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Best Dog Crate Buyer's Guide

Buyer's Guide for Choosing a Dog Crate

Let’s face facts: Dog crating has long been the focus of conflict and it shows no sign of fading. Truth be told, arguing isn’t going to get the ones who’ve decided to add a four-legged member to his/her family anywhere. So, what can we do about it? Let’s define and break things into smaller pieces so you can make a solid decision about "kindness or cruelty".

What is a dog crate?

We have no intention of going by the typical “a large wooden or plastic box meant to….” definition. Instead, let’s call it your pooch’s haven that satisfies his denning instinct. And when you set-up his/her comfy spot, include a few toys, a chew, or anything he likes to keep close so he/she feels safe.  Think of your dog's crate as their bedroom.  It is not meant to be a place for punishment which is a common misconception.

Buyers guide

With so many choices, deciding on the right crate for your dog isn’t as easy as ABC. And that’s why you should ask yourself these questions:

1.    How big will my pup get?

As a general rule, the larger the breed, the more months they grow.  Choosing a crate that your dog can grow in will save you money in the long run.

2.    What’s the plan of action?

When deciding a perfect crate for your dog, it's important to find out the most common intended use so you can easily finalize the material, durability, and size of the crate.

3.    Does my pet need multiple crates?

That depends on which crate you choose.  Some crates can easily fit in almost every situation.  Camping, flying, traveling in a vehicle, and just used at home.  Make sure you pick a crate that can be versatile. 

4.  Where am I going to store the crate?

As you’re aware, wooden crates are designed to stay where you install it. Hence, if you don’t have a spot for the crate when not in use, pick up the ones that effortlessly break down flat.

5.  Are crate and cage the same?

Well, you may call them cousins - crates are more portable than cages and the choice largely depends on the purpose and personal preference.

6.  Is it okay to stack crates?

It’s totally okay to stack the crates. But when you do so, stack the largest one on the lowest level and ensure to keep the crates with active animals on the ground

7.  Is my dog quiet or high energy in a crate?

If you have a high energy pet, you may opt for plastic or metal crates. However, keep in mind that not all crates marketed as escape-proof do what they claim.  Research the brand that you are thinking of purchasing.  Dogtownsupply.com has already hand picked several great brands for you!

8.  Is it too cold/too hot?

Too much heat and humidity can cause heat stress.  Although dogs have fur, that doesn't mean they are intolerable to the cold.  So it is imperative to consider the temperature zone of your area.  Ventilation is an important feature to keep in mind when choosing a crate.  

Different Types of Dog Crates

Decision making becomes hard when you can have crates in 100 varieties. So we thought of covering the most popular ones here. A takeaway tip: Your pooch’s personality has a say in the type of crate you buy.

Wire Crates:  These are the cheapest option of pet crates.  They offer zero visual barriers for you and your pup, ample ventilation, easy to put up, take down, and store, and ideal for potty training.  There are some downsides to these crates.  It’s a not-so-pretty crate and is not airline approved. And yes, they are prone to rust over time.  As a long term option, we don't recommend wire crates.

 

Plastic Crates: Ideal for the small to large-sized furry companions who love hermit-mode and are living in colder climates. Also a great option for the owners who are on the move and want to bring their pets along. However, they can be bulky, less durable, and absorb dog smell.  They aren’t suitable for pups still in the learning phase of "how to potty properly".  If you have a habitual chewer than a plastic crate is probably not the best option.

Wooden or Decorative Crates: This kind of crate is best for an easy-going, calm dog and for homeowners who want to double the crate as a décor piece. The downside is that it is neither portable nor easily cleanable. Oh yes, it’s a BIG NO for a pup that literally chews everything in sight.

Soft Fabric Crates: Small dogs that aren’t a chewer or clawer are ideal candidates for this pop-up play tent like crate. Lightweight, portability, and easy storage – these are the upsides that make it a go-to crate for camping, hiking or traveling.  The major downside is that they are difficult to clean (hence no-no for pups being housebroken).

Heavy Duty Crates: Chew-proof, bend-proof crates made of steel or aluminum keeping in mind the clever Houdini dogs and other escape artists. These crates can be more expensive but are well worth the money.  You won’t have the trouble of replacing it over and again. The downside of having one heavy duty crate, of course, is that it is heavy and sometimes difficult to move.  There are collapsible heavy duty crates available.

