Best Outdoor Dog Kennels – Reviews & Buyer’s Guide

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Our dogs love being outdoors. My dogs are hesitant to even walk back into the house when it’s pleasant outside. This is why I invested in a good-quality outdoor kennel. 

Some people believe that keeping a dog outside is abusive, but this is not true at all. The only thing you must remember is that dogs are social animals, and they must be played with frequently. So, make sure that you spend quality time with them throughout the day and give them some alone time in their own kennel.

Also, make sure that the kennel is properly weatherproofed & insulated to make your pooch as comfortable as possible.

If you consider these important features, you’ll be able to find a kennel that your pup loves!

IMAGE

Lucky Dog Modular Box Kennel with Roof

BRAND

Lucky Dog

DETAILS

  • Large area (10′ x 10′)
  • Elevated platform
  • Easy Installation

Pricing

Lucky Dog Uptown Dog Kennel with Cover

BRAND

Lucky Dog

DETAILS

  • 100% Steel Frame with Powder Finish
  • High-Quality Canopy with UPF 50
  • Single door with a strong latch
Advantek 5 Foot Portable Indoor Outdoor Metal Pet and Dog Gazebo Kennel

BRAND

Advantek

DETAILS

  • Unique rain-proof umbrella cover
  • Spring Loaded Lock
  • Drop Down Window for food & water
MidWest Homes For Pets Chain Link Portable Kennel

BRAND

Midwest Homes

DETAILS

  • Extremely stable design
  • 80% sun protection
  • Affordable
BestPet Heavy Duty Dog Kennel

BRAND

BestPet

DETAILS

  • Strong Galvanized Steel Fencing
  • Modular Design
  • Rain-proof roof design
Tooca Pro Dog Kennel

BRAND

Tooca Pro

DETAILS

  • Pleasing roof tarp design
  • Detachable roof
  • Extremely affordable
Amazon Basics Welded Outdoor Wire Crate Kennel

BRAND

Amazon Basics

DETAILS

  • Sturdy hardware & wire
  • Rounded edges due to center welding
SMONTER Heavy Duty Dog Cage for Large Dog Strong Metal Kennel e1660573669867

BRAND

Smonter

DETAILS

  • Skylight for easy access
  • Floor trays for cleaning
  • Transport wheels with silent bearings

Top 8 Outdoor Dog Kennels Reviews 

1. Lucky Dog Modular Box Kennel with Roof (6′ x 10′ x 10′)

Lucky Dog Modular Box Kennel with Roof

Large area (10′ x 10′)

Elevated platform

Easy Installation

The Lucky Dog Modular kennel is definitely the best modular kennel design. A modular design is a perfect option if you have an oddly shaped outdoor space or if you want a certain kennel shape.

This kennel has a large design & ample space inside, which makes it great for dogs of all sizes.

It is also elevated, which makes cleaning up very easy. You can simply rake the floor when a quick cleaning is necessary. There are large step-through doors, which are a pretty accessible height.

The metal framing is commercial grade steel, which is a heavy-duty rust-resistant metal. Customers have also noted that installation was very easy, especially if you have two or more people.

However, some customers complained that the hardware was faulty and became rusted after a few years of use. Moreover, some complained that the lock was faulty & broke easily.

Therefore, I wouldn’t recommend this outdoor kennel for escape artists, because it may be easily broken if your dog is determined to.

Moreover, the price is rather high for such a simple crate design, which is really more like a pet playpen than a kennel.

PROS

  • Larger area is preferable for big dogs
  • Tarp roof has great protection from rain
  • Very easy to install
  • Center welding ensures that there are no sharp edges
  • Made of 100% heavy-duty steel
  • Metal connectors

CONS

  • Some reviews about poor quality hardware
  • High price for a simple design

2. Lucky Dog Stay Series Villa Kennel (4′ x 8′ x 6′)

Lucky Dog Uptown Dog Kennel with Cover

100% Steel Frame with Powder Finish

High-Quality Canopy with UPF 50

Single door with a strong latch

This kennel is a fantastic option if you would like a premium feel at a low cost. The design & construction of this kennel feels very high-quality, thanks to the powder-finished steel & the high-quality canopy.

