If your canine buddy is a regular vehicle passenger, you better have the best dog crate for car travel on hand. A loose pet inside a car is a hazard.
Unrestrained dogs are one of the common causes of distracted driving. Even if your pet is an angel, things could take a new turn once he gets a new battery of smells and sights!
So, take safety to the next level with the best dog crate for travel. A travel crate will prevent your pooch from jumping off the window, bouncing around the car, or from getting under your feet.
Best Dog Crate for Travel Reviewed
Looking for the best dog crate for car travel can be a tedious task for any pet parent.
The pet industry has an explosive array of dog crates! Some are made out of fabric and plastic, while others feature heavy-duty metal construction.
Have no worries, though.
20 x 12 x 18.5 in
Black - 360
Small dogs (up to 20 lbs.)
24 x 17 x 17 in
Small dogs (up to 15 lbs.)
22 × 29.5 × 25.5 in
36 x 23 x 25 in
36 x 25 x 25 in
Large dogs (up to 70 lbs.)
36 x 24 x 23 in
Large dogs (up to 70 lbs.)
24 x 19 x 20.5 in
Small dogs (up to 20 lbs.)
26 x 20 x 20 in
Medium Dogs (up to 30 lbs.)
Many spend laborious hours finding the best dog carrier for car travel that aligns with their budget. Little did they know that you can get more bang out of your buck with the 360 Pet Carrier & Car Seat by Pet Gear.
This product is suitable for dogs weighing not more than 20 pounds (9.07 kg). The carrier itself is lightweight at 6.9 pounds (3.13 kg) and measures 20 × 12 × 18.5 inches.
As the name suggests, it features mesh ventilation that grants your pooch a 360-degree view of his surroundings. The mesh is robust and scratch-proof to boot. The bottom has a stiff board, which supports the weight of your pet. It also comes with a washable fleece pad to keep those paws comfy.
Although this is quite an excellent carrier for the price, it is not made to withstand impact in case of an accident. It does, however, limit the amount of movement. There are two handles in which you can fit through either a seat belt or a shoulder belt that will hold the carrier in place. Rest assured your pet will not get hurled forward. The crate may only move to the sides a bit.
- Grants your pet a 360-degree panoramic view
- Lightweight at 6.9 pounds
- Has a weight capacity of up to 20 pounds
- Has a no-zipper design and an easy-locking canopy
- The dual push-button entry provides ease of accessibility
- Easy-locking canopy
- Multiple mesh panels provide maximum airflow
- Comes with a spacious front entrance
- Multifunctional — carrier and car seat in one
- Includes a machine-washable fleece
- Available in black, floral, Midnight River, and aqua
- Not designed to withstand impact but limits harmful movements caused by sudden vehicle stops and minor collisions
This crate is a soft-sided, collapsible model. Aside from car travels, you can use it for camping, too. The rectangular design of the carrier also makes it an indoor den, whelping box, and so on.
Currently, there are four sizes and colors for this model. The medium size measures 24 × 17 × 17 inches and weighs 6.8 pounds (3.08 kg).
Unlike its cheaper counterparts, this crate will not warp. Neither will it bend. It boasts of a robust steel framework, which accounts for the durability of the product. Likewise, the crate features a 600-Denier Oxford construction. Thus, it is water-resistant and scratch-resistant.
Cleanliness is a big deal for me. So, I like how easy it is to clean and freshen up the crate. Just remove the entire cover off and throw it into the washing machine for hassle-free cleaning. Plus, it comes with a waterproof pad to stop wee-wee leaks from seeping into your car seat.
Moreover, the crate has two entry points that are both mesh and zippered. It also has three mesh windows for added visibility and ventilation.
My only gripe is that the entrance falls short for the size of the crate. Your pooch might find it a little awkward to go in and out of it. Also, the mesh and zippers seem substandard.
