This guide is intended to make picking a good dog crate for your German Shepherd easy and simple.
For example, some of the most important things when choosing the best dog crate for your German Shepherd puppy or full grown adult are:
- the right crate size, measurements and dimensions
- a design for flexibility, comfort, and safety
- a sturdy construction that is durable and able to stand up to some wear and tear
- the right crate type
- suitable materials
- how the dog crate fits in with your plans for crate training your German Shepherd dog or puppy
What we’ve done is put all that information together for you in one place, so all you have to do pick a crate that sounds like a fit to you.
We’ve even identified some crates that will be good for both a German Shepherd puppy, and a full grown adult when that puppy gets bigger.
Sound good? Let’s dive into it…
(NOTE: this is a general information guide only, and is not professional advice, or a substitute for professional advice. A qualified vet or animal expert is the only person qualified to give you expert advice in regards to your pet/s)
Best Crate For German Shepherd Dogs & Puppies: Reviews & Buyer’s Guide
Our top choices for the best dog crates are:
Best Soft Dog Crate For German Shepherds – EliteField 3-Door Folding Soft Dog Crate (on Amazon)
Best Heavy Duty Steel Dog Crate For German Shepherds – ProSelect Empire Dog Cage (on Amazon)
If you want to check out other options and types of dog crates, check out this guide:
Best Crate For German Shepherd Dogs & Puppies: Reviews
Midwest iCrate Pet Crate (42 Inch or 48 Inch)
The Midwest iCrate is among the most popular dog crates and for good reason.
Let’s start with the price – for what this crate is going for, you won’t find too many other dog crates for this price that also have all of the features and quality that this one has.
Not only does it come in both the 42 and 48 inch crate sizes, but it can be bought with single door, double door, and comes with a divider panel (so you can use the crate for German Shepherd puppies) and composite plastic crate base pan for easy cleaning.
It is a metal hard cover dog crate that has the ability to fold up for easy transport, and carry handles make it easy to carry the crate from point to point.
Safety wise, the Midwest crate has rounded metal corners to minimise poking and prodding of your dog or puppy, and has a safety latch in case you need to secure your GSD inside the crate.
If we were to pick one not-so-great thing about this dog crate, it would be that the metal used to make the crate although not flimsy, is not the strongest dog crate metal.
If having a super sturdy dog crate is important for you, get the Proselect crate.
AmazonBasics Folding Metal Dog Crate
Suitable for puppies or adults.
A metal dog crate that folds down and folds flat for easy storing away or transport.
The doors have metal slide bolts on them.
There are mini dividers on the bottom perimeter to prevent paws from slipping through between the floor and walls.
You get an optional divider panel and removable composite plastic pan included.
Comes in double door or single door options, and available in 6 sizes up to 48 inch.
Like the Midwest, the metal on this crate is good, but not the strongest out there.
Elitefield Indoor & Outdoor 3 Door Folding Soft Dog Crate
A soft portable crate that you can take travelling – it folds up and down very easily and quickly without any tools. The crate is only 3 inches high when folded down making it easy to store and transport.
The crate frame is made steel and the crate cover is made of 600D fabric and hex mesh fabric.
It has great ventilation and looks great too.
There are three mesh doors (on the top, front, and side) and two accessory pockets on the top and side. The cover is removable and washable.
You get a free carrying bag and fleece bed included.
There’s a handle and hand carrying straps on the crate and hand carrying straps and adjustable padded shoulder strap on the carrying bag.
Comes in 4 sizes – up to a 42 inch crate.
A massive 13 different colors available.
ProSelect Empire Dog Cage (42 Inch Only)
The ProSelect Empire Dog Cage is not a traditional crate – it is more a cage on wheels.
Measuring 42 1/4″L x 30 3/4″W x 41 1/4″H for its outside dimensions, this cage is designed for the strongest and most powerful dogs – when it comes to size, temperament, chewing and claws.
The cage material is made of 20 gauge steel and 1/2″ diameter steel tubing, stout dual door latches (with 4 locking casters that are removable and are 4 inches high) and heavy-duty welding at stress points.
The metal is finished in long lasting high grade Hammertone – which is a very durable enamel paint. The finish is also rust resistant.
Also includes a floor grate and steel tray for easy cleaning.
Four drawbacks we did notice about this crate are, firstly – the latches can be easy to move. If you have a smart dog, they may figure out how to move them. But, some inexpensive zip ties, or small d rings can prevent this.
Secondly, the floor is grated, not solid. This is great for dogs that pee in their crate or are going through toilet training, but if your dog doesn’t like grated surfaces, make sure you have a mattress down for them.
Thirdly, the cage/crate is quite heavy, which is why it comes with wheels. It’s weight can make it difficult to transport. Consider this if you want a crate you can take travelling or move around with.