The canopy provides UPF 50 protection. It also extends down past the roof, which provides more rain protection, and stops water from dripping in.

This waterproof cover has a nice color & beautiful design, which makes the kennel look very aesthetically pleasing.

Reviews state that the hardware has fantastic construction, and can function even in cold weather. They also state that the latch on the door is durable and can’t be broken by medium-sized dogs.

However, some customers complained that the door is a bit small. Although the kennel is listed as 6 feet tall, this is actually the peak height.

The height of the panels is less than 6 feet, which is something to consider if you are on the taller side.

PROS

  • Easy to assemble, especially with two people
  • UPF 50 protection sun cover
  • Powder-finished metal & high-quality canopy
  • High-quality hardware

CONS

  • The door is a bit short for taller pet owners
  • A bit pricey compared to other kennels

3. Advantek Portable Gazebo Kennel (5′ x 5′ x 5′)

Advantek 5 Foot Portable Indoor Outdoor Metal Pet and Dog Gazebo Kennel

Unique rain-proof umbrella cover

Spring Loaded Lock

Drop Down Window for food & water

This Advantek gazebo kennel features an ingenious octagonal design that makes rain slide right off. It has a reversible polyethylene cover that is UV protected, providing additional weatherproofing. 

The cover easily slides on an umbrella-style roof frame. Therefore, customers have stated that this kennel is extremely easy to assemble. 

A fantastic feature is a slide-up window that allows you to change out the food and water bowls. 

The kennel is made of a 2″ x 4″ galvanized steel wire, which is durable & rust-resistant. It also has nylon feet to protect your flooring & for ease of cleaning.

You can add kennel pads underneath and easily sanitize them, thanks to the raised level.

However, some customers have complained about the stability of the kennel. They state that larger dogs can easily jump into one of the corners and send the whole kennel tumbling down. Thus, we recommend this design only for smaller, more calm dogs.

PROS

  • Rain-proof design
  • Reversible canopy provides UV protection
  • Heavy duty 11 gauge metal 
  • Elevated for ease of cleaning
  • Durable spring-loaded safety latch 

CONS

  • Some customers complained that the nylon connectors were unstable
  • Not suitable for dogs more than 100 lbs. 

4. Midwest Homes Portable Kennel With Sunscreen (6′ x 4′ x 4′)

MidWest Homes For Pets Chain Link Portable Kennel

Extremely stable design

80% sun protection

Affordable

We recommend this kennel if you have a tight budget & a small dog. This kennel provides tons of stability for a relatively low price. The area, however, is a bit small & must be used only for dogs that weigh less.

The kennel has a strong, galvanized steel frame and chain-link mesh construction, which gives a lot of structural stability. However, chain link can be bent apart fairly easily by naughty puppies.

It comes with a complementary tarp roof that provides 80% protection from sun rays.

Reviews state that this kennel is easy to put together. However, some people complained that they received bent parts, which they had to get replaced. 

Furthermore, others complained that the top and bottom panels are connected by zip ties, which would easily snap in the winter. They recommend using your own, thicker zip ties to prevent this.

PROS

  • Tarp provides 80% protection from the sun
  • Very stable & hard to collapse
  • Easy to assemble
  • Less expensive than other options

CONS

  • A chain link fence isn’t suitable for escape artists
  • Small entry door
  • Some customers complained that they received bent parts
  • Flat roof 

5. BestPet Heavy Duty Dog Kennel (8′ x 4′ x 6′)

BestPet Heavy Duty Dog Kennel

Strong Galvanized Steel Fencing

Modular Design

Rain-proof roof design

This is a great, low-budget option for a larger dog. This BestPet kennel has a modular design, and it comes with panels made of high-tensile galvanized steel. 

It has a large area & a canopy made of waterproof polyethylene. It has a steel-framed roof which provides the kennel with more stability, as opposed to just a rain cover.