Different features of dog crates

Crate alert! You choose the wrong one; the results can be nothing less than a disaster. So, here are some features you should look for when buying a crate:

1.    Size: For stationary crates, no ducking or cramping – remember this while choosing the crate so your doggy can fit inside the crate comfortably.  If you are flying with your dog, please contact your airline to inquire about their sizing requirements.  Dogtownsupply.com has a popular line of airline approved crates.  When traveling with a dog in the car, a crash tested crate is recommended.  You want your dog to "appear" to be cramped.  It is not safe in a crash scenario for your dog to be standing or siting. 

2.    Quality: If you overlook the quality, your pooch will be out of the cage the very next hour you confined him.  The old saying "you get what you paid for" applies here.  Be aware of your dog's personality and behavior so you choose the right crate.

3.    Dividers: If you want a one-time investment for your pup, make sure to shell out few extra dollars for a crate with dividers.  This will ensure that your puppy can grow with their crate.

4.    Locks: Some crates come with locks on them.  Some experienced "escape artists" have mastered opening crates without locks so this is a great feature.  This might also prevent someone from trying to steal your dog.  

5.    Second doors: Single doors are common. But some crates come with doors on each side, front/ side entry doors, and front/ back entry doors.  This is helpful when you have limited space for your crate.  Dogtownsupply.com carries these multiple entry crates

6.    Durability: Depending on the usage and your dog’s personality choose either a plastic or metal crate. Also, consider the crating time when you choose the material of the crate.

7.    Crate Finishes: It is equally important to know the create finishes – powder coating, fabric finish, electro-coating all influence the durability of the crate.

8.    Portability: Check on design, leak-proof construction, proper ventilation, and if the crate is collapsible when considering how portable of a crate you need.

9.    Crate Pans: Always look for an easy to clean up crate pan to avoid unnecessary hygiene issues.

Benefits of Dog Crates

In a broad sense, a crate is beneficial for both you and your pet.

    At home or on a vacation, a crate is indeed a calm retreat that offers physical, mental, and emotional security for your pooch.

    Crates will come handy during housetraining as many pups show an aversion towards the soiled bed in a new atmosphere.

    Crates will allow the pet owners to include the furry friends during family outings instead of being left behind alone.

    Crates are doubly safe for naughty and over-enthusiastic puppies that could end up hurting themselves if left unattended. 

    Dog crates are important in creating a harmony in your pet’s life.

    Crates are a wise choice to prevent counter surfing or chewing things when you’re not with your dog.

    Crate training will turn the vet visits into a breeze.

    Crates offer proper confinement when you have guests over.

How to Choose a Dog Crate

So you reach this far and still have quizzical looks. No problem. We’ve rounded up few frequently asked questions below.

1.    What size should I choose?

That depends! Here’s a handy tip to find the ideal size – To calculate the minimum height of the crate, measure from the floor to your pet’s shoulder and add 3 inches to it. For the minimum length – take the head to base of the tail measurement and add 3 inches. As a general rule, no ducking and no cramping!

2.    I have an overly active pup. Which crate should I buy?

Plastic crates can do the job but consider buying a sturdy metal crate if he/she is a chew monster.

3.    How durable are the metal crates?

All metal crates are constructed to withstand extreme conditions of all sorts.  Dogs with high anxiety, high energy, and habitual chewers. 

4.    Which crates are suitable for large dogs?

Metal crates are appropriate for larger dogs. As always, remember no ducking, no cramping rule when you buy the crate.

5.    What are the airline-approved crates?

Many international airlines allow on the crates that have enough height for free movement, and a single metal door.

IN CONCLUSION

We agree that sometimes it is emotionally hard to see the pets inside the crate, but there is always a right way and wrong way to do things, as they say. If you find yourself spinning your wheels trying to decide on which crate to buy, try Dogtownsupply.com – a dog store for dog lover's.  

Whether you want pet crates or crate accessories for dogs, have a look at our best pet crates and sign up today for a SPECIAL 5% discount on your total order.  Dial (855) 896-9453 or email us at support@dogtownsupply.com for more details.

 

 

 

 

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Great buy!

Good product.

Well, she can’t get out or hurt herself so it’s a WINNER

GSD female w apparent separation anxiety came into my life recently. Destroyed a wire crate. Rush delivery of an Impact Crate saved me from needing to do constant supervision and gave me peace of mind and time to do life’s little things like grocery shop without worrying what was happening at home. Yay! Thanks for the beautiful crate that my daughter says looks like a vault. It works!

Incredibly Built

Amazing quality and service.

Awesome crate

We love our Impact crate and the customer service can’t be beat.