Our Top 3 Picks
Whether it’s for traveling or for everyday use, a soft dog crate can really come in handy to keep your dog safe and sound. Compared to hard-sided dog crates, a soft dog crate will keep your canine companions cozy and comfortable, something a hard crate would have more difficulty doing. They can be a regular staple in your home or just be used for travel. Top rated soft dog crates are lighter and easier to transport than their hard counterparts and make an excellent solution for pet parents short on space who need a foldable option.
But what makes a top-rated soft dog crate? Are all soft dog crates the same? Are soft travel crates for dogs and crates for puppies similar? We’ll answer all these questions, present you with options on a few of the best soft dog crate options, and what to look for when you’re browsing for one.
View The Best Soft Dog Crates Below
1. [Best Overall] EliteField 3-Door Folding Soft Dog Crate
The Elitefield 3 door folding soft dog crate takes the top spot thanks to its sturdy construction, convenience and security. This soft dog crate comes in multiple sizes and colors to house any fur baby. The crate comes fully assembled, all you need to do is set it up or fold it down for storage which takes no more than a few seconds. The durable frame is made from steel and the soft crate cover is made from 600D fabric.
This type of fabric is durable and can come in many designs and patterns. It is lightweight and also provides enough ventilation and airflow for your dog. The Elitefield soft dog crate has 3 points of entry and incorporates mesh windows into the design so your dog can have a clear view of the outside world.
+ Many colors and sizes
+ Strong steel tubing
+ 600D fabric
+ 3 doors
+ Folds easily
Why We Like It – Three points of entry gives pet parents easy access to their fur baby inside the soft-sided crate. The Elitefield crate has every feature of the best soft-sided crate in terms of design.
2. [Best Budget] OMORC Airline Approved, Expandable Soft-Sided Dog Carrier
These soft-sided airline approved soft crates provide luxury on a budget for your dog. It comes in two different colors but doesn’t offer more sizes as it’s meant for small dogs. The Omorc pet carrier crate mesh panels expand to give your pet more room to settle in. This is an ideal feature for small dogs who are traveling for long hours. The carrier is airline approved so you don’t need to worry about meeting regulations. The expandable soft-sided dog crate can also be used as an everyday crate or carrier.
+ Expandable mesh panels
+ Durable material
+ Airline approved
+ Comes with a lining pad
+ Folds easily
Why We Like It – This best soft-sided dog carrier also comes with a leash attachment for security. Your active puppy won’t be able to escape once you attach it to his collar or harness.
3. AmazonBasics Portable Folding Soft Dog Travel Crate
For dog parents with larger canines, the AmazonBasics portable folding soft dog travel crate is an excellent option that comes in multiple sizes and security on all four sides. There are 2 doors, so your dog can enter from the top or side. The secure zipper closures will hold the mesh windows in place and keep your dog safely inside.
The frame is constructed with PVC and the fabric is a strong polyester, which is durable and resistant to bites and scratches. The entire crate folds down for storage in less than a minute. As with all AmazonBasics products, the soft-sided crate comes with a 1-year warranty.
+ 2 doors
+ Comes in large sizes
+ Secure zippers
+ One-year warranty
+ Folds flat for storage
Why We Like It – This best soft dog crate is well-ventilated and ensures your pet will have adequate airflow and a view of the outside.
4. AmazonBasics Premium Folding Portable Soft Dog Crate
The next one on our list is another AmazonBasics product that also comes in large sizes but also has multiple color options. Similar to the one before it, this best soft dog crate also folds down easily for storage. It also shares the same mesh screens for ventilation and is constructed of PVC and polyester, but the premium soft crate comes with a cozy fleece pet bed to keep your pet comfy on your trip. There are storage pockets on the side of the soft-sided pet crate to store all the snacks and accessories your dog may need.
+ Different sizes
+ Different colors
+ Durable construction
+ Comes with storage
+ Carrying straps
Why We Like It – The AmazonBasics folding portable soft crate comes with a carrying top handle and strap no matter which size you choose. This gives pet parents carrying flexibility.
5. 2PET Foldable Dog Crate
The 2Pet foldable dog crate is an all in one soft-sided pet crate that combines functionality and style. There are different patterns to choose from and it’s a great solution for training or just an everyday crate. The tough materials of this best soft-sided dog crate make it a good choice for indoors and out. The strong steel tube design holding the crate’s shape is tough and lightweight. The crate cover is soft and easy to clean. Just toss the machine washable cover into the washing machine and it will emerge as good as new!
