Which Dog Crate Is Best For Your Dog?

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Yellow dog in crateIs 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 little pup isn’t so little anymore. It creates a little indoor escape for dogs and becomes a home within your home. Find out why dog crates can be a great option for dogs of any age and read our review of the various types of crates available. We’ve even picked out the best dog crate for each category.

The Importance of Dog Crate Training

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, visit our article, Crate Training Your Puppy: The Key To A Pee-Free Home.

Types of Dog Crates

You may be thinking: How many types of crates can there actually be? The truth is: A LOT! Not all dog crates are created equal though, and you’ll want to make sure you choose the type that’s best for your life, and your dog. The main types of dog crates are:

Wire Dog Crate

Wire 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 collapsable for easy transport.

Best Wire Dog Crate

Midwest Life Stages Double-Door Folding Metal Dog Crate (View on Amazon) – This versatile metal crate with adjustable divider offers front and side access, bolt latches, and comes with a one-year warranty. This is the one that a couple of our team members use for their pups.

Price: $52.99

Plastic Dog Crate

PetMate Kennel on Amazon
Plastic dog crates are also not the most attractive kennel option, however they’re great for dogs that like a little more privacy and seclusion when they sleep. But, they’re not as well-ventilated or as easy to clean as the wire crate. Plastic crates have a cozy vibe and are difficult for dogs to escape from. 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).

Best Plastic Dog Crate

Petmate Two-Door, Top-Load Kennel (View on Amazon) – Two-door construction on this plastic crate provides easy access for your pup, while steel and plastic combine to provide safety and strength.

Price: $39.95

Soft-Sided Dog Crate

Petnation Port-a-crate on Amazon
There are a several pluses for soft-sided crates: they’re lightweight, great for travel, and store easily. However they’re really only an option for smaller dogs. They’re also more difficult to clean, can be easy for curious pups to escape from, or destructive pups to chew through.

Best Soft-Side Dog Crate

Petnation Port-a-Crate (View on Amazon) – 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.

Price: $23.99

Heavy-Duty Dog Crate

ProSelect on Amazon
These tough numbers are made to house the most clever and destructive dogs. They are 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 approved for airline travel. So, if your dog is already accustomed to this crate, travel will be much easier.

Best Heavy-Duty Dog Crate

ProSelect Empire Cage (View on Amazon) – Designed specifically 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.

Price: $382.48

Fashion Dog Crate

Crown Pet Crate on Amazon
Just like they sound, fashion 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.

Best Fashion Dog Crate

Crown Pet Crate Table (View on Amazon) – This durable, hardwood constructed crate is fashion-forward, well-ventilated, and has a waterproof floor that makes it easy to clean in the event of an accident.

Price: $238.00

Crate Training Tips Video

So 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.

Do you have a crate for your pet? Any crate training tips or favorites?

The information contained in this article and website is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional safety advice; it is provided for educational purposes only.

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Sara is a writer for Canine Journal. She adores dogs and recently adopted a rescue pup named Beamer. Whole she may be adjusting to life with another being to care for, she needed no time to adjust to all the extra love.

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3 Comments on "Which Dog Crate Is Best For Your Dog?"

I am a dog trainer with over 30 years of experience and I have recently been seeing a lot of abnormal behaviors from puppies and adult dogs that have been crated for any length of time.
Of course, there are times when crating is appropriate, such as for traveling or when attending dog shows. But it should not be used as a “Dog or puppy dog sitter”.
It interferes with normal behavioral development and may actually cause the behaviors you are trying to prevent!
Crating or confinement is unnatural and should not be used as a training tool for dogs. If your dog is chewing on shoes, move the shoes out of the reach of the dog. Don’t crate the dog, I am a dog obedience trainer and I am seeing more and more maladaptive behavior in dogs because people are confining their dogs instead of training them.
Don’t do it!
Put your dog on a leash if you have problems but don’t put them in a crate!
and putting dogs on a leash is natural? obedience training is natural? stop with the i know all and you’re wrong…

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