How to make a small house for goats, dogs and any small animal using discarded pallets. Pallets are free, strong and easy to get.
I love pallets! They’re strong, often made from hardwood, and best of all free! You can make all kinds of things from them. I can’t take all the credit for this idea. I had planned on making a chicken coop out of some pallets I have been gathering until I was given a free Bob house (ice fishing house) which I used for the chickens.
I then read a great article in one of my favorite magazines, Backwoods Home (“Build a small A frame using pallets”). One of the ideas was a simple goat house. I have wanted some goats for some time now to help with the overgrown brush and brambles on my 13+ acres in the White Mountains of New Hampshire.
I found a nearby organic farmer that had a young Nubian goat that if not sold would be heading to the freezer shortly. So I bought Mo! I needed to build him a home quickly, so I set about making the A-frame home sketched out in the article. First I took 3 of the smaller sized (about 3′ x 2′) pallets and connected them, with screws and L-brackets.
L brackets are another one of my favorite things; amazing what you can build with them! Then I took two of the full-sized pallets and, using a hinge (used) to connect them, made the A-frame. Put the hinge on the inside to connect the two pallets, and then you are able to adjust the pallets to get the size you want. I then cut a triangle of T1-11 siding (free from my neighbor’s scrap pile) and attached it to the back of the A-frame. Then I made a much smaller triangle to brace the top of the front. With help of a friend (the only outside help I needed) I lifted the very heavy A-frame on to the top of the 3 small pallets.
The next steps were fairly straight forward, I used more of the scrap T1-11 siding to side the outside and roof of the house. I used some scrap metal flashing to make a drip edge where the roof met the sides. I do plan to use some (leftover, of course) asphalt shingles to make the roof last longer. I also used more pallets to build a small pen around the house for Mo to be in at night and when I’m not around to let him browse in the field.
I later expanded it to make it meet up with the chicken pen next door, giving him more room and allowing the chickens and Mo to spend more quality time together. I wrapped the entire pen with wire fencing (which I got free from another neighbor). I even made Mo a hay rack from a really small pallet.
The entire house and pen cost me a few dollars for the L-brackets, and screws, some of which I already had stashed in my miscellaneous hardware drawer in the tool shed. MoMow is now a very happy goat with his warm chalet. Much better than a freezer, I’m sure. Now, I just need to get him a buddy!
Published in: Do-It-Yourself