Lastly, because of the heavy duty materials and metal/welding work that goes into making the crate/cage, it’s not the cheapest crate available.
Further Dog Crate and Crate Pads/Mat Guides and Resources
Here are some other dog crate and mat/pad guides and resources you might find helpful:
- Best Dog Crate That Grows With your Puppy
- Best Inescapable and Escape Proof Dog Crates
- Best Indestructible and Chew Proof Dog Crates For Heavy Chewers and Destructive Dogs
- Best Dog Crates That Look Like Furniture
- Best Self Warming Crate Pads and Mats
- Best Self Cooling Crate Pads and Mats
- Best Indestructible and Chew Resistant Crate Pads
- How To Keep A Dog From Escaping His/Her Crate
Best Crate For German Shepherd Dogs & Puppies: Buyer’s Guide
Does My German Shepherd Need a Dog or Puppy Crate?
Per our article ‘Crate Training German Shepherd Dog or Puppy: 4 Simple ‘How-to’ Steps‘ at The Daily Shep:
Crates can be used for a range of purposes with German shepherd puppies, full grown adult dogs, and even older dogs. The uses and purposes can include:
- General Obedience and House Training (minimise chewing, barking, jumping, isolating from new house pets etc. until fully trained)
- Potty training. Read more about How To Potty Train A German Shepherd at The Daily Shep.
- As a Housing Unit for your German Shepherd’s bed/mattress. Read about how to pick the Best Bed For German Shepherds at TheDailyShep.com
- Safe, Comfortable and Portable/Transportable den/home/bed for your GSD travelling with you, or if you leave it at home with friends/family or a doggy day care centre
- Separation Anxiety Training as a place to separate your GSD from your bed at night time
Do German Shepherds Like Dog Crates?
Even if your GSD puppy or dog doesn’t like or is unfamiliar with his or her crate to begin with, you can train them to enjoy the time spent in their crate both in and out of your presence.
Read more on Crate Training Your GSD (German Shepherd Dog) at TheDailyShep.com
Do exercise caution though – if your GSD shows signs of distress or anxiety, do not force them into the crate. A trip to the vet may be worth it in this instance.
Purpose of A Crate For Your German Shepherd
The purpose of a Dog or Puppy Crate is to provide you with a short term training (obedience training, potty training etc.) or management tool (to isolate, transport etc.) for your GSD.
Being a large, athletic and intelligent breed of dog, a German Shepherd is not naturally suppose to spend large periods of time in a small space with little stimulation, or room to exercise.
What Size Dog Crate Do I Need For A German Shepherd? – 42 Inch Crate For German Shepherd, or 48 Inch Crate for German Shepherd
A 42 Inch (usually XL) or 48 Inch dog crate (usually XXL) is generally suitable for a German Shepherd, depending on its size.
German Shepherd males average 60-65 cms (24-26 in), and 30-40 kg (66-88 lb). Females average 55-60 cms (22-24 in), and 22-32 kg (49-71 lb).
A 42 inch Extra Large Crate with a divider panel should be ideal for a German Shepherd puppy, adult or older dog up to 71 to 90 pounds. Extra Large dog crates of 42 inches generally have the following dimensions:
- 42L x 28W x 31H Inches
Some owners with very large German Shepherds (90 pounds plus) may opt for the 48 inch dog crate (XXL), although it’s important to measure your GSD before purchasing a crate of any size. XXL dog crates of 48 inches generally have the following dimensions:
- 48L x 30W x 33H Inches
What Is The Best Crate For A German Shepherd Puppy? – German Shepherd Puppy Crate Size
Fortunately, for convenience and to save money, a good crate will come with a divider panel.
You can still buy a 42 inch or 48 inch crate for your GSD puppy, and use the divider panels to decrease the size of the crate until your dog matures in size – at which point you can remove the divider panel and utilise the full space inside the dog crate.
How To Measure German Shepherd or Large Dog For A Crate
Measure the following measurements in your GSD, and check the crate product specifications to make sure it can support the weight, plus have surplus room (work on the basis of a 42 inch crate or 48 inch crate) for your GSD when fully grown:
- Length (nose to tail tip)
- Width (shoulder to shoulder)
- Height (top of head to paws) – this is probably the most important measurement along with length as you don’t want your dog to be hunching or limited in any way
Important Features and Criteria of A Good Dog Crate for A German Shepherd
Criteria to keep in mind when selecting a good dog crate for your German Shepherd or large breed dog include:
- Large enough in size (dimensions and measurements) to fit your GSD puppy, and adult dog when it is standing. Usually 42 inch crate or 48 inch crate for large breed dogs.
