Have you heard the news? Camping is one of the most popular family-friendly past times! During the past couple of summers, people were stuck in their homes and had to turn local for entertainment. Many new campers learned just how much fun a trip to the great outdoors can be by exploring their own and neighboring states. And many four-legged friends joined in on the fun! Just like us, dogs can have a little piece of paradise while out on a camping trip with their very own dog tent.
While dogs love being in the outdoors, they also enjoy a space to call their own. The shelter will protect them from the elements while also giving them a cozy place to relax and catch a nap. (Because napping is a big part of camping too!) A dog tent makes your camping trip that much easier.
You can bring your pal along to the lake, the mountain, the beach, and your campsite, knowing that they will have their own home away from home. It works inside and out so that you don’t have to share your space with your pooch, but also know that they are safe and also having fun while camping.
There are plenty of dog tents in all shapes and sizes for many different uses. This list contains some of the best dog tents on the current market and how to choose one that fits your dog’s needs. Plus, some bonus tips for camping with dogs and additional items you may want to pack!
What Is A Dog Camping Tent?
A dog tent is designed just for use by your dog. We all know that dogs love to have spaces of their own. From hiding under the dining room table to napping away on their dog bed, this gives them a safe space to hang out while they’re out and about and not at home. Most tents are portable and easy to set up!
It has many uses, offering shelter from certain weather conditions such as sun or wind, as well as keeping your pet contained for moments when you can’t keep an eye on them. It’s extremely handy to have on hand to make not only their experience more enjoyable but yours too!
Features To Look For In A Dog Camping Tent
When it comes to shopping for a dog tent, the options can be overwhelming. Every one of them has different features, so you want to make sure and consider which are the most important to you before making your decision.
When you’re on the go, whether that’s to a backyard barbeque or a mountain peak, your little buddy should be able to accompany you. Some of the options are very easy to carry, being lightweight and coming with their own case. Other options are meant better for long-term use and aren’t as portable in comparison.
Some fabrics will do better against scratches and biting than others. Oxford fabric is a common option due to its durability. With this in mind, though, all tents are made of breathable fabric and aren’t meant to house rowdy and destructive dogs.
Some of the tents are pop-up style, meaning they just need to be removed from their case, and they will assemble all on their own. While easy to use, these ones typically aren’t as sturdy. They can also be hard to fold back up.
On the other hand, other options may be more difficult to assemble with multiple parts but they may be sturdier and meant for long use compared to other options.
Not all dogs are made the same!
From big adventurous labradors to tiny dachshunds, you want to find a tent that has the perfect amount of room for your pup. Bigger tents are harder to come by, but there are a few options on this list. You also don’t want to go too big for your little dogs as it can mean taking up too much unnecessary space while packing. Or, it may make the tent not as cozy and inviting for them.
Many of the tents are designed for different needs. Make sure you know what you intend to use the tent for prior to purchase. If it’s just a shade shelter for the beach, you won’t need something heavy-duty. But, if you plan on backpacking, you may need something of higher quality.
Most tents won’t be waterproof, but some fabrics may be water-resistant. The tents should provide some form of protection from the sun’s UV rays, and others are good for sheltering from heavy winds. Make sure they have stakes if this is the case. And sometimes, you may want something to keep away from biting insects that are bothering your dog, where complete containment is best.
Take some time to think about what you’re looking for before you get started shopping.
Finally, no two dog tents are going to be priced the same. If you’re just starting out and are not sure what kind of tent features are important to you, the price may be the main thing to consider. A cheaper tent won’t last as long, but it can be a quick solution or a good starting point until you’re ready to invest in something more expensive. But, like regular tents, investing in a good quality one can mean many seasons of use!
Look, camping gets messy. Your dog is going to have muddy paws, wet fur, and bits of the forest attached to its coat. Dogs may also even have accidents inside their dog tents that will need cleaning up!
You will want something that can easily be wiped up with a damp cloth while you’re still camping. And when you get home, something that can handle something a little more heavy-duty to get the dog smell out and live to tell another story!
Why Should Your Dog Sleep In A Tent?
Why would you want to bring extra equipment just for your dog? While you may enjoy snuggling up with your pup in your own tent while camping or letting them roam free, having their own dog tent can be a super useful tool to have on hand when bringing your dog to the great outdoors.
