Dog crates – one of the most useful tools in an owner’s toolkit for successfully raising a well-adjusted puppy.
Whether you use them for house training, traveling, or simply as a cozy den for your dog, a good crate is the perfect sanctuary for your dog and a great way for you to keep them safe if you’re unable to give concentrated supervision.
But what crate should you use with your Golden Retriever? There are many different types and styles on the market; From soft-sided fold-up crates, to expensive furniture style hardwood versions. Which should you choose?
In my opinion, the very best crates are collapsible wire dog crates – for a variety of reasons.
In this article I discuss why I think they’re best, then give my recommendations for the best wire dog crates for Golden Retrievers available today.
Quick Links: Our Picks for Best Wire Dog Crates in 2017 Considering Quality and Price
- MidWest Life Stages Folding Metal Dog Crate
- Midwest iCrate Pet Crates
- OxGord Double-Door Easy Folding Metal Pet Crate for Dogs
- SmithBuilt Folding Black Dog Crate w/ ABS Tray Pan – Double Door
- 42″ Pet Wire Cage with ABS Pan
*The above links lead to current prices and customer reviews on Amazon.
Carry on reading to discover why we made these choices, and lots of tips and buying advice to ensure you get the right product.
Table Of Contents
- 1 What Makes Wire Dog Crates The Best Choice?
- 2 Possible Drawbacks To Wire Crates
- 3 What to Look For When Buying A Wire Dog Crate
- 4 The Best Wire Dog Crates 2017: Our Top 5 Picks
- 5 Conclusion
What Makes Wire Dog Crates The Best Choice?
Wire crates are the most popular of all types available – and for very good reasons.
They are Very Strong and Durable
Being made of metal, wire dog crates are extremely tough and long-lasting. Wear and tear over time has minimal effect and they are impervious to a dogs scratching and biting. A single crate can literally last a lifetime.
This is often not the case with plastic, fabric or wooden crates that can can quite easily get damaged by even calm and non-destructive dogs. Large, boisterous and even slightly destructive dogs are frequently seen to chew and scratch their way out of crates that aren’t made of metal.
They are Very Easy to Keep Clean
Because metal is non-absorbent, and completely non-reactive to a little washing detergent, wire crates are very easy to keep clean.
If they should need a clean, a bucket of soapy water, or even a power washer out in the garden is all that’s needed. A very quick and simple job to keep clean.
They Offer The Most Ventilation
On a practical level, they afford your pup plenty of ventilation and air – definitely a plus point if you’re living in a warmer climate.
In contrast, many plastic, fabric or wooden crates have enclosed sides and can quickly lead to overheating in warmer months.
Dogs Inside Have a Great View of Their Surroundings
A wire crate will give your dog a great view of their surroundings and make them feel as though they’re still part events, even though they have a new, private space to call their own.
Able to relax, but still keeping an eye on things. That’s how most dogs like to spend their time with very few truly enjoying time with their pack (family) completely out of view.
Highly Portable Despite Their Strength
Yes, there are lighter more portable options out there for a crate, made from materials lighter than metal.
But a wire crate isn’t too heavy, collapses flat easily and is set up after within seconds with no need for tools, so they are highly portable for storage or transportation.
From Puppy to Adult – One Crate for Life
Many wire dog crates have a divider available that allows you to resize a large adult crate to suit a puppy.
So instead of having to buy a small crate for your puppy, a medium one when your pup’s an adolescent and a large crate for when they’re fully grown (3 crates? Expensive!), you can simply buy a large crate and use a cheap divider to make it fit your puppy as they grow.
Possible Drawbacks To Wire Crates
As with everything in life, there are some aspects to wire crates that can be considered a disadvantage:
Very Exposed for Colder Climates
The advantage listed above of ventilation for hot climates swings the other way and can become a problem in colder climates. There’s little shelter in a wire crate.
However, you can of course choose to site the crate against or or two walls, certainly out of the way of any draughts, and of course there are a wide number of crate covers available to keep them warm. Or do as many others do and simply cover the crate with a blanket!
They Can be Noisy
Wire crates can be a little noisy if a large dog inside moves around a lot and the crate is on a solid floor with no mat or carpet. However, many come with little rubber feet, or you can buy some for a very low cost. You should also place bedding inside which dampens any noise.
I always use wire crates and they aren’t loud at all with feet and bedding. I can honestly say I never notice it 🙂
What to Look For When Buying A Wire Dog Crate
Of course, there can be a world of difference between the quality of different wire crates so we’ve compiled a list of things you should look out for to help you make the most informed purchase.
If you follow these rules, your dog will be as safe and secure as can be in his new doggy haven, and it will last and remain useful for a very long time, saving you the cost of replacement when compared to low quality offerings.
- Size is the most important consideration: The crate must of course be large enough, but it mustn’t be so large that one end can be used as a toilet while your dog lays at the other! For a Golden Retriever you need a 42″ crate. (You can see our dog crate size guide here.)
- Is it foldable? You may or may not want the crate to be foldable, depending on if you plan to place it permanently in one spot or occasionally move it. But it’s a nice feature to have, if only for portability to clean it!
- Check that the wire mesh isn’t too thick or too thin. Too thin wires will be flimsy (and screams low quality!) while wire that is too thick can impair a dog’s vision from inside the crate.
- Make sure it’s stainless or there’s no exposed metal on the wires – ideally, they should be coated in a sturdy, easy to clean finish that is safe for your dog to chew (as well as being easy to clean!)
