Pitbull and dog crate

Choosing the Best Dog Crate Size: Dimensions and Measurements Guide

How do I Choose the Right Crate for My Dog?

Dog crates are extremely useful. Dog crates provide your dog with a safe place of their own to go to when they are anxious for instance. Crates are super helpful for traveling with your dog. You can also use crate training techniques to aid in obedience training and potty training too.

There are a ton of different types and styles of dog crates to choose from. So, you may be wondering how to figure out which one is right for your pup. There are several factors to consider before you purchase a crate for your dog. First off, think about what you plan to use the crate for. You may want one crate for traveling and a different crate for home use, for instance. Additionally, consider the size of your dog and any special requirements your pup may have.

Dog Crate for Puppy

Size Guide for Dog Crates

Dog crates usually have dimensions listed for length, width, and height. However, crate sizes vary by brand and style, so make sure to read the labels carefully.

Some dog crates list all the dimensions and the weight limits. Other dog crates will only list the length. Some dog crates come in small, medium, and large sizes. Others come in a variety of extra small, extra-large, and jumbo sizes as well. The following table displays common crate sizes and example breeds that fit those sizes.

CRATE SIZEAVERAGE DIMENSIONSFOR DOGS THAT WEIGHDOG BREED BEST FOR
Extra Small (XS)24L x 18W x 20H10 lbs. or lessPomeranian, Chihuahua, Maltese, Jack Russel Terrier, Pug, and the Boston Terrier
Small (S)24L x 18W x 22H11-25 lbs.Tibetan Spaniel, Miniature Poodle, Border Terrier, and the Maltese
Medium (M)29L x 22W x 24H26-40 lbs.French Bulldog, Miniature Schnauzer, Cocker Spaniel, and the American Pit Bull
Large (L)35L x 24W x 27H41-70 lbs.Shar-Pei, English Setter, Bulldog, and the Basset Hound
Extra Large (XL)42L x 29W x 30H71-90 lbs.Golden Retriever, Dalmatian, Chow-Chow, Siberian Husky, and the German Shepard
Extra – Extra Large (XXL)45L x 32W x 33HOver 90 lbs.Alaskan Malamute, Saint Bernard, Bloodhound, and the Sheepdog

Measure Your Dog for the Best Crate Size

The best way to determine what size crate your dog needs is to measure your pup’s height, length, and width. You’ll want to weigh your dog too. 

How to Measure the Length of your Dog

To measure your dog’s length, have your pup stand on all fours. Use a tape measure. Measure length from the tip of the nose to the base of the tail. It is not necessary to include your dog’s tail in this measurement. When looking at dog crate sizes, look for one that is approximately two-four inches longer than your dog. 

How to Measure the Height of your Dog

The best way to measure your pup’s height for a dog crate is while they are in a sitting position. Use a tape measure to find the height from the top of your pup’s head to the floor. Include your pup’s ears in the measurement if the ears stick straight up. If your pup’s ears lie flat, you do not need to include them in the height measurement. It is ideal to get a dog crate that is approximately two-four inches taller than your dog in a sitting position. 

How to Measure the Width of your Dog

Your dog can be sitting or standing to measure the width. Use a tape measure to find the girth around the largest part of your dog’s tummy. Look for dog crates that are two-four inches wider than your dog. 

Dalmation measuring tape

Make Sure to Weigh Your Dog!

Most dog crates have weight limits. It is essential to make sure your dog is not too heavy for their dog crate. A lot of dog crates list the weight limit in the product description. Some do not.

In instances when the weight limit is not listed, look at the dimensions of the dog crate. If the dog crate is the right length, height, and width, it is reasonable to assume your dog will not be too heavy for the dog crate.

Is your dog a little too big for a medium dog crate, and a little too small for a large dog crate? If so, go with the large. Too much space is better than not enough for your dog’s comfort. Plus, a lot of dog crates come with divider panels you can use to adjust the size. 

