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Keeping a clever dog out of the trash can sometimes feel like a full-time job. If you are the proud parent of a pup who finds trash a delightful delicacy, the good news is that there are a lot of dog-proof trash can options out there that can challenge even the most motivated dog. From pedal models to motion sensors to locking lids, there’s likely a design out there that can keep your dog safely out of the trash.
Even better, many of these cans are designed to fit in with your usual decor and provide great functionality for many different household needs. We’ve curated a list of some of the best dog-proof trash cans out there designed to deter doggy dumpster divers. Not sure where to start? Hop down to our dog-proofing tips.
- Best for Odor Control: iTouchless 13-Gallon Dog-Proof Trash Can
- Best for Large Capacity: iTouchless Wings Open Dog-Proof 18-Gallon Trash Can
- Best Step Model: Simplehuman 16-Gallon Kitchen Dog-Proof Step Trash Can
- Best Small Capacity: SimpleHuman 1.2 Gallon Dog-Proof Bathroom Trash Can
- Best Butterfly Lid: SimpleHuman 2.6 Gallon Butterfly-Lid Trash Can
- Best Locking Lid Design: Sterilite 12.6-Gallon Locking StepOn Garbage Can
- Best for Trash and Recycling: Simplehuman 15.3-Gallon Pet-Proof Step Can
Best for Odor Control: iTouchless 13-Gallon Dog-Proof Trash Can
iTouchless 13-Gallon Dog-Proof Trash Can
This touchless trash can uses a patent-pending motion activated PetGuard technology to help keep trash in and pets out. This large-capacity can is heavy-duty with a rectangular base and is difficult to tip over.
This 13-gallon dog-proof trashcan has a PetGuard lock feature to prevent your dog from getting inside. It opens by motion sensor, which is not only difficult for a dog to crack, but is a feature that promotes hygiene for human users. To keep trash odors at bay, this model has a carbon odor filter and a mechanism to keep trash bags in place. The large capacity makes it a good choice for kitchen trash.
- Large 13-gallon capacity (also available in 2.5-gallon size)
- Carbon odor filter to help eliminate odors
- Motion-sensor no-touch opening to help keep pets out
- Heavy duty and difficult to tip
- Stainless steel exterior
- Uses batteries or optional A/C adapter
Best for Large Capacity: iTouchless Wings Open Dog-Proof 18-Gallon Trash Can
iTouchless Wings Open Dog-Proof Trash Can
This large capacity (18 gallon) touchless trash can uses a motion-sensor and butterfly-lid opening to help keep dogs out. It’s a heavy-duty trash can that is difficult to tip over.
This 18-gallon touchless trash can is designed to keep even the cleverest pets out. The lid is only activated by a motion sensor, and the bin features an “off” mode that locks the lid when humans don’t need to use it. The combination makes this one especially difficult for dogs to crack.
We like that the touchless design helps keep germs at bay by eliminating the need to lift the lid, and the wing design is great for low-clearance situations, such as under countertops. This trash can is powered by four size D batteries or with an optional plug-in A/C adapter. Like other iTouchless models, this can features an odor-reducing filter to help eliminate trash smells.
- Large 18 gallon capacity
- Touchless motion sensor open feature and a locking feature
- Heavy and difficult to tip over
- Features carbon odor filter
- Battery operated or optional A/C adapter for battery-less function
Best Step Model: Simplehuman 16-Gallon Kitchen Dog-Proof Step Trash Can
Simplehuman 16-Gallon Kitchen Dog-Proof Step Trash Can
The heavy-duty nature of this trash can combined with its step pedal mechanism makes it an ideal choice to keep nosey dogs away.
This large-capacity trash can is designed to last: it comes with a 10-year guarantee and features a heavy-duty step mechanism to deter dogs. It includes an odor-reducing filter and a silent-close lid, making it a good option for dogs who are unlikely to learn the pedal mechanism or who are not overly aggressive with tipping trash cans. (If you have a dog who is a dedicated trash-can tipper, we recommend a two-step mechanism, such as the iTouchless Wings 18-Gallon trash can.)
- Heavy duty steel step design to deter dogs
- Large 16-gallon capacity
- 10-year warranty
- Silent-close lid
- Includes odor-reducing filter
Best Small Capacity: SimpleHuman 1.2 Gallon Dog-Proof Bathroom Trash Can
SimpleHuman 1.2 Gallon Pet-Proof Dog Trash Can
This 1.2-gallon stainless steel trash can uses a pedal to open the lid, which helps to keep pets out and trash in. This is a study and difficult-to-flip can that is well-sized for bathrooms and offices.
