Best Heavy Duty Dog Crates & Indestructible Kennels for 2019

Best Heavy Duty Dog Crates & Indestructible Kennels for 2019

  • 18 min read
  • Updated: 12/05/2018
  • Author: Jonathan Cooper

As much as we all dream of the placid dog waiting patiently on the unblemished sofa patiently waiting for our return, the reality is that dogs are like people and many of them have anxiety, behavioral issues or destructive tendencies when left to their own devices. Sometimes it’s necessary to contain them for their own safety during our absence or during travel. It’s imperative to choose a good crate that will keep your escape artist both safe and comfortable. Cages that can be pushed open, warped or bent can also prove extremely dangerous to the dog while he is escaping in the event he becomes trapped while trying to escape. Therefore, it’s critical to choose a well-built crate.

Click here to scroll down to see what things we look for
when choosing the best harness for french bulldogs

Best Budget

Petmate Ultra Vari Kennel

6/10

Tie-down strap holes

Easy Assembly

Wire vents are proportionally small

Metal screws

Covered Door posts

Door post can be bent outwards and door forced open (most common means of escape)

Floor is not flat and smooth

Best for smaller dogs without strength to force door open

Wire door can be chewed and the solder points popped apart

Quality control issues

TYPE OF CRATE
Plastic & Wire style
MATERIAL
Plastic
Steel
SIZE
x-small (21" x 16" x 15")
small (28" x 20.5" x 21.5")
medium (32" x 22.5" x 24")
large (36" x 25" x 27")
x-large (40" x 27" x 30")
xx-large (48" x 32" x 35")
COLOR CHOICES
2

Best Plastic

Gunner Kennels G1 Medium Dog Crate

9/10

Fits dogs up to 45 lbs

Double-wall construction

Elevated feet

Escape-proof door

Paddle latch

Top and bottom safety locks

Drainage system/plug for easy clean-up

Crash-test certified

Extensive assembly needed

Kennel is quite heavy (39 lbs)

TYPE OF CRATE
Plastic Style
MATERIAL
Plastic
Steel
SIZE
29.5 x 20.5 x 23.5
COLOR CHOICES
1

Go Pet Club Heavy Duty Mobile Metal Pet Cage

3/10

Removable plastic tray

Can be folded for storage

Removable lockable wheels

Flimsy latch

Door easily bent open

Wires on bottom of cage are not welded

Frame is the only heavy duty portion of the cage, the wire panels are weak and easily popped apart

TYPE OF CRATE
Wire style
MATERIAL
Metal
SIZE
24x 28.75 x 36.8
COLOR CHOICES
1

BestPet 36" Dog Cage with Two-Door Indoor Outdoor 4 Casters

4/10

Eco-friendly epoxy-coated metal

Top and side entrances to crate

4 casters, 2 lockable

Easily cleaned tray

Best for smaller to medium dogs

Weak latches easily popped out

Requires extensive assembly

Wire can be bent and soldered joints popped

TYPE OF CRATE
Wire style crate
MATERIAL
Metal
SIZE
36 x 25 29
COLOR CHOICES
1

Gelinzon Roof Dog Crate Heavy Duty Large Homestead Series Dogs Cage Kennel

4/10

2 inch spacing between bars on sides, .8 inches on bottom grate

Removable plastic trays

Top and side door entry

Weak locks

Metal coating/paint comes off easily

Quality control issues

TYPE OF CRATE
Metal bar style
MATERIAL
Steel
SIZE
42 x 30.3 x 37.3
COLOR CHOICES
1

Impact Collapsible, Durable Aluminum Dog Crate

9/10

Collapses easily to less than 8 inches in height

Rust resistant powder coated aluminum

4-sided ventilation

Spring loaded handles

Slam-latch door

Piano hinge

Higher price point

Powder coating can be chewed off over time

TYPE OF CRATE
MATERIAL
Aluminum
steel
SIZE
medium (30 x 19 x 22)
large (35 x 25 x 29) x-large (41 x 25 x 29)
COLOR CHOICES
1

