Selecting a Crate

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How to Select the Right Crate for Your Dog

Types of Crates

There are three standard types of crates available that can be bought at regular retailers and big box stores:

Plastic crates (the kind often used as on flights and known as "flight kennels")
  • Pros: Available in different colors, great for dogs that prefer a cozier den-type crate, most can be used for airline travel, typically more difficult for a dog to break out of than standard collapsible wire crates
  • Cons: Bulky and less attractive, putting it together and taking it apart (for storage, travel, etc) is more a process because most styles require multiple screws to be hand installed around the edges to keep the two pieces together, not as much air ventilation and a poor choice of hotter settings, less visibility for dogs that prefer to see what is going on around them

 

 


Soft-Sided crates
(made of fabric, usually on a collapsible, rigid frame)
  • Pros: Very lightweight and portable, great for non-destructive dogs, easily to put together and take apart for storage (most just fold up)
  • Cons: Destructive dogs will easily chew their way out, some dogs can figure out how to unzip the door and escape, may be difficult to clean

 

Collapsible metal wire crates 
  • Pros: some models include divider sections for growing dogs so you can make his area in the crate bigger as he grows, most fold flat for easy storage, easy to put together and take apart, removable tray pan/floors are easy to clean, the most ventilation (better for hotter climates or dogs that tend to get hot easily)
  • Cons: Some escape artist dogs find these crates easy to get out of and can seriously harm themselves in the process, larger size crates can be heavy and hard to move around (not as portable), not as attractive to have in the house (there are many different styles and designs of crate covers you can get, but many dogs will pull them through the wires and chew them), to avoid sitting in their excrement some dogs will pee/poo through the wire onto the floor outside the crate which can create a mess

 

    Specialty Crates:

    Heavy-Duty Crates
    • Pros: Specially designed to contain the most destructive or escape-artist dogs, much stronger and more durable than any other type of crate, some are collapsible which makes it more convenient to store/more portable
    • Cons: More costly upfront (but worth it in the long run as it can save you thousands on furniture and home repairs and costly medical bills, and cheaper than continuously replacing standard crates that will not hold your dog), some models are stationary and not portable, can be very heavy as they are made of much more durable metal

      Designer Crates (focus on crate aesthetics)
      • Pros: Some can be used as end-tables and doubles as furniture so saves room in your house, much more aesthetic
      • Cons: Not designed to contain destructive dogs, crates made of finished wood can be damaged with wear and tear/accidents

       

          What is the Right Size Crate for my dog?

          Although it may be tempting to buy a much larger crate for your dog, that can be detrimental to the crate training process.  A dog's crate should only be large enough for him to be comfortably able to stand up and turn around. For puppies and dogs that are still growing, you should select a crate size that will fit your dog when he is full grown.  Some crates come with dividers to block off any excess crate space, or you can find something solid to block that space off to prevent your dog from going to one side of the crate to use the bathroom and then have enough space to lay on the other side.

          If you are still not sure which crate is the best one for your dog, get in touch with us and we would be happy to help you out!

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