When it comes to your dog crate, wooden or metal, hygiene and comfort should be the first priority.
For instance, keeping yourself warm becomes the first concern during cold seasons. So you take measures to avoid cold weather or seasonal diseases. But what about your dog crate? It is clean and spacey but uncomfortable! Because it is winter and no measure is taken to keep the crate warm, the dog is cold in the season. In fact, you don’t know or yet know how to keep dogs warm in a crate.
You can keep dogs warm in a crate by placing a mattress or blanket inside, insulating the bottom, using heat sources such as a heating pad or heater. Also, keep the crate dry and elevated from the ground.
There are several ways to keep your dog warm in a crate. In this post, I’ll discuss ways to keep a dog warm in a crate.
But first, let’s see what’s a dog crate, why you need a dog crate, when to use it, and its pros and cons.
What Is A Dog Crate?
A dog crate is a safe sanctuary for our little canine friends. The structure consists of metal, wood, plastic, or fabric, and it comes with a door. In addition to a secure resting place, you can use a dog crate, a.k.a. an indoor kennel, to transport your dog from one place to another, such as visiting the vets.
Sometimes veterinarians may even suggest keeping your dog inside a crate to aid any infectious disease or surgery. In simple words, a dog crate is a dog’s sanctuary and bed for confinement.
There are different types of dog crates in the market to suit different dog owners. The common types include:
- Wire Crates: Wire crates are quite popular and a great choice for the summers. The crates feature metal construction and a powder-coated finish. They offer the best visibility for dogs. However, when the weather turns cold, they offer the least protection.
- Plastic Crates: Plastic crates are simply made of plastic and offer the best weather protection. They are lightweight crates with a front-swinging door and a top-handle. The crates are widely used for transportation of pets.
- Soft & Fabric Crates: These are crates made of soft fabric materials for puppies that love to chew and cuddle. The crates vary in size and material thickness.
- Wooden/Fashion Crates: You can also opt for wooden crates which are also known as fashion crates. They are versatile crates that serve the dual-purpose of warm crates and as a piece of furniture. However, most dogs don’t like spending time in wooden crates.
- Heavy-duty Crates: We also have heavy-duty crates designed for large-dog breeds. They are large crates designed for outdoor use.
When Would You Use A Dog Crate?
A dog crate can be used when dogs are over their destructive chewing stage. This age varies depending on the dog breed.
For example, Labradors can chew up to the age of 2 and 2 ½ years. It would help if you were sure you could trust your dog before leaving it in a dog crate.
You can use a dog crate when you need to secure your dog, transport it, train, and prevent bad behavior.
A dog crate can be used for confinement reasons. You can use it for the safety of the dog. If you’re traveling, you’ll need the crate to keep your pet safe and secure. You don’t have to worry about your pet running away.
Most pets get anxious when in new environments. They can easily get scared and run away. Having a dog crate gives you peace of mind knowing your pet is safe.
Pros and Cons of Using Dog Crates
The correct use of a dog crate can offer various pros and cons to the dog and dog owner. However, when used inappropriately, the crates have cons.
Pros of Dog Crates
- For pet owners, a dog crate provides safe housing when leaving your dog alone at home. You can be sure dogs are safe and nothing is soiled or destroyed.
- Crate also offers easy potty training for dogs. Potty training is stressful. However, a correct size crate makes the process easier.
- A crate also provides dogs with personal space where they feel safe and comfortable
- Provides a safe space for dogs during transportation
- Encourages behavior control
- A crate hones den instincts for dogs
- Enjoys privacy and comfort
Cons of Dog Crates
- Crates feel as a punishment for dogs
- They create emotion stress for dogs at first-time use
- Poorly ventilated plastic crates can cause suffocation
- High chance of entanglement when dogs wear collars and leashes
- Physical frustration when the crate is too small
How to Keep Dog Warm In Crate?
Now that you know it’s essential to keep a dog warm in a crate let’s see the different ways you can do it. You need to make sure your pooch is comfortable and warm in the crate. Here are a few ways to do it.
Use a crate cover up
If you use a crate cover, the dog will be protected from drafts and rain. Every dog generates some body heat, so you can put a blanket over the crate cover to trap the heat for extra warmth.
Elevate the crate from the ground
Elevate the crate a few inches off the ground so that air is circulating around the crate. This way, your dog won’t feel like he’s trapped. It also ensures the crate does not come into contact with cold floors.
Insulate the crate bottom
The floor of the crate should be insulated if possible. A thick rug or pad will help insulate the crate floor. Thick rugs ensure that the crate stays warmer than the outside temperature. Insulating the crate prevents cold air from getting inside and warm air from escaping. The rugs also provide a comfortable place for pets to rest.
Put an electric heating pad inside the crate
An electric heating pad is a great way to keep your pet warm without getting too hot. It’s also a good idea to place the heating pad below the crate so that heat doesn’t escape through the bottom.
Consider heating pads with adjustable temperature settings. If your dog loves to chew, be creative with how you set up the heating pad. You want it hidden under mats to prevent the dog from chewing on it.
Keep a heater or space heater nearby
If you have a space heater or other type of heater near the crate, your dog will stay warmer than if he was left alone with no source of heat. However, make sure the heater isn’t too close to the crate. Too much heat could cause burns.
Cover the crate door
Covering the crate door helps keep out drafts and cold air while keeping the dog warm. Make sure you don’t leave any gaps between the crate walls and the door because this allows cold air to enter.
Keep the crate dry
Don’t let water get inside the crate. Wet crates are dangerous as they can freeze and break. Also, keep the crate away from sources of moisture such as pipes and plumbing.
Cleanliness is next to godliness. Keeping the crate clean prevents odors and harmful bacteria from building up, avoiding health problems.
Place a towel over the crate
Place a towel over the crate door to keep out drafts and cold. The towel will also absorb moisture. If the crate is inside the house, placing a towel over the crate prevents heat loss.
Turn off the lights
The dark makes dogs feel more comfortable, and they tend to sleep better. So turn off all of the lights before you leave your house in order to make sure that your dog has a nice cozy bed to sleep in.
Don’t forget about ventilation
Ventilation is important when using heated products such as a heating pad. You want to make sure there is excellent airflow to prevent heat build-up inside the crate.
Well, that’s it from me! Now you know how to keep a dog warm in a crate. Your dog doesn’t need to feel cold just because it’s in a crate. You can use the various ways I’ve discussed above to keep your dog’s crate warm and cozy.
Low temperatures below 45 degrees F can affect your dog. You need to understand how these canines live and provide the best environment possible.
Unless you share a bed with your dog, keeping your dog warm in a crate is highly recommended.