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Which puppy playpens are best?

In order to help your new puppy stay safe, keeping them confined to designated spaces in your home (especially while away) is critical. Doing this prevents them from eating or chewing on hazardous items such as electrical cords or human foods that are toxic to dogs. When puppies are really small, it’s also important to separate them from potential physical dangers, such as staircases and other animals in the home.

The best strategy for enclosing your puppy in a specific space is to use a puppy playpen. MyPet Petyard Passage Plastic Puppy Pen is made with sturdy panels and a locking doggie door, providing both security and freedom for your pet. 

What to know before you buy a puppy playpen

Dog’s size

Before laying out the puppy pads and creating a space for your new addition, finding the right puppy playpen is a must. Playpens provide more space and openness than crates, yet still keep your dog in a set area they can’t escape. Your puppy will be happiest in a playpen that provides them with just the right amount of space.

Find the playpen size that works best for them by considering their current and future size. If your puppy is a medium or large breed, it’s wise to purchase a playpen that provides room for them to grow. Small breeds, however, can continue to feel comfortable in most standard playpens as they grow into adulthood.

Outdoor vs. indoor use

Although most puppy playpens are designed for both indoor and outdoor use, select models are not. This is particularly true with enclosed fabric designs, which can be damaged by rain, dirt and other outdoor elements. 

Before purchasing a playpen, consider where you plan to use it. If you need a dual-use design that’s suitable for both indoors and outdoors, the most cost-effective approach is to buy a playpen that can be moved between locations. Alternatively, you can order two playpens to avoid having to move them around.

One or multiple dogs

Whether you’re welcoming more than one puppy into your home is another critical consideration to make prior to settling on a playpen. In instances like these, size isn’t the only factor. Assessing the temperament of each dog is also key for their safety.

If you’re unsure as to how the puppies will behave if placed in the same playpen, you may benefit from purchasing two separate playpens.

What to look for in a quality puppy playpen


Few puppies are genuinely content with remaining in a playpen for more than a few minutes. Certain breeds begin expressing their curious nature from an early age. This sense of curiosity fuels the desire to escape from their playpen in search of adventure.

Contain your dog’s desire to explore by purchasing a secure playpen that won’t budge. Highly recommended designs are weighted and don’t tip over easily. They also have tall panels that prevent your puppy from jumping over the top. If the playpen features a gate, it should have a secure lock that can’t be loosened by your pup.

Safe design

Puppies have a reputation for being professional troublemakers, and testing boundaries is a daily habit. Top brands take extra care to ensure that their playpens don’t pose any kind of hazard to your dog. Openings between bars are carefully spaced so they can’t get stuck, and there are no small pieces that dogs can ingest.

Sturdy material

When your puppy starts teething, they want to chew on anything in sight, and an appealing “chew toy” is the sides of your puppy’s playpen. No matter your dog’s breed, always select a playpen made with a sturdy material that can withstand their teething phase.

How much you can expect to spend on a puppy playpen

Most puppy playpens cost $30-$100. The price you pay primarily depends on the playpen’s size and material.

Puppy playpen FAQ

Why is it important to keep my puppy in a playpen when I’m not around?

A. Young dogs should never be trusted to roam around the house unsupervised. In a matter of minutes, your puppy can become ill or injured after getting into common household hazards. Until they learn and respect boundaries, your puppy should always be contained while you aren’t at home, or while you’re out of the room for a prolonged period of time. 

Do soft playpens work as well as plastic or metal designs?

A. The answer to this largely depends on your dog’s characteristics. Puppies who have exceptionally high energy levels or puppies who are heavy chewers will likely be able to escape a soft playpen.  

Should I use a crate or playpen?

A. This is up to your preferences and training goals. Both are effective ways to keep your puppy out of trouble while away. Crates and playpens are also useful in establishing routines and in potty training. Conduct research on both methods to select the one that works best for you and your new pup.

What are the best puppy playpens to buy?

Top puppy playpen

MyPet Petyard Passage Plastic Puppy Pen

MyPet Petyard Passage Plastic Puppy Pen

What you need to know: Expandable to six and eight panels, this reliable design can grow with your puppy.

What you’ll love: The base model of the MyPet Petyard Passage Plastic Puppy Pen comes equipped with four plastic panels. As your dog gets older, you can purchase additional panels to expand to a six- or eight-sided playpen. On the front panel, there’s a locking dog door for added freedom and flexibility.

What you should consider: Larger breeds of puppies quickly outgrow this style, including the dog door.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Chewy

Top puppy playpen for the money

Frisco Four Panel Plastic Exercise Dog Playpen

Frisco Four Panel Plastic Exercise Dog Playpen

What you need to know: Stylish and secure, this four-panel playpen is ideal for smaller breeds of dogs.

What you’ll love: The Frisco Four Panel Plastic Exercise Dog Playpen is easy to assemble and transport. It’s made with a locking door that allows your puppy to easily enter and exit. The height of the gate measures almost 24 inches. Rubber feet coverings ensure that the gate doesn’t slide around on hard surfaces.

What you should consider: The design is too small for large dog breeds.

Where to buy: Sold by Chewy

Worth checking out

IRIS 6-Panel Plastic Exercise Dog Playpen with Door

IRIS 6-Panel Plastic Exercise Dog Playpen with Door

What you need to know: Created for both indoor and outdoor use, this spacious playpen is suitable for puppies of all sizes.

What you’ll love: The six-panel design provides plenty of space for your puppy to play. The playpen is made from molded plastic and effortlessly snaps together. It can be used on hard surfaces or carpeting.

What you should consider: Some owners reported the playpen being somewhat easy for larger puppies to escape.

Where to buy: Sold by Chewy

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

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