Do you find yourself always looking to buy a stronger, indestructible crate all the time? Is your canine companion destroying or escaping their crate each time you are away?
Well, if the answer to both of these questions is yes, you have a dog with separation anxiety on your hands, and you need more than an indestructible crate.
We review the best dog crates for separation anxiety in 2020 that will significantly help you decrease your dog’s stress whenever you go out of the door.
We compiled this list based on the quality of material, customer ratings, and other unique features. Getting to know these crates you will be more confident when picking the one made to suit your criteria of a right construction and door security
Best Dog Crates For Separation Anxiety
- Best Overall: ProSelect Empire Dog Cage
- Runner Up: MidWest Homes Dog Crate
- Best Versatile: Precision Pet Products Double Door Dog Crate
- Best Value: Frisco Ultimate Heavy Duty Dog Crate
- Best Soft-Sided Crate: JESPET Soft Dog Crates Kennel
Reviews of The Best Dog Crate For Separation Anxiety for 2019
#1. ProSelect Empire Dog Cage
Great for large breeds
Available in different sizes
Sturdy construction with removable tray
Welds not the best quality
Not best dog crate for small size pups
We found the Guardian Gear ProSelect Empire Dog Crate to be the most robust dog cage to deal with a dog with severe distress. This is the heavy-duty dog crate with the structure constructed with 20 gauge steel tubes.
If your dog is strong enough to tear apart plastic and wood by his bare teeth, you should consider one of the heavy-duty dog crates. The rust construction is made sturdy enough with 0.5-inch steel tubes to comfortably contain anxious dogs.
The grated floor with a removable tray makes the cleaning process effortless and quick. Carrying this crate is easy because it comes with removable casters that are easy to remove.
The corners of this durable kennel have been rounded off to curb any accidental cuts. The front door has robust latches that are tough and guaranteed to keep your dog from unlocking it. As a result, you have a high anxiety dog crate that will give you peace of mind while your pooch is at home.
There are two downsides to this top kennel. One is the high price of the cage. Another is that it is only available in medium and large sizes. If you have a pup or small size pooch he might feel little lost in this big cage. If you’re one of these owners that needs a kennel strong enough to resist your dog’s long and hard efforts to break free, this is a good purchase.
#2. MidWest Homes Dog Crate
Collapsible and easily portable dog crate
Features a divider panel
Available in different sizes
Bulky and may need more space
Not the best option for smart dogs
Strong dogs can break the latches
If you are a parent to a feisty puppy, you’re probably wondering if he will ever grow out of the weaning phase. Well, chances are he will. However, before that happens, the Midwest Homes for Pets Dog Crate may help make life a little bearable for our little dogs,
Dog owners with large breeds will also find this crate useful. It is spacious in size. The dog crate can accommodate breeds up to 90 lbs. You will find this crate to be very versatile even for small and medium breeds thanks to the divider panel.
The divider panel allows you to expand or reduce the size of your kennel as your dog grows older. The crate is also easily portable because it comes with a carrying handle.
It has additional roller feet on all corners of the crate that allow you to move the crate from one place to another easily. The crate can also be easy to fold and put away for storage. The plastic tray set underneath ensures easy cleaning for the owners. This crate type is both portable and safe and makes a top choice for a boarding kennel.
Safety and security are paramount when it comes to your canine companion. That is why this crate is fitted with twin slide-bolt latches, which ensure that the door is firmly locked. All these features are contained in this quality product. As a result, we have one of the best dog crates for anxiety distressed animal on the market.
#3. Precision Pet Products Double Door Dog Crate
Sturdy and durable
Travel & Storage friendly
Not for excessive chewers
Precision Pet has crafted a perfect dog crate that embodies the two most important qualities we seek when choosing our dog refuge: functionality and affordability.
The construction is made of heavy-duty wire that can handle persistent chewers. The double door solution is one of the best features of these dog crates. excellent choices for traveling dogs. Practical design and light feel make this create easy to put away once you want more space around the house.
If your dog is a bit claustrophobic, a Precision Pet dog crate will provide him with enough light, ventilation, and view for him to feel comfortable.
These easy to assemble dog crates also come in different sizes, so you can choose the one in which your pooch can stand up, sit, and turn around. Superior leak-proof plastic pan is super easy to maintain and clean.
Last, but not least – Price tag. When it comes to our beloved companions there are no limits of how much we can spend to make them happy. However, it is refreshing to know that among our picks there is this one that offers a great deal on this quality crate.
