Should you have dog car crates for your dog? In a word, yes. The well-known behaviorist Nick Dodman once said, “A crate for life should be the dog owner's maxim.” From keeping your dog safe to managing behavior problems, keeping him safe from injury while you are dring, and training your puppy, dog car crates is a must. In fact, dog car crates should be one of your first pet purchases. There are several styles, materials and sizes of dog car crates to choose from. So, before you go shopping for a dog car crate, consider these factors. Features to Consider in Dog Car Crates Materials – Molded plastic and wire frame are the two primary choices for dog car crates. While the plastic version is most commonly approved for airline travel, the wire frame style offers better visibility and ventilation for car travel. When traveling in the back of a pickup truck, the greater protection offered by the molded plastic make it a better choice for this situation. Never leave your dog loose in the back of an open pickup truck. For the home there are wire frame dog car crates with a decorative wicker style cover. For routine travel in your car, it can be almost any style or size as long as it fits. A sturdy plastic model often works well and can be washed out easily.
Size – Your dog car crates should be roomy enough for your dog to stand, turn around and lie down comfortably, but not so large that it fails to provide the safety of confinement. If you are buying for a puppy and don't want to buy several sizes as he grows, buy the recommended size for a typical adult of his breed and fill the extra space with blankets and soft toys. This will make your dog car crate cozier and safer for your new puppy when you travael.
Durability – Molded plastic dog car crates tend to be relatively indestructible. If you buy a wire frame dog car crate, be sure that it is sturdy enough for the size and activity level of your dog. They are also very secure in the case of an accident and tend to hold up very well.
Ability to clean – Wire frame dog car crates tend to be the easiest to clean, and some even have a raised floor that allows food, debris, and waste to sift through to a solid pan below. This is often not essential for a dog car crate, especially if you are going short distances. A solid bottom model can work quite well in this situation.
Chew proof – Molded plastic and wire frame dog car crates tend to be the most chew proof. The wicker style covers are attractive and provide your dog with cozy privacy, but they may also encourage chewing. For most people, the decorate aspects and associated costs are not important for car travel unless you are using this in your house as well.
Safe – Keeping your dog safe is the primary purpose of a dog car crate. So, choose one that is sturdy, latches securely, and is the correct size to provide the protection of confinement in travel situations.
Ideal Choice of a Dog Car Crates
For most car traveling situations, a sturdy wire frame dog car crate is easy to clean, durable and offers good ventilation and visibility. It should fit in your car and be easy to clean. A basic molded plastic rate is strong, durable and provides some aspect of safety if you happen to be in an accident while driving. This type of confinement can be helpful as your pet won't “run” off if a door is opened or in the case of an accident.
For airline travel or riding in the back of an open pickup truck, the added protection of the molded plastic dog car crate makes it a very good choice. You can even get a slip cover of durable, weather proof fabric for these types of dog car crates for added protection in inclement weather which is especially important if the dog car crate is in the back of a truck.
Shopping Tips for a Dog Car Crates
Consider a folding design for your dog car crates if you travel frequently.
If you have a puppy, choose a crate size that will accommodate him as an adult, or you may want to consider a design that can be sectioned off to allow for expansion.
Take time to scrutinize the design. When selecting a wire frame dog car crates, consider the size of the wire grid; be sure your dog's paws won't fall through the grid. Also, check for any sharp edges. And for any style of dog car crates, check the front door to see if it is spring loaded, these doors can snap shut on a paw or tail.
Molded plastic dog car crates are easy to clean, durable and most are airline approved, but offer less ventilation than a wire frame crate.
More Tips for Dog Car Crates
Your car is your means of getting from one place to another. For some, our cars are as important as our homes; they are our castles in motion, a sanctuary and safe place to retreat. You can offer your dog this same comfort by selecting the proper dog car crates and demonstrating to your pet that it is his safe private space while on the road. Take time to acclimate your puppy early by offering food or treats in the crate, or by throwing favorite toys into the back of the crate for them to retrieve. Make dog car crates an everyday object, not something he sees just occasionally or only when there is some sort of emergency.
Consider your dog car crates as part of your dog's overall training. Never ever use the crate as punishment. Your dog should regard his crate as his haven. If you use the crate to isolate or punish your pet, he will come to associate his crate with unpleasant circumstances and feelings.
Crate training is important, not only as a form of protection and security for your dog, but also because there are a variety of situations in which traveling with your dog may become necessary for social, medical, or even legal reasons.
Even if your dog lives primarily indoors, don't underestimate the usefulness of a dog car crates. Your pet will travel safer in the car if he is confined, and there may well be times when confining him happily in the home is useful or even necessary.
Finally, when you put your dog into a dog car crates to remain for a period of time it is best to remove his collar so there is no chance of it getting caught, thus trapping or choking your dog.