+ Five sizes
+ Machine washable
+ Different patterns
+ Good for indoor and outdoor
+ Strong steel tube design
Why We Like It – The ventilation and mesh windows are very important in this dog crate. Your curious fur baby wants to get a look at what’s going on outside and experience the fresh air with their dog owners.
6. Noz2Noz Soft-Krater Crate
If mesh windows are your dog’s thing, then you won’t find bigger ones than the windows on the Noz2Noz soft-krater crate. This soft-sided dog crate has the equivalent of human floor to ceiling windows for your dog. He will have a clear view of you and the outside world plus enough ventilation. The steel tube construction keeps the shape of the crate and the heavy-duty tight weave mesh fabric makes this soft sided dog crate a very lightweight option and suitable for travel. There are no tools required for setup, just pop it up and fold it down in a matter of seconds.
+ Big mesh windows
+ Strong tight weave fabric
+ No tools required
+ Folds easily
Why We Like It – We love any dog crate that comes in multiple sizes. This way you can be sure your dog will always have a safe space as he grows.
7. K&H PET PRODUCTS Travel Safety Pet Carrier
When you look at this cute dog crate, you may see what seems to be a little house for your dog instead! The adorable little abode features a slanted dome roof that will give your fur baby the extra space to crane his neck. It pops up and down for easy storage and travel, and the bottom is a soft lining that is machine washable and easy to clean. This travel crate for dogs may be one of the safest options on the market as it works with any seatbelt. Clip the seatbelt through the strap in the back and then secure the additional strap around the headrest to keep your pup safe and secure.
+ Foldable soft-sided dog crate
+ Safe travel crate
+ Machine washable lining
+ Easy to clean
Why We Like It – We like a traveling crate for dogs that keep their comfort in mind. The K&H travel pet carrier crate includes its own soft bottom that acts as a comfortable dog bed for a cozy journey.
8. Petsfit Soft Portable Dog Crate
Here we have another sturdy 3-door folding soft dog crate. It also has floor to ceiling soft mesh that rolls up for good ventilation. The soft dog crate also has carrying handles and storage pockets to not only make it a safe space for your dog but a multifunctional traveling bag as well. The soft dog kennel comes in 3 different sizes with an additional machine-washable mat that’s easy to clean. The domed roof outperforms the traditional flat top as it gives your dog a bit more space to stand up and stretch.
+ A good crate for a small dog to medium dog breeds
+ Storage pockets
+ Carrying handles
+ Roll-up mesh windows
+ Domed roof
Why We Like It – We like the sturdy construction and the extra domed roof design of the Petsfit soft dog crate. It comes in different sizes and is suitable for all dogs that fall within the measurements.
9. Go Pet Club Soft Crate
These portable and compact dog crates are the perfect travel buddy on the road. They serve to provide your pet shelter no matter where you are, kind of like a tent for humans. It also features water-resistant and heavy-duty polyester and PVC material to make sure the elements won’t pose a problem. It’s perfect for both indoor and outdoor use and has mesh window ventilation on four sides. It’s a lightweight option that also folds flat to less than 2-inches thick for easy storage. The crate includes a lambswool flooring rug with your purchase and can be removed.
+ Water-resistant soft-sided dog crate
+ Folds easily for storage
+ Comes with lambswool rug
Why We Like It – The Go Pet Club soft dog crate is a convenient and portable dog den option for any type of travel. It pops up quickly and easily to provide shelter for your dog whenever you need it.
10. Zampa Pet Portable Crate
The Zampa dog crate can be a crate training solution or a soft travel crate for your dog. It’s also a soft-sided design with cute bone-shaped mesh windows that notifies everyone who the inhabitant is. It is also a foldable soft-sided dog crate and the crate is made with sturdy and durable materials. The materials are easy to wash and removes easily from the steel frame. The Zampa pet crate is available in more than 5 sizes and can accommodate fur babies up to 100 pounds in the largest size!
+ Easy to wash and maintain
+ Bone-shaped mesh windows
+ Steel frame and sturdy materials
+ Many sizes
+ Folds easily
Why We Like It – It’s important for manufacturers to remember that a soft pet crate isn’t only meant for utility, but it should also have its own flair. The bone-shaped mesh windows are an excellent example of this.
