Yea, yea… a couple of days out in the wilderness is fun and all, but there’s a sure way to make it even more by bringing along your best friend (no, not your college best friend). Camping with your dogs is becoming increasingly popular, and to do that efficiently and with maximum comfort, you would need one of the best tents for camping with dogs in 2021.
Suppose it’s your first time going shopping for a tent for camping with dogs, in that case, you’re going to realize that it’s even more complicated than shopping for regular one- or two-person tents because you have to factor in a second, more unpredictable tentmate.
However, I’d make the selection process a lot easier by recommending a couple of camping tents designed to handle the extra four-footed roomie while providing maximum comfort and durability. I also include a buyer’s guide, especially for first-timers who may not know what to look for in a tent for camping with dogs.
- Top 6 Best Tents for Camping with Dogs in 2021
- Factors to Consider When Shopping for the Best Tent for Camping with Dogs – A Detailed Buyer’s Guide
- FAQ Section
- Closing Words
Top 6 Best Tents for Camping with Dogs in 2021
My product recommendations for the best tents for camping with dogs include:
1. Wenzel 8 Person Klondike
The Wenzel 8-Person Klondike tent is top of my list, and with the number of comfort and durability features it has, it justifies its appearance so high on this list.
The Wenzel Klondike Tent is incredibly spacious with an internal dimension of 16 ft by 11 ft, which gives your furry buddy ample space to run around and not feel apprehensive or claustrophobic.
It also features a vestibule that can serve as a kind of small apartment for your dog. The vestibule has two mesh windows and a mesh roof, which is perfect for your dog to receive adequate ventilation and sunlight without getting in your way while you’re busy.
This vestibule can also serve as an extra room for you to carry out activities that you wouldn’t like to carry out in the main body of the tent, like a picnic.
Saying the Wenzel 8-person klondike tent is durable would be an understatement. Its main body comprises premium quality waterproof human-made polyester that provides adequate top and bottom protection from the elements.
- Durable body material
- Vestibule with mesh roof and windows
- Efficient waterproofing system
- First-timers might find pitching the tent a bit difficult
The Wenzel klondike 8-person tent is worth every penny on its price tag, so much so that you forget how much you spent on it because of the incredibly high value for money.
2. Coleman 8-Person Tent
This three-room, 8-person tent from Coleman is simply one of the best tents for camping with dogs in 2021. As hard as the decision was, I finally had to settle with it being second, but it’s a really close second.
It features three rooms that are a great feature to have when camping with dogs as it gives you and your dog(s) ample space to move around while still having sufficient space for a couple more adult humans.
Another thing I like about the tent and all tents from the Coleman manufacturing company is their trademarked features. The most popular one is the highly effective WeatherTec waterproofing system found in most tents from Coleman. It would effectively keep all the moisture out while leaving the interior completely dry.
It also has a Cool-Air port and Variflo ventilation system that is adjustable depending on you or your dog’s immediate needs.
- Well ventilated
- WeatherTec waterproofing system
- Three distinct rooms
- Durable build quality
- Set up can be quite tricky for amateurs
With all the features provided by the Coleman 8-person canyon tent, it would make a great addition to your camping gear for a great time out in the woods with your furry best friend.
3. Coleman Tent Dome Screen Room
Another tent from Coleman is one on this list. Surprising? No. And just as a spoiler, it wouldn’t be the last time a tent from Coleman would be featured on this list. That’s just how good their tents are.
The Coleman 6-person WeatherMaster tent is a high-quality tent from Coleman. As expected, it comes with the trademarked WeatherTec waterproofing system that is more than adequate at keeping the internal contents of the tent dry even during heavy rains.
The internals are spacious and gives you and your dog ample movement space with additional headroom for 3-4 more fully grown, average-sized humans.
The build quality of the tent’s fabric is just outstanding for the attached price tag. It is made from an extremely durable 75D polyester with high resistance to wear and tear. The tents’ walls are illuminated, and the level of light coming in can be adjusted through three modes – low, high, and nightlight mode.
I tried this out at a physical Coleman store, and one thing I noticed about it was the chances of it being not very easy to set up for the beginner and even some pros.
- WeatherTec waterproofing system
- Sufficiently spacious
- Durable 75D polyester fabric
- Illuminated walls
- Relatively complicated set-up
- Not suitable for winters
Coleman simply knocked it out of the park with this one. It is simply one of the best tents for camping with dogs that you can currently find on the market.
4. Bessport 3 and 2 Person Backpacking Tent
We’re finally taking a break from the Coleman tents to introduce this kind of equally unique product from Bessport camping gear manufacturers. Its compact size, lightweight, and reliable build quality make it one of the best backpacking dog tents.
The Bessport 2-person backpacking tent is also one of the best tent for 2 adults and a dog because even though it is tagged as a two-person tent, I observed that it could easily accommodate an additional roommate, which in this case is your furry roomie.
