Plastic dog crates are an excellent choice for dogs who travel with their owners. A crate keeps your dog safe and secure, whether trains, planes, or automobiles are your chosen form of transportation medium for you and your pet.
An ideal plastic travel crate is sturdy, well-ventilated, and airline-approved if you intend to fly. You can also use a well-made plastic crate at home.
Read this buyer’s guide and reviews of the best plastic dog crates that are currently on the market.
Our 5 Top-Rated Plastic Dog Crates – At A Glance
Gunner G1 Kennel
- Heavy-duty travel crate
- Strong, well-built dog crate
- Escape-proof door design
Petmate Sky Kennel
- Airline-approved carrier
- Sizes to take pets up to 70 pounds
- Superb quality
Aspen Plastic Kennel
- Well-made, excellent value
- Comes in two sizes
- Accepted for travel by most airlines
Ferplast SUV Crate
- Ideal for SUV travel
- Strong, top-quality build
- Escape-proof crate
Petmate Vari Kennel
- Robust, strong build
- Escape-proof door latch
- Superb quality
5 Best Plastic Dog Crates – Product Reviews
Whether you want a plastic dog crate for a short trip to the vet clinic, for a long-haul flight, or to take with you on vacation, you’re sure to find something suitable in this section of our guide.
1. Gunner G1 Kennel
Heavy-duty travel crate
Strong, well-built dog crate
Escape-proof door design
The Gunner G1 kennel is specially designed for safe, secure travel with your pet.
This is one of the sturdiest crate designs out there and is a solid choice for Houdini hounds! Even if your dog is a proven escape artist, you can be confident that the robust, heavy-duty Gunner kennel will keep your pet confined throughout your journey. The powder-coated door is securely welded and reinforced with a locking, paddle-latch door design.
To prevent your dog from damaging the crate by biting and chewing, opt for stainless steel chew guards to protect the crate. The crate is designed with patented airflow styling to keep the crate well-ventilated, and UV rays are kept out, too. That means that your dog is warm in winter and cool in summer.
- Takes dogs up to 20 pounds in weight
- Designed for maximum security during travel
- Durable crate
- Excellent ventilation
- Includes a lifetime warranty
- Not designed for in-home use
- Crate price is quite high
2. Petmate Sky Kennel Dog and Cat Carrier
Sizes to take pets up to 70 pounds
The Petmate Sky Kennel comes in several sizes, from small to large, which can take a dog weighing up to 70 pounds.
You can use this plastic dog kennel in your vehicle, and it’s also airline-approved by most major carriers, making this crate an excellent choice for air travelers.
Thanks to this perfect plastic crate’s solid build, you know your dog will be safe and secure while traveling. All the hardware is made from corrosion-resistant stainless steel for strength and durability, and there’s 360-degree ventilation to keep your pet cool and comfortable.
You also get some ID stickers and a food bowl with the crate as a bonus feature.
- 360-degree ventilation feature
- A 4-way security door keeps your dog secure during transit
- Comes in several sizes
- Suitable crate for airline travel
- Quite expensive but excellent quality
3. Aspen Sky Kennel
Well-made, excellent value
Comes in two sizes
Accepted for travel by most airlines
Aspen is well known for producing high-quality, reasonably priced pet products, and this plastic crate is no exception.
The Aspen Pet Dog & Cat Kennel is an excellent travel option for your car, but you can also use it at home. This medium dog crate is lightweight and comes in two sizes, capable of carrying dogs up to 125 pounds in weight.
Despite its sturdy build and superb quality, the sky kennel is lightweight and easy to carry when necessary. The crate has plenty of ventilation holes on three sides to keep your dog comfortable and cool.
- Lightweight yet a heavy-duty option for travel
- Two sizes available
- Extra ventilation cut-outs
- Limited choice of colors
4. Ferplast Atlas SUV Dog Carrier
Ideal for SUV travel
Strong, top-quality build
Ferplast has built and designed its budget option Atlas 30 dog carrier with your road trip in mind!
This small-size kennel is ideal for small dogs that weigh up to 30 pounds and is one of the most popular choices of crates. The crate is made from sturdy plastic and features a strong steel mesh door to keep your pup safely confined throughout your trip. A locking system prevents the crate from popping open by accident.
Side ventilation grilles keep your dog cool and comfortable in warm weather, and you can take the crate down quickly and easily for convenient cleaning and storage.
- Secure, well-made door locks keep pups safely contained
- Built from strong plastic material
- Side grilles provide superb ventilation
- Easy to disassemble for cleaning and storage
- Only comes in a small size
5. Petmate Vari Kennel
Robust, strong build
Escape-proof door latch
The Pet Mate 21859 Vari Kennel is definitely built to last!
This best-selling plastic crate is sturdy and strong and has been designed for use in an SUV or car, as well as for crate training and general home use. The Petmate Vari Kennel comes in a few sizes, including one that’s extra-small and suitable for toy dogs and puppies.
The larger-sized crates are built using strong bolts to keep them secure, whereas the smaller ones are made in two halves that snap together. The crate door is reinforced with plastic holders that keep the metal hinges firmly in place. A squeeze latch fastener stops the dog from forcing the door open from inside the crate.
- Strong, effective design
- Market-leading manufacturer
- Affordable price point
- Can be damaged by determined chewers
What Size Dog Crate Do I Need?
Before we discuss the good and bad points of plastic dog crates, let’s explain how to choose the correct size crate for your dog.