What Size Crate Should I Get for My Puppy? 

Golden Puppy in a Crate with a divider

If you are shopping for a crate for your puppy, look for one that will grow with your dog. There are crates with divider panels you can use to change the amount of room in the crate.

For potty training purposes with a puppy, you still only want to give them an extra two-four inches of room to maneuver. When your pup gets bigger, you can move the divider panel to make the crate bigger.

If you purchase a crate that you plan to keep as your puppy grows into an adult, you will want to estimate the size your dog will be when he is full grown and make sure to buy a crate that can expand to this size. You can figure out how big your dog is likely to get by researching the specific breed or consulting your dog’s vet.

Where to Keep Your Dog’s Crate

You may want to choose a place for your dog’s crate in your home before you purchase one because you’ll want to make sure the crate will fit. When choosing a place for the crate there are several factors to consider.

Choose a Low-Traffic Area

You will want to place your dog’s crate in a low-traffic area of your home. Depending on your household, you may choose an area next to the couch, in a corner of your bedroom, or in your laundry room. The key for finding a good place to put the crate is to choose somewhere that is not near heavy foot traffic.

Avoid Harsh Temperatures

You will also want to think about the temperature where your dog’s crate will be. Keep your dog’s crate away from heating and cooling vents, the fireplace, and direct sunlight. You may also want to keep the crate away from outside doors and windows because these can bring in cold temperatures.

Avoid Household Hazards

Keep your dog’s crate away from appliances, cords, and electrical outlets.

What Should You Put in Your Dog’s Crate? (And What Should You Leave Out)

MidWest iCrate Starter Kit 22 Inch XS

  • Everything you need arrives in 1 carton so you can enjoy more time with your new family member
  • Fleece pet bed & polyester crate cover fit your dog crate & are machine washable/dryer friendly
  • Entire dog crate kit includes 1-Year Manufacturer’s Warranty on all products

There is much more to creating a comfortable crate environment for your dog than the crate itself. There are some things you may want to include in your dog’s crate, while there are some you should avoid. What goes into your dog’s crate will depend on a lot of things, including your dog’s age, size, behavior, and needs.

How to Choose Bedding for Your Dog’s Crate

A good dog bed or mat can make a crate much cozier for your pup. However, there are a few things to think about when it comes to what kind of bedding to put in your dog’s crate. For instance, if you have a puppy that is not potty trained, try a waterproof mat instead of a cotton-filled bed.

If you have a dog that likes to chew things up, you may want to look for a crate mat or pad that is labeled “chew-proof” or “chew-resistant”.

Go Collar-less!

All collars, harnesses, and ID tags should be removed from your dog’s neck before they go into their crate. These items pose a safety hazard because they can easily get caught between the bars of the crate and cause strangulation. If you do choose to keep a collar on your pup while they are in the crate, make sure it is a break-away collar.

Our Top Picks for Dog Crates

LUCKUP Strong Kennel Playpen

LUCKUP Strong Kennel Playpen

  • Heavy duty frame: made from corrosion-resistant steel,strong and durable, hard to be damaged,nontoxic finished surface keep your dog health
  • The front door is suitable for pet in and out,the top door also can be opened for you interacting with your dog
  • Removable (slide-out) plastic tray helps you to catch the fallen dog food and excrement,and allows you to wipe and clean easily

The LUCKUP crate is made with a durable steel frame that is rust-resistant. There are two locks and safety buckles so your dog won’t be able to open the door himself and escape. A door in the front and another one on the top for easy access to your pup. The wheels on the crate help you to easily move it around, with locks to keep them in place when you are done moving it.

