Best Outdoor Dog Kennel Buyer's Guide

Best Outdoor Dog Kennel -  Buyer’s Guide 2018

DNA could be to blame for your pet’s love for the outdoors. Dogs love getting an eyeful of whatever is happening around; after all, it’s their natural environment. During a walk, they can see new sights, discover new odors, mark their territory by answering nature’s call, and meet new four-legged companions. But the modern day dogs are getting only quick bathroom trips because they have working parents.

Studies show that giving your pooch enough outdoor time is essential for their mental and physical well-being. In fact, with zero excitement and activity, large and working breeds can show serious behavior problems. Dog kennels will come in handy if you as a caring and responsible pet owner do not want your dog to spend a significant chunk of time in an empty home. Moreover, with an outdoor dog kennel, your canine buddy can still be safe while enjoying serene outdoor beauty and fresh air. 

What is an outdoor dog kennel?

Dog kennels and dog crates are two things people often confuse with each other. Typically, a dog kennel is a larger non-portable fenced in area that safely contain the pooch while giving him room to play, bark at the Mailman or UPS guy, or take potty breaks. And yes, the kennel will save your beautiful lawn from becoming your pooch’s powder room. Kennels may be a single unit or part of a large group such as those installed in boarding and rescue facilities.

A dog crate is portable and generally used for transporting a dog, or for a dog’s sleeping needs.

Best Outdoor Kennels for Dogs

Looking for an incredibly safe, durable and comfortable kennel for your pooch? Take a look at these 4 best picks in the market. 

PetSafe Cottageview Boxed Kennel

PetSafe Cottageview Boxed Kennel is ideal for pet parents looking for durable, chain link dog kennel that can be used all year round. Its welded wire construction, sunblock top, and the pinch-proof gate will keep your pooch safe and secure. The compact size of the kennel lets you can install it anywhere in yards, garages or patios. Plus, it is easy to set up and move around. 


  • Constructed with durable and sturdy welded wire
  • Easy set-up and clean
  • UV treated sunblock enhances the dog’s protection
  • Accessory panels to expand the kennel
  • Pinch-proof gate for dogs' safety


  • May not be the best option for large breeds

Rhino Shed Row Style Dog Kennel with Roof Shelter 6'x12'

Unapologetically reliable, sturdy and safe, Shed Row Style Dog Kennel w/Roof Shelter 6'x12' is made to safeguard your dog from elements. Made with 28 gauge heavy duty hi-rib sheet metal, 1-5/8" 16 gauge galvanized steel tubing and 6 gauge galvanized welded wire mesh 2''x 4'' opening, this kennel is ideal for shady areas and temperate climates. 


  • Lots of ventilation
  • Dogs get to see "out’
  • Heavy-duty lockable sliding bar gate latch
  • Large 3ft Door for easy entry and exit
  • Super easy to assemble, clean and maintain
  • The rigid sheet metal roof ensures the dog doesn’t escape


  • May require two people to assemble


Lucky Dog Uptown Welded Dog Kennel

Made for indoor or outdoor use, this sturdy, durable dog kennel is ideal for pet parents with high energy dogs who like to escape. This kennel comes with pre-assembled modules which can be put together in no time. Featuring a weather-resistant fabric cover, this kennel is super easy to clean and maintain. Though it is a bit expensive, the extra dollars are worth considering its 10-gauge welded steel construction and long-lasting lifetime.


  • Interchangeable panel to suit your needs
  • Lockable door latch for safety and security
  • Large in size hence a good fit for tall dogs
  • Being a roomy kennel, it can even house two dogs
  • Black powder-coated finish provides protection against rusting
  • Water-proof fabric cover
  • Quick and easy to assemble and requires no tool


  • Cannot house dogs weighing more than 100 pounds
  • Roof cover does not provide strong protection against elements


Lucky Dog Modular Welded Wire Kennel

If you’re looking for a super strong kennel that offers plenty of space for your dog, check out this pick. Made of 100% commercial grade steel, this outdoor dog kennel ensures the most determined and high energy breeds will not escape. The heavy-duty construction also ensures protection from rain, wind, and snow. And yes, assembling this kennel is as easy as pie!


  • No sharp edges, durable, and easy to set up
  • Raised legs make it easy to clean
  • Offers plenty of room, air, and visibility
  • Comfortable enough to house extra-large breeds
  • Can fit a decent-sized dog house


  • Kennel Cover is not included
  • A little more expensive


Buyers Guide – Outdoor Dog Kennel

Dog kennel – the cozy home for your canine buddy-can be portable or permanent, small or big, lightweight or sturdy, and rectangular or octagonal. With a vast array of options, knowing which is best for your pooch is tricky; in a broader sense, it depends on different factors. As a pet owner, you need to do a research before a purchase – and that’s what why you should go through the Buyers guide outlined below.

