Choosing What to Put in a Dog’s Crate

So, you’ve chosen the pawfect crate for your pup, now comes the next step - what do you put in it? To get the full benefits of crate training and to establish it as a safe space, it’s important to choose things that’ll help make it a cosy, warm, and happy place for your pup. 

Your dog’s crate is an ideal place for them to seek comfort and rest their paws for a snooze, indulge in a chew session, or go when they want to feel cosy and secure. Being in an enclosed space will automatically give your dog the feeling of being in a safe den, but without crate training accessories, it’s not exactly the most inviting space, especially if you’re introducing your puppy to their crate.

To make your pup’s crate more enticing, you can include things like comfy bedding and toys. However, it’s important to remember that not everything will be suitable for your dog’s crate, and some things can even be dangerous.

Keep reading as we explore what to put in a dog’s crate (and not put in), including:  

  • Bedding

  • Toys

  • Food and water

  • Puppy training pads

Crate Bedding

One of the best ways to give your dog’s crate an instant comfort boost is with bedding - whether that’s with a dog crate mattress or a bed.

When choosing your dog’s bedding, make sure that it’s suitable for your dog’s needs. Puppies are notorious chewers and you don’t want their bedding torn to shreds, or even worse – to become a choking hazard. Potty training is also another big factor, so it’s worth purchasing something that’s easy to clean!

Age is a big factor when deciding on the best crate bedding for your dog:

Young puppies. Your best bet is a durable cage mat or bed that’s made from hard-wearing fabrics and is ideally chew-proof. Picking a bed that’s waterproof or easy to wash will also be a huge benefit! If your puppy isn’t prone to chewing their bedding, then you could make their crate more snuggly with a plush blanket for them to burrow under.

Adult dogs. If your dog has outgrown their chewing behaviour, then there’s nothing to stop you from investing in a soft, thickly stuffed bed with raised edges for ulti-mutt comfort, like this deluxe slumber dog bed.

Senior dogs. When dogs reach their golden years, it’s a good idea to opt for bedding that’ll comfortably support their joints, especially if they’re prone to aches and pains. Some older dogs also benefit from bedding that’s waterproof, especially if they’re prone to accidents.

Crate Bedding by Yappy

Let’s face it, it’s a lot nicer for your pup to snuggle up on soft bedding than a plastic, mesh, or steel crate. Here are some fur-bulous options to make your dog’s crate nice and cosy.

Tweed Cage Mattress

A pawsome crate bedding option, this stylish red and green tweed crate mattress is made from hard-wearing fabric and has a wonderfully soft filling. It’s machine washable too - pawfect if you’re puppy training!


Navy Sherpa Fleece Cage Mattress

This cage mattress is made from hardwearing fabric and is topped with a cosy, sherpa fleece cover that your dog will love snuggling up to. With a range of sizes available, it’ll fit in most standard-sized crates.


Deluxe Slumber Dog Bed

Luxuriously padded, this gorgeous bed is sure to give your dog the sleep of their dreams. With a comfy grey sherpa fleece lining and super soft thermal filling, your dog will love to curl up on this bed and rest their head on its soft raised edges.


Personalised Pillow Bed

With a range of sizes available, this bed is suitable for pups and adult dogs of all shapes and sizes. This padded pillow bed is filled with super-soft, allergy-friendly filler, plus the luxury canvas cover can be easily removed, ready for the washing machine.


Dog Crate Toys

There are lots of benefits to putting a toy or two in your dog’s crate: 

  • Gives your dog something to chew, plus toys will help encourage your pup to chew on the correct things, like their toys and not their bedding or your shoes!

  • Keeps your dog occupied and happy, especially as chewing is a favourite hobby for most of our four-legged friends.

  • Reinforces positive feelings towards your dog’s crate.  

The key thing to consider when choosing what toys to put in your dog’s crate is whether they’re safe for your pup, especially when they’re unsupervised.

While in their crate, your dog should only have access to toys that are durable, especially if your pup loves to chew on anything and everything.

Toys with small parts are a big no-no as your pup may accidentally swallow them and choke. Be sure to check your pup’s toys regularly for rips, tears, and weak spots that could break.

Toothy Treat Dog Toy  

Your dog will have a ball with this boredom-busting toy. Made from extra-tough, bite-resistant rubber, this dog toy is a great option for teething pups and dogs who simply love to chew. Plus, it can be filled with your dog’s favourite treats for added fun!


Avocado on Toast Dog Toy

Some plush toys are more resilient than others and won’t instantly fall to bits at the mercy of your pup’s teeth! With double-stitched edges, this adorable avocado on toast is a more durable plush option. Its soft and fuzzy exteriors will offer your dog comfort while its fun squeaker and crinkly materials will keep your pup entertained.

While this toy is durable, please note that because it’s made of fabric, it’s not indestructible. For safety, we’d always suggest supervising your dog during playtime.


Should I put food and water in my dog’s crate?

Generally, it’s not a good idea to put food or water in your dog’s crate, especially if you have a puppy.

There are a few issues with putting food or water in your dog’s crate:

  • Puppies don’t have strong bladders and they usually need to wee shortly after drinking. The last thing you want is to undo your housetraining and encourage them to wee inside their crate!

  • Your dog may tip over their bowls and end up with wet bedding or food spilt everywhere, and nobody wants that.

  • Your dog should associate their crate with sleep and comfort, and not with eating and drinking.

However, there are some exceptions to having food or water bowls in your dog’s crate, like if your vet advises you to, if you’re planning to leave your dog in their crate alone for a few hours in the day, or if you plan to feed your dog’s main meal in their crate and then remove their bowl once they’re done.  

Should I put a puppy pad/wee mat in my dog’s crate?

If you’re worried about your dog having an accident the night, leaving a puppy pad in their crate is tempting, but this is usually not advised.

Puppy pads are designed to tell your puppy where they should do their business and you don’t want to encourage your pup to use their crate as their personal toilet!

Instead, don’t lose faith in your pup’s housetraining. Take them out for a wee before bedtime and put their pads in easy reach of their crate. Leave their crate door open so that if they wake in the night needing to wee, they’ll be encouraged to wee on their pad and not soil their crate (which can be distressing for your pup).

Yappy to Help

We hope this post has been helpful for you when choosing what to put in a dog’s crate.

For more helpful advice, why not check out our post that delves into whether you should take your dog’s collar off at night. is a personalised pet product shop for dog and cat lovers, simply select a breed and icon and add your pet’s name to reveal a personalised shop just for you and your pet!

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