Aspen Pet Porter Heavy-Duty Pet Carrier

4/10

Smaller sizes have carrying handle

Ventilation openings

Heavy duty plastic

Metal nuts and bolts

Plastic is brittle

Door can easily be pushed out of place

Plastic window grates can easily be chewed through

Quality control issues

TYPE OF CRATE
Plastic style
MATERIAL
plastic
steel
SIZE
x-small (19 x 12.6 x10)
small (23 x 15.2 x 11.8)
medium (24.1 x 16.7 x 14.5)
large (26.2 x 18.6 x 16.5)
x-large (28 x 21 x 22)
xx-large (32 x 23 x 24)
COLOR CHOICES
1

SMONTER Heavy Duty Strong Metal Dog Cage Pet Kennel

3/10

Three locks

Two doors plus top opening

Easy assembly

Bars are hollow and thin, can be crushed, bent or chewed

Damaged bars can injure dogs

Weak latches

TYPE OF CRATE
Metal bar style
MATERIAL
Metal
SIZE
small (38 x 25 x 32)
large (42 x 31 x 37)
COLOR CHOICES
3

Sliverylake Dog Cage Crate Kennel - Heavy Duty

3/10

Lockable wheels

Composite tray for easy cleaning

Two door openings

Weak lock

Quality control issues

Difficult assembly

TYPE OF CRATE
Metal bar style
MATERIAL
Metal
SIZE
small (37 x 24.4 x 28.7)
medium (41.7 x 29.1 x 33.5)
large (48.8 x 33 x 37)
COLOR CHOICES
3

Guardian Gear ProSelect Empire Dog Cage

7/10

Easy to clean tray below

Two sizes

Dual locks

Metal tray

Weak latch

Wheels break off easily

Higher price point

TYPE OF CRATE
Metal bar style
MATERIAL
metal
SIZE
35.75 x 23.5 x 24.5
COLOR CHOICES
1
Homey Pet 37

Homey Pet 37" Open Top Heavy Duty Dog Pet Cage Kennel w/Tray, Floor Grid

4/10

Stackable

Plastic floor grid easier on dog's feet

Nontoxic powder coated finish

Top and side entry points

ABS plastic tray can crack

Latch is weak

Weak welds

Quality control issues

TYPE OF CRATE
Wire crate style
MATERIAL
Metal
plastic
SIZE
37x 25 x 31
COLOR CHOICES
1

LUCKUP Heavy Duty Dog Cage Strong Metal Kennel and Crate for Medium and Large Dogs

3/10

Top and side entry points

Dual locks

Corrosion-resistant steel frame

Plastic tray for easy cleaning

Weak locks that can be bent

Weak welds

Quality control issues

Assembly issues

TYPE OF CRATE
Metal bar style
MATERIAL
Metal
plastic
SIZE
small (37 x 30.5 x 41.5)
medium (39 x 46 x 32)
large
COLOR CHOICES
2

Heavy Duty Pet Dog Cage Strong Metal Crate Kennel Playpen w/Wheels&Tray

3/10

Top and side entry points

Nontoxic powder coating

4 Rolling casters

Very weak and flimsy bottom grate

Weak welds

Hollow bars that can be easily bent

Weak latches

TYPE OF CRATE
Metal bar style
MATERIAL
Metal
Plastic
SIZE
small (24.4 x 26 x 36.2)
medium ( 43 x 31.4 x 28.3)
(large (46.4 x 35 x 31.4)
COLOR CHOICES
1

SmithBuilt Heavy-Duty Dog Crate Cage - Two-Door Indoor Outdoor Pet & Animal Kennel with Tray

4/10

Corrosion resistant hammer tone coating

Two entry points- top and side

Locking wheels

Metal tray

Plastic casters

Bent wires

Weak latches

Vertical stanchions not welded in

TYPE OF CRATE
Metal Bar
MATERIAL
Metal
SIZE
small (36 x 24 x 29)
medium (42 x 30 x 34)
large (48 x 33 x 37)
COLOR CHOICES
2

Frisco XX-Large Heavy Duty Double Door Dog Crate, 54-in

2/10

Black electro-coat finish

Plastic pan

Two door entry

Flimsy construction

Weak locks

Weak welds

TYPE OF CRATE
Wire style
MATERIAL
Metal
plastic
SIZE
54 x 36.5 x 44.75
COLOR CHOICES
1