First off, let’s check the important features to consider while choosing the kennel.

Be it permanent or temporary, the purpose of an outdoor dog kennel is to safely house your dog when you are away. This might be one to two hours or for a work day. Plus, it should resist the atrocities of your canine buddy. Here are a few important things to consider when buying a dog kennel.

Material:  Generally, dog kennels come in five options: wood, metal, wood-metal combination, steel, and plastic, with each offering different levels of durability, protection, and hygiene. The behavioral pattern, your budget, the purpose of using the kennel, the amount of time you want your pet to be housed inside the kennel needs to be considered while choosing the material. Metal or steel kennels are rugged, offer maximum durability, and are ideal for heavy chewers and high energy dogs. Where as wood is cheap and environmental friendly but poses hygiene threats.  Plastic kennels have wide acceptance among pet owners as they are easy to maintain, airy, well insulated and durable.

Size: First things first – consider the breed’ s full grown size and amount of time he/she is going to spend in the kennel. The kennel needs to be large enough for the dog to freely and comfortably move around and play. 

    In addition, you should also consider the size of miscellaneous items that go inside the kennel such as a bed, food bowl, water bowl and types of toys or a nice dog house.

    Go for an all-weather kennel: If you’re planning to buy a permanent outdoor kennel, you’ll want it to be climate controlled. Insulations in the floor, wall, and ceiling will ensure your dog remains comfortable year round.

    Covered roof: Look for a kennel offering great roof system. Nowadays, kennels come with covered tops of different materials, such as canvas, tarp, and weather-resistant fabric and sheet metal. Roofs will keep sun, rain, and snow at bay.

    Locking system: You can’t stop a determined dog but a sturdy latch can.  There are many different latches that come with kennels so be sure you are keeping that feature in mind when purchasing a kennel.  You will want a sturdy latch depending on your dog's personality.

    Flooring: Smart dogs that spend a great deal of time inside the kennel may dig to escape which ultimately put his safety at risk. So look for kennels with reliable flooring or digging bars.  Some customers put down Zinger Drain- Thru Flooring to keep their dogs off of any soiled areas and to add some extra insulation or padding.  This flooring can be cut to size so just give us a call at 855-896-9453 to request a quote!

    Food and Water Containers: Keeping your dog well fed and hydrated is important. Hence don’t hesitate to buy one that comes with built-in food and water containers even if it is little heavy on your pocket. 

    Where to set up the Dog Kennel?

    Placement of your kennel, whether temporary or permanent, is one of the important factors a pet owner shouldn’t overlook. Getting a crate trained dog into the kennel is a cake walk.  Dogs who are new to the "containment world" should be worked with so they don’t think of it as punishment or isolation. And that’s exactly why you should choose a location that is easily viewed from your home. An area with good drainage and natural shade is definitely a plus. Installing the kennel under the tree is not a recommended idea as the debris, fallen leaves, branches, ticks, etc can damage the roof of the kennel and may cause physical injuries to the dog.  Another important factor is the number of dogs the kennel is going to house. If you have two or more dogs, avoid putting the kennel too close to your home (and neighbor’s) so odors and barking will not create a problem. Remember, the outdoor dog kennel should be raised off the ground to avoid the kennel becoming unstable and soggy because of rainwater.

    What to put in a Dog Kennel?

    So, you have installed the kennel that best suits your pooch. Now the question comes down to how to make the kennel a comfy home? An empty boring and bulky kennel is the last thing your pet will want. Hence, knowing what you should and should not put in the kennel is crucial in creating a warm and enticing place for your pet. 

    Bedding: Putting bedding in your dog kennel will depend on whether the kennel is for indoor or outdoor use.  Some rescues and boarding facilities have indoor kennels that lead out a pet door into outdoor kennels.  Naturally, you would want bedding and maybe blankets for the indoor portion of the kennel but those things might not fair well in the outdoors.  Keep in mind that some dogs have a tendency to chew anything if left alone for certain periods of time.  This could be very dangerous if left alone with bedding and blankets.  Dogs can eat pieces of bedding which can cause blockages and can ultimately lead to a very expensive trip to the vet or even death if not treated right away.  We recommend our Carlson Portable Folding Pet Bed.  These are good for the outdoors and great for hot days when blankets would not be suitable.

    Toys: Regardless of your dog’s age, you should always leave durable hard chew on toys inside the kennel. Toys will keep the dogs occupied, helps to beat boredom, and forms the habit of chewing on the right things – their toys. Remember, you should never leave your dog with soft toys or stuffed animals that they can tear or ingest.

    Food and water:  As for food, stick to fixed feeding times and avoid the habit of "free feeding" depending on your dogs habits. Though we recommend not to leave food in the kennel unsupervised, you can feed the main meals inside the kennel to foster a positive connection with his haven.  Fresh water should ALWAYS be provided for your dog while they are in an outdoor kennel.  Purchasing a no spill water bowl might be a good idea if you have a high energy dog.

