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What Size Crate Does A Labrador Need? (Expert Tips)

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What Size Crate Does A Labrador Need

Did you know that over 80% of Labrador owners admit to being unsure about the right crate size for their furry friend?

Choosing the wrong size can lead to discomfort or even anxiety for your Lab.

In this article, we’ll guide you through the essential measurements and considerations to ensure your Lab has a comfortable, safe space.

Prepare to find the perfect crate for your companion, addressing a common concern with practical solutions.

What Size Crate Does A Labrador Need?

Labradors, both adults and puppies, require a crate that is either 36-inch or 42-inch in size to ensure their comfort and safety.

Crate size for adult Labs

An adult Labrador requires a crate that is a maximum of 42 inches long.

Ensure the crate allows the dog to stand, sit, lie, and turn around, as a crate too small can cause discomfort and stress.

Crate size for Lab puppies

For Labrador puppies, a crate no longer than 36 inches is advisable. This size supports the puppy’s growth, enabling comfortable movement within.

Ensure the crate isn’t too big to avoid overwhelming the puppy or encouraging elimination in the crate. Position the crate in a high-traffic area to promote integration into the household and provide a comforting den-like space.

Benefits of Crate Training Labrador Retrievers

Lab sleep in crate

Image credit: mr.bats_the_labrador / Instagram

1) Provides a Safe Space

Crate training establishes a sanctuary for Labrador Retrievers, offering them a secure environment that mitigates anxiety and provides comfort during times of stress or solitude.

2) Prevents Damage in the House

Using a crate reduces the risk of destructive behaviors by confining the Lab to a safe space.

This prevents them from chewing on household items and furniture when unsupervised, thus saving homeowners significant repair or replacement costs.

3) Helps With House Training

Using a crate leverages a dog’s natural instinct to keep their sleeping quarters clean. This accelerates the house training process by encouraging them to wait for the appropriate time and place to relieve themselves.

4) Eases Travel

A crate serves as a portable safe zone for Labradors during travel, ensuring their safety. It reduces their anxiety by providing a familiar space in unfamiliar environments, whether traveling by car or airplane.

5) Easier Vet Visits

Labs are familiar with a crate experience and have less stress during veterinary confinement.

This makes them more compliant during medical examinations or treatments, as it simulates a familiar environment, facilitating a smoother and quicker vet visit experience.

How to Measure Your Labrador for the Right Crate Size?

Labrador lies on the floor and looks sad

Measuring your Labrador correctly for a crate ensures their comfort, safety, and the effectiveness of crate training.

It’s important to take these measurements accurately to avoid choosing a crate that’s too small or too large, which could lead to discomfort or behavioral issues.

Here’s how to do it:

Measure the Length

For the length measurement, have your Lab stand upright on all fours. Measure from the tip of their nose to the base of their tail.

Avoid measuring to the tip of the tail, as this could result in an unnecessarily large crate.

To the length measurement, add three to five inches. This addition ensures your Labrador can lie down comfortably without being cramped.

Measure the Height

The height measurement is crucial for ensuring your Lab can stand and sit comfortably without crouching.

To get this measurement, have your dog sit on its haunches and look up towards you. Measure from the floor to the top of your dog’s head or the tip of their ears if they stand erect.

Adding three to five inches to this measurement will provide the necessary headroom in the crate.

Width Measurement

While specific width measurement instructions are less commonly provided, the general rule is that the crate’s width will be appropriate if the length and height measurements are correct.

This ensures that your Labrador has enough space to turn around comfortably.

What are The Types of Labrador crates?

Image credit: ruseprc / Instagram

Choosing the right crate for your Labrador involves understanding the different types available, each catering to specific needs and preferences.

1) Wire Crate

Wire crates are highly durable and offer excellent ventilation and visibility, making them a popular choice among Lab owners.

Their ease of maintenance and the ability to fold them for storage add to their practicality.

The construction supports active puppies, allowing them to observe their surroundings, which is beneficial for curious dogs.

2) Plastic Crate

Plastic crates provide a cozy, den-like environment for dogs, fostering a sense of security.

They stand out for travel due to their sturdy build and portability. These crates are lighter than metal ones, making them easy to reposition as needed.

High-quality polyurethane construction ensures ease of cleaning, and their compliance with airline cargo specifications makes them ideal for air travel.

