What do you guys think of this outdoor shelter?

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What do you guys think about this outdoor shelter? With a $20 coupon, this is only $40 for an insulated outdoor shelter. I'm probably going to spend 3x that just on materials if I make it myself. I'm enclosing a relatively large outdoor area so I will probably still end up making a different shelter for proper overwintering (with heat on a thermostat) but at $40 I'm struggling to see any way this ends up a waste of money. If anything it's just another fun cave or another option for thermoregulation or shelter.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0CKXNC91Y/?tag=exoticpetnetw-20
 

jaizei

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What type of tortoise? It'd prob work for a smaller species.

The insulation it comes with is prob not tortoise proof, but you could easily retrofit it with foam board/plywood.
 

JoJosMom

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What do you guys think about this outdoor shelter? With a $20 coupon, this is only $40 for an insulated outdoor shelter. I'm probably going to spend 3x that just on materials if I make it myself. I'm enclosing a relatively large outdoor area so I will probably still end up making a different shelter for proper overwintering (with heat on a thermostat) but at $40 I'm struggling to see any way this ends up a waste of money. If anything it's just another fun cave or another option for thermoregulation or shelter.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0CKXNC91Y/?tag=exoticpetnetw-20
It may work for a small torts, but, if you plan to have a larger tort, then I would be concerned that it would destroy that insulated liner very quickly when rubbing their shell up against it with force. By the demensions it lists, this is a small box anyway. The box itself seems pretty good for $40, heck even the full price $59.99 with the price of lumber these days. BUT, I would recommend putting in your own insulation board or similar as @jaizei suggested.

Can we get some more info on your tort that you plan on occupying this house with?
 

SinLA

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Just remember, things designed for mammals take into account that the animal itself generates heat and a reptile does not, while this will be good at keeping out wind and keeping the inside temp steady it will only be as steady as the ambient air in there. so you still need some kind of heat source and then make sure what you have isn't flammable. So basically that's going to be a really nice hide.

I did do something similar using a DP doghouse, which at least at the time was only the true legit-insulated dog house I could find: https://www.asldoghouses.com/doghouse-products/dp-hunter-doghouse.html and I got one super cheap on sale somewhere.

But even with it being insulated you have to have a heat source. This is what I did (see photos), and I worked hard to make sure the brooder didn't touch the plastic sides which probably would not catch fire, but I didn't want to risk it.

In the end, it did not work for me because the heat attracted crickets and it was far less a PITA for me just to bring Fezzik into his indoor enclosure in the garage which stays toasty with a greenhouse over it.

That said, he does love the doghouse as his preferred choice to sleep because he feels very safe in there: see video
 

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Tom

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What do you guys think about this outdoor shelter? With a $20 coupon, this is only $40 for an insulated outdoor shelter. I'm probably going to spend 3x that just on materials if I make it myself. I'm enclosing a relatively large outdoor area so I will probably still end up making a different shelter for proper overwintering (with heat on a thermostat) but at $40 I'm struggling to see any way this ends up a waste of money. If anything it's just another fun cave or another option for thermoregulation or shelter.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0CKXNC91Y/?tag=exoticpetnetw-20
What type and size tortoise are we talking about?

Dog houses are for dogs, or in this case, cat houses are for cats. If you line the walls, floor, and ceiling, with plywood, make the doorway much smaller and lower, build an actual closable door, and add suitable heating, it MIGHT work. Only your thermometer can answer that question after you've done all that work and spent all that money on it.

By the time you do all the necessary sealing and retro-fitting and redesigning, it seems like it would be much easier, and certainly much better to just build your own that is designed for a tortoise and is known to work perfectly for our purposes.
 
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This would be for an Eastern Hermann's, so a small species.

It would be pretty easy to just screw in some small thin planks along the sides of the interior to stop the tort from abraiding the insulation. I know it wont be enough to overwinter in weeks of freezing temps but the insulation would at least minimize temp swings between day/night and keep the inside somewhere in the middle of the daily highs and lows. For example days like today with a high of 87 and a low of 61, it might stay in the 70s overnight. Which might be more useful for my climate's spring and fall - or even those random weeks in the winter that get into the 60-70s.
 
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This would be for an Eastern Hermann's, so a small species.

It would be pretty easy to just screw in some small thin planks along the sides of the interior to stop the tort from abraiding the insulation. I know it wont be enough to overwinter in weeks of freezing temps but the insulation would at least minimize temp swings between day/night and keep the inside somewhere in the middle of the daily highs and lows. For example days like today with a high of 87 and a low of 61, it might stay in the 70s overnight. Which might be more useful for my climate's spring and fall - or even those random weeks in the winter that get into the 60-70s.
I guess what I'm trying to say is, I think that for a good portion of the year in my area, an overwintering box will be overkill for what is needed. I'm almost more concerned about the unpredictable temp swings of spring and fall (and what we call false spring and false fall, where temps raise or drop only to go back in a week or so) then the actual winter, where you can at least count on it being cold (at least at night).
 
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SinLA

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This would be for an Eastern Hermann's, so a small species.

It would be pretty easy to just screw in some small thin planks along the sides of the interior to stop the tort from abraiding the insulation. I know it wont be enough to overwinter in weeks of freezing temps but the insulation would at least minimize temp swings between day/night and keep the inside somewhere in the middle of the daily highs and lows. For example days like today with a high of 87 and a low of 61, it might stay in the 70s overnight. Which might be more useful for my climate's spring and fall - or even those random weeks in the winter that get into the 60-70s.

I don't think that's true though. There has to be source of the heat for it to retain the heat. So a cat would keep it warm with its body temp, and then maintain that heat but I don't think a unheated insulated box will be "inherently" warmer or colder than its ambient temperature (beyond a few hours at sunset, but the same would apply for morning at sunrise) without something generating heat (or cold) inside it, which a reptile won't do
 
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I don't think that's true though. There has to be source of the heat for it to retain the heat. So a cat would keep it warm with its body temp, and then maintain that heat but I don't think a unheated insulated box will be "inherently" warmer or colder than its ambient temperature (beyond a few hours at sunset, but the same would apply for morning at sunrise) without something generating heat (or cold) inside it, which a reptile won't do
Okay, fair enough. 👍
 

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