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Which playpen for dogs is best?

Most dogs need a sense of stimulation and safety, both outside and in their homes, and playpens for dogs provide a safe and enclosed environment where they can relax and have fun. Playpens for dogs are usually used inside to keep your dog from exploring spaces that they shouldn’t explore. You can even stock up the playpen for dogs with food, blankets, a bed, toys and more to keep them engaged. For a superior playpen for dogs, check out the Midwest Foldable Metal Dog Exercise Pen.

What to know before you buy a playpen for dogs

Consider your type of dog

The handiness of a playpen for dogs will depend on your dog’s breed, attitude and age. Playpens work particularly well for puppies that are not fully trained, for example.


Playpens for dogs come in a number of different materials, including mesh, fabric, metal, wire and heavy-duty plastic. The material used will impact the strength, portability and durability of the playpen.


It’s also important to consider the height of the playpen enclosure, especially if you have a taller dog. Make sure the playpen is tall enough to prevent your dog from escaping if you’re not around.

What to look for in a quality playpen for dogs


Some playpens for dogs will come with adjustable paneling, allowing to configure the playpen into different shapes. The variety of shapes will depend on the number of panels in the playpen, though.


Many playpens for dogs have doors that open easily and lock securely. Some playpen doors have a pair of latch clips that you need to pull and turn to unlock.

Protective mat

Some playpens for dogs, especially those made for puppies, come with a soft protective mat to protect your floor from messes.

How much you can expect to spend on a playpen for dogs

Playpens for dogs vary in price from about $25 or less to more than $100, depending on their materials and durability. The most basic and budget-friendly playpens for dogs go for $25 or less, while mid-range playpens for dogs cost about $25-$50. The most high-end playpens for dogs can cost from about $50 to more than $100.

Playpen for dogs FAQ

Can you leave your dog in a playpen when you’re not at home?

A. It depends on your dog’s temperament. Playpens for dogs don’t provide the same security that crates do, so your dog is more likely to break free if they want to do so. The playpen can actually be unsafe if your dog attempts to chew or push through the metal or plastic, or if they attempt to jump out of the playpen.

If you do choose to leave your dog in their playpen while you’re not home, you should make sure to remove their collar so it doesn’t get stuck or caught on anything. Also, make sure that you only leave toys in their playpen that you know they can’t swallow or tear apart.

Are dog playpens safe to use outside?

A. Most playpens for dogs are safe and easy to use outdoors. Some playpens for dogs, including playpens composed of metal or plastic, are actually rustproof, so they can be left outside when it’s lightly raining. 

That being said, it’s important that your dog is as comfortable as possible when they are in an outdoor playpen. Make sure that they have plenty of access to shade and clean water. Some playpens for dogs have hooks and stakes to help keep the playpen secured to the ground.

How do you keep your dog from jumping out of its playpen?

A. A playpen for dogs can offer security, stimulation and comfort, but there is no substitute for training your dog. Your dog should be trained not to jump out of the playpen. Be wary though, your dog might not see their playpen as a fun and relaxing place if they are trying to escape. You should frame their time in the playpen as a fun experience rather than a punishment.

If your dog does sometimes jump, like when they greet you, it’s important that you ignore the behavior rather than reward it with attention. Make sure to wait to greet your dog until they are relaxed and seated, then reward the relaxed behavior with praise and treats.

What’s the best playpen for dogs to buy?

Top playpen for dogs

Midwest Foldable Metal Dog Exercise Pen

Midwest Foldable Metal Dog Exercise Pen

What you need to know: This solid and strong playpen for dogs features five different sizes, so you can select the appropriate fit for your dog.

What you’ll love: This playpen is durable, easy to assemble, transport and store and perfect for both outdoor and indoor use. The playpen is also built with thumb-snaps and ground anchors, so it’s fairly sturdy.

What you should consider: This playpen is easy for some dogs to jump over and escape.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top playpen for dogs for the money

Ruff ‘N Ruffus Portable Foldable Pet Playpen

Ruff ‘N Ruffus Portable Foldable Pet Playpen

What you need to know: This is the perfect, affordable playpen for traveling with your dog since it stores and collapses easily.

What you’ll love: The Ruff ‘N Ruffus playpen comes with a collapsible food bowl and a carrying case. It’s simple to travel with, store and assemble and large enough for smaller dogs without taking up too much room.

What you should consider: The material may rip when it’s chewed on or scratched.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Iris USA Dog Playpen

Iris USA Dog Playpen

What you need to know: This panel playpen for dogs from Iris USA is easy to assemble and comes with three different size options.

What you’ll love: This is a cute and practical solution for watching your dog and other small pets and animals. It features a built-in door for simple access and is composed of solid plastic that’s safe for pets.

What you should consider: This playpen wobbles after it’s set up, according to some.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Alex Kilpatrick writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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