A unique aspect of this design is that the canopy has a bonnet design. this means that it overlaps with the side panels instead of just covering the roof part. This provides the kennel with more protection from the rain. 

Customer reviews state that it is very easy to put together. However, they also said that the metal is prone to rust. In fact, some customers state that the pieces they received in their package were already rusted!

Other reviews state that the latch on the door can easily be broken off if a large dog puts enough force on it. 

PROS

  • Made of high tensile galvanized steel
  • Modular design allows customization
  • Very easy to assemble according to customers
  • Very stable & hard to damage
  • Raised platform for quick cleaning
  • Fully covered rain cover

CONS

  • Prone to rusting
  • Some reviews complained that the latch was unstable
  • Small entry door

6. Tooca Pro Dog Kennel (4′ x 4.2′ x 4.45′)

Tooca Pro Dog Kennel

Pleasing roof tarp design

Detachable roof

Extremely affordable

This is one of the most affordable kennel options that we have found, likely because it doubles as an indoor kennel as well. 

This is a great one-size-fits-all animal housing solution, especially if your pup only likes to be outdoors for a few months out of the year. This kennel has a removable roof & waterproof cover, which gives good protection from the sun. 

We also really like the design of the tarp, which is unique & something we haven’t seen before. This design serves to hide the tarp attachments, which makes the design of the crate very streamlined.

This is also the perfect option for an indoor/outdoor crate due to the rubber feet which stops skidding on hardwood floors & allows for quick cleaning. It also has reinforced ground nails for outside use, to provide more stability.

The kennel has an invisible latch & door, which means that once you close the door, it locks automatically. While this does look very good, it could be easy for intelligent dogs to figure out how to open it. 

This is a sturdy kennel, as it is made with heavy-duty welded steel. Customer reviews state that this is an easy-to-install crate. 

However, the size of this crate is a bit small. Therefore, we would only recommend this crate for smaller dogs, or only for the purpose of sleeping. 

Moreover, some reviews stated that the crate was a bit flimsy, and is only suitable for smaller, calmer dogs.

PROS

  • Wonderful quality UV cover with a unique design
  • Rubber feet to prevent skidding
  • Ground nails for outdoor use
  • Heavy-duty latch & hardware

CONS

  • Smaller size, only suitable for small dogs
  • Complaints about flimsy construction

7. Amazon Basics Welded Outdoor Crate (8.5′ x 4′ x 6′)

Amazon Basics Welded Outdoor Wire Crate Kennel

Sturdy hardware & wire

Rounded edges due to center welding

This is a pretty large kennel for a relatively low cost. It is made of welded metal, which ensures that there are only rounded edges. Customers had some issues with building it though; they found it very time-consuming, even with multiple people.

The weather guard cover protects from the sun, rain, and light snow. It extends onto the sides of the kennel, so it ensures that the rain doesn’t drip outside. 

The large size of the kennel means that it is compatible with larger dogs as well. The door swings open and shut and has an easy-to-use flip latch.

However, this latch can be flipped up by larger dogs pretty easily. 

Customer reviews state that this kennel is very sturdy. However, it rusts rather easily. Therefore, we recommend covering sections of the metal that rub together with Rust-Oleum from time to time. 

Another customer complaint is that the canopy sags in the middle, due to the minimalist design of the roof. This means that bigger pooches can easily grab ahold of it and rip it to shreds. 

PROS

  • Sturdy metal framing
  • Rain-proof canopy design
  • Heavy duty hardware
  • Safe welding, with only rounded edges

CONS

  • Rusts easily, must be treated regularly
  • Canopy sags in the middle
  • The latch can be nudged open by larger dogs

8. Smonter Heavy Duty Dog Cage (3.8′ x 6.6′ x 3.2′)

SMONTER Heavy Duty Dog Cage for Large Dog Strong Metal Kennel e1660573669867

Skylight for easy access

Floor trays for cleaning

Transport wheels with silent bearings

This is a unique design; it looks to be more like a typical crate than an outdoor kennel. However, this is the best solution if your dog loves to chew the wiring of their kennel & escape.