Diamond Deluxe~Aluminum Single Hole Dog Box

9/10

Carrying handle

Dual-layer including plastic and insulation

Locking T-Handle door

Interior is flimsy and can be chewed and damaged by dog

Difficult to keep clean, no inside tray for accidents

Rough edges

Best for small to medium size dogs

Higher price point

TYPE OF CRATE
Solid panel style
MATERIAL
Metal
SIZE
medium (17 x 30 x 20)
large (24 x 35 x 27)
COLOR CHOICES
1

Best Solid Panel Style

Zinger Winger DX5000 Deluxe 5000 Aluminum Dog Crate

9/10

Aircraft grade aluminum

Lockable slam latch

Lightweight but sturdy

Corrosion-resistant

Higher price point

Lock can be tampered with by dog

Assembly can be complicated

TYPE OF CRATE
Solid panel style
MATERIAL
aluminum
SIZE
40 x 28 x 32
COLOR CHOICES
1

Best Overall

Owens 55065 Dog BoxBest Overall

Owens 55065 Dog Box

10/10

Diamond treat construction

Rubber floor mat

4-season vents with storm covers

Top storage compartment

Slam latch door

Lining can be expensive to replace if chewed

Long lead time for production

TYPE OF CRATE
Solid panel/metal bar hybrid style
MATERIAL
Steel
SIZE
21 x 38 x 26
COLOR CHOICES
1

How to Choose a Heavy Duty Dog Crate

It’s important to choose a crate that’s comfortable and functional if your dog will be spending any amount of time in it. Consider the size of your dog, how long he will need to be in the crate and if it is for travel or home use. There are multiple categories of heavy duty dog crate on the market and we’ve narrowed it down to three for the purpose of our review.

Some heavy duty dog crates are more specialized such as vehicle-mounted or built-in laboratory/veterinarian office style. Most users will not require that level of containment so we’ve chosen crates the average consumer might purchase.

When assessing a dog crate, pay attention to weak points and potential escape routes. Dogs learn quickly how to operate door latches, push through doors, or even separate components of a crate that are held together with insubstantial joints or wire connectors. They will chew on anything they can get their jaws around. With the force of his body, even a medium-sized dog can force his way out of a standard wire dog crate or a wooden dog crate with a wire door. Some dogs even blow out of sturdy plastic crates with metal doors by bending the door until the posts come out of their holes and voila- freedom!

While you want to ensure your dog is unable to escape his crate you should also pay close attention to how it is built – if he manages to push through a wall or joint are there components that might puncture or pinch his skin, catch a leg or trap him by the neck? Some dogs tend to chew on wire grates and we’ve seen permanent and serious damage to their teeth and jaws when they do this all day long, day in and day out. If you choose to reinforce your crate with additional hardware or connectors such as carabiners try to position them so the dog cannot get them into his mouth and grind on them.

We recommend heavy-duty crates that are constructed from metal with removable pans vs. a bottom panel that could provide a weak seam to break through. The locking mechanism or latch should be outside the door and your dog should not be able to manipulate, chew, or otherwise tamper with it from the inside.  The crate should be well ventilated but beware that crates that use flimsy wire grates or easily bent aluminum tubes can be busted through easily. You should be certain though that the dog has adequate ventilation and nothing is blocking the ventilation openings in the crate.

Crate anxiety can be a real issue, so be sure to determine where he will be most comfortable while in his crate. Some dogs prefer quiet while in their crates such as a basement or back bedroom, and other dogs become nervous and manic when they cannot hear what is happening around them.

And most importantly of all – ensure your dog has had adequate exercise and play before putting him in his crate so he will be more likely to take a nice long nap and spend less time and energy trying to escape.

Categories of Crates

Wire Cage Style. Typically made of panels made of rigid heavy metal wire held together with tabs or connectors and a bottom tray

Collapsible
Can easily be forced open
Carabiners may not hold them closed tightly enough for them to be safe
May not be accepted by airlines or shipping companies for transporting your dog

Solid Panel Style- Typically made of hinged solid panels perforated with ventilation holes

Solid panels are more difficult to push against and chew than wire
Less ventilation than wire
May be collapsible for storage or transport

Plastic Crate Style

Metal Bar Style: Sturdier than a wire crate, will typically consist of powder-coated steel bar panels bolted together

Once assembled can be bulky
May not be as easy to use for travel or transport
Excellent ventilation