After deciding on the right dog walking vehicle for my needs, the next decision was what sort of dog cages to use. I knew I wanted something professional with lots of features. The first basic decision was whether to buy something that would be permanently installed or a cage system that could be removed. I decided on the latter option which would allow me to return it to a 5 seater car if needed. Some research followed and I contacted some companies. I quickly narrowed my choice down between TransK9 and Lintran Dog Cages. Both produce a range of dog cages that are fully featured and built to last.
I would have been happy to use either company but perhaps two factors led me to buy from Lintran Dog Cages. The first factor is that Lintran use white fibreglass outers on their cages which make them cooler and lighter than all metal cages. My vehicle has air conditioning and there is a 12v connection in the rear if I wanted to add a cooling fan. It also has blinds on the side windows to reduce the glare from the sun. If needed I could also add tinting to the windows but interior temperatures and airflow seem good. The second factor that led me to decide on Lintran was simply that they were located closer to me than TransK9 who are based in Scotland.
Lintran Dog Cages – My initial visit to Lincolnshire to meet them
After my initial call to them I decided to pay them a visit, I wanted them to look at my vehicle, discuss my needs and recommend how to proceed. Once I had arrived a few of their new and used crates were fitted inside my vehicle to give me a better idea of what to expect. The Citroen Berlingo Multispace has a decent amount of space inside. If you completely remove the rear seats it’s essentially the same as the van version of the Berlingo. Many of their stock cages are made for regular cars. It was clear that none of their stock range would make the best use of the extra height and boxy, square shape of my vehicle.
As such the recommendation was to measure the interior of my vehicle and make me a custom cage to suit. It would contain three large cage areas, two accessed from the rear of the vehicle and one accessed from the side. The two accessed from the rear contained a removable divider which would allow it to become one huge cage. The cages would be high enough to allow even large breeds to stand up inside. Indeed I get enquiries for my pet transport service which have included the transit of Great Danes and Newfoundlands. With the measurements taken, I paid for my new cage which would take a few weeks to manufacture. In the meantime they kindly let me use one of their larger models whilst my new one was being made.
Lintran Dog Cages – My cage features and my thoughts
Once my Lintran Dog Cage was finished I headed back to Lincolnshire to have it fitted. Like all Lintran Dog Cages the doors come with latches and locks. If you ever need spare keys for the locks Lintran can supply them.
The bottom of the cages contain removable, washable black mats. These are like a hard plastic material. Lintran have discovered that these are resistant to dogs who like to chew. For short journeys to the park the mats seem fine. For longer journeys I sometimes add soft bedding for extra comfort. The rear two cages also come with a rubber mat that protects the rear bumper as dogs enter and exit the cages. The cages are crash tested and come with escape hatches. The cage itself is strapped into the vehicle using the car’s provided anchor points. For the metal parts of the cage I opted for a galvanised finish. Some might say that powder coat finish looks better. Galvanised was more expensive but is longer lasting and rust resistant. This could be important if you regularly remove the cage to clean it with a water hose.
So following over a month of use what do I think of Lintran Dog Cages? Generally I am very happy with my choice. Custom made dog cages are never cheap but I believe you need to invest in your business. Transporting clients’ dogs safely and in comfort is a priority. This Lintran Dog Cage gives me lots of options. For dogs that do not travel well together I have a total of three large separate cages. I already walk some large breeds of dog like Rottweilers and the cages offer plenty of space. There are some rattles from the cage when driving but less than you would expect from cheap cages. During transit I don’t typically use the additional top and bottom latch bolts. If I did I think the the noises I experience currently would be reduced.
If at some point in the future I want to replace my vehicle I am able to remove the Lintran Dog Cage. Thankfully Citroen still make and sell the Berlingo Multispace. I could replace my existing model for a newer model when the time comes and still use my Lintran Dog Cage. The cage is after all likely to outlast the vehicle it’s fitted to! If you would like to know more why not visit the Lintran Dog Cages website.