Dog Crate Guide
Choosing the best dog crate for your loved pet can be a painstaking process if you are not equipped with the right information. We at BestDogCrates.org aim to make the buying process as easy as possible for dog lovers by providing you with buying advice, dog information and unbiased product reviews. Dog crates have become very popular amongst dog owners in the last decade and there is a huge variety of crates to choose from on the market today. There are plenty of choices regardless of your budget, size of your dog or your personal preference and making the right choice for you and your pet can be a daunting task. Whether you want a sturdy no nonsense crate, a fashionable designer crate or even a pink crate. BestDogCrates.org will make these decisions easier for you.
- 1 Dog Crate Guide
Dog Crate Review Introduction
Increasingly popular over the last decade, dog crates have become a popular addition in a lot of dog owner’s homes. They can be used from anything from a travel cage to a house training aid. A crate can be a very important tool whilst toilet training puppies as it can train your puppy to learn to delay urinating until they’re in a suitable potty area. You can also train your puppy to go to a certain place at certain times, for example, at bedtime. With proper training you can teach your dog to associate their crate as a place of comfort and security and a place to receive the most treats. A good dog crate can also be used as a humane and non-cruel method of punishing a dog. Placing a naughty pup in their crate for a few minutes can settle them down and teach them the error of their ways.
We will show you the top rated dog crates available on the internet today and give you an honest unbiased opinion on these products. We source our information from hands-on experience, user reviews online and other data available. With this data we will compare it with other crates in the same niche market and the same price bracket to help you come to the conclusion if it is right for you and your needs. Our comparison tables will allow you to easily digest a great deal of information within a short space of time without individually checking details of individual crates yourselves.
You have probably been wondering ‘what size crate for my dog”. There are a number of considerations and factors involved in choosing the correct crate size for your dog. This dog crate size guide will help you discover what size dimensions you will need for your pet.
One thing to bear in mind is that your dog’s size is more important than their weight. A great rule to follow is – The crate should be at least 6 inches longer than the length of their body and the crate height should be 6 inches higher than their shoulder height. Follow these rules to ensure your dog is comfortable. If your dog is a mixed breed, you should assume your dog is a purebred of the larger breed in their ancestry to be safe.
It is common for people to choose a crate that is larger than required. There is nothing wrong with that, however you do not want to go to big as the width between the bars increases which may allow your dog to get their head or a part of their body stuck in the gap. Many crates on the market have a divider panel which enables you to cut the size in half making it an idea puppy crate . These types of crate are often called “training crates” due to their size flexibility being an invaluable tool when housebreaking a puppy.
One of the most common mistakes people make when buying dog crates is getting one that is the incorrect size. The dog crate should be big enough for the dog to lie down, stand up and turn around in. This will aid you when housebreaking a puppy, as dogs tend to not want to soil their sleeping areas. If you buy a crate that’s too big for your dog, you run the risk of them using one end for a toilet area and the other end as a clean sleeping area.
The size table below, should give you a good idea of what size crate your dog will need. If you are unsure, please ask your pet professional for advice.
|Size of Crate (Inches)||Dog Weight (lbs)||Breed of Dog|
|18 - 22 (45 - 56cm)||0 - 25||Affenpinscher, Chihuahua, Brussels-Griffon, Maltese, Pomeranian, Papillon, ToyFox Terrier, Russian Toy, Yorkshire Terrier|
|24 (61cm)||0 - 25||Australian Terrier, Bichon-Frise, Fox Terrier, Jack Russell Terrier, Manc Terrier, Mini Poodle, Mini Dachshund, Norfolk Terrier, Norwich Terrier, Pug, Parson Russell Terrier, Schnauzer, Shih Tzu, Skye Terrier, Silky Terrier, Tibetan Spaniel, Toy Poodle, Terrier, Wirehaired Fox-Terrier|
|30 (76cm)||26 - 40||American Pit Bull Terrier, American Water Spaniel, American Staffordshire Terrier, Bedlington Terrier, Clumber Spaniel, Cardigan Welsh Corgi, French Bulldog, Dachshund, Irish Terrier, German Pinscher, King Charles Spaniel, Lhasa-Apso, Mini Schnauzer, Mini Pinscher, Pekingese, Tibetan Terrier, Shetland Sheepdog, Staffordshire Terrier, Welsh Springer Spaniel, West Highland Terrier|
