Best Plastic Dog Crates, Carriers, & Kennels


There’s a few different dog carriers on the market, and with that said, we wanted to find the best plastic dog crate, kennel or carrier.

The best plastic dog kennel should be lightweight but strong and durable, and features like being airline approved or being designed specifically for travel or transport are looked upon favorably.

In addition, the best plastic dog carrier crate should be affordable or a value for money type kennel.

Something to note is that there are some great performing small plastic dog crates, but there is only a few specific good crates for medium to large dogs that are super strong and durable.

We’ve identified them in this guide.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at the plastic dog crates that fit this criteria!


(*NOTE: always check the laws, regulations and requirements of travel providers, such as airlines, when taking your pet crate, kennel or carrier travelling. Regardless of what the pet crate manufacturer says, you should check travel requirements yourself and make sure you comply with them all)

(ALSO 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)

(*Friendly Disclosure – links to retailers or brands on this page may include affiliate links, and we may receive a commission when you purchase through these links)


Best Plastic Dog Crates, Kennels & Carriers

Our top picks for the best plastic dog crates are:

Small Dogs


Medium To Large Dogs

Rough Tough Dog Crates


Gunner G1 Dog Kennel


Other top picks for good dog crates are:


*Dog crate bed is sold separately – you might look at the MidWest Deluxe Bolster Pet Bed for Dogs (on Amazon)


Best Plastic Dog Crate, Kennel or Carrier: Reviews

Petmate Top Load Two Door Kennel

View On Amazon

Good Features

Plastic Portable Kennel For Small Pets no bigger than 7 inches tall and 15 inches in length

Comes in 2 sizes – 24 inches and 19 inches

The 24 inch kennel has internal dimensions of 21″ x 14.75″ x 13.25″

Has 2 doors for your pet to enter and exit the kennel easily

Has a carry handle to transport your pet easily

Comes in 4 different colors

Has good ventilation to allow air in and out

Has a squeeze latch for the front door

Kennel secures together with metal nuts and bolts


What’s Not So Good?

Not for large pets

Sometimes gets delivered without the bolts/hardware or handle – but this is rare




Petmate Sky Kennel

Good Features

Heavy Duty Plastic Portable Kennel For Dogs Up To 125lbs

Great for pet travel as it includes ‘Live Animal’ labels, identification stickers, and absorbent materials and food and water cups.

Comes in 6 sizes from 21 inches up to 48 inches

The 48 inch size kennel has dimensions of 48″ L X 32″ W X 35″H

Has non-corrosive plastic wing nuts as hardware

Has extra strong steel wire for the door mesh and side ventilation openings

Made in the USA

Has a vault latch that is a four-way latching system


What’s Not So Good?

Some models don’t come with the carry handle

Some models don’t come with the vault door

The 15lb capacity model doesn’t come with tie down holes

To check what each model comes with – check the Petmate comparison table on the product page

For the price you pay, it could be more heavy duty – the plastic could be stronger, and the bolts that go in the nuts could be metal and not plastic threads




Petmate Compass Pet Kennel

Good Features

Plastic Portable Kennel For Dogs Up To 90lbs

Comes in 6 different kennel sizes

90lbs capacity model is for pets up to 24 inches in height and 36 inches in length

Has ventilation on all sides

Assembly is slide & snap – no tools required

Meets IATA & USDA standards

Has dual turn-dial door latch


What’s Not So Good?

The top, bottom and door of the kennel can have issues aligning fully flush, and the door can be awkward to open and close

Crate seems to be slightly small based on sizes – order a size up from what you think you need




Petmate Ultra Vari Kennel

Good Features

Plastic Portable Kennel For Dogs Up To 125lbs

A good crate for either travel or housetraining

Has metal mesh side vents and front door + rear ventilation

Has easy-open squeeze latch for locking for 32 and 36 inch models

Has tie down straps

Made with 95% pre-consumer recycled plastic

Made in the USA

Meets USDA and IATA requirements for shipping live animals

70-90lbs kennels fit pets up to 29 inches tall

Has interior Floor Moat

Check the model comparison chart on the 125 lbs capcity kennel product page for what each model kennel includes and doesn’t include


What’s Not So Good?

For the price – the overall construction of the kennel could be stronger




Which Petmate Dog Crate or Dog Kennel Is The Best For You?

It depends on the size of your dog and what you want to use the kennel or crate for.

Petmate Top Load 2 Door Kennel – For Small Pets no bigger than 7 inches tall and 15 inches in length. Not really an airline travel kennel

Petmate Sky Kennel – Could be used for airline travel. For dogs up to 125lbs.

Petmate Compass Pet Kennel – Could be used for airline travel. For dogs up to 90lbs capacity, and for pets up to 24 inches in height and 36 inches in length.

Petmate Ultra Vari Kennel – Could be used for airline travel. For dogs up to 125 lbs.

*NOTE: the Petmate Kennel carriers are designed for airline travel, but you need to do the final check to make sure the airline you travel with will approve the kennel prior to travelling.


What Size Petmate Dog Crate or Kennel Should I Get?

Check these two things:

The weight capacity for the crate or kennel

The height, length and width of the kennel should be 3-4 inches taller and longer than your pet so there’s ample space to fully stand up, easily turn around and comfortably lie all the way down


Rough Tough Heavy Duty Plastic Kennels With Composite Doors

Crate Features

Heavy duty plastic crate designed particularly for travel, transport, boarding, but also for home

Extremely strong construction – all in one strong plastic crate with composite metal crate door

Crates have been dropped from 12 feet onto concrete and grass and have no noticeable damage.

