Taking your dog camping can be a lot of fun for both of you, but there are some things you need to remember. Most importantly, that your dog considers you and your family its pack, and it doesn’t like to be separated from it.
If you leave your dog in your RV or tent and go off to do something, and it’s not used to being there, your dog will become very stressed and do anything to return to the pack it thinks has left it. This is where dog camping crates come in.
Chances are your dog has a crate at home, designated as it’s safe space. If so, getting one for camping is essential to keep that sense of comfort and security. A camping crate for dogs is an important piece of camping gear. Let’s look at how to choose a dog cage for camping and then at our top picks.
How to Choose a Dog Camping Crate
When choosing a camping crate for your dog, there are a few things to consider before purchasing:
- Material: Is your dog a chewer? If so a soft-sided crate is out. Your dog won’t have much trouble chewing his way out. Do you want the option of using it outdoors? Then you’ll need one that is waterproof. Metal is the best choice for chewers. Plastic can also be a good option, but it can be chewed somewhat, unlike metal.
- Size: Crates are not meant to be spacious, but they should provide enough room for your dog to turn around in and stretch out, plus hold its food, water and something comfy to sleep on.
- Storage: Look for a crate that folds flat, so it can be easily stored when not in use.
Soft-sided crates will provide easier clean up if your dog is prone to accidents, but they are not nearly as durable as metal or plastic crates. Soft-sided crates have roof coverings to protect your dog from the sun and if waterproof, the rain, while metal or plastic ones may leave them more vulnerable.
Metal crates may also heat up if left in direct sunlight for too long, something else to keep in mind. If your dog is a jumper, a soft-sided crate is recommended, while if he is a digger, a hard plastic or metal one is best.
Both soft sided and metal or plastic crates are easy to store and transport. Metal doesn’t necessarily mean strong though, so check out any crate you’re interested in carefully. Some are constructed of thin wire that bends and warps easily.
Best Overall Pick – A4Pet Dog Crate and Kennel with Leak-Proof Bottom
The A4Pet Dog Crate and Kennel comes in 25, 31 and 36-inch sizes and is soft sided with a roof and windows. It accommodates dogs up to 70lbs and is collapsible for easy storage. The large side windows provide plentiful ventilation and allow you to check on your dog and for your dog to see you and be included in what’s going on.
This dog crate for camping features strong oxford cloth over a high-quality steel frame. It can be set up and taken down in less than a minute. The kennel cover and cushion can be removed and washed, and the floor is leak proof to contain accidents and protect your dog from the elements. It’s suitable for use indoors and out.
What We Liked
- Variety of sizes to accommodate many dog breeds
- Ventilation mesh
- Ease of set up and break down
- Cover and cushion are washable
What Could Have Been Better
- Cover and cushion are not machine washable (hand wash and air dry only)
- Not ideal for chewers
- Zippers could be a little sturdier
Best Value Pick – AmazonBasics Single Door & Double Door Folding Metal Dog Crate
This metal camping crate for dogs features 24-48-inch sizes and single or double door configurations, plus an optional divider panel and a solid floor. It’s made out of durable steel, and the doors have a double bolt for added security. It sets up in seconds and folds flat for easy transport and storage. The floor is constructed of sturdy plastic and can be removed for cleanup in case of any accidents. It even has a handle for ease in carrying.
Users rave about the quality and ease of use and say it’s just as good as the big, more expensive brands. This is a good choice if you have a digger or want a crate that can be stacked or connected to another. If you’re looking to protect your pooch from the sun or heat, this dog camping crate won’t get the job done unless you lay a towel over it or use the divider panel as a roof.
What We Liked
- Handle for carrying
- Removable, washable floor
- Double or single doors
- Variety of sizes to accommodate most breeds
What Could Have Been Better
- The lock could be sturdier
- May not stand up to veteran escape artists
- Edges are not rounded
Best Budget Pick – MyDeal Pop Up Pet House in a Bag.
This cute and very affordable soft-sided crate accommodates small and medium-sized dogs. It pops open in seconds and can be used as a pet barrier in your vehicle by attaching it between your car seats. This dog camping crate is lightweight and folds flat, making it easy to tote around or store. The fabric is weather resistant, so it can be used indoors or out.
The MyDeal Pop Up Pet House features a roof, three windows, and a zipper window. It folds into its bag with carrying handle. The roof protects your dog from the sun and helps keep them cool when the temps soar. Users rave about its durability, portability, and lightweight. It may not stand up to the rough and tumble of puppies, but it should keep most dogs comfortable and cozy at the beach, in the car, and at the campgrounds.
What We Liked
- Ease of set up
- Sun protection
What Could Be Better
- Folding takes some time to get the hang of
- Fabric is thin
- Doesn’t accommodate large dogs
All of our picks are solid choices if you are looking for a dog crate for camping. A crate will keep your dog safe and secure at the campground and in your RV. To make the best choice, keep your dog’s needs and temperament in mind along with the types of places you’ll be visiting. Super sunny spots demand a crate with a roof for shade, while pooches traveling in an RV may be more suited to a wire cage similar to what they have at home.
Our best pick is the A4Pet Dog Crate and Kennel with Leak-Proof Bottom. It has everything you and your dog could need in a crate, with high quality and a budget-friendly price. The leak-proof floor makes cleaning up accidents no big deal, and the variety of sizes available mean there’s one to fit almost every size dog. The removable and washable cushion and cover are a big plus!