Dog laying on bed in front of crate

How to place and style a dog crate in a small space

LIVE smarter | 6 MIN READ | 2021-06-04

If you’re lucky enough to live with a four legged friend, there’s a chance your pet enjoys the security and coziness of a crate. They’re especially handy for anxious dogs who need to be in their own space and for times when you need to be away from home for an extended period during the day. 

We can all agree that a crate is handy to have to help prevent anxious chewing, pacing and general mischief while your dog is home alone, however, they’re not always the most attractive looking and definitely not easily hidden in a small space like an apartment. 

We’re here to tell you that it doesn’t need to be that way! Check out these tips on how to conceal and decorate your dog’s crate.

Picking the perfect location

Bulldog eating kibble in crate

Remember, a good crate location for you doesn’t necessarily mean a good crate location for your dog. Just like people, dogs need visual stimulation to help with anxiety. Here are a few tips to get you started on picking a good spot for Spot: 

1. Near their humans. They’re a member of your family, so try to avoid tucking their crates away in isolated areas. If the living room in your house is the place to be, find a cozy spot that works. 

If you live in an apartment that has a den that’s your work-from-home office and you’re in there all day, consider placing the crate there. 

2. In a cozy corner of a room. Even if the space is bright, they’ll be able to turn in and face the corner, or bury their face in their blanket. Corners also make dogs feel less anxious and more at home in a smaller space. 

3. Close to a window. Being near a window will allow for some sun to come in – perfect for basking in while sleeping. Plus, they may see a bird or two land on your balcony!  

4. Away from your front door and neighbours. Noises in the hallway or from nearby apartments  may trigger anxiety or nervousness in your dog (and cause a lot of barking), especially if you’re not home. Do your best to keep them away from as much noise as possible when they’re crated. 

Tip: For new puppy owners, you may need to move the crate around a bit in the beginning, like from the living room to your bedroom when you sleep. If a new puppy is left alone to sleep at night, it may feel abandoned and will cry for you to come back. Just something to consider. 

Styling your crate

Dog crate with topper and decor

Now that you’ve looked at the best spots for your crate, you can figure out how it can fit with your décor. Dog crates can actually be a very versatile piece of furniture if you get a bit creative, which is perfect for a small space that needs every square inch. When you’re choosing what you’d like to do with it, consider these options: 

If it’s a flat wire type crate, place a plank on top to make it a: 

o Side table

o Book shelf

o Record player stand

o Plant shelf 

o Small coffee bar 

o Small desk if you have a chair you can pull up to it

Build a crate cover similar to this.

Place a blanket over the sides to create a dark space on the inside and a dog bed on top so your dog has the option of sleeping in or on the crate. This will also allow you to remove the dog bed from the floor, creating more space in your apartment. This works best when crate is directly next to a couch or chair so the dog can easily jump up. 

Turn the top of your crate into a functional piece of art like this.

If your crate is hard plastic, consider painting it to match the walls in your apartment, or a fun colour to make it a statement piece. 

o Important: Make sure you know how much weight your crate can withstand before placing anything on it. Do not place anything on a crate if you’re unsure of the amount of weight that can sit on top of it. 

If you’re looking for more dog crate inspiration, check out Pinterest to see what other people are creating in their homes!

When in doubt, hit up the stores

Two dogs in a side table crate

Luckily there are now so many options when it comes to crates that aren’t classic wire or hard plastic. If you’re in the market for a unique dog crate that’ll blend in seamlessly with your furniture, consider some of these: 

Console tables

Side tables

TV unit

Corner units

Accent tables

Some of these options, although pricey, could be just what you’re looking for in your small space to ensure seamless integration. 

Don’t forget: Now that your crate is styling on the outside, it should also be cozy for your pet on the inside. Be sure to include blankets, toys, pillows and anything else that makes your pup feel more comfortable and at home! You can even make the colours on the inside match the work you’ve put into the outside. 

When it comes to our dogs, there really isn’t much we wouldn’t do for them. When choosing the perfect location for your crate, remember that not all dogs are alike – so if Fido isn’t happy in one location, try moving it around your apartment until you find the perfect spot. And above all, the best thing you can do is find ways to make it cozy and cute so you can both fully enjoy it!

Have you gotten creative with the location and styling of your dog crate? We’d love to see it! Tag us on Instagram and we’ll share it with our other dog loving followers.