This outdoor dog cage is made with hammer-tone coated welded steel. The bars are 0.85 inches, which is practically impossible to chew through.

This heavy-duty dog crate is on wheels with a locking mechanism & silent bearings. Therefore, the kennel is easy to move around, especially on concrete or tile.

The bottom of the kennel is equipped with a plastic flooring tray that allows for very easy cleaning. Moreover, the door has a lockable flap that you can use to change the food or water.

A cool feature of this outdoor kennel is the skylight. Thanks to this unique feature, you can quickly reach in and play with your pet. 

However, one negative aspect of this outdoor dog cage is the price. This heavy-duty dog crate is rather expensive for something so small.

Also, considering that the crate is only 3.2 inches tall, this is only an acceptable option for smaller breeds of dogs. Moreover, some online reviews stated that although the metal is very sturdy, the locks are slightly flimsy and can be broken with the right amount of force.

This kennel is the perfect option if your small dog jumps on the first opportunity for escape. 

PROS

  • Wheels allow easy transport
  • Thick, rust-resistant bars
  • Trays to clean flooring
  • Food & water changing flap

CONS

  • Small size, only suitable for smaller breeds
  • Expensive considering the size
  • Locks are slightly flimsy & may be broken with force

Outdoor Kennel Features to Consider

As you begin your search for the perfect kennel, you must keep certain things in mind, regardless of the kennel that you choose.

Kennel Style

There are a variety of kennel styles, but there are 3 common ones. 

  • Welded Wire: This is made of strips of wire welded into a larger frame. This is the most secure option as it can take a heavy beating without bending or breaking. The thicker the bars are, the more stable the kennel is.
  • Wood: Wood is a very aesthetically pleasing choice, but we wouldn’t recommend it for outdoor use. Not only does it not provide adequate ventilation, but it is also prone to rot and insects.
  • Chain Link: Chain link is a design of interlocking parallel wires that are very uncomfortable to bite. Therefore, although it is a bit more unstable, larger dogs prefer not to chew on it because of how disagreeable it feels. 

Size

upscaled dog house kennel

Size is the most important factor in buying a crate. Outdoor kennels must have enough room for the dog to enter comfortably, turn around, sleep, and jump. 

To analyze this, measure your dog. Take the height from the ground to the highest point on the shoulder. Take the width from the widest part of the body (usually the chest/shoulders). Take the length from nose to tail. 

If you are planning to keep your dog in the kennel for longer periods of time, the kennel must be even bigger & must have ample space for a bed, a few toys, and food & water bowls.

Roofing

If you live in an area where it rains for long periods of time throughout the year, then roofing is something you will definitely have to consider.

A tarp-style cover will protect your dog from the elements, including rain, sun, and light snow. An A-frame roof style also allows rain & snow to flow right off without pooling up at the top.

You also may need to consider the wildlife in your area. If you have coyotes near your small dogs, consider investing in a kennel with a roof. This is because a roofed kennel will keep all predators away.

Weather-proofing

Proper weatherproofing is crucial if you are planning on leaving your dog in an unprotected area like your backyard. Look for a tarp covering with UV protection of at least UPF 30.

A solid metal sheet or wooden plank are also common options for roofing. However, try to install a tilted roof to allow the snow to fall off. A level roof means that the snow will collect & pool up above the kennel. 

Flooring

Lucky Dog Uptown Dog Kennel

Kennels should have feet on the bottom of the kennel. These feet should raise the entire crate by 1-2 inches. This makes it easier to move, less likely to scuff flooring, and also allows much easier cleaning.  

Nylon or rubber-coated feet are the kinds of features that help protect your flooring.

Moreover, extended feet can help act as ground nails if you decide to put the kennel in the grass. Essentially, these feet will dig into the lawn, and secure the kennel properly to the floor.

As for the actual flooring of the kennel, you can invest in kennel mats. These are easy to clean, and they make sure that your dog isn’t laying in his own urine if he isn’t house-broken.

