How to Collapse a Dog Crate Without Struggling

Going on a trip with your little pup but not really sure how to collapse your dog’s crate? Well, you’re in the right place!

Collapsible dog crates are both versatile and convenient, which makes them perfect for impromptu trips or long family vacations. The good news is this: No matter what the size of your crate is, or its manufacturer, holding a dog crate is fairly similar for all of them.

Here we’ll be discussing how to collapse two different types of dog crates, the wired dog crates, and the side-sided dog crates. Let’s get right into it.

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How To Fold a Dog Crate: A Step-by-Step Guide

There are three different ways to collapse a dog crate, depending on what you own.

So before we start, you’ll have to correctly identify and gather the right information about your crate.

Step 1: Identifying Your Dog Crate

Not all dog crates are created equal. Some are best suited for smaller dogs like Pugs and Chihuahuas, and some for huge dogs like Great Danes and Malamutes.

There are five primary types of dog crates.

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Folding Wire Crates

Folding Wire Crates are what’s predominantly found in every dog lover’s house. It comes in all sizes, is well-ventilated, and provides your dog an unrestricted view of the house from inside the crate.

New World 30" Double Door Folding Metal Dog Crate, Includes Leak-Proof Plastic Tray; Dog Crate Measures 30L x 19W x 21H Inches, For Medium Dog Breeds

Plastic Dog Crates

Plastic Dog Crates are commonly used for small to medium-sized dogs and are often entirely made of thick plastic. Most hard dog crates have a carrying handle on top and a front-facing swinging door that opens side-to-side.

It’s not as well-ventilated as wire crates, but it’s a great pick if you have a dog that likes a little more privacy and seclusion when they sleep.

Petmate 21947 Vari 28-Inch Pets Kennel, 25-30-Pound, Bleached Linen

Soft-Sided Dog Crates

Soft-Sided Dog Crates are primarily made of canvas or nylon, which makes them more fragile than the other crates on this list.

Soft crates aren’t recommended for initial crate training because dogs may scratch or chew at the confines. It’s best for already crate-trained or exceptionally calm dogs.

The best thing about soft-sided crates is that they’re lightweight, perfect for travel, and are easily collapsible. Again, this type of crate is best for small to medium-sized dogs.

Akinerri Folding Soft Dog Pet Crate Kennel,Soft Collapsible Dog Crate and Kennel with Leak Proof Bottom for Indoor or Travel Use

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Heavy-Duty Dog Crates

Now here’s a crate that can house the biggest, toughest, and most destructive of dogs. They’re made entirely of heavy-duty material, which can be a bit expensive. But this also means that you wouldn’t have to purchase a replacement ever again.

This type of crate isn’t made for confinement – none of these crates are. Heavy-Duty Dog Crates may look like maximum security cages, and yes, they may be used as such, but crates are made to house them instead of locking them in.

LUCKUP 38 Inch Heavy Duty Dog Cage Strong Metal Kennel and Crate for Large Dogs,Easy to Assemble Pet Playpen with Four Wheels,Black … …

Furniture Dog Crates

Furniture Dog Crates, sometimes called Fashion Crates, are certainly the best option if you’re looking to use a crate that doubles as furniture inside your house. They’re often used as a side table or a credenza. They’re very pleasing to the eye and are normally made with a wood or rattan finish.

Do note that this type of crate, just like the soft-sided crate, isn’t an effective training tool.

Casual Home End Table, 24-Inch Pet Crate, 20" W x 27.5" D x H, Espresso

Step 2: Cleaning Your Dog Crate

This step applies to whichever crate you own. Here’s how you do it:

Remove Everything Inside the Crate

This includes toys, blankets, beds, bowls, and all the other objects inside the crate. Set these aside so they won’t be in the way.

Wash the Soft Furnishings

This one’s optional, but highly recommended. Simply pop soft furnishings such as the pad, pet bed, blankets, and stuffed toys inside your washing machine. Make sure you use a specially formulated pet bed cleaner when washing soft elements of your dog crate.

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Plastic toys and bowls are to be rinsed thoroughly.


Before scrubbing away at your dog’s crate, you’ll first have to take it outside in any open space, like your garden or terrace. Alternatively, a closed, ventilated room will do perfectly fine as well.

Secondly, make sure to choose the right cleaning solution. Dogs can generally handle most types of household cleaning products so as long as they’re ammonia-free, you should be good. Putting the solution in a spray bottle will make it easier to clean.

Here are a few different solutions you can try:

  • Mix half a cup of bleach to approximately 4 liters of water
  • Mix one part dish detergent to ten parts of water
  • Mix half a cup of white vinegar to approximately 4 liters of water

Step 3: Collapsing Your Dog Crate

There are three different ways to collapse a dog crate, depending on the type of crate you have.

How To Fold Down Wire and Heavy-Duty Dog Crates

  • Close the front and side doors of your crate.
  • Search for the two tabs that normally secure the panels of the crate.
  • Press it down to release the grip.
  • Once released, allow it to collapse into the inside of the crate.
  • Repeat the same on the other side.
  • Fold the right and left sides of the crate and lay them on top of each other.
  • Secure the crate by using the little hook located at the bottom.

Collapsing Soft-Sided Dog Crates

  • Identify the crate’s collapsible points and push. Doing so will allow the crate to collapse in on itself.
  • Push in the entire side paneling towards the middle, until it’s lying on top of each other.
  • The majority of these crates come with straps, so after collapsing your crate, use these locks to secure the latches close.

Tip: Some crates have a screw mechanism that keeps the crate standing if your pet is fidgety or too excited. Remember to have them unscrewed before proceeding to the third step.

How To Disassemble Plastic Dog Crates

  • Unlock the latches from the right and left sides of the plastic crate.
  • The top half will come off after unlocking the side latches. Stack the two halves on top of each other for travel.

Furniture Dog Crates

Unfortunately, you can’t collapse a furniture dog crate. This is because it’s primarily used as a part of one’s “house decor” and comes built-in and screwed in place.

Final Thoughts

Dog crates are a great tool for the average pet owner and benefit you and your dog. Training your dog to be comfortable in his crate will help your pup love his crate and deem it to be his very own safe place, like a personal bedroom for dogs!

Collapsing a dog crate is fairly easy and would normally come with instructions from the manufacturer. If you get stuck, you can always call their customer service, and they’ll assist you with any inquiries you may have.