- Features a heavy-duty steel tubing
- Made of water- and scratch-resistant 600-D Oxford fabric
- Lightweight at 6.8 pounds
- The manufacturer has included a fleece liner to the entire canvas cover
- The cover is removable and machine-washable
- Spot cleaning is easy and hassle-free
- Can hold a water bottle and a cylindrical food container
- Has a waterproof pad to contain spills and accidents
- Has two entry points and three mesh windows
- Available in multiple sizes and colors
- Not the best option for an excited dog who likes to claw or chew through the fabric
All entry points are mesh. The entire front portion of the product itself is mesh. Thus, your furry pal can see you on all sides and enjoy a great breeze as you drive.
The carrier comes in three sizes. The large size measures 22 × 29.5 × 25.5 inches and weighs 10 pounds (4.53 kg). All three sizes work incredibly in the rear seat and the compartment area.
You may also use the small-sized carrier in the front seat. Installation is straightforward. There is a loop in which you thread a seat belt through. It also has a strap that you buckle around the vehicle headrest for added security. Taking it down is also just as easy.
Unzipping the main entrance is not always convenient. Furthermore, it emits a strong chemical smell after unboxing. It will help if you let the carrier air out for two to three days before using it.
- Eliminates the need to set up a big, hard-sided crate in the backseat or compartment of the car
- Easy to install and folds flat for compact storage
- Lightweight at 10 pounds
- Comes with a soft, anti-skid pad that you can remove for washing
- The interior can withstand occasional chewing
- Effectively contains pet messes including hair
- The front portion is all mesh to provide maximum airflow and reassurance for your pet
- Has five entry points that are all mesh
- Uses industrial-quality plastic zippers
- Available in three sizes
- Backed with a 1-year warranty
- The framework should be metal, considering its price
- Smells strongly of chemicals after unboxing
- Has not gone through crash testing
You can go for the single-door crate, which costs less or opt for the double-door crate that has more exciting features.
I recommend you aim for the double-door option. Having two double doors, you can quickly access your pooch either from the side or at the front. The doors have good-quality latching mechanisms that discourage Houdini-like pets from escaping.
The AmazonBasics Folding Metal Dog Crate makes a great dog car carrier for anxious pets. Your pooch will be able to see you clearly and vice versa.
Likewise, it increases ventilation, especially for double-coated and brachycephalic dogs. The edges of the crate are smooth. There are no sharp metal points that could either hurt you or your dog during interactions.
That aside, setting up this metal crate is a piece of cake. Its foldable design also makes it a breeze to store when not in use. Plus, there is a handle for easy carrying. But as expected of a budget option, the crate wears out quickly.
- Wire metal is coated to prevent rust
- The single-door crate is suitable for limited spaces
- The double-door crate features two swing doors and two s secure slide-bolt latching mechanisms
- A divider panel is included to accommodate two dogs
- Easy to assemble and disassemble
- Folds flat for convenient storage
- A removable plastic tray is included
- Multifunctional — can be used as an indoor crate
- Strong, agile dogs can easily break the plastic bottom-lining tray
- Amazon does not have replacement trays
- Wears out quickly with time and usage
- Large, strong dogs may bend the metal wires
- The handle of the crate is only functional when folded down
Assembly requires no tools. The crate sets up in a flash. It folds down quickly, as well. The crate comes with two doors. There is one on top of the crate and another at the front. The crate also has perforated bone-shaped windows to encourage airflow.
Another strong point of this carrier is the security it offers. It is equipped with reliable, industrial-quality zippers. Likewise, the material used to make this crate can withstand the elements. Therefore, you can use it for indoor and outdoor purposes.
This model is available in five sizes. The smallest size, which measures 20 × 13 × 13 inches, weighs only about 3 pounds (1.36 kg). That feels as though you are carrying a can of soup! The large size, which measures 36 × 25 × 25 inches, remains lightweight at 11 pounds (4.98 kg). Additionally, the crate comes with a rugged handle that is also gentle on the hands.
PetNation Port-A-Crate is a soft-sided crate made of tightly woven mesh fabric. It goes without saying that this carrier is neither for aggressive chewers nor for diggers. On the bright side, a high-quality, sturdy steel frame provides support and stability to the carrier.
