How to Build a Dog Crate

Some dog owners choose to build portable dog crate on their own. By doing this, they have the liberty to customize the crate based on their preferences and the dog’s need. You can use different materials like wood, metal, stainless steel, and others. Before you run to the nearest store to buy your materials, read this how to build a dog crate article first.

Your pet dog might still want to stay in a crate. Building your pet a double purpose decorative furniture will surely make your pet happy. It will serve as a safe haven for pooch every time your pet wants to curl up for a snooze. This guide will help you build the most comfortable kennel for your dog.

What You Need:

  • Bar clamp 24 inches
  • Drill
  • Jigsaw
  • Hammer
  • Miter saw
  • Nails
  • Paint (optional)
  • Plywood (cut on sizes based on how big the crate you want to build)
  • Pneumatic brad nailer
  • Sandpaper
  • Screwdriver
  • Screws
  • Tin snips
  • Tape measure
  • Hinges

Steps on Building a Dog Crate


Step #1 Make a Plan and Prepare the Tools and Materials You Need

Start by measuring your dog. The crate must be big enough, so your pet can move comfortably. Measure your pet’s height and length. If your pet is still a pup, do not build a monstrous crate. The crate should only be big enough for your pet. After creating the design of your dog crate, start preparing the tools and materials that you need.

Note: Be careful when working with a hammer, nails, and electric saw. Wear protective gear like eye goggles when using the electric saw.

Step #2 Cut the Plywood According to the Size You Need

Using the miter saw, cut the plywood based on the length and height you decide to build. It is much easier to complete the task with the plywood cut into the needed size.

Step #3 Connect the Top and Bottom Parts of Your Crate

You have done the cutting earlier, so you just need to connect the pieces. Put wood glue on the ends of the top rail and bottom rail. Then clamp the end of the stiles, flush. Create angled pilot holes into the edges of the top and bottom rails and the stiles. Make sure the frame is completely secured into the pilot holes using 3-inch finish-head screws.

Step # 4 Place the Decorative Grate on the Doorframe

Place the decorative grate into the doorframe so that the lip will rest firmly on the edges. Flip the grate and frame over so that the decorative site will be up in the doorframe. Make four triangular corner blocks to be used as a frame’s interior and keep the grate in position.

On each block, apply wood glue, then hold them flush on the grate’s corner, and nail them on the frame’s adjoining pieces using a pneumatic brad nailer. Fill the holes with wood filler, then smoothen the corner blocks’ faces until they are completely flushed with the rest of the frame. Coat the door with shellac.

Step # 5 Placement of the Grate

As soon as the shellac dries, place the grate on the frame’s interior side. Create holes at the grate’s corners and around the corner blocks. Use 1-inch drywall screws to secure the grille.

Step # 6 Building and Attaching the Face-Frame

Lay the pieces of face frame flat and apply glue at the end from the top and bottom rails and glue them together. Create pilot holes into the sides’ external edges and in the ends of the top and bottom rails. Use screws to secure the frame. 

Step # 7 Create a Window

Form a rectangle on the back and sides panel, which will serve as the window. On the created opening, secure the grilles to the back and side panels. Use snips or wire cutters to cut the grilles and fit it on the panel cutouts.

Step # 8 Attaching the Floor Support

On the side panels, interior flush with the panel’s bottom edge so you will have a ¾ inch space in the center. On the inside of the back panel, at the center, install a dowel to have spaces on each panel.

Step # 9 Attach the Face Frame

Put glue on the external edge of the cleat at the back of the face frame. Place the edge of the side panel, trim side. Use a clamp to hold the corner firmly together, then screw to attach the panel to the cleat. Do this again for the other side.

Step # 10 Insert the Floor

Connect the ends of the center floor support dowel and set it in place. Fit the ends between the floor supports. Carefully slide the floor panel in place. Ensure that it will fit underneath the ends of the vertical cleats.

Step # 11 Attach the Back Panel and Smoothen the Corners

Glue the back panel’s sides and place it between the back ends, make the floor rests on the back floor support. Use clamps to keep them together and fasten the side panels. Once the sides, front, and back are secured, place the stiles on the side panels. Next, install the wider stiles on the back.

Step # 12 Install the Door

Choose which side of the crate you will attach the door to. Make sure you can slide it easily between the pivot hinge hardware. Fix the door in place and check if it swings so your pet can easily come in and out.

Step # 13 Place the Latch

Finally, install the latch on the door and sand the crate with sandpaper. Complete the crate by coating it with shellac. Place the cushion and plastic tray inside to make your pet comfortable.


You don’t have to be an expert to build a portable dog crates for your dog. All you need to do is to complete the materials you need and follow the instructions carefully. I hope this how to build a dog crate guide was able to help you build the crate for your pet.