On the budget end of the price range is the Smithbuilt self-proclaimed ‘Heavy Duty Dog Crate.’  This industrial looking dog crate is crafted using high-quality steel to make a strong, durable crate that will prove inescapable for a dog and will last for many years. The front door is locked with two slide bolt latches, and the top opening is secured with one. There have been reports that the locking mechanism is weak and can be hugely improved with a standard padlock bought separately. Smithbuilt has made this crate fade, rust, and corrosion resistant by covering it with a multi-layer finish that is better than the powder coat paints on other brands of a dog crate.
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Place the crate somewhere ‘scenic’ & interesting. It may be beneficial and relaxing for your dog to have something interesting to look at while in the kennel. You could experiment by placing the enclosure near a window so your pet can watch the world pass. The opposite may be beneficial and distractions such as cats and people walking by may get him overly excited and needing to escape.
Overview: This is an extra large dog crate with soft sides. It is usable for both indoor and outdoor use and it also is waterproof, so you can take it camping with you (it looks like something you’d take camping). There is a storage case included with purchase and it folds down into that case conveniently. The measurements are 48 x 32 x 38.5 inches and the crate itself comes in other sizes for smaller animals as well (this is their XXL). The entries are front, side, and top.
The wire is thinner than my old crate, which is also made of the black metal, but it is still sturdy. I used to have the really heavy silver steel crates but they are ugly and stronger than necessary. I guess if you have a dog you think might get out, you should use zip-ties all around and bungee the door when the dog is inside. The ... full review
Addendum added January 28, 2013: My vet had never noticed these carriers because I had never put one up on the exam table until my last vet visit. She looked at it with interest and totally concurred with my opinion of having a small, but open carrier for my two (panicky) cats. She has seen more than a few overheated pets in too enclosed carriers. Since I live far from the vet I always carry spare towels for the bottoms of the carriers and she found that the "stable floor covering'* I use was an additional comfort feature for my pets long trip to their appointments. (I just ordered the larger size of this carrier for my "Phat Kat" and will donate her previous carrier to our local animal shelter.)
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