The Complete Guide to Space Requirements
We THOUGHT we had everything planned out… we purchased pipe and the correct kind of wire. There was to much money involved to mess this up, but like a slap in the face it happened… The dog pens weren’t tall enough to pass inspection. Keep reading to make sure that you don’t make the same mistake!
The good thing about mistakes is that they are all fixable, but not always cheap. At least we didn’t mess up our dogs food.
When I first started researching licensing requirements I realized how much dedication it takes to read through the state and USDA data. Keep in mind that these guidelines are good for the state of Kansas, and the USDA in November of 2017.
The USDA requirements are probably more strict than your state, but don’t take my word for it. Just make a phone call to your state they can send you in the right direction. (Kansas is Kansas Pet Animal Act)
Formula for Space Requirements
(Length of dog in inches + 6) x (length of the dog in inches + 6) = required floor space in square inches.
Required floor space in inches/144 = required floor space in square feet.
For more in depth details see page 65 (look for the physical page 65, it will be printed on the bottom of the document, not the page numbers at the top) of USDA liscense regulations. (United States Department of Agriculture)
Understanding the Formula
Lets try to make this as simple as possible.
Use a tape measure to find the length of your longest dog. For example: If my largest Boston terrier is 22 inches long (from his nose to the end of his tail) I would insert 22 in the length location. If you want to be on the safe side add an inch or two to your dogs length. (It would be way more work, and MONEY to fix this in the future than to have a little extra space.) If your dog is 22 inches long:
(22+6) x (22+6)= required floor space in inches
28 x 28 = required floor space in inches
28 x 28 = 784
784/144 = 5.4 required floor space in square feet per dog that is 22 inches long.
Benefits of Double Pens
- You can build a 12 square foot pen (based off of the example above), and place two dogs in one pen relieving you of the requirement to document exercise.
- Another benefit of double pens is you can use one for a litter of puppies and their mother. If you want to go a different route see USDA license regulations to help determine space requirements. (physical page 65)
When in doubt add space!
If you will be raising small dogs keep in mind: the height of each pen must be at least 6 inches taller than the highest point of the HEAD of your tallest dog when standing.
This was the mistake that we made and we will have to rebuild our pens in the future. Learn from our mistake! I also plan on adding lots of extra space so that our dogs will have plenty of room to play.
IF THESE REQUIREMENTS ARE NOT MET, THEN YOU DON’T MEET REQUIREMENTS TO BE LICENSED. (As of November 2017 when I wrote this post) Keep in mind that you don’t have to be licensed unless you are having more than 3 to 5 litters of puppies per year. Although, if you are selling your puppies over the internet (sight unseen) a license is required.
Lets do this the right way… plenty of space, love, exercise, and socialization for our puppies!