|36 (91cm)||41 - 70||North American Eskimo, Australian Cattle Dog, Basset Hound, Beagle, Bulldog, Bull Terrier, Shar-Pei, Cocker Spaniel, Harrier, English Setter, English Springer Spaniel, Kerry-Blue Terrier, Norwegian Elkhound, Portuguese Water , Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier, Schnauzer, Whippet, Welsh Corgi|
|42 (107cm)||71 - 90||Airedale Terrier, Australian Shepherd, American Bulldog, Bearded Collie, Belgian Sheepdog, Border Collie, Belgian Tervuren, Standard Boxer, Chow Chow, Dalmatian, Gordon Setter, Golden Retriever, Ibizan Hound, Irish Water Spaniel, Irish Setter, Labrador Retriever, Normal Poodle, Vizsla|
|48 (122cm)||91 - 110||Akita, Alaskan Malamute, Anatolian Shepherd, Bloodhound, Bernese Mountain Dog, Bouvier Des Flandres, Briard, Bullmastiff, Collie, Chinook, Doberman Pinscher, German, Shepherd, Giant Schnauzer, Greyhound, Komondor, Malinois, Newfoundland, Otterhound, Old English Sheepdog, Pointer, Rottweiler,Siberian Husky, Tervueren|
Types of Dog Crate
The dog crate is one of the most expensive items you will purchase for your dog and this is especially true of you have a large breed of dog! It can be difficult deciding what type of crate you want to get as their are so many options to suit a range of budgets. It really depends on your needs and what you are planning on using the crate for. Each type of crate has its drawbacks and advantages and we will look at them all. Before you dwell on ‘what type?’ you will need to find out what size crate you will need for your dog. You can seriously damage your training program if you buy the wrong crate so choose wisely!
The most common type of crate is the collapsible/folding wire crate and indeed the strongest crates out there. Crates made of stainless steel wire are the strongest making them also very heavy. They are very easy to setup, maintain and clean. They are popular because of their great versatility and their many advantages. One such advantage is they provide great airflow and ventilation to your dog which on warm days can help keep your dog feeling comfortable and cool. Wire crates are very functional units and being made of metal are the most secure type especially if you have an active strong pet. They are easy and quick to setup. They are not the most aesthetically pleasing compared to designer or wooden furniture-style crates but they are dependable and long-lasting.
- Great for long haired dogs that feel the heat more and need better ventilation.
- Often have a floor tray that is easy to remove and clean
- With some brands of wire crate, a divider is provided to allow sectioning of the crate – ideal for a growing puppy!
- Storing or carrying wire crates is made effortless with the ability to fold down
- Not the most attractive to have in your house compared to other types
- Larger crates can be difficult to move and heavy to lift
- They can be noisier if your dog is particularly playful and active in their crate
- Expert escape artist dogs can sometimes escape from wire crates
Midwest iCrate Pet Crates
We have assessed that the Midwest iCrate Pet Crates offer fantastic value for money and are a solid option for those looking for a wire crate for their dog. The iCrate is an extremely popular choice of crate on Amazon. With over 11 thousand mostly positive reviews you will hardly go wrong with this crate. It comes in a variety of sizes to suit any dog from 18 inches to 48 inches, they also come with a single door or double door option.
The iCrate is very easy to setup and takes a few seconds, furthermore it does not require any specialist tools to setup. Safety is paramount and features included rounded corners to prevent injury, secure bolt latches and a washable plastic bottom pan in case of toilet accidents. The iCrate is available in seven sizes (inches): 18, 22, 24, 30, 36, 42 and 48 and the single door varieties also come with the added option of the color blue or pink.
Read Midwest iCrate Reviews on Amazon
Wooden / Designer Crates
Wooden dog crates, also described as designer dog crates can double as not only crates to house your canine friend, but also an aesthetically pleasing attractive part of the room! Some wooden crates can double as tabletops or nightstands. There are many varieties of wooden crate on the market today and it should not be too difficult to find something suitable for your pet that also matches your home decor. Due to the materials used, wooden crates are often more expensive than the more traditional wire or plastic crates. Crates made with expensive woods such as Mahogany can cost many hundreds of dollars.
