What Is The Best Dog Crate For Your Dog?

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Best Crates By Type
Wire
Midwest Life logo small
Plastic
PetMate Crate logo small
Soft-Sided
PetNation logo small
Heavy-Duty

Is your dog chewing up shoes and destroying your furniture? You might want to consider a crate. While crate training is key for puppies, it may also be a good choice when your pup isn’t so little anymore. It creates an indoor escape for dogs and becomes their home within your home.

Article Overview

Best Dog Crates By Type

Not all dog crates are created equal, and you’ll want to make sure you choose the kind that’s best for your life, and your dog’s needs.

Best Wire Dog Crate: Midwest Life Stages

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Midwest Life Stages Double-Door Folding Metal Dog CrateWire crates are well-ventilated and often portable (though they can be a bit heavy). They’re a great option for dogs that like to see their surroundings, need a little extra air-flow and aren’t escape artists.

While they aren’t the most attractive options and can be noisier than other types of crates, wire crates are also easy to clean and offer removable panels so your puppy can grow into the space. You can also find some which are collapsible for easy transport.

The Midwest Life Stages Double-Door Folding Metal Dog Crate is a versatile metal crate with an adjustable divider. It offers front and side access, bolt latches and comes with a one-year warranty. Some buyers have experienced issues with the latch, especially in larger dogs.

We have used Midwest Dog Crates for years. They always hold up wonderfully and provide a cozy den for our dogs to rest while we are away. And other team members use them for their pups and have been pleased with their performance. – Michelle S., Co-Founder of Canine Journal

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Best Plastic Dog Crate: Petmate Two Door

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PetMate KennelPlastic dog crates are also not the most attractive kennel option. However, they’re great for dogs who like a little more privacy and seclusion when they sleep. But they’re not as well-ventilated or as easy to clean as a wire crate.

Plastic crates have a cozy vibe and are difficult to escape. Plastic crates are also great for air travel and are easy to store when they’re not in use (the top half comes off so you can easily stack the two halves).

The Petmate Two-Door, Top-Load crate provides easy access for your pup, while steel and plastic combine to provide safety and strength. It comes in four colors: hot pink/black, pearl white/coffee ground, pearl ash blue/coffee ground and pearl tan/coffee ground.

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Best Soft-Sided Dog Crate: Petnation Port-A-Crate

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Dog sitting inside a Petnation Port-A-CrateThere are several pluses of soft-sided crates: they’re lightweight, great for travel and store easily. However, this is really only an option for smaller dogs. They’re also more difficult to clean and can be easy for curious pups to escape from or destructive animals to chew through.

The Petnation Port-A-Crate is lightweight, portable, and made of tightly woven mesh fabric surrounded by an extra-strong steel frame. This crate sets up and folds down in seconds.

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Best Heavy-Duty Dog Crate: ProSelect Empire Cage

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ProSelect Empire Dog CageThese tough crates are made to house the most clever and destructive dogs. They’re a bit expensive, yet they more than pay for themselves if you have to replace a less sturdy crate several times due to your pup’s antics.

Another plus for heavy-duty crates: some are airline travel approved. So, if your dog is already accustomed to this crate, travel will be much easier.

The ProSelect Empire Cage is specifically designed to house destructive or aggressive dogs. This crate features strong steel tubing, sturdy dual door latches and heavy-duty welding at the cage’s key stress points. It also has wheels, which are handy for travel.

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Best Travel Dog Crate: Diggs Revol

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Diggs Revol emptyA collapsible crate is essential if you travel a lot with your dog, and the Diggs Revol Collapsible Dog Crate is an excellent option. It’s easy to break down and set up again. And it’s much more sturdy than standard wire kennels or portable soft-sided crates.

This crate features three ergonomic handles and two wheels for easy transport. It also has solid escape-proof doors, an adjustable puppy divider and a rounded frame to prevent injuries. You can collapse it in seconds and easily carry it in one hand. 

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Best Fashion Dog Crate: Crown Pet Crate Table

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Crown Pet Crate on AmazonFashion crates are fashion-forward. Their wood or rattan finish certainly looks the best of all these options around the house, and some can even double as a side table, proving that these crates aren’t just a pretty face — they’re functional too.

The downside to these crates is that they’re not an option for destructive dogs due to their wood-based construction. They could also be easily damaged if they have a wood floor and there is an unexpected accident.

The Crown Pet Crate Table is a durable, hardwood-constructed crate that’s fashion-forward, well-ventilated and has a waterproof floor that makes it easy to clean in the event of an accident.

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Dog Crate Accessories

Now that you’ve decided on a crate, you may also want to consider some of these add-ons to make the experience more comfortable for your dog and less of a disruption to your house decor.

  • A crate bed or liner will make your pet more comfortable on what can otherwise be a pretty hard surface.
  • There are a couple of different attachable cup options (stainless steel or plastic) to keep your pet hydrated while you’re away.
  • If a clunky crate doesn’t quite match your home decor, you can also toss a crate cover over the top to disguise it and make it more of a fashion statement (make sure you order the correct size).

How To House Train Your Dog

No matter what type of dog you have or crate you get, remember that having a happy place for your best friend is a must. Even if you don’t use your crate all the time, it’s nice to have the option for when you have guests or children around or those times when you are traveling with your pup.

Crate Training Tips

You’ve probably heard that dogs are den animals and that they look to their crate for comfort in times of stress. A crate, approached correctly, provides this den-like structure within your own home, giving your pup a safe place to sleep, retreat and maybe even eat.

For more on the process of crate training, see our articles crate training your puppy and 4 crate-training tips. Have you crate trained, but your dog is still crying in the crate? We also have tips on how to stop your dog from whining in his crate.

Do you have any crate training tips or favorite crates to recommend?

About The Author:

Michelle holds an MBA from Vanderbilt University and has worked in marketing at Bank of America, Mattel and Hanes. Her expert advice and opinions have appeared in many outstanding media outlets, including The New York Times' Wirecutter, Forbes, People, Reader's Digest and Apartment Therapy, among others.

She is the proud co-founder of Canine Journal and a dog lover through and through. Since the day she was born, she has lived in a home full of dogs. Her adult home is no exception where she and her husband live with Lily and Barley, their two adorable rescue pups.

In addition to her love for snuggling with dogs, she also has enjoyed working professionally in the canine field since 1999 when she started her first dog-related job at a dog bakery.

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