Most people assume dog or pet crates are used to contain your pet for the sake of just containing the pet. While this is somewhat true in some cases, a pet crate can be a very effective tool for your pet. Dog crates usually come naturally to most dogs. When dogs were still wild before they became domesticated they lived in dens very similar to wolves. This is basically what a pet crate is. A modern version of a den. Crates usually make pets feel safe, cozy and usually make training your pet easier. Housebreaking your pet goes much faster when using a crate and cuts down on destructive behavior like chewing because if they need to calm down they can retreat to the crate to gather themselves and feel safe. Crates are also very usually with new born puppies and will further make the housebreaking easier to do if its taken advantage of.
You'll a want to make sure the crate is sized properly. The dog should be able to lie down, turn around and stand up comfortable in the crate. If they cannot do these things the crate might become more of a problem than a solution. Also the type of material the crate is made out of will benefit as well. If you have a chewer a plastic crate might possibly get chewed on, but lots of crates are make from stainless steel or other metals to help prevent chewing. Also naturally a metal crate will be much more durable in the long run.
Also its never too late to use a crate for your dog. Older dogs actually learn faster than puppies most of the time and they usually take to it naturally. Some good tips are to place meals inside of the crate to get used it. Not force the dog into the crate. After dogs become accustomed to the crate most actually enjoy spending time in it because its comfortable and makes them feel safe. A similar feeling such as when you go to bed with your covers over-top on you and your comfortable, this is the same type of feeling the dog gets. A crate in the end will make you and your pet more comfortable with day-to-day living.
Dog Crate Types
A dog crate is an enclosure that is typically used to keep a dog in for security or transportation reasons. These crates are typically made from either metal, wire, plastic or even fabrics. While dog crates are used to secure a dog, a dog if trained correctly will see it as refuge at home or if they're in an uncomfortable environment. Dogs naturally have the instinct to have a den, and the only thing a dog crate is, is a synthetic man made den. We will go over the types of dog crates that are on the market currently.
Solid plastic creates are very popular among airline travel. Almost any type of airline you fly on will have specifications and regulations for what type of pet or dog crate you can have on board. Plastic dog crates are usually considered safer during automobile accidents, but some disadvantages are is that they usually take up a lot of space and these creates cannot be broken down into a smaller footprint.
Wire crates usually have the ability to be broken down or folded for much easier storage than any other crate. These crates a great for giving you dog a clear view and lots of airflow on hot days. Also they give you the ability to show your pet off if need be. Usually they are used in dog show competitions, vets or just as kennels. These crates usually decently heavy and padding or soft covers can be purchased separately to be put over the top of the crate.
Aluminum crates are usually fully enclosed. These typically are lightweight because of the aluminum construction and are great for outdoor use because it will not rust. Typically these crates work well with automobile travel (especially truck beds if the crate can be affixed to the bed of the truck), vets or as a permanent den for the dog at home or breeding kennels.
Soft crates are the most transportable out of any of the crates featured. These crates are used to provide the dog with a sense of security as they would have in a regular den. Usually good visibility and airflow is featured with these. It's not recommended these crates are used with dogs that are typically destructive or chew. They crate simply will not last. Also it's not recommended these are to be used in transportation since they do no provide any safety features at all.
Dog Crate Sizing Guide
There are some details in dog crate sizing that some pet owners never taken into account. When purchasing a dog crate you'll want to make sure of a couple things. Namely that the dog can stand up and turn around comfortably in the crate while also being able to lie down inside the crate as well. We will go over what to look for when matching a crate with your dog.
The most important part of dog crate sizing is the height and length of the crate. Take the following measurements of your dog. Starting from the floor at their front feet to the top of their head, measure the dog's height. When measuring their length you start from the nose to tail. If the dog has a really long tail you do no have to account for all of it. For thicker tails you'll want to include a bigger measurement so that they're comfortable in the crate.
When selecting a crate you'll usually want to select a crate that is at least 2-4 inches taller an longer than the measurements you took. These are the minimum dimensions you want. Bigger doesn't always mean better as well. If you get a dog crate too large it may not be effective in crate training.
It's always better to measure your dog and compare the sizes listed on the crates. The breed recommendations and pound/size recommendations are just that. A recommendation that is a guide to help you find the size you need. In the end you'll still want to measure that way you find the perfect crate to fit your dog's size. There are a lot of crates out there with a lot of options, but before you look at the options you should look at the sizing available for that crate.