In the previous articles we told you about what an indoor kennel is and how to get your dog accustomed to using it. Now let’s take a look at what products there are on the market and choose the kennel that best suits your needs.
Indoor kennels are made of a variety of materials, but mostly:
- Hard case, made of plastic or metal: these are classic carriers that are fundamental to taking your dog (or cat) for trip to the vet or even on longer hauls on vacation. Depending on the model, the door can be large or small and there are a variety of options to choose from, like extra handles, food dishes, water bowls, safety latches and rugs.
- Soft, made of cloth: cloth kennels are very practical because they can be used at home as beds, folded up and brought along on trips or be stored away when they are not needed.
- Hard case, made of wood: wooden kennels are great if they are not meant to be used as travelling cases, only as in home refuges. Wood exudes a sense of cosiness and can fit right in with your home’s interior décor as well. Rex’s little house should be nice and comfortable, so it’s a good idea to add a comfy pillow for him to nap on.
Depending on what your needs are, one or the other of these materials should be right for you. For example:
- Taking the dog in the car, means you’ll need a hard case kennel made of plastic or metal so that it can act as dog house and carrier case in one (once you have your dog used to the kennel at home, there will be no problem to taking him in the car);
- Taking the dog on vacation, means getting a cloth dog house – like the Ferplast Holiday model that is easy to fold up and take anywhere – that will make Rex feel at home anywhere;
- Having a kennel for domestic use only, because the dog doesn’t need to be carried in the car (or you already have a carrier) and maybe because of the interior design of the home, or just because he might enjoy a wooden house, like Ferplast’s Dog Home.
In any case, if you still have to get through the training phase, it’s a good idea to get a cloth kennel as it risks being ruined.
And what about the openings? In general it is thought that “the more openings it has, the better,” that way the dog doesn’t feel trapped. But that is not at all true. A dog accustomed to a kennel prefers it to be closed on all sides so that all he has to worry about is the door in the front, not the openings on the sides. The fact that he is closed in makes him feel calm and safe, just like he would in the den his mother burrowed for him when he was a puppy. In a nutshell, the only side openings required are the ones that assure a correct air ventilation.
And the size? Considering that the dog sees the kennel as a domestic den, it does not have to be huge. He has to be able to stand up in it. He doesn’t have to jump around or wrestle inside it, it’s a place in which he feels safe and calm, at ease.