- Make sure all the wire points on the crate are rounded or otherwise risk your dog potentially hurting or cutting themselves on sharp edges.
The Best Wire Dog Crates 2017: Our Top 5 Picks
If you’re feeling overwhelmed with deciding which wire crate to buy, fear not, we’ve done the research for you.
Below are our top 5 picks of wire dog kennels on the market. We’ve highlighted their pros, cons and most useful features so you’ll be able to get a good idea of the best one for your dog.
Midwest Life Stages Folding Metal Dog Crate
This multi-feature wire dog crate from MidwestHomes4Pets comes in 6 different sizes so you’ll easily be able to find the right fit for your dog:
Available in 22″, 24″, 30″, 36″, 42″ (perfect for Golden Retrievers) and 48″
As an added bonus, it comes with a divider panel included, which means the amount of space available in the crate can be adjusted as your puppy grows – it’s a crate for life! A divider panel also means your pup won’t be able to go to the toilet at one end of the crate while sleeping in the other – a great tool to use during the all important house training stages.
Rounded corners on the edge of the wires means neither you nor your canine companion will hurt yourselves on any sharp edges.
Security is paramount with a double secure bolt system – your dog won’t be able to escape no matter how clever at lock-picking they are – and two doors allows you quick and easy access.
Another plus point for this crate is it’s exceptionally easy to clean. The wire structure has been coated with a satin black, electro-coat finish while the ABS plastic pan is also super easy to remove and clean.
No tools are needed to assemble or take down this crate and it also sports 2 large plastic handles – so it can be easily transported no matter where you and your dog decide to travel.
Midwest iCrate Double Door
This wire crate – another offering from Midwest – is excellent value for money and comes in 7 different sizes:
Available in 18″, 22″, 24″, 30″, 36″, 42″ (perfect for Golden Retrievers) and 48″
So you’ll have no trouble finding the perfect fit.
Another crate for life, it comes with a divider panel to assist you with housetraining and grow the crate with your puppy.
In terms of safety features, this Midwest crate is very well equipped with a handy double door system, allowing quick access to your dog, and a secure bolt system too – just the one bolt this time, however. The panel corners of the crate are rounded ensuring that your dog can’t cut themselves on any sharp edges either.
Maintenance is also easy with this crate as it is finished with a very durable, satin black, electro-coat finish. The composite plastic pan is easy to slide out for removal, making cleaning super easy.
The ‘fold and carry’ configuration of the crate allows you to erect and collapse it easily without the need for tools, it’s a highly portable crate.
OxGord Dog Crate
Another crate equipped with a dividing panel, this OxGord number will grow with your puppy, giving you control in adjusting how much space your dog needs and what works best for their house training schedule.
It’s available in 6 different sizes so you should easily be able to find a good fit for Fido.
This crate would be particularly well suited to more boisterous dogs or heavy chewers as the wires are very heavy duty and made of 100% stainless steel.
Safety is still a top priority here, as all of the potentially sharp metal edges are rounded down to keep you and your dog safe from cuts and there is a double door system allowing you easy access inside. Security is assured with a series of non-resistant, slide bolt latches.
Finished with a durable, black, electro-coat finish, this crate is also totally washable – even the ABS plastic tray is removable with an easy slide-out motion.
As with all of our favorite crates, the OxGord is portable, requires no tools to set up and bring down, and is super easy to travel with as it collapses down to less than 4 inches tall – perfect for sliding into the boot of your car. It also has a handle so carrying it is no problem at all.
SmithBuilt Folding Black Dog Crate
This SmithBuilt dog crate comes in a wide variety of 6 different sizes with the option to purchase with a dividing panel or without.
The divider is a great idea if you have a puppy, as it’s a really useful tool for housetraining, not to mention it allows the crate to grow with your pup – essentially making it a crate for life.
The crate is finished with an epoxy coating that is rust, corrosion and fade resistant while the wire itself is made of steel.
This isn’t as heavy duty as our other top wire crates so would be better suited to a calmer dog and one not prone to chewing or aggression. The ABS composite tray is very durable and easy to clean – as a bonus, it won’t stain, rust, warp, corrode or retain your dog’s odors either!
As with the other crates, convenience and portability are one of it’s biggest strengths – it collapses, without the need for tools, into a package less than 4 inches tall, and also has a removable handle so you can carry it easily, suitcase style.
One slide bolt latch is also in place to keep your dog secure and there are two doors so you can have quick and easy access to your dog if necessary.
BestPet 42” Wire Cage with ABS Pan
The standout feature of this BestPet wire crate is undoubtedly its safety standards.
With a two-latch system and three doors allowing you easy access to your dog, this is a highly secure crate perfect for the pooch who is a keen escape artist. Cleaning is also easy with this crate – the tray is of a slide-out configuration and is removable even when the door is closed.
Just like the other crates we recommend, maintenance is minimal – it is super easy to assemble with no tools necessary and folds down to a completely flat package.There is also a handle making for easy carrying.
The one drawback on this crate is that it doesn’t come with a divider panel so it may be worth buying one separately if you’re intending to buy for a growing puppy or want to use the crate for house training purposes.
Wire dog crates are some of the very best value and most practical ones on the market. Always my first choice and I wouldn’t be without one!
I hope you’ve found this guide useful and would welcome any feedback or questions below 🙂
Product images: © Amazon.com