Best Soft Dog Crate Buyer’s Guide
There are so many benefits to soft-sided dog crates such as the lightweight portability, color and size options plus the easy storage. Unfortunately, soft dog crates aren’t meant for every dog. Those who are professional escape artists or who have destructive tendencies may defeat even the best soft-sided dog crates. Just to be sure one of these soft crates is the right option for you, we have put together a quick buying guide to help you out.
No matter what type of crate or dog bed you get, the size is the first and most important consideration. Anything your dog will dwell in for a long time needs to be comfortable. One big drawback of the best soft dog crates is the size. While we worked hard to select options that come in many sizes, soft dog crates are usually smaller in size and meant for more petite dogs.
Measure your dog precisely in length and height from the tip of his tail to the tip of his nose, then from the top of his head to the bottom of his paws while he’s standing. The best and most ideal crate size will allow your pooch to stand up and turn around in. In some instances, giving him enough space to take one step forward can be considered, especially if your fur baby likes to sleep stretched out.
A good rule of thumb to gauge the measurement is to tack on an extra 4 inches to your dog’s measurements to ensure he will be comfortable. Giving a dog too little space is not only uncomfortable but inhumane for long hours. But if you accidentally give him too much room, he could go potty in the crate and triple the amount of cleanup for you.
Another factor to note about soft crates is that they don’t often have the option to section off the inside. For example, some metal wire dog crates have a divider panel that can be removed as your dog grows. A soft dog crate, however, cannot be customized in that way and you will need to purchase a different size as your pup grows.
The colors and style of the soft crates are important too. Soft dog crates often come in more color options than hard-sided crates which give you plenty of freedom to match the colors to your dog’s other accessories. Does it have 2 or 3 doors in the design? Some soft dog crates may only have one single side door, but for large dogs, that’s all they need. If you have a small breed, it may be easier for you to load them into the crate from the top, and this is when having 2 or 3-door design soft crates will come in handy.
We only want the best when it comes to our dogs, and the material definitely needs to be heavy-duty and top of the line. We have found that a steel frame or steel tubing design will hold the shape of the soft-sided crate well and is tough enough to handle the impact. Don’t let the robust and strong properties of the steel frame fool you, it’s still an extremely damage-resistant material that’s also very lightweight.
What goes over the frame should be a tight weave, and strong fabric like 600D, polyester, or anything else that’s preferably water-resistant. Soft dog crates can be an investment, so you definitely want it to be created out of the best materials.
The best soft dog crates will have adequate ventilation and a clear view of the outside. One without mesh windows and maybe only a small opening is only suitable for dogs who won’t spend more than an hour or two inside. It doesn’t matter if you have small dogs or large breeds, in addition to having enough space to move around, they should also have a good view. Simply just having the door open may not be enough. Your dog may become anxious to find out what’s happening all around him, especially if he hears sounds that are foreign.
He may also become extra nervous on the road so giving him a clear line of sight to where you are can help alleviate a lot of his anxiety. For all these reasons, look for the best soft pet crate that has at least 2 mesh panels. The larger the window the better, unless you have a rambunctious fur baby that may escape through the netting.
Assembly and Storage
Hard dog crates are comparatively larger and bulkier than soft-sided dog crates. Unfortunately, only a hard dog travel crate is suitable for dogs who are expert destroyers. If you have a more timid and calm pup, then look into soft dog crates. Although they can come in large sizes too, a soft crate is available in foldable options that are easy to store and assemble with no tools necessary. Most high quality best soft dog crates will be a breeze to set up.
If you’re often on-the-go and need to pack up and move locations quickly during trips, then definitely look into a high-quality soft-sided crate to ensure this.
Even though soft-sided dog crates are much more comfortable, you’re still setting it up on the hard ground. Some of the best dog crates out there come with a comfy and cozy lining that is easily removable. Once placed in the crate, your dog will have a nice and comfortable setup. You can feel free to add your own lining to the crate, especially if your fur baby has a favorite blanket or bed. Having some familiar items in the crate with him will also help alleviate anxiety and stress.
How easy is it to clean the best soft-sided dog crates? We suggest looking for a travel crate that comes with machine washable elements. Nothing is more tiring than cleaning up your dog’s mess after a long trip. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could just unzip the cover and toss it in the machine?