The SimpleHuman small-capacity trash can features a stainless steel exterior, a solid round base, and a pedal to open. These cans are difficult for dogs to crack because they require the user to press a pedal to open the lid. They’re also heavy-duty for small trash cans, so moderate nosing can’t flip them over. The 1.2 gallon capacity is ideally sized for bathrooms and offices.
- 1.2 gallon capacity
- Pedal-open mechanism makes it easy for humans and hard for dogs
- Stainless steel exterior
- Optional custom liners
- Durable with 10-year guarantee
Best Butterfly Lid: SimpleHuman 2.6 Gallon Butterfly-Lid Trash Can
2.6-Gallon Butterfly Lid Bathroom Step Trash Can
In addition to its pretty and smudge-resistant stainless steel exterior, this bathroom trash boasts a pedal mechanism that keeps dogs out.
This bathroom trash can incorporates a pedal mechanism for easy (human) use and proves to be a difficult can to crack, even for large dogs. It has a butterfly-lid that opens from the center with the press of a pedal. This makes it hard for dogs to nose open—and also a good option if you need a trash can with low clearance. It comes in a few color options, including smudge-resistant stainless steel, gray, and white.
Like other SimpleHuman models, this trash can is on the expensive side, but its functionality and appearance earn high praise from dog parents. We like that the open/close mechanism for this can is especially quiet.
- Butterfly lid opens from center, with low clearance
- Pedal operated with silent closure
- 2.6-gallon size
- Available in three color options
- Robust and difficult to tip
Best Locking Lid Design: Sterilite 12.6-Gallon Locking StepOn Garbage Can
Sterilite 12.6-Gallon Locking StepOn Garbage Can
Sold in a two-pack, these trash cans are truly dog-proof, thanks to both a solid locking mechanism and push pedal that keeps the lid shut.
If you have a clever dog who is frankly insulted by the suggestion that a pedal-mechanism trash can would fool him, Sterilite has designed a trash can with both a pedal and a locking mechanism. This can is designed to keep pretty much any creature lacking opposable thumbs out, which makes it a good choice for households with clever pets. As an added bonus, the lock remains in place even if this trash can is tipped over. If you are at your wits’ end, this might be a good option. Even better? These cans are sold as a two-pack or an eight-pack.
- Push-pedal and locking mechanism for maximum security
- Stays closed even when tipped over
- 12.6-gallon size (fits 13-gallon trash bags)
- Available in black and white
- Made from durable plastic
Best for Trash and Recycling: Simplehuman 15.3-Gallon Pet-Proof Step Can
Simplehuman 15.3-Gallon Step Can
This 15.3-gallon double bin is a great option for a trash can and recycling container in one. It boasts a pedal mechanism to keep dogs out and a brushed stainless steel exterior.
For the dog parent who wants a dog-proof trash and recycling solution in one, we like this dual receptacle from Simplehuman. It has two bins for storing both trash and recycling, and it uses a pedal mechanism to keep pets at bay. Additionally, each side is lined with a plastic bin to make the entire ensemble easy to clean. Reviewers praise its durability and functionality.
- Robust design makes tipping difficult even for the largest dogs
- Pedal mechanism keeps pets at bay
- Brushed stainless steel exterior
- Built-in liner storage and dispensing
How To Pick the Right Dog-Proof Trash Can
There are various levels of security when it comes to dog-proof trash cans. The simplest is a foot pedal. Paired with a heavier can, this can work well for smaller dogs who can’t throw enough weight into the step to open it or knock over the whole can.
The next level of security is a locking trash can. Even if your dog has figured out how to operate a pedal or can easily tip a can over, they can’t bypass a locking lid. If your dog only strikes when no one is around, locks are a relatively convenient and affordable safety measure.
If your dog is a true trash fiend who can strike at any time, you might want the securest of all setups: a motion-sensor. These make a trash can both hygienic (since you never have to touch the lid) and extra dog-proof. They also save you the inconvenience of having to lock and unlock your trash can whenever you need to use it.
Some other dog-proofing features that can help:
- Odor-control, which keeps pets at bay by containing those appealing smells
- Heavier materials, such as stainless steel, making a can harder to tip over and a lid harder to lift
- Something heavy that anchors garbage bags in the can
How We Chose
The dog-proof garbage cans featured here were selected based on a combination of our own hands-on testing and a comprehensive look at customer reviews across a wide variety of retail platforms. To find the best dog-proof trash cans, we prioritized a variety of opening mechanisms that prove difficult for pets, including pedals, locking lids, and motion sensors.
We chose heavier-weighted cans, odor-proofing mechanisms, and materials that were easy to keep clean. As always, we’re guided by the experience of living and playing alongside our own much-loved and strongly opinionated trash hunters, who are never stingy with their feedback.