Types Of Dog Crates – Which Dog Crate is Best for My Dog?

Types of Dog CratesDog crates are one of the best options to serve as a den for your dog.  They come in a wide variety of styles, shapes, sizes, and materials.  Understanding the benefits and functionality of each type of cage will help you select the one that best suits your needs and the needs of your dog.  Wire cages are more practical, plastic ones are great for traveling, heavy-duty are more secure, and wooden cages are very stylish. 

Personally, I love the look of the furniture style crates but this type is not the best functionally for my Rottweiler.  Remember your dog’s size and behavior have a major role to play when selecting the right crate – please see our “Things to consider when buying a dog crate” article for the full list of factors you should take into consideration. 

Listed below are the main types of dog crates with their pros and cons, which should help you make the perfect choice.

Wire Dog Crates

New World Medium Dog Crate 30inchThese types of cages are the most common ones.  They come with a standard single door, however some manufacturers offer multiple doors as an option.  They are easy to clean, and perfect for hot climates as they allow for ample ventilation.  When locate in the family area, your dog may feel less isolated because of the great visibility through the metal bars which allows them to see everything that is going on around them.  They are easy to assemble and come equipped with a slide out tray at the bottom for easy cleaning.  In addition, some models are foldable, or come with a divider panel to adjust the cage size.  Some dogs are clever at working the latches on the door or are very powerful and bend the wire to escape – personally I have found that using heavy duty cable ties along the joints and sides of my wire crate has helped improve the crates structural integrity, and the use of a couple of small carabiner clips on the door keeps everything secure.  

Wire Dog Crate Pros

Wire Dog Crate Cons

Heavy-Duty Dog Crates

Smith Built Heavy Duty Dog X-Large Crate 48 inchSteel welded construction, some using 20-gauge metal bars, providing a very robust and strong structured type of crate.  They can be described as almost escape proof and most come with heavy duty locks.  Due to their solid construction, they are very heavy, and some come with the option of having castor wheels.  Some models are made with stainless steel while others use metal with anti-rust coating to help reduce the overall cost.  These are the more expensive type of crate and are the go-to option if the wire style crates are not strong enough for your powerful or willful dog.

Heavy-Duty Dog Crate Pros

Heavy-Duty Dog Crate Cons

Plastic Dog Crates

Petmate Plastic CrateThese cages are lightweight and easy to move around.  They offer more shelter and hence provide better insulation during cold-weather conditions.  The top half can be removed, allowing the lower half to be used as an open dog bed.  They are more difficult for your dog to escape from due to their durable construction and front door lock system.  They are ideal for transportation purposes, especially when travelling in cars or through airlines.

Plastic Dog Crate Pros

Plastic Dog Crate Cons

Stylish Wooden Furniture Dog Crates

Merry Dog CrateIf you are not comfortable with the thought of a cage placed in the corner of your beautifully decorated living room, then a stylish wooden or rattan cage could be of interest.  These types of dog crates can blend perfectly with your existing furniture and can even serve as a usable surface such as a side table.

Furniture Dog Crate Pros

Furniture Dog Crate Cons

Soft-Sided Dog Crates

EliteField Soft Dog CrateUsually made from nylon, this type of crate does not really look like a cage in appearance.  Hence, they are an alternative for crate-adverse dog owners.  Being lightweight, they are highly portable and easily foldable.  The interior is soft and flexible and considered to be comfortable for your dog.  They are fairly effortless to assemble and dissemble, and usually use a zipper to close the front panel.

Soft-Sided Dog Crate Pros

Soft-Sided Dog Crate Cons

Final Woof

Dog crates are one of the best options to serve as a den for your beloved dog.  Using them properly should enhance the well-being of your dog and provide them with their own safe space.  With several different types of cages available, you can choose the perfect one that aligns to your needs and the needs of your dog.  Wire cages are more practical, plastic ones are great for traveling, heavy-duty are more secure, and wooden cages are very stylish.  Although each type of crate has its share of pros and cons they ultimately provide a safe, secure, and cozy personal space for your dog at home, while keeping your belongings free from any destructive behavior.  It’s a win-win scenario.

Don’t forget to check out our Dog Crate Ratings and Reviews page.

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