Consider these specs:

  • Heavy duty steel frame
  • 360˚ locking castor design
  • Removable plastic tray for easy cleanup.
  • Double doors
  • 3-year warranty
Pros
  • This crate is designed for easy assembly
  • All hardware is included
  • This crate is great for keeping escape artist dogs secure
Cons
  • Not a good option for travel because it is bulky

ProSelect Empire Dog Crate

ProSelect Empire Dog Crate

  • This ProSelect Empire dog cage is extremely strong with reinforced 0.5-inch diameter steel tubes and 20-gauge steel
  • Cleanup is easy with this ProSelect dog cage because of its grated floor with tray
  • You can attach casters to the bottom of the cage to allow for easily rolling the cage to other locations or leave the casters off for added stability

The ProSelect Empire Dog Crate is reinforced with a half-inch diameter 20-guage steel tubes. This crate is equipped with a grated floor and removable tray for easy cleanup. This crate comes with removable casters. You can put the casters on to move it, or leave them off to ensure the crate is stable.

Consider these specs:

  • 20-guage steel tubes
  • Removable tray
  • Strong latches
  • Strong welds
  • Removable castors
Pros
  • The sturdy steel design is made to stand up to wear and tear from large dogs
Cons
  • This crate only comes in two size options – medium and large

MidWest Homes for Pets iCrate

MidWest iCrate Starter Kit 36 inch Medium Large

  • Your dog’s home while you’re away from home: Durable design creates a safe place for your pet while you’re away & caters to your dog’s natural “den” instincts
  • Two heavy duty slide bolt latches firmly locks dog crate door in place keeping your dog safely inside their dog crate
  • Sets up in seconds w/ no tools required for assembly & folds flat for convenient storage or travel, roller feet protect hardwoods, make repositioning easy

The iCrate is designed to grow with your dog. This crate comes with a divider panel that you can move to make the crate larger or smaller. This crate is equipped with a slide bolt latch to keep the door locked and in place. One of the most unique facets of this crate is that it can be folded flat for storage or travel.

Consider these specs:

  • Divider panel
  • Roller feet
  • Foldable design
  • Single door or double door options
Pros
  • This crate does not require any tools for assembly
  • This crate comes in several size options
  • You can choose from a single door or double door model
Cons
  • The single bolt latch may not stand up to dogs that are especially good at escaping their crates

Petmate Sky Kennel

Petmate Sky Kennel 28 inch

  • 4 way vault door provides extra security for the travel dog crate by preventing sliding and shifting
  • Durable, Heavy Duty Construction: Durable plastic shell, non corrodible wing nuts, extra strong steel wire, and interlocking door provide heavy duty protection
  • entilation openings surrounding the travel kennel give pets fresh air and visibility from all sides

The Petmate Sky Kennel is designed for traveling with your pup. This crate is equipped with 360-degree ventilation and wire vents for breathability and visibility. The 4-way vault door adds security.

Consider these specs:

  • 2 “live animal” stickers
  • Clip-on Food & Water dishes
  • Pet ID stickers
  • Wire Vents
  • 4-Way Vault Door
Pros
  • Great option for traveling with your dog
  • Has excellent ventilation and airflow
  • Great security with 4-way vault door
Cons
  • The hard plastic shell may not be comfortable for older dogs. If your dog suffers from joint pain or arthritis, you may want to add a padded mat or cushion to the crate.

SMONTER Heavy Duty Strong Metal Dog Crate

SMONTER 38 inches dark silver Heavy Duty Metal

  • Safe and non-hazardous dog cages protect your pet’s health, so you don’t have to worry when it chews and licks.
  • Our heavy duty dog crates Made out of reinforced steel and having all parts welded which means our heavy duty dog cage can prevent even the most aggressive canines from escaping.
  • A door and locking caster design: the front door is suitable for pets in and out.

The SMONTER Heavy Duty Strong Metal Dog Crate is made with a sturdy steel frame covered in a non-toxic hammer-tone coating to prevent corrosion, rust, and scratches. This material is non-toxic, so you do not have to worry if your dog chews on it. This crate comes with two locks to keep your pup from escaping.

