I much prefer to dry dogs 100% by hand but that is not always possible, Sometimes, either because of time constraints or doggie constraints (a dog that doesnt tolerate drying well) I have to use cage dryers.
I never use a heated dryer. Don't even own one one. I use box fans, high velocity fans and floor dryers, like the DriEze blue dryer.
I also use wire crates with grated bottoms. Usually its not an issue and the dogs are easily dried using this method. The air circulates around the dog due to the grate and it makes drying efficient and safe. But then there are the ones that like to wad up in a ball prventing the air from circulating around their feet, legs and undersides making it all but impossible to dry them efficiently.
And do I have a solution for that? Yep! I do!
I have a 6 pack cage bank that has grates in the floors of each kennel. I put a floor dryer underneath it and point it UP into the cage above. Simple. I use something behind it to keep it from rocking backwards or falling down, and it works great.
Now, of course you have to be careful NOT to put another dog underneath the open bottomed cage (common sense) and I always try to trim nails before using a great to prevent accidents, but this method is safe when used as directed.
As you can see from the video clips, the air from underneath lifts the coat as it dries, adding fluff, and is soft enough to not cause tangles or distress to the dog. I have a box fan on the side of the crate adding airflow to the dog to assist with the face and the top part that might not be dry enough.
This method really works well and cuts down on drying time drastically. The hardest part is figuring out how to keep the dryer angled so that you dont find the dryer pointing at the ceiling. We use a plant stand on rollers to accomplish that.
Kermit and Katie (my models) seem to really enjoy the soft air flowing around them. Katie cannot stand up due to bad knees and being about 10 pounds overweight and Kermit was just getting a fast bath and brush so we were saving time.
I also use box fans as cage dryers for general every day use (faces, ears, dogs that stress) and the way we do it is simple. I use grooming loops to hang them from my wire crates. I bought grates for the bottom of my wire crates and keep a towel underneath the grate for pee accidents. I use wire crates, not a cage bank or vari kennels because the wire allows for more airflow and faster drying.
You can adjust them to where they are blowing DOWNWARD for drop coats or full coats, move them to the front or side, or even use two or th ree on a dog if needed. They offer soft, gentle airflow and fast drying with no stress or heat.
You can see the large Sahara dryer on the side. It creates a vortex of airflow. THe two bottom cages have grates as well and that allows for v entilation underneath the dogs, but the air starts to circulate in the room with that fan on. It will warm up the air with its motor so I keep a thermometer on the wall and check it often. HOwever, that dryer and a couple of box fans in a closed room (with heat and AC of course) creat a wind tunnel of sorts and dogs just sat in the cages without thefans will be able to dry effectively with a little lift if th eir ears or faces are just a tad damp.
To keep hair out of the fans I wrote this blog post recently Box Fan Maintenence
We use a towel underneath dogs that are not being dried from underneath, and pads once they are dry. The cages in this room double for barker cages. Barkers go behind closed doors.
I am ultra careful making sure dogs cannot get to cords. In the above photo the dog COULD have possibly gotten to the cord the way it was placed but I did this strictly for photo purposes and took it down immediately after the photo was taken.
Hope this helps someone out!