There is nothing more satisfying than taking something which most people would think is at the end of its life and repurposing it into something else.  One of the most popular choices that people use to upcycle is pallet wood. They can be picked up for next to nothing and are sometimes even free.

Pallet wood can be used to make all sorts of creative things, from picture frames to decorations for your home, but how about using pallet wood to make something that has a great practical purpose too?

If you have a dog and you’re looking for a unique and rustic looking stand for his bowl, John Woods from All Things Dogs built his very own stand and created a guide to go with it. He has shared his step-by-step process so you can treat your dog to a new accessory without it costing a fortune.


  • Nine pieces of pallet wood
  • A hammer
  • Nails
  • Level
  • Pencil
  • Jigsaw
  • Stain

Step One: Prepare the Pallet Wood

You will need to break down the pallet using a hammer and pliers to remove the nails. Remove any rotten pieces of wood, or any that are so heavily stained that they cannot be sanded down to the bare wood. Make sure you have a total of nine pieces of pallet wood to create your dog bowl stand.

Step Two: Cut the Boards to Size

The next step is to measure, mark and cut the wood. The first step you need to do is to figure out how large the bowl is that you want to fit inside the stand. The bowl in our example is 10 inches in diameter.

Take four pieces of pallet wood and measure them to the size of your dog bowl, plus an extra 4 inches. In our example case, that is a total of four pieces of pallet wood at 14 inches per piece. Use a level to draw the lines to ensure they are straight and square.

Always double check your measurements before making any cuts.  Once you are sure you have the right length, cut two of the pieces of wood to the right length. You can do this with a handsaw. Once they are cut, mark them with a D as these are your depth pieces.

With the other two boards, take one inch away from the original cut line, making the new length 13 inches. You can then cut these two boards. Mark these two pieces with a W as they are your width pieces.

You will then need two support beams which are the same length as the width pieces. You can either use pallet wood for this or scraps of other wood.

Once you are finished cutting you should have a total of six boards. Two width boards that are 13 inches in length, two depth boards that are 14 inches and two support beams that are 13 inches.

Step Three: Build the Base

Now it is time to start build the stand. You are going to create the corners first. To create the initial square shape, nail the width boards into the support beams, then nail the length boards into the support beams. You will then have a square shape and the dog bowl should now fit perfectly in the center.

Step Four: Fixing the Top

Use the leftover pallet wood to measure, mark and cut five boards to size. In the example, we wanted a slight over hang, so we measure them to 14.5 inches. Once you have cut the top pieces, you can nail the boards to the base one pallet at a time.

Step Five: Finishing Touches

To finish the dog bowl stand, turn the bowl upside down and draw around it in the middle of the stand. Use a jigsaw to cut around the circle and remove the piece of wood from the center. You’ll probably want to sand down the rough edges to prevent any injuries to your dog.

Once you have finished building your stand, you might want to stain it to give it a nice finish. If you choose to do this, make sure you select a stain which is non-toxic and suitable for dogs.

We hope you enjoy building your very own dog bowl stand!

John Woods is the editor in chief at All Things Dogs. He is a recognized author by the Dog Writers Association of America and a professional dog behaviorist.