- Adjustable in size with a divider panel to cater for puppy and older dog sizes so you don’t have to buy a new crate as your GSD grows and matures in size
- Either single, double or triple door – depending on your requirements, and a security latch
- Strong and durable materials for wear and tear (scratching, chewing, hits and bumps, transport etc.)
- Safe in construction and design so your GSD doesn’t harm itself on sharp corners or protruding metal
- Easy to clean and removable plastic base/pan
- Transportable and flexible in use – foldable, with handles
- Fits your German Shepherd’s bed or mattress inside
- Will be suitable for plane or car travel – depending on your requirements
Best Bed For German Shepherd Dogs and Puppy Crates
Read more about the Best Dog Bed For German Shepherds at The Daily Shep.
Usually the ‘Mattress’ type beds are best for crates (orthopedic if you can afford it). Make sure the dimensions of the bed or mattress fit the pan or base of the crate – but, the bed manufacturer usually specifies what size crate the bed is good for and will fit in.
Components/Parts of A Dog Crates
Crates have 5 main parts to them:
- The Cage – Usually made of a stainless steel or hard wearing metal. Travel crates have metal frames with lightweight fleece coverings.
- The Gates/Doors and Latch – Double doors are handy to maximise entry and exit space, and a sturdy slide latch for securing your GSD inside. There are also single and triple door dog crates which are common.
- The Base – You want a hardened plastic removable plastic pan. Hardened plastic is durable and strong (plus scratch proof), but easy to remove and clean mess from.
- Divider Panel – For dividing up the space inside the crate when your GSD is a puppy and a full grown dog. Saves you effort and money of buying a bigger crate for adult dogs.
- Carry Handles and Collapsable Design – For ease of transport.
Materials and Types of Dog and Puppy Crates
Steel/Metal Dog Crates
The Best Crate For German Shepherd Dogs and Puppies for regular use has a hard metal mesh cover and hardened plastic base.
Some indestructible crates/cages are even made of steel tubing and heavy duty welds like the ProSelect Empire Dog Cage.
A good dog crate has a multi-functional design crates that allows you to train your GSD, transport them and use the crate as a bed (with a mattress inside).
The MidWest iCrate Pet Crate is an example of dog crate that achieves this type of flexible design, multi-purpose usage and construction, and although it is metal, is still foldable.
Soft Dog Crates
There are special lightweight portable dog crates available for outside camping, hiking and similar outings.
These dog crates are made with a metal frame, and a lightweight soft fleece cover that can easily be washed, and usually peeled on/off at the top, and zipped off and on at the sides. They usually come with other features like water bottle holders.
They are easy to carry, set up and fold to store in a car – and are more lightweight than the hard cover crates.
Wooden Furniture Dog Crates
These are indoor dog crates only and are usually made of wood.
Most of them come in the style of an end table, and they look great inside with other decor, especially other wooden furniture.
Apart from end tables, there’s 2 in 1 crates and pet gates, metal and wood crate and even custom dog crate furniture wood pieces.
There’s different colors and sizes available for different color schemes and dogs.
Two things to be aware of – look at what type of wood the item is made of, and check whether the crate comes with a plastic floor tray for accidents.
Read more about the best dog crate furniture in this guide.
What Is The Best Travel Crate For German Shepherds In General?
In our opinion, the best travel crate for general travel in the car, going on road trips, hiking etc, are the portable soft dog crates.
What Is The Best Airline Approved Dog Crate for German Shepherds?
You should always check the requirements of the individual airline you are flying on, but most airlines have similar minimum requirements when it comes to dog crates.
Hard cover crates (metal, hardened plastic, fibreglass etc.) usually pass these minimum requirements.
From the range of crates we have discussed in this article – the Petmate 21100 Ultra Vari Pets Kennel is probably the most similar crate to what most airlines allow (Meets USDA and IATA requirements for shipping live animals).
Some of the important minimum requirements for plane approved dog crates include, but aren’t limited to:
- The crate must be made of hard material
- Floor must be solid and leakproof
- Must have handling bars on the outside
- Crate door must have a secure locking system
- Crate should be sturdy in design and not collapsible
- Must be ventilation on a minimum two sides
- Plus more!
You can read more about German Shepherd Plane Travel tips here.
Crate Training, & German Shepherd Puppy Crying In Crate – What To Do?
We wrote about how to crate train your GSD, crying in the crate, and other problems when introducing your GSD to a crate.
Read Crate Training For German Shepherd Dogs and Puppies for more information on how to approach this.
Are You Looking For A Dog House/Kennel, or A Dog Crate?
Are you actually looking for a dog house/kennel, and not a dog crate?
If you want a dog house/dog kennel, take a look at this best indoor and outdoor dog house guide.
What Is A German Shepherd Dog Cage?
A cage is just another word or phrase some people use to refer to a dog crate.
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