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Best cat kennel

Which cat kennel is best?

Cats love being able to freely roam around your house or apartment, which can make it difficult to wrangle them into a cat kennel, let alone have them remain there for an extended period of time. This makes selecting the right kennel that allows your cat to feel safe and comfortable all the more important. 

You have a lot of options, and choices may vary depending on your needs, but one top pick is Petmate Two Door Top Load Pet Kennel, which has a convenient top-load door to easily access your cat.

What to know before you buy a cat kennel


You want your cat to be able to stand and move around inside the kennel, making it a good rule of thumb to purchase a kennel that’s one-and-a-half times the size of your cat. 


Make sure that the kennel is well-ventilated and that your cat can get adequate airflow when inside. You can always place a blanket on top of the carrier to create a darker and more secure space for your pet. 


If you’re going to be traveling with your cat being in a kennel, select a model that’s lightweight, easy to transport, easy to clean and easy to store when not in use. 

What to look for in a quality cat kennel

Cat kennel styles

Cardboard: Cardboard kennels can be used when rescuing a cat or for an emergency trip to the vet, but they’re difficult to secure and your cat can chew through the kennel over time. For this reason, these temporary cat kennels should only be used for short periods and before you have the ability to purchase a long-term kennel. 

Soft side: Made from a firm but flexible material, soft cat kennels are a great option for shorter travel outings and trips to the vet.

Rolling: A rolling suitcase-style carrier tends to be the roomiest option for cats and allows them to see their surroundings as they travel.

Hard side: This is the most common type of cat carrier, as it offers space for cats to move around while also helping them feel safe and secure. They’re durable, strong and easy to clean.

Single vs. multiple doors

A single-door kennel is a comfortable option, but if you have a more fearful cat, multiple doors can help you to place your cat safely inside the carrier. This also allows vets to have more than one way to access your cat without removing them from the kennel. 


A cat kennel with screws securing the top down makes it easy to remove the top of the kennel while the cat stays in the bottom portion where they feel safe. Utilizing this feature can be slightly more time-consuming than other types of kennels.

Side snaps

Snaps are an easy way to latch or unlatch the top portion of the carrier, but the loud noise might frighten your cat.

How much you can expect to spend on a cat kennel

Cat kennels vary in price based on size, material, features and benefits but can range from $15-$75.  

Cat kennel FAQ 

How can you get your cat more comfortable with the cat kennel?

A. If possible, start using the kennel when your cat is young. Even if you don’t need to transport your cat, you can keep the kennel open at home with some of their favorite toys and blankets inside. Adding a little catnip to the kennel can help get an adult cat to spend more time inside. 

What type of cat kennel can you bring on a plane? 

A. Most cat kennels identify if they’re TSA-approved or not, but the rule of thumb is that the kennel should fit under the seat, so a soft-sided kennel with multiple entrances is ideal.

What’s the best cat kennel to buy?

Top cat kennel

Petmate Two-Door Top-Load Pet Kennel

What you need to know: This is a simple top and front-loading cat kennel that meets all air-approved travel regulations.

What you’ll love: This carrier is durable and secure, made from heavy-duty plastic and features a wing-nut and bolt design. The multi-access, grated steel doors allow your cat to have increased visibility of their surroundings, while you can easily check to make sure they’re comfortable and happy.

What you should consider: Some customers have noted that they’re missing screws in the package, so make sure that you have all the parts you need before assembling the crate.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top cat kennel for the money

Amazon Basics Two-Door Top-Load Hard-Sided Pet Travel Carrier

What you need to know: This is an effective, safe and durable cat kennel for a budget-conscious price.

What you’ll love: This two-door model has excellent airflow. The spring-loaded latch makes for a smooth and quiet opening, and the top door can be opened from left to right.

What you should consider: Be sure not to use this with overweight cats, as some customers mention that the latches don’t support animals closer to 20 pounds.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

SPORT PET Large Pop-Open Soft-Side Kennel

What you need to know: Road-trip approved, this cat kennel creates a cozy yet spacious area for one or more cats in the back of your car.

What you’ll love: Specifically designed for car travel, this cat kennel has a durable gate entry and mesh side panel for ventilation, which gives you the ability to keep your eyes on your pets. Framed in durable plastic and designed with secure straps, this is a safe and comfortable option for your cat while traveling.

What you should consider: Your cat should be comfortable in the car and have experience in a solid cat kennel before transitioning to this model. Calm adult cats are the prime candidate for this type of kennel.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

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

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