The presence of 2 doors and 2 vestibules are just another couple of reasons why this is suitable for camping out with dogs. I would throw more light on the relevance of having 2 doors and a vestibule or, in this case, 2 vestibules in the buyer’s guide section.
The tent’s body is made from relatively durable, waterproof human-made polyester, which, even though it isn’t as tough as the canvas tents, it would easily get the job done. This isn’t a disadvantage, seeing as the polyester material affords it the lightweight that makes it suitable for backpacking.
- Sturdy framework and durable polyester fabric
- 2 doors
- 2 vestibules
- Easy to set up
- Well ventilated
- Fabric tends to be caught in the zipper often, which can get annoying
- The zippers could be stronger
As long as you can carefully handle the relatively fragile zippers, you wouldn’t have an issue as the Bessport 2-person backpacking tent offers more great features that would make you forget all about this shortcoming.
5. Clostnature Lightweight Backpacking Tent
Closenature made a pretty good backpacking tent with this one. It is relatively small and can only hold one fully grown adult and one dog, but that’s the price you have to pay for its lightweight and compact size, which is an essential characteristic of backpacking tents.
Even though it doesn’t feature all the fancy features that can be found in most high-end car camping tents, it has a lot of useful features that make it one of the most dog friendly tents that are available on the market in 2021.
It has 2 doors, which makes entry and exit a breeze without inconveniencing the other occupant. Also, there are two vestibules where the rain flies are near each door, which provides a comfy space for your pup to sleep or chill when you have your hand-tied.
This tent comes with adequate ventilation windows and features two crucial waterproofing features – an externally coated rigid polyester material and bathtub flooring. This bathtub flooring method served to keep the floor dry during rainfall.
- Very durable
- 2 doors
- 2 vestibules
- Easy to pitch
- It could use more space
Apart from the space issue, the Closenature 2-person backpacking tent is a really close second to the Bessport as one of the best backpacking dog tents currently available.
6. Coleman Steel Creek
What better way to end the list than with another tent from the Coleman group. The Coleman SteelCrack dome tent is tailored for beginners with its easy set-up and dismantling.
For a tent that can hold up to 6 fully grown adults, the Coleman Steelcrack tent is pretty lightweight and suitable for car camping and backpacking. Its body is made of a highly durable, waterproof (WeatherTec) and lightweight polyester fabric.
To prove that Coleman had beginners in mind when building this thing, it has specific fast-pitch features like color-coded poles and pole hubs, making the set-up a breeze. It also has a reflective coating on the tent cords, which reduces your chances of tripping over them and causing damage to the tent or your body.
- Highly durable build quality
- WeatherTec waterproofing
- Some backpackers may find it heavy
As usual, Coleman made a great tent suitable for backpacking and car camping. Some backpackers may, however, find it challenging to move around easily with this on their back.
Factors to Consider When Shopping for the Best Tent for Camping with Dogs – A Detailed Buyer’s Guide
Camping or backpacking with a dog has its peculiarities. This is mainly because even the best-trained dogs cannot communicate efficiently with their owners. This can be an issue, particularly if they’re being startled or disturbed by something that may not be immediately apparent to you.
Also, especially when your dog isn’t familiar with the outdoor setting, its reaction may be unpredictable and get apprehensive, resulting in the damage of weakly-built tents. For these reasons, this buyer’s guide is tailored considering their unpredictability and other factors like additional space and vestibules.
I think it would also be necessary to point out that all the items featured on my “best tents for camping with dogs” list passed all the criteria I would list subsequently, even though some did better than the others hence their inclusion in lower parts of the list.
Consider the following when shopping for your dog friendly tents:
Nature of the tent body material
The claws of your dog are at least ten times sharper than your sharpest fingernail. This means that there is a tendency for the dog to tear through the sides of tents with poor construction, particularly when they get restless.
This means that you should go for thick and durable fabrics, preferably one made out of cotton/canvas. But this would translate to more weight, which can make backpacking or hike a tad more complicated.
You can also trim your dog’s nails with nail clippers or a nail grinder before embarking on your camping trip.
Be sure to avoid the extra-cheap, too-good-to-be-true priced tents because most times, they are made from low-quality materials that would be more suitable for single human use.
Keep these two characteristics of fabrics in mind when making your choice (in general, the higher they are, the better):
● Denier Rating (D)
The tent’s “Denier rating” can be used to measure the thickness and durability of the material. Strictly speaking, it is the thickness of each strand within the tent’s body.
One denier or 1D is approximate to the thickness of one strand of silk. This means that a 20D fabric features strands that are as thick as 20 strands of silk wound together.
Generally speaking, you should go for a tent with higher denier ratings, even higher when camping with dogs. This translates to a thicker, more durable, and water-resistant fabric.
