Deciding on a dog crate requires careful planning, but shopping for a big breed like a Mastiff or Dane adds another layer of complexity. Besides needing something your dog will want to be in, the crate must also stand up to demands of these giant breeds, especially if your dog is aggressive or anxious. This is also usually a more financially impacting decision, and isn’t as simple or as cheap as buying your giant a big dog toy.
There’s also the fear that if you grab a really large crate, that you’ll need to make space for it in your home! You don’t want the enclosure to take over your house, being the focal point of your living room instead of your furniture. Making sure the crate can either work in your home or be hidden from plain view is also something to consider.
Fear not! Finding the perfect crate for your giant breed is not mission impossible. To help you pick the best one, we’ve compiled a list of extra large dog crates that’ll get the job done, as well as some practical advice below.
A crate’s job is to provide comfort and safety, and it can also be used for transporting your pet. It’s necessary for traveling by vehicle and required for air travel. Given its importance, make sure to do your homework when deciding on a crate. Here are a few things to consider before committing.
Your Dog’s Size
Proper sizing is critical to ensuring your dog is happy and healthy in their crate. It should be big enough that they can stand up and turn around freely and maybe even play. However, while you don’t want to force your dog into a cramped space, the crate shouldn’t be too big that you lose the security factor, which is one of the reasons you crate.
When we say security factor, we’re referring to the fact that dogs enjoy the small space of the crate, which satisfies their need to inhabit a den. If it’s too big, they won’t feel protected. Likewise, the more space they have to move around, the more trouble they might get into, especially if they’re prone to escape.
All crates come with at least one door, but some come with two. Having a two-door enclosure can be an advantage because it allows you more options when it comes to crate placement, particularly if you will be moving it around from time to time.
There’s a few other accessibility questions to ask yourself. These include whether or not you can easily access the inside for things like cleaning, feeding, and putting in or removing bedding. Does your dog need you to be around to open the crate, or will she be able to get in by herself?
Your Dog’s Age
Your dog’s age isn’t important if you’re buying a crate for an adult dog, but young dogs are a different story. Puppies will change in size, so you should be aware of what their adult size will be. If your dog will grow significantly, find a crate that has a divider panel that you can remove as they get older.
All of the crates in this guide are made for giant breed dogs. This means that they are likely going to be 54 inches in height. They will be tall, and you’ll need to have adequate space for them in your home. We don’t recommend crating your dog outside, but if you do, make sure your crate is out of the sunlight. Crates themselves can become hot, and pose potential health hazards for your dog.
Will you need to take your crate on the road with you? If so, consider the portability of the models you like. Some models fold down, allowing for easy to storage and transport, while others only come as single pieces. If you’ll be taking this item lots of places, it’s best to avoid those single-piece crates. But you’ll likely not be traveling by plane if you have a bigger dog. If you are, there are guidelines to adhere to, and you’ll want to consider carriers (not crates) suitable for travel.
Types of Crates
Now it’s time for the fun stuff-what types of crates are there? We can break up crate categories into five main groups, each with their pros and cons.
Wire Crates: Wire crates are a popular choice among pet owners. Many allow you to section them, which is nice if you want to buy just one crate. It’s also an excellent choice for dogs with thick coats, they’re easy to clean, and they generally easily fold if you need to travel or store the crate. If you’ve got an escape artist on your hands, this crate type is generally the easiest to break out of.
Plastic Crates: Plastic crates are suitable for containing Houdini dogs, as they are more difficult to escape. They’re a comfortable choice for the dog you always find curled up in small spaces and are easy to use for airline travel. But plastic crates aren’t without their disadvantages, some of them being that, since there’s less air circulation, they run hot. They’re also challenging to clean if your pet has an accident and don’t allow your furry friend to see what’s happening around him.
Soft-sided Crates: Soft-sided crates work better with smaller dogs. For the owner looking for a heavy-duty option, steer clear of soft-sided crates. We will say that if you also have a little dog, this type is portable, stores well, and is suitable for travel-though it doesn’t hold up well when it comes to destructive dogs and accidents.
Heavy Duty Crates: Almost all of the crates on our list fall into the heavy-duty category to keep destructive dogs from destroying and to hold escape artists in their place. These crates aren’t usually beautiful, but their functionality is what makes them great. They also tend to be more expensive, but paying more for a crate is better than having to replace damaged furniture.
Alternative Crates: Alternative crates are a non-traditional option that some pet owners find works well for them. This type can be anything that deviates from standard crates, and usually involves a finish (like wood) that helps the crate blend into your house more effectively. Some crates can even substitute furniture like end tables, saving space and doing double duty. We don’t recommend this type of crate for “destroyer” dogs who may chew the wood and destroy it.
Our Favorite Crates For Giant Breeds
Let’s dive right in with our top choices in a range of budgets and varieties. Keep in mind that these crates will serve purposes for a variety of your needs. They should be suitable for any dog that’s over 100 pounds and qualifies for the “XXL” dog designation. Great Danes and Mastiffs are both considered giant breeds, or “XXL” when it comes to their size.
The Frisco Double Door 54 inch dog crate is our top pick for giant breed dogs. This crate combines security and budget in a very big size. This crate is perfect for Mastiffs, Great Danes, or Saint Bernards. They will have plenty of room inside to stand up and turn around. We know this, because our lead editor at Love Your Dog, actually owns two mastiffs, and they do just fine inside a crate this size.
So what features does it have? It has double-locking doors, and a durable plastic tray that slides in and out with ease. This makes cleaning up after accidents both quick and easy. The dual door entry allows your Giant breed to come and go freely, and gives flexibility as to the positioning of the crate in your home.