Some other bonus features to look for that can make your life easier but aren’t necessarily requirements are carrying handles and straps, storage pockets and an expandable design. The carrying strap is more suitable for dogs under 20 pounds, but even if your fur baby is larger, the carrying handles will still make the travel crate more easily transportable.
The storage pockets will hopefully provide enough space for you to store all of your dog’s accessories without having to carry a separate bag. Lastly, though you can’t section off the inside to create a smaller space, there are some best dog crate designs that can expand to give your fur baby some extra space.
When are Soft Crates NOT a Good Idea?
As we briefly mentioned, soft dog crates aren’t meant for every canine. More specifically, they aren’t the best choice for destructive pups or one that isn’t potty trained. No matter how tough and durable the foldable crate is, it won’t match up to their hard counterparts. It’s much easier for sharp little teeth to tear through fabric than it is through plastic, metal or wood. This is especially true if you have breeds that can’t be contained such as the Siberian Husky.
Also, if your fur baby hasn’t been fully potty trained yet, using a soft travel crate will be your biggest mistake. You can’t stay up all night to make sure your pooch is sound asleep and not going to have an accident. While the material of the crate won’t necessarily stop your pup from going when the time comes, but a hard crate will lessen the cleanup time as it won’t absorb the mess.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are soft dog crates any good?
Yes, soft dog crates are good depending on your pup. They aren’t suitable for dogs who are very active chewers, have separation anxiety or have the tendency to escape and destroy. They are a great option for ones that are potty trained, relatively calm and well-behaved. While soft crates were designed with small breeds in mind, you can find ones of large sizes to accommodate larger breeds too.
Can you crate train with a soft crate?
Yes, you can crate train with a soft crate. It isn’t ideal because the cleanup that will ensue after an accident will take 3x more effort than if it was a hard crate. As long as you don’t mind the cleanup or place a plastic tray inside, a soft crate can be a useful tool for crate training.
Are soft crates good for puppies?
We would recommend hard crates for little puppies because dogs at such a young age will go through the teething stage and very likely destroy the soft crates. However, it isn’t the same for every pooch and you might have some puppies that only go after what you put in the crate with them. The most surefire way to make sure is to get to know your dog and watch for his tendencies.
Should you cover your dog’s crate at night?
Yes, and no. Many professional pet trainers claim the crate is your pet’s safe haven, a place they feel secure and comfortable and dogs like to spend time in dark and secluded places to wind down and rest. While this may be true, it doesn’t apply to every dog. Some dogs like to have a clear view of their surroundings and thoroughly dislike it when they can’t see you or what’s happening around them. Again, the best way to make sure is to try.
There are so many benefits to soft crate options and we personally prefer them also due to the convenience they provide to pet parents. For us, they are uncumbersome options that fold and assemble easily and can somewhat be malleable to fit into tighter spaces. They come in a wide variety of sizes and have additional color options to choose from.
For your dog, these crates are cozier in design and offer adequate ventilation through mesh panels from which they can have a clear view of their favorite humans and the world around them. But to make sure you are choosing one your dog will love, it requires the right measurements, features and of course, comfort. Hopefully, our buying guide can help narrow down the choices to one best choice for your furry best friend.
Did You Know?
Getting your pup used to a new crate is hard. Just like with everything else, when you introduce a new element to your pet, do it slowly and with a lot of patience and positive reinforcement. First, let them inspect the crate and even go inside of it but leave the door open. Feed him his treats in there, put all his favorite things inside until he feels comfortable enough to go in and out. If he is still resistant, you can try feeding him his meals inside too. If he is an anxious pup, you can try to leave a shirt or a calming toy in there to make them feel more comfortable.
Never force your pup into the new crate and lock them in there for long periods of time. This will only get them to resist the crate training even more. Do not give it when they cry, and only reward them with your attention and let them out when they stop.
- Soft-sided carrier crate for pets that collapses down easily for storage
- Made with durable polyester and PVC material
- Well-ventilated with multiple screened panels for your pet to look out of
- ALL-IN-ONE FOLDABLE DOG CRATE – If you’re looking to buy a foldable dog...
- STRONG STEEL TUBE DESIGN – Unlike many other flimsy & makeshift dog...
- WASHABLE SOFT FABRIC COVER – The steel frame is covered with a water...
- Size: 42" long x 28" wide x 32" high; 2" wider and 4" higher than most...
- The crate frame is made of strong steel tube; the crate cover is made of...
- Three mesh doors (on the top, front, and side) for convenience and for...