#4. Frisco Ultimate Heavy Duty Dog Crate
Escape proof dual lock
Rust-resistant slide out steel tray
Too heavy, over 100 Lbs
Does your pooch carefully plot his escape crate on a daily basis? Did you try every possible crate for anxious dogs out there? If you crave high anxiety dog crates you need to step it up when it comes to dog crate quality.
Frisco Ultimate Heavy-duty Steel pet crate offers a solution when plastic or wood type crates fail. This premium crate is built with 22-gauge steel that stands up to some strong-willed dogs.
Dual escape-proof lock keeps the crate doors securely shut. It resists bites and scratches which makes it the best crate for dogs with separation anxiety. This all makes these Frisco crates one of the most durable on the market.
The grated floor with a slide-out steel tray underneath makes the mess and food easy to clean up. The heavy contraction of these crates is easy to move around the house due to high-quality made wheels. This product includes 3 different sizes (small, medium, and large) so you can make the right choice and ensure a good purchase.
This premium crate comes with the hammer tone finish that also looks nice with any home décor. However, These Frisco dog crates are one of the best crates for an outdoor dog because they are made rust-resistant. If you are searching for the best dog crates for your pet kennel, Frisco is a top choice.
#5. JESPET Soft Dog Crates Kennel
Easy access because of three-door construction
Easy to clean
Large hex holes
May not contain aggressive dogs
Not for persistent chewers
The JESPET 3-Door dog crates are suitable for anxious dogs in all sizes. It features large, medium, and small size models. It is also available in two different colors – beige and blue, so you can pick the one you like the best. Owners do agree that one of the best features of these crates is the three-door design.
Front door, top door, and side door of this crate all allow easy and quick access to your pooch. The doors are made of mesh-like material which guarantees sufficient airflow when your mutt is inside.
The frame of this cage model is made from a strong sturdy steel tube. Therefore it can handle daily wear and tear. The fabric is also made from 600D nylon. The fabric of these crates is easy to clean. This model also features a soft fleece bed which will provide comfort for your small dogs.
These durable dog crates are easily collapsible. If. It also comes with extra pockets as well as an adjustable carrying strap. This metal cage ensures security.
The only downside of Jespet crate is that the hex holes on the mesh are large enough for an aggressive dog to tear the material.
What is Separation Anxiety in Dogs
Many pet parents have heard of this expression but are not sure what it means. Not all dogs with a certain kind of behavior issue have this disorder. Being stuck at work for hours makes our pet feel lonely and bored. It is normal that he gets into mischief from time to time.
There are, however, dogs that develop over time persistent behavior issues. These behavior disorders are characterized by destructive behavior only when a guardian is not present.
How do we differentiate this disorder from simple doggy boredom?
A bored dog will be perfectly happy once you arrange a puppy playdate, a dog walker, or a doggy daycare. Any human or any dog friend will do. Just as long as he is not alone. When it comes to anxious dogs suffering from separation anxiety, the destructive symptoms manifest every time this particular person (pet parent) is not present.
The good news is that there are many ways you can minimize the sufferings of those dogs. Providing your loyal companion with a high-quality crate you will at least make him feel comfortable in a safe place once you are not there.
Dog breeds prone to separation anxiety
Toy and small breeds
Many households chose to foster these adorable little furry doggies. Breeds such as Maltese dog, Bishon, Toy poodle, Yorkshire Terrier, and Chihuahua are well known for their adorable faces and Napoleon- like characters. For centuries these animals have been bred to keep close company to their guardians.
Once these small dogs are separated from their favorite person they may wine, bar, and howl for hours. Some of them may refuse to eat and drink. This makes it hard to leave inside the cage once the owner is missing for a couple of days. Many fall sick due to stress.
As a result, these dogs can experience shimmering, gastrointestinal issues such as gastritis and diarrhea. For dogs suffering from epilepsy, this can be a trigger for the seizure.
Among all guard dogs, the breed that is most prone to developing this behavior disorder is German Shepard. They are loyal, hard-working, protective, and obedient. They have been bred to obey and thrive on making their owners happy. Once their guardian is not with them these dogs may chew through plastic, wood, and even wire resulting in self-injuries.
German shorthair pointer and Vizsla are considered to be well natured and balanced dogs. . These dogs are made to work side by side with their humans. The connection between the owner and the dog is so intense that they often break free from their home confinement to look for their owner.
That is why this type of dog needs high-quality dog crates with top and bottom escape-proof door locks. If you are one of the owners that want to ensure a top escape-proof cage on the market, you would want to go with a heavy-duty cage.