When you bring your dog, there will be moments that you aren’t able to keep a close eye on them while you’re busy with other activities. Having an area to safely put your pup while you cook or shower can help you get your stuff done while your dog relaxes. That being said, a tent is not a crate and cannot be used to hold the kind of dogs who are determined to be little escape artists.
Even the largest dogs can feel unsafe at times. Has your dog ever freaked out during a thunderstorm? Or hidden behind you while fireworks go off? If you have an anxious dog, giving them a safe space where they can curl up may bring them comfort. Especially if you bring them away from home into a new space, having their own area to hide away from everything may provide them with that “safe” feeling.
Arguably one of the most important reasons, dog tents help to keep your pooch comfortable from the elements while outdoors. A tent with a large canopy may shelter them from the sun during super hot days. A raised tent gets your pup off of the wet ground or hard rocks that may be uncomfortable on your older dog’s joints. A mesh tent can get the pesky wasps away from attacking your dog. Tents with stakes mean your tent can stay sturdy while your dog hangs out inside, sheltered from the wind.
All in all, it gives your pup a comfortable place to hang out when conditions are not ideal.
Unlike dog houses or crates, dog tents are easier to carry around. Wherever you and your dog may plan to go, the tent can follow. You can bring along an area just for your dog when you go camping, to the beach, the park, on a hike, someone’s backyard, or even your own house. Most are fairly easy to assemble and disassemble, and some even come with carrying cases.
Inside Or Out
Because they’re not super bulky, you can also use the tent inside as well. Most are more spacious than a crate if your dog likes to curl up while you’re away. They can also work well for newborn puppies or as an area for sick dogs. If you go to the office, you can also bring along a tent so you can get work done with your pup at your side.
The Best Dog Tents On Amazon
Looking to buy a dog tent for your pup? There are lots of different options out there. Some are exact replicas of our own camping tents but made for dogs, while others take inspiration from tents for a fun and playful indoor dog tent bed. There are options below for multiple price points, different uses, and all kinds of sizes of dogs.
Find the one that best suits you and your pup!
Sometimes, all you want is to get your pet elevated and up out of the sun. With all their hair and lack of air conditioning, things can get pretty heated while outside for our four-legged friends. This dog bed gets your pet in the shade no matter where you are and raises them up for extra comfort.
This product is made of oxford fabric and a steel frame, including additional middle beams for support. It measures 36” x 48” x 9.1”, giving your pet plenty of room to lay down as well as sit up comfortably. The frame can hold up to 120 lbs.
Big or small, all dogs can enjoy this x-large bed. It’s not often you can find an elevated structure that will hold up to 120 lbs. On top of that, it boasts that no extra tools are needed to assemble this bed, and it comes with its own carrying case for easy transport. Those are all great things to hear when it comes to packing for camping.
The canopy covers the whole bed, allowing your dog to safely stay out of the sun. The raised bed also is ideal for older dogs to relieve tension off their joints. It also gets them off off tough rocks, hot pavement, and other non-ideal surfaces. The fabric below is purposefully breathable to ensure they get plenty of air circulation to help keep them nice and cool.
Pros And Cons
One of the major cons about this canopy is that it’s not considered waterproof. Only meant to shelter from the sun, the canopy needs to be covered by a tarp if it rains to stay dry, and it will not protect your dog during bad weather. Instead, they will have to come in and camp with you!
On the pros side, the size and ability to hold a high weight are great for large dog owners. The raised section is also a rarity for this list, helping older dogs get comfier and keeping them cool throughout the day, top and bottom.
Sometimes, you only need something quick and easy. When you’re on the go or are trying to pack light, this is the option for you. Great for trips to the park, days at the beach, or simply stopping by grandma’s house, this is a simple option for providing your dog shelter.
Made of weather-resistant fabric, this is a pop-up tent that folds up. The outer frame is made of steel, and the tent measures 24” x 42” x 28” when fully popped up.
The main standout for this tent is the pop-up feature. Simply unzip the bag from its package, and it will instantly expand. It takes literal seconds to give your dog its own little piece of heaven. The primary purpose of this tent is also to provide shade and protection from harmful UV rays.
The mesh sides allow for ventilation and cross breezes to help keep your dog cool. It also means you can be on any side of the tent and see what your pooch is up to, helping your anxiety and theirs! The large opening allows your pup to enter and leave as they wish. It also comes with stakes for those windy days to keep the tent in place.
