Your dog can and will really do a number on your yard if you allow it to relieve itself anywhere.
To address this, you might want to try your hand at building a DIY outdoor dog potty area.
While there is a wide range of ready-made solutions available, most of them are expensive.
Making one yourself is your best bet in meeting your pet’s needs without spending hundreds of dollars.
- DIY Outdoor Dog Potty Area Projects
- Project #1: A Designated Potty Area in Your Yard
- Project #2: A DIY Potty Box
- Step 1: Prepare All the Tools and Materials
- Step 2: Build the Frame
- Step 3: Make the Drainage Hole
- Step 4: Install the Support for the Plywood Bottom
- Step 5: Install the Plywood and Drill a Hole for the Drainage
- Step 6: Waterproof the Potty Box
- Step 7: Install the Hardware Cloth Supports
- Step 8: Install the Hardware Cloth, Top Frame, and Surface
- Next Up: Training Your Dog To Use It!
DIY Outdoor Dog Potty Area Projects
Building a DIY dog potty area only requires a few materials from the hardware store and a little bit of patience.
In no time, you can have a dedicated spot in your yard where your pet can do its business when needed.
Project #1: A Designated Potty Area in Your Yard
A simple way to have a DIY outdoor dog potty area is by designating a specific spot for it in your yard.
With a few quick changes, you can make it suitable for your dog’s potty needs.
Step 1: Prepare All the Tools and Materials
One thing you have to keep in mind for this project is proper drainage.
The best material for this purpose is pea gravel. It is smooth enough for your dog to step on, looks good on your yard, and is pretty affordable.
Before you start, check your tools organizer for the following:
Also, look for the following materials at a local garden center:
Step 2: Choose a Spot
After preparing the tools and materials needed, the next step is even easier, which is to pick a spot as your dog’s potty area.
It should be away from foot traffic and far enough from your home to prevent contamination.
Step 3: Secure the Perimeter
Secure the perimeter of the area you picked so that it can hold in the gravel you will put in later.
A few pieces of 2×6 boards will do, but if you want something more ornamental, try landscape edging.
Step 4: Install the Drainage Materials
After establishing the perimeter, lay down the weed barrier to prevent pesky weeds from overrunning the spot.
Next, lay down some landscaping rocks to form a one-inch layer.
Step 5: Add Pea Gravel
Finally, pour enough pea gravel to form a three-inch drainage layer and then spread it evenly using a rake.
Project #2: A DIY Potty Box
If you are up for a bit more challenge, you can try building a potty box.
It’s your best option if your outdoor space is paved with concrete or a balcony is all you can work with.
Step 1: Prepare All the Tools and Materials
For this project, you will need enough 2×6 boards to form the sides of the potty box.
How many boards you need would depend on the size of your box. You would also need plywood to form the bottom part of the box.
To complete the project, look for the following materials:
- 1×4 boards for the top frame
- 1×2 boards to support the plywood
- Waterproof tarp
- Hardware cloth to hold the sod or artificial grass
- 1.5” PVC pipe and elbow fitting for drainage
- 0.5” PVC pipe to support the hardware cloth
- Sod or artificial grass
You would also need the following tools:
Step 2: Build the Frame
After gathering the tools and materials, you’re ready to build the sides of the box using the 2×6 boards.
Assemble them in a square or rectangle by driving the Phillips screws using your handheld drill.
Make sure you use the right-sized bit from your socket organizer to prevent damaging the top.
It will also allow you to drive the screw all the way in or remove it if needed.
Step 3: Make the Drainage Hole
Like the other project, you would need a provision for the drainage to make the box easier to clean.
You can do this by drilling a hole through one side of the frame where the drainage pipe will go.
The location of this pipe would depend on the orientation of the box on your yard or balcony.
Step 4: Install the Support for the Plywood Bottom
To have something to support the plywood bottom, you need to install overhangs using the 1×2 board.
Attach the board to the inside of the frame using construction screws.
Make sure that the locations of the support boards are uneven so that the plywood tilts once you insert it.
Doing this will make it easier for water to flow to your drainage pipe.
Step 5: Install the Plywood and Drill a Hole for the Drainage
Once the support overhangs are complete, you should be able to set the plywood on them.
Next, you need to make another hole for the drainage, this time on the plywood.
Insert the elbow into the frame hole and align it to the bottom. This is where you need to cut the hole.
Step 6: Waterproof the Potty Box
Since you will place the potty box outside, you need to protect it from rain by waterproofing it.
To do this, lay down the waterproof tarp on top of the plywood bottom.
Stretch it out properly and press on the corners, then staple it to the inside of the frame.
Staple the tarp at least one inch away from the plywood so that the wires won’t get soaked.
Next, cut a hole on the tarp where the drainage is supposed to go.
Insert the pipe and connect to the elbow, then apply water sealant to the tarp’s edges.
Step 7: Install the Hardware Cloth Supports
Once the sealant has set, install the PVC supports.
Drill holes on the top edge of the side frames, creating slots where you can set the PV pipes.
Make sure that they are spaced equally so that the pipes will run in parallel lines on top of the frame.
A spade drill bit will work best for this step.
Step 8: Install the Hardware Cloth, Top Frame, and Surface
Unroll the hardware cloth and staple it on the top edge of the box frame.
Next, cover the edges of the hardware cloth using the 1×4 boards.
Finally, apply the sod or lay down the artificial grass over the hardware cloth. If you use sod, you might have to replace it from time to time.
Next Up: Training Your Dog To Use It!
Whether you designate a spot in your yard or build a box, you’ll have a cost-effective potty area for your dog.
The next step is equally important: training your fur baby to use it.
It can be a bit more challenging than creating the potty area, but the reward will be worth all your efforts.