Consider these specs:

  • Reinforced steel frame
  • Non-toxic rust-proof coating
  • Double locks
  • Removable Castor
  • Removable slide-out plastic tray
Pros
  • This crate comes partially assembled
  • There is a 3-year warranty
  • This crate is great for outdoor use
  • Non-toxic materials make it safe for chewers
Cons
  • This is a bulkier crate, not great for travel

Homey Pet Open Top Crate

Homey Pet Open Top Crate

  • Open top makes it easier to put your dog/animal in and out
  • Lockable casters provide more convenience to move the cage. Floor grid keeps your pet clean and dry
  • All metal heavy duty design with safety auto lock design; Nontoxic finished surface

The Homey Pet Open Top Crate is designed with an open top so you can easily get your pup in and out. The metal frame has a non-toxic coating. This crate comes with a removable tray and lockable casters.

Consider these specs:

  • Floor grid
  • Removable Tray
  • Locking Castors
  • Open Top
  • Metal Frame
Pros
  • The removable tray can either be placed underneath the floor grid to catch spilled food and excrement for easy cleanup, or it can be placed on top of the floor grid to provide protection for your dog’s paws in the event you are not using a crate mat.
Cons
  • This crate is not great for travel. If you are looking for a crate that’s portable, you may want to try a travel crate.

EliteField 3-Door Folding Soft Dog Crate

EliteField 3-Door Folding Soft Dog Crate

  • The crate frame is made of strong steel tube; the crate cover is made of high quality durable 600D fabric and hex mesh fabric
  • two accessory pockets on the top and side; removable and washable cover and bed
  • Free carrying bag and fleece bed included; a handle and hand carrying straps on the crate, hand carrying straps and adjustable padded shoulder strap

The EliteField 3-Door Folding Soft Dog Crate is equipped with a strong steel tubing frame and a durable fabric cover. There are three mesh doors; one on the top, one on the front, and one on the side. This crate comes with a fleece dog bed and a carrying bag. The cover, bag, and bed are all machine washable.

Consider these specs:

  • Steel Tube Frame
  • 600D fabric & hex mesh fabric cover
  • 3 Doors
  • Fleece Dog Bed
  • Carrying Bag
Pros
  • This crate is designed to fold up and carry in several different ways to give you multiple carrying and storage options.
Cons
  • This crate is for more docile dogs. Not recommended for aggressive pups or chewers.

2PET Foldable Dog Crate

2PET Foldable Dog Crate

  • foldable dog crate that combines all the functionality with a touch of class & innovation, 2PET Fold-A-Crate is the perfect choice
  • Unlike many other flimsy & makeshift dog crates out there, Fold-A-Crate uses a strong yet lightweight steel tube design that can be folded/unfolded in a jiffy
  • Being absolute pet lovers, we donate a portion of sales to various pet shelters & charities – With a 1-year warranty

The 2PET Foldable Dog Crate is designed for indoor and outdoor use. This crate is equipped with a durable lightweight steel tube frame and a water-resistant fabric cover. This crate also has a top handle so you can use it as a dog carrier for travel.

Consider these specs:

  • Steel Tube Frame
  • Oxford 600D cover
  • Front zippers
  • Foldable
  • Waterproof mat
Pros
  • Easy to keep clean, the cover is machine washable
  • Easy to take with you when you travel and fold away when not in use
Cons
  • Not ideal for aggressive dogs, chewers, or escape artists

How Do I Know What Kind of Crate I Need? 

There are a lot of things to consider before you purchase your next dog crate. You’ll need to think about what purpose in which you plan to use the dog crate. For instance, you will need a different type of dog crate for air travel than you will need for home use.

Other things to consider are your dog’s size, age, habits, and behavior. If you have a large, rambunctious dog that likes to chew on things, you’ll need a heavy-duty crate. If you have a puppy that is small now but will grow large later, you will need a dog crate with dividers that will grow with your dog. 