    Types of Dog Kennel

    There are different types of outdoor dog kennels in the market for you to choose from and 2 of the most popular are: Welded wire galvanized steel kennels and galvanized chainlink kennels. Each type has its own pros and cons which we’ll discuss below to help you make faster (and wiser) decisions.

    Welded Wire Mesh Kennels


    • Welded Wire is very sturdy and durable
    • Can withstand dogs that have a habit of chewing
    • Rust resistant
    • No sharp edges for dogs to potentially harm themselves 
    • Long lasting
    • Easy to replace damaged portion of the kennel
    • Come in Multi-Kennel set ups


    • Can be more expensive

    Galvanized Chainlink Kennels


    • A sturdy and somewhat reliable choice for chewers
    • Lightweight so can kennels can be moved around effortlessly
    • Usually costs less


    • Can become damaged easily depending on the energy and size of your dog
    • More difficult to replace damaged portions of the kennel

      Top 9 benefits of using an Outdoor Dog Kennel

      It goes without saying that installing a dog kennel on your property is beneficial for you and your dog. Below are some of the benefits that top our list.

      • If you don’t have a fenced yard or want to confine the dog for a couple of hours when you are at work, outdoor dog kennels are your go-to.
      • Outdoor dog kennels can be spacious enough that your dog that he can easily play and run off the excess energy. Unlike house-dweller dogs, dogs housed inside kennels are healthier and energetic.
      • Unnecessary trips to the vet can be avoided because you never know what goes inside your pup’s mouth, especially if you have a mischievous one at home.
      • Digging is in their genes. The enclosed and well-ventilated outdoor dog kennels will save your garden and other landscaping from becoming messy and full of holes.
      • House training becomes easier with an outdoor dog kennel
      • Most outdoor dog kennels are the built-in section which you can put together in a matter of a few hours.
      • Outdoor dog kennels can be set up as a means of quarantine from other dogs.  Depending on your situation, you may need to keep a dog separate from the rest.
      • Multi dog run kennels are great for rescues, law enforcement agencies, or professional k9 handlers.  They can be ordered as a group and come with all the necessary hardware to assemble them together.
      • Dog kennels are cheaper than the fence and easier to clean - a win-win, indeed!

      How to choose an outdoor dog kennel (FAQ)

       Here are some of the most frequent questions asked by pet owners. 

      • Does a Kennel Need a Roof?

      A secure roof is essential for two reasons: to protect your pooch from bad weather and to ensure he doesn’t get hurt or escape while jumping up.

      • What size is ideal?

      This will depend on your situation and needs.  Facilities looking for multi-run kennels just for housing dogs at bedtime or for breaks will not need a great deal of space in the kennel.  If you don't have a fence and need a safe outside area for your dog to run or lounge in then a bigger kennel will suit you best!

      • What are the safety issues a pet owner should be aware of?

      Inspect the kennel for bent wire, jagged edges, and torn fencing.  If your dog likes to dig, you might want to invest in anti digging system to go at the bottom of the kennel.  Make sure your dog ALWAYS has fresh clean water at all times while in their kennel.  Sometimes high energy dogs will easily dump water bowls over so be aware of that and purchase a no spill water bowl or mounted water bowl.

      • Which is best – store-bought kennel or DIY?

      A properly built prefabricated kennel is great if you are unaware of the technical know-how of building a safe and secure outdoor dog kennel. Plus, a store-bought kennel saves your time and energy.

      • What kind of floor is best?

      Flooring is important for the overall health and safety of your dog. Most popular kennel floors materials are concrete, grass, gravel, patio blocks, stone, and gravel. Wooden flooring is ideal for the ones that have a habit of scratching the floor. Rubber sheet flooring and plastic flooring are also used.

      • What If I Have More Than One Dog?

      The personality of your pooches has a say on housing them inside separate kennels or in one large outdoor kennel. If you own peace-loving litter, keep them together to rule out ‘isolation’ from their dictionary. If you have dogs that are at war with young and calm pups, put them in separate kennels.

      • How often should I clean the kennel and dog’s belongings?

      Bowls and feeding accessories should be cleaned daily with hot water and mild dish soap to get rid of bacteria whereas beds and sheets should be cleaned at least once a week. Check for mold development in the toys. Frequent sanitization and cleaning ensures your pooch remains healthy and infection-free.

      Final thoughts – Your dog deserves all the love and comfort you could afford!

      Buying a kennel is a big decision – for you and your dog –so do a thorough job of researching a kennel for your pup. Whether you opt for simple kennels or any of the 4 best picks mentioned in this article, we have you covered!  Head over to our selection of Dog Kennels and sign up today for a SPECIAL 5% discount on your total order.  Dial (855) 896-9453 or email us at for more details.







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