You can also just keep the grass if you decide to place the kennel on your lawn; just make sure that you continue to water the grass, but don’t apply any soil treatment or pesticides to it.

Durability

Durability is crucial if you have a larger dog that specializes in canine escape by force. Some dogs don’t bother with trying to understand the mechanism of the locks; they immediately try to break free by breaking the door!

Thus, you must invest in a durable design made of sturdy materials (welded steel) to prevent this.

Transportability

If you have a smaller dog, then chances are you will be able to easily carry around its kennel. In this case, you need to opt for features that make it easy to transport outdoors.

Look for 360-degree wheels and handles so that you will be able to drag it around efficiently.

Material

Tooca Pro Dog Kennel High Quality Steel

There is a wide variety of materials that kennels are made of nowadays. The most durable option is definitely steel with a powder coating or hammer-tone coat.

Alloys are also very popular, as they tend to be more rust-resistant. Heavy-duty plastic kennels are usually cheaper & more lightweight, so you don’t often see them as a material for outdoor kennels.

We recommend metals because they are non-porous & heat resistant, so they are very easy to sterilize.

Locking Mechanisms

If you have a little Hound-ini at home, you must make sure that the lock system you have is very secure. Small push locks can easily be pushed up by smart dogs.

Spring-loaded locks are a good option because they require a lot of force, which is hard for a dog to exert. The most secure solution is often a padlock, which is great for large dogs that keep outsmarting their crates. 

An important, yet overlooked factor is the durability of the latch. Even if the lock is extremely strong, a weak latch can easily be broken. 

You should have complete confidence in the locking mechanism of your dog’s crate to feel like you are leaving your dog in a secure space.

Doors

Doors must be large enough for you to enter easily if you have a large kennel. You may also like a design with multiple sets of doors on different sides, which allows more freedom while setting it up. 

If you have a dog that must be kept separately from other dogs, we recommend a kennel with a double door system. This is a lot like an airlock in a laboratory or a mantrap system in a bank.

You open an outer door and enter a sort of waiting room. Then, you can close the outer door and open the inner door where the dog is kept.

This is a great solution for aggressive dogs that run out of the kennel as soon as they hear the latch opening.

Food/Water Attachments

Close up of a water bottle with a dispenser for a pet.

Some high-end kennels come with a wall-attached food and water dispenser. With this, you don’t even have to step into the kennel to fill these up. This definitely isn’t a requirement, but it does make your life easier.

Furthermore, some designs have a smaller flap where you can fill up the bowls. Therefore, you don’t have to enter the kennel; you just have to reach in for the bowls. This is a cool feature that is a little more common.

Available Space

It’s crucial to consider how much space you have in your yard and the general shape of it. One tip is to utilize your side yard to create a very long kennel.

Otherwise, you might end up with a kennel that’s much too large for your yard, and you can’t even walk around it. Try to maximize the kennel space while also leaving enough yard space for regular chores.

In Conclusion

Choosing the right kennel for your pooch can definitely be challenging & overwhelming. However, after comparing some of the best kennels on the market, we agree that the Lucky Dog Stay Series Villa Kennel is a fantastic option for most people.

The kennel boasts a stylish canopy cover that offers rain and UPF 50 protection. This kennel also has durable hardware, a sturdy welded metal design, a strong lock & latch, and a design that fares well in all types of weather.

The cost is a bit high, but I believe that this product has the quality to back it up. 

Another good outdoor kennel is the Advantek Portable Gazebo Kennel. The unique octagonal design allows for excellent features such as a gazebo roof, hard-to-notice doors, and a food & water flap.

No matter what you choose, make sure you consider the features that we have highlighted regarding your personal life & home.

If you have any other kennel ideas, please leave a comment down below!

Meet our writer

Anoushka’s love for animals began with taking care of the cows & chickens on her family farm. As she grew older, this love transformed into a love for dogs. She volunteers in a dog shelter, so she is well-versed in the care and comfort of all breeds of dogs.

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