What are the Different Types of Dog Crates?

Dog crates come in many shapes, sizes, and materials. The most common kinds of dog crates include wire, metal, plastic, and soft-sided varieties. 

Wire Dog Crates

Wire Dog Crates

  • Includes Free divider panel, durable dog tray, carrying handle, 4 ‘roller’ feet to protect floors & midwest
  • Durable design creates a safe place for your pet while you’re away & caters to your dog’s natural “den” instincts
  • Sets up in seconds w/ no tools required for assembly & folds flat for convenient storage or travel,

One of the most common types of dog crates is the wire crate. These crates are used widely because they are good for keeping an eye on your dog at all times. Wire dog crates are also often used for travel. A lot of wire crates are collapsible so you can easily take them with you or store them away when not in use.

These crates have excellent airflow and ventilation. Wire crates are easy to keep clean. The negative to wire crates is that some of them can get pretty heavy. Another possible issue is that your dog may feel vulnerable being so out in the open, which may give him anxiety.

Metal Dog Crates

LUCKUP Strong Metal Kennel and Crate

  • Heavy duty frame: made from corrosion-resistant steel,strong and durable, hard to be damaged,nontoxic finished
  • The front door is suitable for pet in and out,the top door also can be opened for you interacting with your dog.
  • All hardware pack included,just need to fit it with four wheels and eight screw bolts, locks were pre-assembled,Just takes 3-5 minutes to complete.

Metal dog crates are made to stand up to even your most destructive pup. Metal crates are naturally chew-resistant. These crates will keep your aggressive dogs or dogs that need to be under more security in place. These crates are often a lot heavier than others though, therefore, they are not ideal for travel. For this reason, you may want to choose this type of crate for your permanent at-home option.

Plastic Dog Crates

Pet Travel Plastic Carrier

  • Two-door, top-load model allows for easy loading of your cat or dog Measures 23 * 15 * 13in
  • Top door can open to the left or right for easy access and convenience
  • Included screws can be used to further secure the top and bottom of kennel for added reinforcement

Plastic crates are much lighter than wire crates. For this reason, they are good for travel as well, even though they are usually not collapsible. These crates typically are equipped with a hard, plastic shell and a wire door. These are the types of pet carriers you may see when people take their pup on an airplane or on a visit to the vet. The plastic shell provides much less visibility than the wire crates.

Soft-Sided Foldable Dog Crates

Soft-Krater Indoor and Outdoor Crate

  • Durable, Well-Ventilated Pet Crate For Indoor Or Outdoor Use Made With New Heavy-Duty Tight-Weave Mesh Fabric
  • For pets up to 70 pounds Sets Up In Seconds Anywhere You Want To Go
  • Rounded Corners Protect Home Décor And Auto InteriorThe N2-36 Measures 36″L X 24″W X 27″H When Assembled And Is Appropriate For Pets Up To 70 Pounds.

Soft-sided crates are usually made with a metal frame tubing and a fabric cover. The best thing about these crates is that they are light and foldable so they are easy to travel with and don’t take up a lot of room in storage. These crates are best for older or calmer dogs and likely will not hold up to rambunctious puppies.

Final Thoughts on Choosing the Best Dog Crate Size

Ultimately, the dog crate that you choose will be whatever is best for your pup’s needs and your own preferences. There are a ton of great models to choose from, so there is something out there for every pet parent.

The key is knowing what you are going to use the crate for. Then, consider your dog’s size, weight, and behavior. Measure your dog beforehand. Lastly, do your homework on several different crates and select the one (or ones) that is the best fit.

Read product dimensions and weight limits carefully. With these tips in mind, finding the right size dog crate for your pup will be much easier. Your dog will thank you when they are comfortable and secure in a dog crate that is just the right size.

Sarah Nishimoto

Sarah is not only a pet owner but loves animals of all shapes and sizes.

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