What causes separation anxiety?
Many Behaviorists tried to explain why some dogs express behavior issues when being left by their owners, and others don’t. As we mentioned, the breed has a lot to do with it. Other than that, the cause may lay in inadequate crate training and upbringing.
Let’s take a look at the most common behavior triggers.
- Alone for the first time in their life. This scenario is often seen in young puppies.
- Alone after being accustomed to your company. This often happens when the owner needs to get back to work after a period of being unemployed.
- If they had any trauma after being left alone in a shelter or boarding pet kennel, dogs may develop a fear of abandonment.
Once the dog loses his owner, the entire family structure charges. That traumatic experience can easily trigger behavior issues in the dog.
Symptoms of Separation Anxiety in Your Dog
Do your neighbors and family complain about your pup’s constant barking?
Whenever you leave your pooch, he will vocalize his reaction with barking. Sometimes the barking can be so loud it makes people around you uncomfortable. If your pet fits this description, he could be suffering from anxiety dog issues.
Pacing or Shaking
An unsettled dog tends to pace back and forth. Like in humans, anxiety can trigger that effect on dogs. When in distress, your dogs may start to shake or tremble as a natural response from the body.
Panting and Drooling
Excessive panting and drooling is also a sign of stress. Do you find your dog’s fur wet with saliva when you come back? Alternatively, puddles of drool or water on the floor? This could be a sign that your dog is suffering from this behavior disorder.
If you find yourself continually replacing household items and beddings or buying new crates, it could be a clear sign of a distressed dog. When you have anxious dogs, you should also consider getting a heavy duty dog crate.
Anxious dogs might be chewing, biting, or clawing at themselves when we are away.
Disinterest in Food or Treats
Do you find your pup’s favorite treats the same place you left them for him?
The last thing on your mind is food when you are feeling anxious about a significant event or test, and your dog goes through the same motions as well. When he is anxious about you leaving, he feels the same way and doesn’t touch the foods or treats.
Soiling the House
How many times have you had to come back to a soiled living room? Well, urination or defecation is also a symptom of anxiety.
If your dog spends time licking his paws or floor of the crate while you are away, it might be a sign of stress. You might notice that your puppy’s fur is dried in little triangles or the paws are wet, which is a sign of over-grooming.
You need to pay attention to signs of stress in your dog carefully. If you are not sure what your dog is experiencing, talk to your vet. He will give you information and tips about how to handle the situation. He may also provide you with tips on how to make his crate more suitable for his needs. The final result should be that your pup sees his kennel as his home and safe place.
Separation Anxiety Lookalikes You Shouldn’t Ignore
Sometimes, we assume that the pooch is suffering from these behavior issues without further analyzing the signs and symptoms. These are some of the lookalikes you shouldn’t ignore.
Improper dog training can look a lot like a behavioral problem. If your neighbors keep complaining that your dog excessively barks while you are away, then it could be a symptom of distress caused by isolation distress.
Alternatively, it could be your dog simply reacting to sounds he hears outside, which could be fixed with training or management.
Separation anxiety manifests itself in several ways. To figure out which is which, film your pup while you are gone. You could use a remote camera system for this.
If your dog sleeps the majority of the time you are away, he is not suffering from isolation distress.
The symptoms mentioned above of separation also look a lot like signs of medical issues. For instance, if your pooch suddenly starts soiling the house while you are away, it could be a medical issue like a urinary tract infection.
UTI can cause your pup to soil and so before you rule this sign out as a symptom of isolation distress, have him checked by a vet.
How to Help a Dog With Separation Anxiety
To get your pooch used to being left alone, practice leaving him for tolerable periods while pairing it with something your pooch loves.
You can start this off with just leaving the room for a while, then slowly increase the amount of time you’re away.
Studies have shown that doing this you can keep your dog calm when he is alone. Systematically increasing the time you leave him alone could be the essential element treatment of his isolation distress.
Pharmaceuticals offer lots of options for treating behavior issues in dogs. The most common medicines for treating separation anxiety is Clomipramine. This medication will keep your dog below his tolerance level while you look for a permanent treatment plan.
However, for treatments like Clomipramine, a study by King et al. (2000) showed that it works better alongside training with the best crate for a dog with separation anxiety. Hence, always make sure that any medication you put your pooch on is in conjunction with a crate training program.
Important: Always consult your vet when it is necessary to use the medication.
