Working out the design and colors for a DIY dog-crate end table

Rob had such great success making a Murphy bed last month that he's now gung-ho to make the next piece of furniture on my request list - a dog crate that doubles as an end table.

Having a crate-trained dog is a wonderful thing. I never have to worry about him getting into something he shouldn't or our feisty cat terrorizing him while we're away. But Milou came from the Illinois Doberman Rescue Plus, and they trained him in a Doberman-size crate, even though he's 25 pounds at the most.

We wanted to make him feel comfortable when we adopted him, so we borrowed a huge crate from some friends. However, that sucker takes up a good portion of our bedroom. There's no room for it in the living room, either, so we have to listen to the poor dog yelping from the minute we pull in, as we unlock the door and walk to the bedroom to let him out. It would be so much easier to crate him in the living room.

Enter the dog crate end table - I've wanted one for as long as I've known about them, but I've always balked at the price tag. Still, how great would it be to have your dog crate do double-duty? It's a perfect idea for small-house dwellers like us.

 

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Then I spied DIY dog crate end table instructions from AnaWhite.com and begged Rob to try making one. He finally agreed, but he wants something more unique. He recently stopped in at the Preservation and Conservation Architectural Salvage Warehouse. He picked up some solid oak and radiator covers for about $10.

He took apart the radiator covers to remove the patterned screens. He plans to incorporate them into the dog crate design (I'm not quite sure how). They are a bit rusty, though, so they definitely call for some Rustoleum spray paint.

My big dilemma so far is, what color should we spray paint them? We own glossy black, bright red, brown, silver and copper. I'm leaning toward black, but not ruling out any other color, either, including white. Anyone have an opinion? Rob wants to build the rest of the crate out of solid wood. It will probably have a dark wood stain, maybe even the same Jacobean we stained our Murphy bed.

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DenaS wrote on September 05, 2012 at 8:09 pm

Make sure you do an animal safety toxicity check on everything you're using on the crate - (a) dogs are smaller and therefore subject to toxins at smaller doses than humans, and (b) if he likes licking or chewing or nuzzling anything, or if he rubs against the inside and then licks himself, he can pick up stuff that way.

If it was up to me I'd use wood that hadn't been treated with the usual preservative and anti-inflammatory chemicals, and then maybe rub mineral oil or beeswax into it for a finish? Or use non-toxic stains under those - I don't know particular manufacturers of those off the top of my head though.

The Common Ground Food Co-op has been sourcing non-treated and non-hazardous wood for use in their construction and reconstruction; you might ask them for some of the materials when they're ready to take things down?