Pros and Cons
One of the biggest drawbacks of this tent is getting it back in its case. If you have ever used any type of popup assembly before, then you know the difficulty. You have to twist and bend it exactly so to get it back in its container. Improperly doing so can bend the steel frame incorrectly. So be sure to follow the instructions and be gentle!
For pros, without a doubt, this is the easiest and most portable dog tent on the list. Simple and basic, it does the job and is good for any quick trip. If you are looking for something for day use, this is a good and affordable option.
If you want to keep your dog from wandering off while camping, you may want a tent that is meant to keep dogs contained rather than provide just shelter. Similar to toddler playpens, you can purchase versions meant for dogs. It keeps them safely inside while you cook over the campfire or snooze in the hammock.
This dog camping tent comes in 3 different sizes, with the smallest measuring 18” high and 29” across, medium measuring 34.6” across and 22.8” high, and the largest being 44.9” wide and 22.8’ tall.
This playpen features 8 foldable panels that, when fully open, create a circular enclosure. Like some of the others on this list, it uses pop-up assembly, so all you have to do is open the strap, and it will do all the work itself. When not in use, it folds up flat for easy transportation.
Each panel is made from scratch-resistant oxford cloth and mesh siding. This allows for 360-degree viewing, so your pet doesn’t get anxious without you in view, and allows for plenty of ventilation. The dog can enter either through the roll-up doggy door panel or be placed in through the roof. The roof is also made of mesh and can be left open or zipped up closed. Inside, there’s lots of room for a small dog to hang out and relax.
Pros And Cons
The ease and portability of this tent make it a big winner for dog families on the go. It provides a complete enclosure to keep pets safe and comfortable when you can’t keep a direct eye on them.
While it does provide lots of ventilation, the amount of mesh also means it may not block as much sun as you might hope. If shade is your main concern, another option on this dog tent list may be a better way to go.
The tent is also not designed to be a time-out area or somewhere to keep misbehaving dogs as it’s not durable and would easily be destroyed. It’s better suited for well-behaved pups, elderly dogs, or even as a sick room.
If you want the camping aesthetic without all of the hard work, mosquitoes, and lack of running water, why not bring the great outdoors inside? This large dog teepee bed is a great addition inside the home to give your dog the camping experience and alternative to the classic dog bed.
This dog teepee bed measures 23.6 x 23.6 x 27.6 and works for dogs 33 lbs or under. In addition to dogs, it can also work well for cats, rabbits, and other small pets.
Without a doubt, this is the cutest tent on the list. Coming in 4 different patterns, it consists of washable canvas cloth and pine poles with rubber protectors on the bottom to prevent any scratches. On the bottom, there’s a thick and washable cushion for your pet to lounge designed to stay in one place. There’s plenty of small details such as the name blackboard and leather straps to hold open the bed.
Pros And Cons
Of course, this tent is more for aesthetics and would only work indoors. If you plan on actually camping or taking your dog somewhere outdoors, this tent is not designed to withstand the weather elements and will quickly get dirty.
However, it’s one of the more aesthetic options on this list if you’re looking for something indoors. Your pet will enjoy the cocoon feeling of being inside this dog teepee bed. If you’re wanting more than the average dog bed, this may be the choice for you.
Whatever happened to the original dog house? You know, the rectangular boxes with the pointed roof where the dog could hang out in their own backyard. Well, Amazon is bringing them back with a more portable design that you can bring camping. And it comes in a bright blue!
This dog camping tent measures 35.4 x 25.6 x 28, creating a nice rectangular shape with plenty of headroom for a dog to feel nice and cozy in their outdoor home. This model is good for animals up to 25 lbs.
As already mentioned, it is an a-frame design with a raised bottom to keep your dog off of the ground if it’s cold or uncomfortable. It comes with a large front opening that allows for easy in and out access (no door or flap). In addition to the durable oxford fabric, mesh paneling at the top allows for additional air circulation. If it rains, it also has flaps that can cover this mesh siding to keep it nice and dry inside.
You can reassemble and move this dog tent as you would like. The product itself only weighs 10.1 pounds, but it is still a sturdy design.
