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Crate training has many benefits for your new puppy. It’s an essential tool in potty training and helps limit your puppy’s access to your home while they learn the rules. Dog crates are also super-useful for transporting your puppy in the car. Most of all, crates give your puppy a safe, cozy spot of their own. Dog crates for puppies don’t have to be different than they are for larger dogs, but there are a few special considerations to keep in mind.
Choosing the right crate for your puppy depends on your particular needs, your puppy’s size and activity level, and your future plans. Read on to learn about the best dog crates for puppies of all kinds!
How to choose the right crate for your puppy
The ideal puppy crate will be:
- Large enough for your puppy to comfortably lie down, stand up, and turn around in
- Have a durable, leak-proof, easy-to-clean floor
- Be easy to assemble and disassemble according to your needs
With all that in mind, we’ve rounded up some of the most highly recommended dog crates available online. From plastic-sided dog crates for safe travel to disguised furniture crates for the living room, there’s a crate for your and your pup.
Top Dog Crates for Puppies
- MidWest LifeStages Folding Metal Dog Crate with Divider, $25.99-$88.99
- Petmate Ultra Vari Kennel, $69.95-$167.73
- PetNation Indoor/Outdoor Pet Home, $21.99-51.36
- Petmate Two Door Top Load Pet Kennel, $39.95
- Crown Pet Products End Table Dog Crate, $237.99
- Aspen Pet Puppy 2-Door Training Retreat Crate, $37.26
Read on for more detailed descriptions and info!
Best Easy-to-Stow Crate for Growing Puppies
Recommended if you need a sturdy, reliable wire crate that will grow with your puppy. MidWest makes a variety of high-quality crates for dogs. The LifeStages line comes with a divider insert that splits the crate into separate compartments so you can limit your puppy’s space to exactly what they need. And as your puppy grows, the crate grows, too!
- Folds down flat with snap-on plastic handles for easy transport and storage
- Rounded corners so you won’t suffer scratches or snagged clothes
- Safe and secure slide-bolt latches
- Coated frame and plastic tray are easy to clean and disinfect
Most helpful review: “Overall very happy with this crate, it was easy to assemble and fold back down to carry and easy to clean with a wipe-down tray…I liked having the two easy open doors on the front and side.”
Pick one up starting at $25.99
Best Hard-Sided Plastic Crate for Puppies
The VariKennel is favored by veterinarians and pet care professionals because it’s sturdy, easy to clean, and useful in a variety of settings. You can strap it into the back seat for safe car travel, or set it up in the living room for an at-home den. And it’s ideal for puppies who gnaw on the sides of wire crates and need something a little more secure to keep them cozy.
- Tough, durable construction
- Easy-open squeeze latch
- Vented on four sides for ideal airflow
- Easy to put together and take apart, and comes with extra screws and covers
Most helpful review: “It is well-made and attractive…and will make a nice indoor bed for the puppy to chill out & rest in. I plan to get a soft crate/carrier bed since this will be used for crate training the new puppy.”
Order one for your puppy starting at $69.95
Best Soft-Sided Dog Crate for Puppies
This soft-sided but sturdy dog crate is ideal for puppies on the go. It’s made of heavy-duty fabric over a steel frame that offers extra strength and support. The padded handle and mesh windows make it suitable for travel or outdoor time. And the interior is easy to wipe clean in case of accidents or spills. Note: this fabric crate is best for puppies who are already crate-trained, or unlikely to chew. It’s durable, but not indestructible!
- Mesh windows encourage airflow
- Entire fabric covering is removable and machine washable
- Two doors (front and top) for easy access; can be rolled back for an open resting spot
- Industrial-strength zippers and latches keep your puppy secure
Most helpful review: “We bought one to take with us on a long road trip. It turns out our pup likes this crate more than his real crate. He goes inside on his own…maybe it seems more like a den to him. Either way, it is super lightweight, and easy to pack. I highly recommend this!”
Get yours starting at $21.99
Best Top-Entry Dog Crate for Small Puppies
If you have a smaller puppy who will grow into a small dog, you might like a top-entry kennel. It’s helpful for puppies who are reluctant to walk into an open kennel, but who can be picked up and plopped down from above. Like other hard-sided plastic kennels, this one is sturdy and durable, with an easy-to-clean interior.
- Secure wingnut and bolt design
- Steel front door with secure latch
- Ventilated on all sides
- Heavy-duty plastic is strong, safe, and easy to clean
Most helpful review: “It’s a great size for my little Chihuahua foster dog. She is a puppy mill rescue and is often terrified of hands coming toward her. This carrier allows me to open the top and pick her up rather than having to pull her out from the front. Much better experience for both of us!”
Pick one up for $39.95
Best Furniture-Grade Crate for Puppies
One of the most common complaints about dog crates is that they take up space and look unattractive. Of course, safety and utility are the most important factors to consider when choosing a puppy crate. But it’s okay to want something attractive, too!
This end table crate is made of durable, sustainable rubberwood that will look lovely in your living room. One note of caution: wood is durable, but not indestructible. Supervise your puppy during crate training, and make sure they have something sturdy to chew on so they won’t be tempted to gnaw on the crate. Or, follow some reviewers’ advice and secure a piece of plexiglass to the inside at puppy-level!
- Swing-through door secures with a stainless steel latch
- Vented on all sides for excellent airflow and 360-degree views
- Waterproof melamine-covered MDF floor is easy to clean
- Available in two finishes to complement your décor
Most helpful review: “Bought this almost two years ago for my Bichon puppy as she was chewing through every nylon crate out there. We did not want an ugly wire crate in our small living room and after much looking…I purchased this…The dog had no penchant for chewing this crate and took to it immediately…Today it is her safe haven.”
Order yours for $237.99
Best Bargain Wire Puppy Crate
Looking for a budget-friendly puppy crate? This sweet pink crate—also available in blue—is perfect for puppies and small-breed dogs. It comes with a snap-on handle, slide-out plastic tray, and divider panel. And best of all, you get all that for under $40.00!
- Sturdy wire construction with rust-proof pink or blue coating
- Front and side door access for versatile positioning
- Leak-proof, removable pan for easy cleaning
Most helpful review: “Surprised at how sturdy this crate is! Very good value for the price. And the latches actually work!!! Like the divider feature as I can put the Shih Tzu in one side and the Chihuahua in the other for transport to the vet.”
Order one (or maybe two?) for $37.26