Can Dogs Live in Your Garage?

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Introduction

Dogs are known for being highly resilient beings that are able to adapt to almost any environment. Depending on the climate in your area, you may decide that you want to leave your dog in a number of different places. Many dogs live outdoors year-round, which can put them in dangerously hot or cold temperatures, so many people believe that their garage is a great alternative.

While the garage may seem like a good place to let your dog stay during extreme weather, is it safe for them? What dangers are present to dogs that are left alone in garages?

Signs That Dogs Shouldn't Live in Garages

When it comes to deciding where your dog should live in your home, it can be difficult. Some people view dogs as members of the family, and the dog lives in the homes of the owners. Other people believe that dogs should live outdoors or in a shed or garage. A third group of people have dogs that live both indoors and outdoors.

What is best for your pooch? Really, dogs should live inside your home. Outdoor dogs are left out in the heat and cold, which can cause health problems. Heat stroke can lead to brain damage, and dehydration is a serious worry for dogs left out in hot weather. In the snow or cold weather, dogs can get frostbite and hypothermia.

Unfortunately, even in a garage, dogs can be exposed to tough temperatures. In most homes, garages aren’t temperature controlled, which means that in the summer, the garage will be too hot and stuffy for your pooch, much like when they are trapped in a hot car. In the winter, the garage may not be so bad, but if snow or ice gets into the garage, it can be too cold to leave your dog out there without proper bedding.

Body Language

Dogs use body language to communicate with humans since we don't understand each others' verbal languages. Here are some body language signs that your dog isn't happy in your garage:
  • Barking
  • Whining
  • Ears drop
  • Low tail carriage
  • Dropped Ears
  • Averting eyes

Other Signs

Other signs that dogs aren't safe in a garage include:
  • Being susceptible to extreme temperatures
  • Accessing dangerous materials
  • Injuring themselves on equipment or tools

History of Dogs Living in Garages

In the past, it may have been very common for dogs to be brought into the garage from outside on extremely hot or cold days. Now, more people view dogs as members of the family, so they are accustomed to their dogs living in their homes. Since a garage isn’t a suitable environment for a dog for a number of reasons, it is a good idea to keep your dog in your home.

In a garage, your dog is left in uncontrollable temperatures, which means that it is easy for them to get too cold or to overheat, but that isn’t the end of the dangers. When kept in a garage, your dog may have easy access to harmful chemicals. Many people store their motor oil and anti-freeze in their garages. These types of liquids could cause significant health problems for your dog, including death. With the lack of supervision your dog will get in the garage, your dog might not receive the medical attention they need in time to prevent permanent damage from a poisoning.

Tools are also dangerous for your dog to be around. If your dog knocks over heavy tools onto itself, you could be looking at serious injuries, such as a concussion or broken bones. If you aren’t supervising your pet in the garage, you may not make it to them in time to save them.

Science Behind Dogs Living in a Garage

Dogs are known for being highly adaptable, so they would probably do just fine in a safe space in your garage. Your dog should be kept in an enclosed area away from any dangerous substances or objects. A kennel or corral can transform your garage into a much safer environment for your pooch.

To make the garage even safer for a dog, you can provide a fan or space heater to help control the temperature in the garage. You will want to keep the fan or heater and all of its cords out of reach of your dog. This is also where a corral or kennel comes in handy.

You will still need to give your pet the appropriate amount of food and water and plenty of exercise and bathroom breaks. Dogs also need interaction, so you need to make sure that you spend time with them.

Having Your Dog Living in a Garage

As a dog owner, it is important that you make your dog’s need a priority. The problem with a dog living in a garage is that they are easy to lock up and forget about. A dog needs social interaction and affection to live a happy, healthy life. If you need to leave your dog in the garage for a couple of hours, this isn’t a big deal as long as it is done safely, but keeping your dog in the garage all the time means that they aren’t getting the attention that they need from their owners.

Exercise is also important, so getting your dog outside or in your home for playtime is crucial. You should ensure that your dog is getting exercise at least once a day. Plus, potty breaks are important for your dog, unless you want them to go in the garage.

Unless your garage has been converted into a living space, it is likely that it isn’t a safe space for your dog. Harmful tools and chemicals are generally kept in the garage, and any uncleaned spills or accidents can lead to disastrous results for your dog. It isn’t a good idea to leave your dog around these items for their own safety.

Ventilation problems are also common in garages. If there are windows in your garage, that can help. Leaving a door open to a fenced-in area can also be helpful. Plus, windows provide light for your dog without you having to leave a light on all the time.

Food and water are necessary for dogs all the time, and when dogs are left in a garage, it can be hard to monitor how much food and water they have at any given time. As the owner, it is your job to make sure that your pooch is getting everything that it needs.

Safety Tips for Keeping Your Dog in a Garage:

  • Find a way to make the space colder or warmer when needed.
  • Keep dogs away from harmful objects and substances in the garage.
  • Provide your dog with plenty of food and water.
  • Be sure your dog gets time for potty breaks and exercise.
  • Play and interact with your dog on a regular basis.