- Durable mesh is water-resistant
- The handle is made of the same material as the dog crate
- Features a sturdy steel framework
- Assembly is quick and hassle-free
- Has smooth rounded corners
- Suitable for both indoor and outdoor purposes
- Even the large size remains portable
- The top entry makes it more convenient for the pet parent to access the crate
- Has multiple size options
- This crate is not suitable for untrained canines
- The mesh fabric is challenging to clean if your pet makes an accident
Likewise, you can roll up the side and front flaps to create an open space for your pet during travel breaks.
The carrier has three sizes and two colors to choose from. The small size measures 24 × 18 × 17 inches and weighs 6.7 pounds (3.03 kg).
This option is best suited for a little dog that is 15 to 17 inches tall.
Moreover, the carrier highlights Petsfit patented screw-in metal framework that holds the carrier’s shape. The metal locking frame sets up within seconds without further need for tools.
But because it is a soft crate, I do not recommend it for dogs who are prone to chewing or digging.
- There is a foot mat underneath for increased traction
- Includes a soft and machine-washable fleece pad for your dog to nap on
- Features Petsfit patented metal framework
- Has three mesh sides, two of which can be rolled up
- Multifunctional — can be used as an open crate or dog bed
- Not a right choice for hyper canines
The crate measures 24 × 19 × 20.5 inches and weighs 6 pounds (2.72 kg).
This carrier is made of polyester with PVC backing. Thus, it is water-resistant and heavy-duty. Setup is straightforward. All you have to do is to zip up the front and back panels together.
Adding to that, it comes with a matching carrying case and a sheepskin mat. The mat is not too thick nor too thin. However, the bottom of the carrier is flaccid. So, you might want to improvise. I suggest tucking underneath a sturdy piece of plywood to make it rigid.
Nevertheless, the carrier’s ventilation windows have a nice touch. They won’t extend all the way to the floor. This is advantageous if your canine buddy moves a lot while sleeping.
You also have the option to put them up or down. The zippers are hardy, too. Likewise, there are pockets that will come in handy for holding your pet’s leash, treats, etc. The Velcro straps for the windows, however, seems too long. So, you may want to cut them shorter.
- Made of water-resistant and heavy-duty polyester with PVC backing
- Mesh door and windows provide adjustable ventilation and visibility
- Has handy pockets for tucking in treats and accessories
- Includes a carrying case and a removable sheepskin mat for comfort
- Setup is quick and hassle-free
- Compact storage — folds up to 93% less its size
- Your dog might hesitate to walk into the carrier if he has to duck
- The quality of the mesh needs improvement
- The bottom of the carrier needs reinforcement
- Not suitable for aggressive dogs
The carrier is made of 600-D flexible nylon. Thus, it lightweight, water-resistant, and resilient. Stitching is exemplary. The zippers are durable, too. Most importantly, the crate features a heavy-duty steel framework.
The crate comes in three sizes and two colors. The small size measures 26 × 20 × 20 inches and weighs 7.3 pounds (3.31 kg). Setup is quick and hassle-free. It is also just as easy to take down. There are convenient sliding bar locks that allow you to fold the crate in a jiffy.
Moreover, the crate has zippered mesh panels on three sides. This feature not only provides your pet with ample ventilation, but it also allows him to see what’s going on.
My only concern is that the hex mesh, while robust, may be able to hook a nail in it because the holes are a lot bigger compared to similar crates.
- Materials used to make the crate are robust
- Features a heavy-duty steel framework
- Assembly is straightforward
- Has a collapsible design
- Steel tubing is powder-coated to prevent rust and corrosion
- Includes a cozy fleece bed that you can remove for washing
- Equipped with a carry strap
- Available in multiple sizes and colors
- The mat and the seam of the side zippered panels need improvement
- The hex mesh is prone to snagging
Best Dog Crate for Car Travel Buying Guide
Have you chosen which dog travel crate suits your needs? There are several variables that you should consider before making a decision. Price alone will not determine whether or not a crate worth your investment. So, read on!