- These types of crate are quite durable, sturdy and strong
- Some wooden crates are aimed at the furniture market that can double as side-tables and small tabletops
- Comes in many types of wood
- Less noisy than metal crates
- Wood can be chewed
- If the crate has a wooden floor, it can be damaged by urine
Plastic dog crates offer a great option for those travellers amongst you and those that take their dogs on camping trips. They are light and easy to pick up and their cheaper prices allows you to use them as a housetraining crate to control chewing behaviour that could otherwise destroy furniture and more expensive crates. For this reason plastic crates are recommended for people with puppies. Plastic crates often are sturdier than their metal counterparts but lack the ability of being able to fold down. Plastic crates offer more privacy for your dog but they lack in ventilation that a wire crate may provide. This might be a problem if you live in a warm climate and/or you have a long-haired dog. Plastic crates lack the divider that many wire crates come with however a good tip to reduce the amount of space is to place a box a the back of the crate reducing space. This can be ideal if you have a growing puppy. With a solid plastic bottom, these types of crates are very easy to clean if your dog has a toilet accident.
- Some plastic crates have removable top halfs that can be placed inside the bottom half for easy storage
- Plastic crates come in a variety of colors
- More difficult for dogs to escape from than other varieties
- Great for airline travel – If your dog is used to their crate it will make flying easier for them
- Great for dogs that love to sleep under tables or in cozy corners
- Not aesthetically pleasing in the house compared to wooden or wire crates
- If a dog has diarrhea inside it you will need to use the hose to clean it out
- Some dogs enjoy a full 360 degree field of vision and might get claustrophobic inside a plastic crate.
- Less ventilation than other varieties – Your dog might overheat in hot weather
Petmate Sky Kennel
With over 900 reviews on Amazon and sporting a 4 / 5 rating this petmate plastic crate is the standard setting crate in the industry. This is a plastic crate but it sports a rugged design due to its focus on airline travel. This crate has durable and strong doors and wire ventilation to give adequate air flow.
This crate comes in a range of sizes to suit different breeds of animal.
- 21 x 16 x 15
- 28 x 20.5 x 21.5
- 32 x 22.5 x 24
- 36 x 25 x 27
- 40 x 27 x 30
- (Extra large) 90 – 125lbs
First and foremost this crate is designed for airline travel however it still makes an excellent home crate for your dog. Of course you will need to double check with the airline you intend to fly with to make sure this crate still passes the requirements/conditions.
Finally this crate comes with a nice doggy travel kit consisting of ID stickers, labels stating “live animal” water and food cups to keep your pet fed as well as an absorbent pad to take care of any spillages.
Soft Sided Crates
Easily accessible and transportable on the go, soft crates are lightweight, washable and often very stylish. They are suitable for use both outdoors and indoors. Soft-sided crates are often a firm favorite with dogs because of their comfortability. They are a firm favorite with owners because they are made of vinyl and mesh as opposed to metal and wood which reduces the risk of injury greatly – especially for a easily frightened or overly active dog.
There is an obvious risk of your dog destroying the soft material of these types of crates so that should be taken into consideration. Indeed, most of the negative customer reviews on Amazon typically begin with “my dog ripped the crate to bits!”. Soft sided crates are ideal for dogs that are already crate trained and well behaved. You might buy a soft-sided crate because; you travel a lot with your dog and you need a portable crate to take with you. Your dog might appreciate a dark place to hide with no distractions or you have a very timidly and laid back animal that is not prone to crate destruction.
- Easy to store away
- Great for travel in the car, picnics and camping
- Great for small tame dogs
- Very lightweight and easy to transport
- Smart dogs may be able to unzip the door if they can figure it out
- Some dogs might be able to gnaw their way out
- Difficulty to clean in the event of a toilet accident
Heavy Duty / Escape Proof Crates
If you have a particularly skilled escape artist of a dog or one that is difficult to control then you probably will want a heavy duty crate. They are made from sturdy and strong metals such as aluminum or stainless steel and are often much more heavier than their wired counterparts. Heavy duty dog crates are primarily build for dog security and peace of mind that your dog will be in their crate when you come home. The quality of the materials used is a huge factor to look at when choosing a heavy-duty crate. They are primarily designed for security and toughness so you will want top build quality. There are plenty of inescapable and unbreakable crates out there, but there are also a lot of sub-standard cheap ones as well. Heavy duty crates need not be heavy as some manufacturers are producing aluminium heavy duty crates that are robust as well as lightweight.
- Can keep the most escape prone dogs safe and secure
- Some heavy duty crates are approved for air travel. This will make flying with your pup easier
- Hardy design ensures a long lasting crate that will be with you for many years to come
- Generally not aesthetically pleasing and might clash with your home decor
- Quite expensive compared to other types of crate but definitely worth if you value security and peace of mind.
- Heavy to move around