Pros And Cons
This design may be one of the more durable options on the list. If you want something long-lasting for your backyard, this should do the trick. The many pieces make it quite sturdy, but this can also make the initial building process much more complicated. While advertised as portable, you probably wouldn’t want to disassemble and reassemble it often.
It also doesn’t come with stakes, so you will need other ways to weigh it down against the wind. Another missing item is any additional bedding, so you will probably want to add some for your dog’s comfort. But, this dog tent is a good and sturdy basic that you can customize based on your surroundings and the dog’s needs.
This tent looks like it could very well belong to a human! That is until you actually pitch it and realize it’s a dog camping tent that is much more suited for their size rather than humans. If you plan on doing some backpacking or want your dog to get the real tenting experience, look no further than this true dog tent.
It comes in a medium or large size, medium being 9.69 x 19.69 x 17.72 inches and large being 23.62 x 23.62 x 21.65 inches.
Just like a regular tent, this dog tent comes rolled up in a small bag with poles to give it a structure and frame. The metal frame and polyester fabric are nothing fancy but give your dog plenty of shade from the sun as well as offer a reprieve from windy days. The open mesh sides provide ventilation, and pups can enter easily through a doggy door. It can either remain rolled up or zipped down if wanted.
Designed for small animals, the tent is easily collapsible and portable for multiple camping trips. While it doesn’t come with stakes, it does have corner ties that you can use to stake down the tent if necessary. The fabric washes easily, so you know that you can wash away all the antics of your dog’s camping activities.
Pros And Cons
Some reviews complain about the quality of this tent. Given the price point of this item, it won’t be the most durable and high-quality option on this list. But if you’re just testing the waters or only want a quick fix, this dog tent should do just what you need.
One thing to keep in mind is that the size is best for small dogs only. For larger dogs, you will need a different option. The real tent look is something to be desired, though for sure!
This dog tent has a very similar design to the BODISEINT playpen mentioned earlier. However, it comes at a slightly lower price point and has some different features that are worth mentioning. An Amazon bestseller, many dog owners have sung their praises for this particular dog tent.
This dog tent measures 42” x 36” x 29” for the medium size, with the dog door measuring 17.5” inches tall. Additional sizes are available online. If you want a little bit of variety, it comes in 3 colors: navy blue, gray, and hunter green.
Like the other playpen, the circular aspect is the standout feature of this pen. It provides lots of room that a normal crate wouldn’t be able to offer. The panels on the sides have mesh to allow ventilation, but the top offers sun protection in case of a super hot day. The top comes with a zipper that you can completely remove if you want to give your pup a view of the sky or zip up to keep away any UV rays.
A dog can enter on its own through a zippered entrance that can be rolled up. Completely collapsible, it packs into a carrying case. It also comes with stakes that you can use to secure it from blowing away outside. The fabric is also designed to be easy to clean for any accidents or muddy paws.
Pros And Cons
For the price point, the quality of this product won’t be high. It should not be used in place of a crate for securing naughty or anxious dogs who may scratch or chew. It’s better suited for dogs to relax while you’re close by.
That being said, it does its job well and is an affordable option to give your pup a little more comfort while out camping, on a picnic, or even just hanging out in the backyard. Many dogs simply enjoy having an enclosed space to call their own.
Another amazing miniature true dog tent, this design is another easy and quick tent you can bring along with you on your next camping trip. It has many of the same features you would find on your own tent, including tabs to roll up windows and stakes to insert into the ground.
This green tent measures at 32″ x 42″ x 30″, fitting up to a medium-sized dog. The actual product itself weighs less than 1.5 lbs.
This tent mimics a standard version of a human-sized tent. It comes with poles that insert into four corners to create a comfortable dome shape. The tent has 5 mesh windows that can be left open or closed depending on your pets comfort or the temperature outside. It also comes with stakes to help anchor the tent on windy days or when your dog is restless inside.
One of the best features of this tent is that the bottom is waterproof. If you have to camp on wet ground or rain is in the upcoming forecast, a waterproof tent can go a long way in keeping your pet warm and dry.
Pros And Cons
Because of the peaked shape of the tent, there will be less room on the sides for your dog. Imagine standing up in your own tent. You always have the most room in the center! The actual fabric of the tent is not fully waterproof. If you’re thinking of having your dog hang out here at night or during bad weather, you will definitely want to have this dog tent under a tarp.