Suitable crate dimensions allow your pup to:
- Stand upright
- Turn around
- Sit down
- Lie down flat out
Whatever type of crate you choose, your dog must not hit his head on the crate roof or be so squashed by the crate that he can’t easily move around to get comfortable.
How To Measure Your Dog For A Crate
To measure your dog for a plastic crate:
- Measure your dog’s length from the tip of his nose to the tip of his tail.
- Measure your dog’s height from the top of his head to the floor.
- Add 4 inches to both those measurements.
That ensures that you have a crate that’s big enough for your dog to be comfy. Most manufacturers print the recommended crate sizes for various dog breeds on their packaging or on their website.
However, if you’re not sure what size to order, contact the manufacturer for more advice and guidance on size options.
Remember to leave enough space for the door to close properly when choosing a mat or pad for the crate. If the door can’t shut and latch securely because the mat is in the way, your pet could escape.
If you have a puppy, you don’t want to keep buying a new crate each time your pet outgrows one.
So, what can you do?
Many dog crates come with a removable divider panel that you can use to make the crate larger or smaller, which is ideal for a puppy house!
House Training Puppies
You’ll find a divider ideal if you want the crate for housebreaking needs. Dogs and puppies instinctively won’t soil their den or crate. However, if the crate is too big, your puppy might start using one end as a toilet area and the other end for sleeping.
So, use the divider to make the crate slightly smaller so that your puppy isn’t tempted to relieve himself in the crate. Remember to move the divider once the puppy is toilet trained and enlarge the crate in line with the little guy’s growth.
What Are The Pros And Cons Of Plastic Dog Crates?
So, now you know what size of dog crate to buy for your pet, let’s look at the advantages and disadvantages of using plastic dog kennels.
Advantages Of Plastic Dog Crates
Plastic dog crates have lots of plus points that you should consider when choosing a kennel for your dog.
When it comes to practical crate requirements, you want a crate that’s easy to clean.
With a plastic crate, all you need to do in the event of an accident is remove and wash the crate bed and wash the crate itself with dish soap and warm water.
To make the crate comfy, you will need to add a crate bed or a mat. However, plastic crates are often more comfortable and cozy than wire crates, which is crucial when crate training your dog.
While cheap soft-sided and wire crates can be easily damaged, all-purpose plastic dog crates are generally very durable and stronger.
Plastic crates are typically lightweight and portable, making it easy to relocate the crate within your home and take it with you on the go.
A well-constructed crate will offer superior insulation.
Plastic is typically much warmer than metal; you don’t need to cover the crate to make it warmer or give your dog the sense of security he needs from his den.
Wire metal types of crates tend to rattle and be pretty noisy when a dog moves around inside them.
In contrast, a plastic kennel is much quieter, which is important if you’re on a long journey or if you use the crate at home in your bedroom or home office.
A well-made crate is often approved by major airlines for transporting dogs and cats either as cargo or in the passenger cabin, depending on the size of the dog and its crate.
However, you need to check with your chosen carrier that you have an airline-approved crate with the flight-ready design features they want before you travel.
Disadvantages Of Plastic Dog Crates
There are only a couple of disadvantages to using plastic dog crates.
Plastic dog crates are not as easily collapsible as metal wire or soft-sided fabric crates. That can be a pain if you want to put your crate into storage without taking up too much space.
Some dogs are happiest when they can see their human family when confined to a crate.
Plastic crates often provide limited views outside, which can be stressful for some dogs suffering from separation anxiety.
How To Choose The Best Plastic Dog Crate
Apart from sizing the crate correctly, there are a few other considerations for the first-time crate buyer to bear in mind when choosing the best plastic dog crate for your needs.
If you plan to use your dog’s crate regularly and on journeys where you need to change trains or planes, there are a range of crate features to look out for.
- Firstly, you want a crate that has a comfortable ergonomic handle that doesn’t dig into your hand when you lift the crate up.
- Some crates come with detachable wheels, which is an excellent feature if you have a heavy dog that makes carrying the crate impractical.
- Extra storage compartments are extremely handy for carrying essential items, such as poop bags, treats, and water.
- Plastic food dishes and water bowl attachments are excellent additional features that enable you to keep your pet hydrated and fed while you’re out and about together.
As mentioned above, a removable crate divider is also a very handy addition, especially if you have a growing puppy.
It’s much easier to load and unload a wriggling dog or squirming cat if your crate has a top-loading design feature and a front door.
Good ventilation is critical for your furry friend’s welfare and comfort.
Dogs can suffer from overheating, and brachycephalic breeds, such as Pugs and Bulldogs, are especially at risk. Flat-faced breeds struggle to breathe during hot, humid weather, and confining one of these dogs in a crate without adequate ventilation is asking for a tragedy to strike.
Ideally, you want a crate with vents side, front, and top.
I hope you enjoyed our guide to the best plastic dog crates. If you did, please remember to share the article.
Our favorite option of the plastic dog crates we reviewed for this guide is the Gunner G1 kennel. This well-made kennel is proven to keep even the most determined escape artist in check, thanks to the incredibly well-constructed locking, paddle-latch door design.
The crate’s ventilation is excellent and is also designed to keep UV rays out, so your dog should be warm in winter and cooler in summer. The main downside of this crate is that it’s an expensive option. However, the price of this crate is well worth it for such a well-built, solid design.
Did you buy one of the plastic dog crates we featured in this article? If you did, tell us which one you chose and why in the comments section below.