Whether or not your pet actually plays in a playpen, there are multiple other reasons to have one - especially a soft-sided one that you can move easily from place to place and carry with you when you want to bring your indoor pets outside or go camping or travel with them.
Most soft-sided carriers, especially the top-rated, are made of durable, ripstop nylon and reinforced mesh. But strong as they may be, if you have a pet, especially a dog or cat, who's determined to get out, he probably can.
So, the first thing you need to do with a new soft-sided pet playpen is to accustom your pet to it, and make him very comfortable in it, like it's 'home.'
Most of the soft-sided playpens are made for small to medium pets. You can use them for ferrets, guinea pigs, rabbits, cats and small to medium dogs. Many owners use the playpens to rehabilitate wounded wildlife, for pet birthing, or to temporarily house a new pet. If you have multiple cats or dogs, buy a size larger than you would for one pet and, if you can set up a place in your home for the pet playpen, it would be ideal. But unless your pets are really, really small, don't make the mistake of thinking these are "exercise pens," as several advertise themselves as that.
Place bedding or soft pillows in the playpen, as well as a few small toys, and a small water bowl. The playpen should become your pet's "castle." Unlike a crate, which resembles a place of captivity, the playpen should be a place for respite.
These 3 (plus 3) soft-sided portable pet playpens are equally highly rated by their customers, so I'm placing them in order of their sales volume, not customer satisfaction. Ahead, I'll just break down what may be plusses and minuses for each one.
The ESK and Parkland Pet (below) are the two best selling soft playpens on Amazon. The ESK Collection Pet Playpen comes in two sizes: 1) 33" diameter x 24" height, and 2) 48" diameter x 25" height. The smaller size gives ample room for small dogs to use as a 'living room,' which is nice. And the larger size offers a bit more height than most large playpens. Both sizes have zip off tops.
The materials are solid: 600 Denier oxford cloth and strong mesh. A washable nylon bottom is good for easy cleaning, but if you have pets that are potty trained, it's more comfy to place a thin blanket on the floor. One owner suggested purchasing a round rug to cover the floors; like that!
The ESK comes in 3 colors in the smaller size: blue, pink, and red. The larger ESK Pet Playpen comes in blue, pink, red, and black. The playpens have zipper closures so watch out for critter or puppy chewing. The outside treat pockets and water bottle holder are plusses! One negative is that the playpen does not come with anchors, but you can buy metal ones at a hardware store.
This easy set-up playpen has a lot of satisfied pet and pet parents. The quality of materials is very high, notably the 600 Denier material. I like the shade afforded on the top of the crate and around the bottom, so your pets can be protected from the sun, as well as insects that otherwise might crawl in from beneath. I worry about the recommended sizing (see sizes listed in image above), in this case a small playpen recommended for pets up to 25 pounds. Maybe that's okay if you are using the playpen as a crate... but if you want your pet to feel 'at home,' and you want room for bedding, toys, and water, I would get a larger playpen.
The Parkland Pet Portable Foldable Playpen is easy to set up and folds up easily for carry or storage. Cloth anchors help secure the playpen to stable fixtures.
Are the pet playpens starting to look a lot like each other? Well, they are. Toysopoly claims to be the original manufacturer of this style of playpen and that the others are copies. The differences among them are far fewer than the similarities and may be restricted to size and color. Toysopoly comes in one size: 45 inches in diameter and 22 inches high. Both the top and bottom zip off and the Toysopoly comes with a carrying case and 4 metal stakes. Stylistically, I like the fact that the top and bottom materials match the sides.
I am impressed that the Toysopoly Playpen is third party tested and is certified non-toxic, BPA safe, lead safe, and Phthalates safe. It also comes with a 100% Money Back Guarantee.
The Toysopoly Pet Portable Playpen comes in blue (above), black, maroon, ruby, yellow, pink, and green. And it has 2 roll-up doors!
So, the playpens above are the tops in popularity, but if you are seriously shopping for a portable pet playpen, it might be useful to check out a few additional highly rated playpens. Maybe you will prefer the available sizes or colors.
Unleashed Pets Portable Foldable Pet Playpen: comes in medium and large, and supplies a collapsible pet bowl.
EliteField 2-Door Soft Pet Playpen: Attractive, 2-tone, comes in 2 sizes.
Jespet Portable Foldable Pet Playpen: Great for larger dogs! Comes in 45 and 61 inch diameters!
I don't think you could go wrong with any of the above soft-sided play pens. But remember, they are soft, so if your pet is a bit rambunctious you might consider a strong wire playpen!
That's the buzz for today!