However, it does easily fit up to a medium-size dog. If you plan on backpacking, this will keep your dog from running away at night or staying in your tent and getting all your items dirty. The bag itself is small and lightweight enough that your pup can carry its own load up the mountain.
Last but not least, here is a super cozy option for all the little dogs out there. This dog tent bed made comfort its number one priority. Designed with small dogs and cats in mind, it’s a plush little heaven that they can use as their hideaway while they snuggle up and catch some zzz’s.
This dog tent bed comes in a plaid, gray pattern. It measures 16 x 16 x 14 inches and will work for small dogs only.
Most of this dog tent bed is made from poly foam lining, making the whole bed ultra-soft and cozy. When your dog rests, the foam conforms to your pet’s position. It also comes with a reversible pillow, being plaid on one side and ultra fuzzy on the other. Inside, there is enough room to allow your small pets to lay and cuddle up.
One of the best things about this tent is that the whole thing is machine washable. When you follow the instructions, you can pop the whole thing in the washing machine for super easy cleaning. The plaid pattern also means it blends well into your home’s décor, with the gray color scheme blending into most rooms.
Pros And Cons
Designed for the indoors, this bed is not meant for outdoor use and cannot be taken on any actual camping trips. That being said, it creates a nice and cozy space your pets will love to hang out in. The soft crate style gives them that sense of comfort, and you can easily bring this on any travels to other homes or hotels.
It also is designed to only fit small breeds such as pugs, Yorkshire terriers, or chihuahuas. The small size also helps it to blend into the home. The design is not only aesthetic but functional. It feels sturdy, is comfortable for your pet, and can be cleaned easily.
How To Prepare Your Dog For A Camping Trip
Here are a handful of tips to help you get your pet ready for your trip to the great outdoors. Keep these in mind and put them into practice before your next trip to set you and your dog up for camping success!
Before your dog can safely hit the trails, ensure they are all up to date on their vaccinations. Young puppies will need a series of shots before going out and exploring areas and encountering other dogs. Beyond puppies, you also want to keep flea and ticks in mind.
Preventative medication before a camping trip is always a good idea to keep your pup safe.
Find Dog-Friendly Campsites
Before you book your camping trip, make sure that the site you plan on visiting is dog-friendly. Most will be, but some may have added benefits of extra trails or off-leash areas that your dog will love.
Camping is a whole new environment and a lot for your dog to take in. Before taking your dog camping, ensure they have enough of their basic training down pat so you know they will listen to you. They should know not to bark at other campers, have strong recall skills if they go off-leash, and know to leave certain items alone.
Get Them Used To Their Dog Tent
To make sure your dog feels comfortable in their new tent, you will want to get them used to it ahead of time. Just like crate training or a new bed, you will have to teach them that this is their safe place to hang out. Before you head out camping, have some practice sessions at home.
During these sessions, get your pooch to go in the tent on their own (if the design permits it) and reward them with a treat. Try and encourage them to stay in the tent and reward them for this behavior. Keep practicing this session until they get used to the tent. If possible, also teach them a verbal command to go with the tent. Work on duration and distance, so your dog gets used to the idea of being in the tent for a while and without you being right next to it.
You will also want to get them used to any other environments they might experience, such as an RV, your own camping tent, and the car if they’re not used to traveling.
Know Your Pet’s Limits
Every dog is different in what they would enjoy most on a camping trip. Some may not be up for a 5-mile hike, and others would not enjoy hanging out at the beach. Know not only their stamina but their personality, and make sure to plan activities that your pup will enjoy.
If it’s your dog’s first trip, try to make it a short one to see if it’s something they enjoy or if it’s better suited as a human-only activity.
Other Items To Bring While Camping With Your Dog
Another huge step in getting your dog ready for camping is making sure you have all the right equipment! Here are some items you may want to consider bringing on your camping trip just for your pup.
First things first, you’re going to need to make your dog tent nice and cozy for your pup. Especially at night or cooler days, they will want some extra layers to snuggle up in. It’s also a good idea to have additional blankets you can lay out on the ground or at the beach for them to relax on.
Chances are, you’ll be heading out and doing some activities while out camping with your dog. Having a dog water bottle is a great thing to have on hand. And no, it’s not your regular water bottle!