This crate is easy to assemble. You don’t need any tools. You assemble it together by a pin system, that locks the paneling in place. The 54 inch space also allows plenty of room for your giant breed’s favorite dog bed. This is great if you plan to crate train at night. It also helps to make the space a place of comfort for your Gentle Giant. Let’s face it – giant breeds love to sleep. You may as well make it as comfortable as possible, and the Frisco 54 inch XXL crate is our primary pick due to their unique combination of both quality and budget.
We love the door latching system because it’s extremely secure and virtually escape-proof. It’s easy to assemble and disassemble. It’s also cost-effective, which is great for budget-minded households.
Finding an economical crate for your giant dog can be challenging, but this one certainly fits the bill. The MidWest Homes Life Stages Dog Crate is made of heavy-duty metal wire that comes in six sizes to accommodate all types of dogs, with the 48-inch option perfect for large dogs.
It features two-door entry and a convenient divider panel. The panel that allows you to use the crate from the time your dog is a puppy until he reaches full size. It also includes a removable leak-proof pan should your dog have an accident. It’s also equipped with a handy carrying handle, and it folds flat for storage.
We love that this crate can come up to XXL in size and is perfect for bigger dogs. The divider feature allows room for larger puppies through adulthood. The one downside is that the lock only slides into place. Since it doesn’t latch, this crate might not be well-suited to dogs who are adept at escaping from their crates. It’s also not the most heavily durable crate on our list.
Giant breed dogs are expensive. FInding the right crate for a giant breed is always challenging. Trust us, when we say once you get it home, you’ll be surprised how much space they take up! If you own a giant breed and are on a tighter budget, then the Single door 54 inch option from Frisco will allow you to save some money, while still providing a secure environment for your giant breed dog.
This crate is the perfect practical choice for pet owners looking to keep things simple. This crate is easy to assemble. It’s just as easy to clean as the double door version. It’s going to be a little more limiting when it comes to crate placement.
The metal wire is constructed to keep your dog where you want him: inside his well-ventilated crate. Its profile is not the lightest you’ll find, but typically you won’t spend too much time moving your crate around. The single door does not offer as much flexibility for in-home placement as other two-door crates. But if you know how you plan to setup the crate in your home, then this may not be an issue.
We love the ease of setup and tear down, making it great for indoor and limited outdoor use. It’s built to last, meaning you’ll get many years of use out of it. It’s also easy to setup and breakdown. Overall, the Frisco single door crate is excellent for sizable dogs that need a secure place to relax, without breaking the bank.
Frequently Asked Questions
We often get many different questions around dog crates, especially when it comes to extremely large breeds like the Dane or Mastiff. Below is a roundup of frequently asked questions that we field regularly here on the site. If you feel we’ve missed anything, please feel free to drop us a line in the comments section!
Q: What varieties of giant breed dog crates are there?
A: There are three main crate varieties: Heavy-Duty, Wire, and Travel. If you own a giant breed, you are pretty much stuck with a wire model. Travel crates are more suitable for smaller dogs. Heavy-duty crates usually only go up to 42 inches in size. Wire crates are most available at the 54-inch size and are perfect for bigger pups.
Q: Is a dog crate really necessary for giant breeds?
A: Many dog owners ask this question, and it’s one that doesn’t have a cut and dry answer. Crate training your dog isn’t a requirement the way that things like feeding them and giving them water are. Crate training, however, can be very helpful for several reasons. Dogs don’t go to the bathroom where they sleep. Putting them in the crate is the fastest way to start the potty training process. And since dogs are den animals, the crate mimics their natural habitat and makes them feel secure. It will also keep them from destroying the house while you’re away or busy. We recommend checking out the Humane Society’s guide to crate training to learn how to introduce your dog to it successfully.
Q: Which dogs qualify as Giant?
A: This crate guide is for giant dog breeds. There are no hard and fast guidelines about what those dimensions have to be to “qualify.” Breeds that would be classified as giant include the Great Dane, Mastiff, Saint Bernard, and the Great Pyrenees. Borderline dog breeds like Rotties can do well in a 48-inch crate.
Q: What crate dimensions should I look for a giant size dog?
A: Getting the crate dimensions right is critical in creating the right environment for your dog. To know what size crate to look for, you’ll need to measure your dog both sitting and standing. When he’s sitting, measure the distance from the ground to the top of the dog’s head. To get the proper crate height, add two to four inches. Similarly, with your dog standing, measure him from the tip of his nose to the base of the tail (not the tip). Adding two to four inches will give you the proper crate length.
Q: What crate accessories can I use?
A: Accessories are a fantastic way to entice your dog to retire to his crate. There are three items we recommend adding. The first is a crate pad, which will make his home cozier. The second is a crate cover, which will enhance the den effect, especially at night (though be careful to make sure the cover allows for proper ventilation). Lastly, every crate must have food and water dispensers.
Overall, your options are pretty limited if you have a giant breed dog. The Frisco 54 inch XXL double-door crate is our top pick for the best crate for giant breeds. It offers a unique combination of cost, size and shipping availability. The MidWest iCrate is a great option, albeit more expensive. It’s available in a wider variety of online retailers.
Don’t let the lack of proper crates out there for giant breeds deter you from bringing a gentle giant into your home. All giant breed dogs can be crate trained, and selecting a 54-inch crate is the right choice to keep your pup both safe and secure. Any of the three options mentioned here will suit your giant breed extremely well during your crate training sessions.