How to Choose a Car Crate?Size and Weight Range
Small dogs, such as Toy Poodles, Pomeranians, and Beagles, need crates designed for small breeds. The same principle applies to medium and large breeds.
Don’t choose the biggest crate your budget allows just because it fits the rear seat of your car. Instead, choose a crate that is designed for your dog’s breed. Unlike indoor crates, a travel crate with too much wriggle room has deadly consequences for your pet. Your pooch could get hurled inside his crate in case of a collision or a sudden stop. He may also use the extra space to relieve himself.
However, this doesn’t imply that you should restrict your dog’s movement. Your pooch should be able to turn around, stand up, stretch, and lie comfortably. For that matter, you must measure your dog beforehand. Your dog’s measurements will dictate the appropriate size of the crate you should purchase.
Adding to that, you need to weigh your dog. Crates vary in weight capacity as much as they vary in size.Material Used and Heavy-Duty Construction
Your pooch’s travel carrier needs to be as durable as possible. Otherwise, your pet’s safety is in jeopardy. A soft-sided carrier works fine for a well-behaved canine, whereas metal wire crates are best for unduly excited dogs.Soft-Sided Carrier
When it comes to soft-sided carriers, look for a product made of Oxford or nylon with a 600-Denier rating or more. Both fabrics have breathable properties. They also have excellent resistance to water, abrasion, stains, and mildew. The higher the denier rating these fabrics have, the thicker and more resilient they tend to be.
That aside, the carrier should have a reliable and robust metal framework to hold its shape. You should also check how sturdy the mesh panels are, as well as the bottom of the carrier. These could serve as potential escape routes for your pet.Metal Wire Crate
A wire crate is the right choice, especially for an anxious pet. It gives your fur-baby the much-needed reassurance that his family member(s) is just right in front of him. With ventilation on all sides, it also provides your pooch adequate airflow to keep him calm and comfortable throughout the journey. We suggest you opt for a crate with a quality steel construction paired with reliable locking mechanisms. This will ensure your pet stays safe when you encounter minor bumps in the road.Comfort and Bedding
A portable dog crate should provide your canine passenger comfortable travel experience. Since our canine companions are prone to overheating, the carrier should provide proper ventilation. It should have a comfy mat for your pooch to lie on, too. But if the rug is non-removable, then it’s a no-go. Upkeep would be difficult, especially if your pet makes an accident.
Additionally, the carrier should also provide you with some level of comfort. It would help to have a sturdy, ergonomic handle to make transportation more convenient. A shoulder strap can also help minimize the strain caused by your pet’s weight.Secure Strapping
We highly recommend a crate that has safety straps that you can tie down or buckle up with a seat belt. Otherwise, all the fancy features a carrier has are for naught if your pet goes flying around your car. If you are involved in an accident, the safety straps will restrain the crate from projecting forward.Crash-Tested and CPS Certification
The ugly truth is that a majority of manufacturers market their products as “crash-tested” yet they won’t protect your pet during a crash. So, for long journeys, we advise you to get a carrier that has earned a five-star certification from CPS. Similar to a dog crate for airline travel (IATA-compliant), a dog crate with CPS certification is built to meet precise specifications that will increase the chance of your pet’s survival in the event of an accident.
Frequently Asked Questions
How to choose the size?
You can also refer to this chart provided by the Association of Professional Dog Trainers.
What about large dogs?
Vehicular accidents can happen anytime, anywhere. So, it is wise to hit the road fully prepared.
The 2Pet Foldable Multifunctional Dog Crate is phenomenal as well. It is quite hardy, considering it is made of 600-Denier Oxford. It also has a metal framework of heavy-duty steel. Adding to that, it has many delightful features, such as a beautiful fleece liner, a waterproof pad, food containers, etc. Unfortunately, the manufacturer seemed to take the mesh panels for granted.
Hopefully, this article review will help you find a way to safely and comfortably travel with your canine passenger.