Comes in a range of sizes – small, medium, intermediate and large

Comes in single door and double door options

The Large single door crate has interior dimensions of 34in L x 21.5in W x 25in H

Lightweight – the large kennels only weigh around 30lbs

Easy to clean

Has good ventilation with holes in the side of the crate

Made in the USA

Has metal inserts on the crate so you can stack or couple crates together, and also use them for tie downs



Not the cheapest crate to purchase, but for the quality, it’s worth it




Gunner G1 Dog Kennel

Read more about the molded Gunner G1 Kennels in this guide.


AmazonBasics Two-Door Top-Load Pet Kennel

You can view the AmazonBasics Two-Door Top-Load Pet Kennel (on Amazon) here.


Aspen Pet Porter Kennel Pet Carrier


A plastic pet carrier for dogs up to 90 lbs

Comes in 10 different colors

The shell is a hardened plastic

Comes with tie down strap holes

Plenty of ventilation around the outside of the carrier with vent holes

The 90lbs model is recommended for pets 24 inches tall and 36 inches in length

Carrier meets most airline travel requirements – but check yourself prior to travel

Has an easy squeeze locking latch on the front door



For the price, the carrier should be much stronger. It feels a bit flimsy and cheap.

The Petmate Two Door Top Load, Sky Kennel or Ultra Vari carriers are probably better options




Should You Get An Aspen Pet Crate, Kennel or Carrier?

Aspen Plastic Carrier/Kennel – overall, the quality of this carrier feels a bit cheap. Look for stronger plastic carriers like the Petmate or AmazonBasics pet carriers.


Sport Pet Designs Rolling Plastic Dog Crate

You can view the Sport Pet Designs Rolling Plastic Dog Crate (on Amazon) here.


Best Plastic Dog Crate, Kennel or Carrier: Reviews

Overall, Are Plastic Kennels, Crates and Carriers Any Good?

They can definitely be good for some people, especially those who need to travel with them or use them on airlines.

But, as far as we can see, most of them have some design flaws apart from the Rough Tough crates, and the Gunner G1 Kennels.


Small vs Large Plastic Dog Kennels and Crates

The smaller plastic dog kennels seem to function much better because they don’t need to be as strong to support the pet or dog inside which is a smaller pet.

Most of the larger plastic dog kennels can have some functionality and usage issues because they have to support bigger dogs.

They can seem weaker and more flimsy as they get bigger, especially as they are not one piece construction.

The exception to this is the Rough Tough Crate – the one piece construction greatly benefits them.

The Gunner G1 Kennels have an equally tough molded design.


What Is A Plastic Dog Crate, Kennel or Carrier?

The two most popular dog crates are metal wire dog crates, and soft fabric dog crates.

Behind these crates, there are plastic dog crates.

Plastic dog crates are usually made of hardened plastic, and snap and bolt together. Because they are made of hardened plastic, they are much lighter and less bulkier than metal wire crates, but stronger than soft sided crates.


What Are Plastic Dog Crates. Kennels and Carriers Used For?

They can be used for indoor use, outside use, and use inside cars, or for transporting pets to the vet for example.

But, many people also like to use them for airline travel as well.


Who Would A Plastic Dog Crate or Kennel Not Be For?

Firstly, metal wire dog crates and soft dog crates are probably better options for people that will mostly be using their crates at home or in the car.

You can check them out here:

Best Overall Dog Crates On The Market

Best Soft Sided Dog Crates

Best Metal Wire Dog Crates


Secondly, if you have a destructive dog, dog that scratches, dog that chews or dog that is an escape artist, you might need to look at a heavy duty steel dog crate.

You can check one out here:


The Rough Tough Crate however is great as a heavy duty plastic dog crate, and so is the Gunner G1.


Wire or Plastic Dog Dog Crate?

Most people choose to get metal wire dog crate. They are stronger than most plastic carriers, and also fold up.

You can’t take a metal wire crate on an airline though.


What Do You Need To Know About Using A Plastic Pet Carrier/Crate For Airline Travel?

ALWAYS check the airline requirements for pet crates prior to travelling. Each airline might have slightly different requirements.

Despite what a pet crate manufacturer says, get the airline crate requirements, and check yourself the crate complies with each requirement.

Also, know that the requirements for the crate and flight will usually be different depending on whether you are just flying within your country, or travelling internationally.

Some common requirements by airlines might be that the crate:

– must have metal connections or bolts

– must have tie down holes

– can’t have a top opening door

– can have limitations on the total weight of the crate and pet together

– must meet specific requirements like USDA (within the US)) and IATA requirements (internationally) for shipping live animals

– must be labelled with a ‘live animal’ sticker, and have water available

– must have carry handle

– must have ventilation


There will usually be other requirements too – so go to the airline’s website, or contact them via phone or email or another form of communication, and ask for the full requirements for the type of flight you’re enquiring about.


What Size Plastic Dog Crate/Kennel Should You Get?

Check these two things and measure your dog for:

– The weight capacity for the crate or kennel

– The height, length and width of the kennel should be 3-4 inches taller and longer than your pet so there’s ample space to fully stand up, easily turn around and comfortably lie all the way down


Collapsible Plastic Dog Crates

Most plastic dog crates don’t collapse or fold down.

They usually have two halves of a plastic shell that you screw and bolt together once you’ve lined up the shell.

Metal wire and soft sided dog crates do fold up and are collapsible though.


Double Door Plastic Dog Crates

SportsPet Designs does a Double Door Plastic Kennel (on Amazon).

It can fit two dogs or puppies, with the area available on the interior being 20 H x 19 L x 16 W inches


Heavy Duty Plastic Dog Crate

The Rough Tough crate, and the Gunner G1 are the best heavy duty plastic dog crates.



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