It has its own water container that, upon pushing a button, dispenses water into the attached drinking bowl. Any unused water can then go back into the container by pressing the water key. This means you don’t need to pack an extra bowl and toss any water your dog doesn’t drink!
Most of the dog tents on this list are not waterproof. To keep the tent dry, you will want to hang a tarp above the tent. You can also use one to protect the ground of the tent from water and other dirt. The more tarps you have on hand, the better – no matter the forecast!
When you’re just hanging out at the campsite or at the park, it’s a good idea to keep your dog leashed at all times. You never know when a squirrel will run by and capture their attention! Having an extra-long leash to tether to a tree or picnic table means they can move around the area freely but won’t be at risk of running away. Typically, their regular leash is not long enough to allow this comfort.
For the campsite, you will also want to bring along food and water bowls just for your dog. Ceramic dishes you may have at home are at risk for breaking and bulky to pack. Bringing along some lightweight, collapsible dog dishes also means you can take them with you if you travel beyond your campsite.
You always want to have these on hand!
When it comes to camping, you will be quick to notice just how quickly your dog gets dirty. From muddy trails to sandy beaches, having extra towels on hand for your pup will help keep things a little less messy and keep them dry after getting wet in the lake or while raining. Microfiber towels are great for camping since they dry off quickly and store smaller than regular ones made from cotton.
You can’t forget their toys! Your dog will likely have lots of room for running, and bringing along some tennis balls and a launcher will help expel plenty of energy. You may want to avoid certain stuffed toys that may collect dirt and other debris. Be sure to pack along some of their favorites from home, but a few new toys can make the trip that much more special!
You can also leave a few of these in their tent to play with.
Even during the hottest days of summer, evenings while camping can sure make you catch a chill. While we like to bundle up in layers of sweaters and blankets by the fire, you will want to keep your dog back from the flames. To keep them warm, consider bringing them a sweater. This reversible sweater comes in sizes x-small all the way to 3x-large for the big guys. It’s waterproof and windproof to keep them nice and toasty warm all the way through the camping trip.
Do you have a dog that loves to soak up the sun? While their fur covers most of their body, you may want to consider buying sun spray for areas of your dog that may not be covered. The nose is a big one as well as the belly. Naked breeds of dogs especially need to be covered up in the sun and those who may have bald patches. Just like us, all dog breeds have a predisposition to skin cancer.
If you plan on camping by a lake or want to head to the beach, you may want to consider bringing a lifejacket. Some dogs are natural-born swimmers who will happily jump in the water without any prompting. Other dogs need some coaxing, while some avoid it at all costs. It’s also a good idea to bring along a lifejacket if you plan on doing any watersports, from paddleboarding to boating.
While the pups can’t enjoy s’mores, they should still get to enjoy some camping treats! Make sure to bring along treats to help with recall in the event that they get off-leash. You may also want to consider bringing a bone or other treat that will last a while and keep them busy while you do your own thing.
If it gets cold or you plan on taking your dog out on the trail, they may benefit from wearing some booties. They can keep feet warm and dry when out in wet weather or safe from scrapes on rocky terrain. They may also help on the super-hot sand while at the beach. Most booties are fairly easy to get on your dog. While it may take them getting used to, they really do help!
Always leave no trace while camping, and this goes for your dogs too. Parasites and bacteria in your dog’s feces are likely not part of the natural ecosystem you will be visiting. They can stay in the soil for years, so you want to be sure to pick up after your dog no matter where they go. Make sure to have plenty of bags on hand and then some while camping.
Get The Most Out Of Your Camping Trip With Your Pets By Being Prepared!
Before camping, it’s important to take some time and make sure you have everything you could possibly need for your pooch in any situation. Camping is all about preparing for the unexpected!
Remember, keep your expectations low for your dog and the trip as you’re testing out the waters. If this is your dog’s first trip, they may need some acclimating to the outside environment before they start having fun.
Still, they may surprise you and immediately have the time of their life while hanging out with you, their best friend, in the great outdoors. At the end of the day, your dog just wants to spend time with you.
By now, you should have everything you need in order to have a safe and fun camping trip with your dog. Whether it’s their first trip or they’ve gone on many camping adventures, they will be sure to appreciate having their own little dog tent to call their own. Going camping together or even just heading out for the day is the best way to treat your dog.
After all, the thing they love most in the world is hanging out with you.