Remote Treat Dispenser
As you begin to increase the period of your absence, a remote treat dispenser can serve as a helpful tool. Begin with highly releasing the treats and then slowly decrease the time interval the treats are released.
When your pooch gets used to the release of low rate treats, increase the amount of time you are away and also increase the treat-release rate.
Desensitize Your Pet to Departure Cues
Your pet has probably studied and mastered some of your departure cues. These cues might be anything from putting on your coat, grabbing your keys, or just your morning shower.
Trying to change these cues up can help reduce his fear of abandonment because you become less predictable. Work on desensitizing these departure cues.
For instance, when you pick up your keys, sit down, and watch some TV. When you put on your coat, fold laundry. When you put on your shoes, make dinner. Doing so, you keep your dog unaware when exactly you are leaving home.
Owners need to provide their dogs with regular physical activity. This is a great way to burn out excess energy. But, even though it can help, it won’t necessarily fix your pet’s behavior issues.
If all the above methods don’t help, it might be time for you to consider other alternatives if you can’t leave your dog alone beyond their tolerance.
For example, if your dog enjoys being social with other dogs, you should provide him with a company. Kennel boarding is a great safe place and often pups enjoy it. It’s crucial to socialize your pup before so he would feel safe around other dogs.
If your dog doesn’t like being left inside alone, ask a friend or family member to watch him while you are away from home.
What to Look For When Buying The Best Dog Crate For Separation Anxiety
If you have to leave your dog alone for an extended period of time, you need to use a crate that is highly secure and can easily contain your canine companion without any issues.
If your pooch is mildly anxious, a soft-sided model may be the most desirable option. However, if you are a parent to a nervous 80-pound dog, you may have to consider a durable dog crate.
Some of the best crates for separation anxiety are made from reinforced steel. The door should have top and bottom placed escape-proof locks.
In general, the best dog crate must offer your dog ultimate security and safety.
No chewable sections
When your pooch is an anxious dog, chances are, he chews on whatever is near him. In this case, select a crate that is resistant to chewing. Therefore, plastic or wood crates can not be as durable as metal once.
The plastic crate is a great choice for small dogs. These products provide safe travel and they are super easy to clean. However, if your pup is strong you should be able to provide a metal kennel to keep him safe.
Opt for cave-like crates
These crates are conventional, but, it is crucial to remember that dogs are naturally denning animals. Hence, a crate with a cave appearance is more secluded and darker and may make your dog a lot calmer. Therefore, some of the best dog crates for separation anxiety contained a safe place. Make sure that the crate made material offers enough ventilation.
When it comes to security, the right crate size is essential. The crate should be set in a way the dog can sit, stand up, and turn on the other side. Your dog may feel exposed in a crate large enough for two dogs.
If the crate is too big and makes him anxious, make sure to return it and get the one that is more suitable for your pooch. You can also use a versatile dog cage. At the end of the day, you just want to help your dog feel safe.
Make sure you always measure your pooch’s length and height before buying a new calming dog crate. These dog crates should allow your dog to stand up, lie down, and turn around with ease. It should offer sufficient comfort.
There are many choices about crate material: plastic, wood, and steel. Either way, your dog should feel like home in this confined place. Since he will be spending a lot of time inside it’s important to ensure the right bed for your pup.
If your crate includes a soft bed-perfect! If not, you can use some soft textile to make a homemade bed. It’s crucial to be sure you’re not having a textile eater on your hands.
Frequently Asked Questions
It’s similar to medical issues, isolation distress, or even improper crate training. However, isolation distress and separation anxiety are often two different concepts.
Real separation anxiety occurs when separating your pooch from a specific person while isolation distress occurs when he is left alone.
Yes. Puzzle toys are one of the solutions that you can use to help your dog overcome his separation anxiety. Mental stimulation is always a great idea for dogs stuck inside all day.
However, if your dog’s anxiety is severe, he may not be interested in puzzle toys in your absence. If you intend to leave your dog to puzzle toys, do it about fifteen minutes before your departure, not when you are walking out of the door.
Make a habit of also giving your dog puzzle toys even when you don’t intend to leave. The last thing you need is your mutt to associate a stuffed Kong with you leaving.
The best dog crate for separation anxiety largely depends on your dog, more than anything else. In this case, we find the Guardian Gear ProSelect Empire Dog Cage to be the best option for managing your dog’s separation anxiety. It includes all the qualities you want in your dog’s crate: safety, comfort, and durability.
All these models are great in their ways, and it’s good to know about them. With the right calming crate, and your love and patience, your dog is bound to overcome his behavior issues eventually.