● Thread Count (T)
This refers to the number of horizontal and vertical threads per square inch of tent material. The higher the T rating, the softer material is, and it is way more pleasing to the touch.
A material with a high T and D rating would be expected to have high levels of water-resistance and durability, making them more suitable for a camping trip with your dog.
Size of the tent
A rule I like to follow when going camping is that I try to go with a tent that has an additional one-person capacity to what I would’ve usually been comfortable with if I was camping solo.
For instance, if I am comfortable in a one- to two-person tent, I generally take a tent with a capacity of 2-3 people when camping with my dog. This would lessen the dog’s tendency to get claustrophobic and give it ample space to move around a bit without affecting your comfort.
There are some tents (usually highly-priced) that have additional smaller rooms for dogs and other pets. Still, some dogs may find it difficult to fall asleep in a separate strange room, mainly if the dog is accustomed to sleeping in the same room with you at home.
Number of doors on the tent
Easy access in and out of your tent is important for both you and your dog. This can be quite difficult to accomplish in the smaller 1-2 person backpacking tents as you often have to inconvenience the other person/dog when moving in or out.
I prefer to go camping with my dog in a tent that has at least two doors. This would make it easier to enter or exit the tent, which would probably wake the literal sleeping dog.
Number and size of vestibules
A vestibule is kind of like a smaller room attached to the main room of the camping tent. They form an integral part of your camping tent, particularly if you’re camping out with your little furry buddy.
If your dog is cooperative, this compartment can be ideal for it to sleep in, especially in situations like soon after swimming when its body is still wet, which would make the sleeping bag soggy and subsequently smelly.
The vestibule can also be helpful if you’re busy with chores that require no distractions like cooking. This way, your dog can lie down in the vestibule out of your way while also still seeing you and smell the food that would keep it calmer than if it was locked up in the main tent.
Considering the clumsiness of you and your dog, a tent with too many tent cords may not be the best idea. If you get a tent with too many cords, the chance of tripping over them, resulting in injury to you or your dog, and causing damage to the tent is a lot higher than a sturdy tent with fewer cords.
Access to water
It is paramount that you and your dog have easy access to water at any point in time. If your dog is sleeping with you inside the tent, you should try to keep a bowl of water outside the tent opening so that you can easily let the dog out for a drink of water at any point in time, particularly during the warmer seasons.
If the dog is sleeping in the vestibule, it’s a lot easier to keep a bowl of water out there with it. In general, just make sure your dog doesn’t have to go through many tent covering layers just to get access to water.
Breed of dog
The breed of your dog would greatly influence the type and size of tent you get. Smaller dogs like poodles would fit in any tent meant for humans as they usually have less destructive power and occupy less space.
Apart from the tent’s size, the dog’s breed would also affect the season in which you can go camping. For instance, greyhounds are known for being scared of thunderstorms, so it would be wrong to go camping with your greyhound during monsoon season. Likewise, camping out with a lightly coated dog during winter months would be far from ideal unless provision is made for extra heating, which would increase your overall load.
The breed of dog also affects the type of material that your tent’s body is made of predominantly. For instance, a polyester or nylon tent would be unsuitable for a dog like a husky with a thick fur coat as they require a lot more ventilation, especially in the summer months.
Where do dogs sleep while camping?
Most times, the dogs sleep in the tent with you. Some dogs may prefer sleeping just outside the tent on a blanket and even more rarely in a separate tent or a car with the glasses partially wound down.
Can dogs sleep in a tent?
Yes, they can. I would recommend placing a sleeping pad under the sleeping bag if you’re having difficulties getting your dog to relax. If this doesn’t work, maybe a vestibule will.
Can I get a good low-budget tent for camping with dogs?
There’s a wide range of spacious tents available on the market that would suit camping with dogs across all budget brackets. But I would suggest saving more and increasing your budget if you plan to use the sleeping bag for a long time.
Do dogs get cold while camping?
Apart from the dogs specially bred to withstand low temperatures like the Alaskan Malamute, most dogs would get cold like humans, particularly when they don’t have a thick fur coat. You can tell your dog is cold when it’s shivering or whimpering, but as humans, this can also be a sign of fear.
At what age can I take my puppy camping?
It’s not like there’s a hard and fast rule or anything, but I would suggest waiting a minimum of five months before taking your puppy camping. By this time, it has all its required shots and has gained some mental development to understand at least a little bit of its training.
Will the dog feel suffocated inside the tent?
If you get a too small tent or that doesn’t have adequate ventilation, there is a tendency for your dog to feel kind of claustrophobic. And once dogs get claustrophobic, they get restless, which can basically ruin the rest of your camping trip.
Camping is a great and fun way to spend your free time with friends and family, and with your dog, it becomes a million times more fun as long as you have the right gear. So, you can either pick one of my recommended best tent for camping with dogs available in 2021 based on your primary needs or conduct your personal research based on criteria in my buyer’s guide.