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DIY Dog Pool – How to Build A Dog Pool

White dog in pink kiddie pool shaking off water

Lot’s of dogs LOVE the water. And building a DIY Dog Pool is the easy way to get them that water experience ANY TIME! I’ll show you how to make a stable dog pool that your dogs will love.

And if your dog loves the summer don’t forget to check out these DIY Icecream recipes – they are fun summer treats for dogs!

How to Make a Dog Pool At Home

I have a couple of variations for you in this post, depending on how much work you want to put in. The first one is a full-fledged in ground kiddie pool for dogs, complete with paver surround.

That’s followed by a few other great dog pool ideas that are easy to execute so your dog can have fun in the water all season.

Let’s get started!

The Ultimate Dog Pool – An In Ground Kiddie Pool for Dogs

Brown dog laying in red kiddie pool in shade

This project is fairly simple if intensive

If your dogs love water, I would keep this pool full all season. It’s made from a hard plastic kiddie pool and dogs love it.

You’ll want to change the water out periodically, but the great thing about using a hard plastic pool is that it will just lift out to be emptied!

DIY Dog Pool Video

This video shows you how to create an in ground dog pool. They are using this for a pond, but the process is the same. Just don’t include the pump.


  • Hard plastic kiddie pool (not an inflatable pool)
  • Pavers or bricks


  1. Using a shovel, dig out the ground where you will place the pool to the size and depth of your plastic pool. Once you have the area for the pool dug out, decide how big you want your brick paver border. Dig out the area for the border going only as deep as the depth of your pavers but as far out as you want your border.
  2. Arrange the pavers in a decorative pattern.
  3. Fill the crevices between the pavers with sand or dog-friendly ground cover plants.

*Note: You can use wood and build a small deck border if you don’t want to use pavers or bricks.

Other Dog Pool Ideas

The in ground dog pool is my favorite option. But here are some other ideas for how to build a dog pool in case you don’t want to do an in ground pool or if you need it for another purpose, like a therapy pool for an older dog.

DIY Dog Therapy Pool

If your dog needs a therapy pool for rehabilitation or to work arthritic joints, then you may need something deeper than the in ground kiddie pool version.

In this case I would use an above ground or in ground human pool with DIY dog pool steps and a dog pool ramp to help them get in and out of the pool easily.

DIY Dog Pool Steps

If you have an above ground pool that you want your dog to be able to enjoy a swim with you in then it’s important that you have steps for your dog to get into the pool with.

You can buy steps like these from Amazon, or you can make them yourself.

To do this inexpensively using old wood pallets makes a lot of sense.

First, you’ll need to determine exactly how many steps you’ll need for your particular pool.

Here’s a video that explains exactly how to do that:

Once you determine how many steps you’ll need you’ll have to cut the part that holds the steps – called the stringer.

stair stringer (also called ‘string’ or ‘stringer board’) is the housing on either side of a flight of stairs, into which the treads and risers are fixed. A staircase will have twostringers, one on either side of the steps.

Here’s a video that shows you exactly how to cut the stringers for your stairs and how to build them.

DIY Dog Pool Ramp

A dog pool ramp is something you put into the pool from the edge of the pool into the water to make it easier for your dogs to get in and out of the pool.

If you have a small in ground pool like the ultimate dog pool above, you won’t need this, but if you have a “human pool” for your dogs to use this will make it much easier for them.

Thanks to K9 of Mine for this cool ramp idea!

DIY Dog Pool Ramp
DIY Dog Pool Ramp
DIY Dog Pool Ramp



  1. Using a utility knife, cut one row of squares from your mat ( One square wide by three squares down). Set aside your 2 square by three square piece of mat for just a moment.
  2. Take the one square by three square piece of mat and cut one square off.
  3. Take your one by two mat and place it at the bottom of your two square by three square section of mat and fasten them together using zip ties. Use enough zip ties to secure the mats through every 3rd of 4th hole. This should create a two square wide and four square long mat ( 2 foot by 4 foot)
  4. Cut your pool noodles into 2 foot sections. You will need 4 of these.
  5. Using zip ties, secure your pool noodles to the underneath of the mat. Looking at the four square length, a pool noodle should be attached from the bottom up two square on each side, then 2 pool noodles in the center of the first two noodles. Make sure to trim the extra length off the zip ties as needed.
  6. On the opposite end of the mat away from the pool noodles, weave the rope back and forth through the last row of holes.
  7. To use the ramp lay the pool noodles end of the mat (noodle side down) into the pool with the rest of the mat resting over the side of the pool and on to the deck. Use the rope to secure the ramp to the deck or deck rails.

DIY Dog Pool Ladder

I like steps and ramps better for dogs, but some dogs will climb a ladder. Here are the basics of how to make a DIY ladder for your pool made out of PVC.

Thanks to for these amazing pool ladder instructions.


  • 2″ PVC Pipe (twice the height of the pool, plus 8 feet)
  • 6 2″-90-Degree PVC Elbows
  • 2 2″-Tee (per step) If you have 5 steps total, you need 10 T’s.
  • 4 2″-45-Degree Elbows
  • Skate Board tape (for traction on the steps)
  • stainless steel screws
  • Spray Foam insulation
  • PVC Primer
  • PVC Glue


  1. Measure and cut the PVC “steps” (18″ each), then spray the foam insulation into each pipe of the step for additional stability, let it dry.
  2. Cut the remaining PVC into 12″ pieces.
  3. Prime the ends of the cut PVC, let the primer dry.
  4. Start with a 90-degree elbow and connect 2 elbows with one 18″ piece of pvc to create the bottom rung of the ladder.
  5. Insert two pieces of 12″ pvc to create the height for the next run, and top each section with a Tee joint, gluing in place as you go.
  6. Repeat until the ladder is the desired height
  7. Apply two 90-degree angle joints to the top of ladder and set aside.
  8. Build the other side of the ladder in the same manner, but once you get to the top, apply a 45-Degree angle joint to the top of the ladder to create a slope.
  9. Attach the two ladders, glue into place. Apply waterproof skateboard tape to each rung of the ladder to help prevent slipping.

How to Keep a Dog Pool Clean

If you are using an in ground kiddie pool for dogs, cleaning is easy.

  • Just lift the pool out
  • Dump it in a place where the water will be useful like your flower beds
  • Rinse it with the hose
  • Put it back in the ground
  • Refill

If you are using a human type pool that your dogs are playing in, you’ll want to clean it the way you regularly do for human use.

The Bottom Line on DIY Dog Pools

There are many ways that your dog can have water fun in the summer.

If you don’t have a human swimming pool that you’d like to also use for your dogs, then the instructions for the ultimate dog pool above are a great way for your water loving dog to cool off and have a great time!

For more DIY Puppy Love, check out Squeaky Doggie Bone Tutorial and Simple DIY No-Sew Denim Dog Toy.

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