Plastic crates often come with a divider panel to adjust the space as your dog grows.

3) Soft-Sided Crate

Soft-sided crates are known for their lightweight and portability, perfect for travel or temporary setups.

Though not as sturdy as wire or plastic options, they offer a comfortable environment for well-behaved Labradors.

These crates cater to dogs prone to anxiety or older dogs with separation anxiety, providing a less intimidating enclosure.

4) Heavy-Duty Crate

Designed for strong or escape-prone dogs, heavy-duty crates are made from robust materials to prevent chewing and scratching.

These crates ensure extra security for your Labrador, making them a wise choice for owners of particularly active or determined dogs.

5) Decorative Crate

Decorative crates combine functionality with style, designed to blend seamlessly with home decor.

Often resembling furniture, they allow pet owners to integrate their dog’s crate into the living space stylishly.

While they offer the same security and comfort as more traditional crates, decorative options bring an aesthetic appeal to the practical aspects of dog ownership.

Choosing the Right Crate for Travel Purposes

When it comes to traveling with your Labrador, it’s essential to choose the right crate for their safety and comfort.

The benefits of dog crates for Labradors are numerous. Choosing the right travel crate is crucial for their safety and comfort.

Opt for lightweight, portable crates made from durable materials like plastic or fabric, ensuring they’re easy to carry yet sturdy.

It’s essential to select a crate that complies with airline regulations if you’re flying, paying close attention to size, ventilation, and security features.

Adequate airflow is a must to keep your pet comfortable, while a reliable lock prevents escapes.

By prioritizing these factors, you’ll ensure your Lab’s well-being during travel, providing a secure and familiar environment on the go.

Recommended Crate Brands for Labradors

Some recommended crate brands for Labradors include MidWest Homes, Frisco, and Petmate.

MidWest Homes

MidWest Homes is a top recommendation for Lab crates, offering 36-inch and 42-inch options that are spacious and durable.

Their crates feature double doors, removable trays, and foldable designs for convenience and easy storage, ensuring comfort and security for your Labrador.

Our Pick

MidWest iCrate Fold & Carry Double Door Collapsible Wire Dog Crate

I highly recommend this dog crate for its excellent security features and ease of use. The added Paw Block and locking tips on the latch provide peace of mind, and the portable design with quick assembly makes it perfect for travel.


Frisco crates provide comfort and security through durable construction and innovative design.

Available in 36-inch and 42-inch sizes, they focus on ventilation and secure locking, making Frisco a reliable choice for quality and functionality.

Our Pick

Frisco Fold & Carry Single Door Collapsible Wire Dog Crate

Frisco Dog Crate is a fantastic choice for dog owners seeking a sturdy and reliable crate. The easy-to-use single door with dual latches ensures the safety and security of your pet, while the included divider panel and removable plastic base pan add to its convenience and comfort. The simple assembly process, adjustable handles, and durable construction make it a top-notch option for both travel and everyday use.


Petmate offers durable, functional crates, featuring secure latches and built-in ventilation systems.

Their commitment to quality and detail ensures a safe and comfortable environment, positioning Petmate as a trustworthy option for your Labrador’s crate needs.

Our Pick

Petmate Ultra Vari Dog & Cat Kennel

Petmate’s Vari Kennel Ultra is the perfect travel companion for pets, providing strength, durability, and safety with its heavy-duty plastic shell and easy-to-assemble hardware. The 360-degree ventilation ensures a healthy airflow, while meeting USDA and IATA requirements for shipping live animals, making it a reliable choice for pet owners on the go.


Finding the right crate size for your Labrador is more than just a task; it’s about providing a safe haven where they can feel secure and relaxed.

By now, you should have a clear understanding of how to choose the ideal crate, considering length, height, and width, to cater to your Lab’s comfort.

A well-chosen crate enhances your dog’s well-being, echoing the love and care you have for them.

Share your experiences and tips below to help fellow Lab enthusiasts make informed decisions.

Daniel Rowe
Daniel Rowe
Daniel is an experienced writer who specializes in canine topics. He has gained firsthand knowledge from years of research and engagement with dogs. This has given him deep expertise in breed profiles, behavior insights, and more. Fellow dog enthusiasts recognize Daniel for his authoritative content. He is dedicated to sharing reliable and trustworthy information. He is committed to enriching the lives of dog lovers through his writing.
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