Before plopping a dog house in your yard, you have to make sure you are aware of the requirements needed for the dog house to be safe and comfortable.
If a dog is left in a yard in all kinds of weather, he needs a good dog house. That dog house needs to be well-built so that your dog is protected. You want a dog house that is your pets go-to place for rest, protection, safety and comfort.
Dry and Warm: Having rain dripping down into the dog house will make for one soggy place of refuge for a dog, and he will probably prefer to not use that dog house on wet days. Make sure all parts of the dog house are sealed tight. To keep your pups dog house from losing heat, the floor of the dog house should be covered in materials that will prevent heat loss. Shavings of wood works well for preventing heat loss as does a bed of straw. When the shavings or straw gets too dirty, then you can easily replace it. You can also place a dog bed in the dog house and plan to wash it often.
Dry and Cool: There are manufacturers of dog houses who sell dog houses that will keep your dog cool in hot weather. Make sure the dog house you build, or purchase, is raised so that the heat from the ground will not seap into the dog house. Also, a hot-weather dog house should have floor and ceiling ventilation.
Up High and Not Too Big: The dog house entrance door should be just big enough for your pup to fit through to prevent the loss of heat during those cold weather conditions. Installing a flap over the door will keep those icy winds from reaching your pup. The dog house door needs to be elevated a bit so it is not flush with the ground to prevent water from flowing inside the dog house during heavy rains.
You Need a Fenced Yard if You Plan on a Dog House: I did alert police to a dog that was chained to a dog house in an unfenced yard. That dog house was positioned right next to a road that had a steady stream of walkers, children and adults riding bikes, and cars. Either the dog could have attacked a human on the road, or he could have been hit by a car. If a dog chained to a dog house sees a squirrel, a rabbit, or any other animal that would make for suitable prey, that chained dog could sustain serious injury trying to yank that chain to facilitate chasing any animal that passes by. Any dogs on the loose, or any humans who are bent on harming a dog, could easily get to a dog chained to a dog house in an unfenced yard. If your yard is not surrounded by a fence, then a dog house is not a good idea.
Update: The police I alerted regarding the dog chained to the dog house were wonderful and acted immediately. Since the yard containing the doghouse was not fenced, the owners were ordered to remove the dog house. The owners were now responsible for providing the right kind of abode for their dog inside their house, and they had to meet their dogs outdoor needs by walking the dog with a leash attached. The owners of the dog also received a hefty fine for chaining the dog to the dog house and for leaving him sitting in cold, frigid puddles when the weather was bad. Contact your local police department if you become aware of animal cruelty.