Why Crate Train a Dog?

It is important to crate train a dog so that there is a certain amount of control over the dog and for his safety. A dog that is crate trained is generally a well-trained and obedient dog as well. Placing a dog in a crate may be necessary in order to protect him from potentially dangerous circumstances. Providing security and protection are the only reasons for crate training a dog. Shutting a dog into a crate as a form of punishment is prohibited.

Crating a Dog Ensures Security

A crate offers security to a dog since he will learn to consider it as his “den” or sanctuary. When feeling frightened or threatened, he can retreat to his crate. The crate will also offer protection from potentially dangerous situations, such as poisons, dangerous household and/or garden chemicals, electrical wires, chewing on furniture as well as other dangers. The crate will offer safety in the event of travel by plane, train, car or ship; during hotel stays; in the event of illness; preventing “potty” accidents; for housebreaking; and for teaching house rules.

Selecting a Crate for the Dog

A crate should be large enough for the dog to stand up and turn around. If you are selecting a crate for your puppy to grow into, you will have to block off the extra space so that he does not soil at one end and sleep at the other end. A dog or puppy may bark, whine or pace to be allowed out; however, crate training requires practice and patience depending upon the age and temperament of the animal. Be especially observant that the barking and pacing does not indicate the need to relieve himself. A dog will usually relieve himself every 4 hours. ”Holding it” any longer can produce kidney or bladder problems.

Dog Crate Training Takes Time

Crate training takes time. By coaxing the dog or puppy into the crate with treats or a favorite toy or blanket will make the experience easier and less stressful. At first, allow him to come and go at will, praising him each time he enters on his own with a reassuring tone in your voice. Position the crate in a high traffic area so he does not feel abandoned. Gradually increase the time in the crate. This may take days or weeks with progress and setbacks throughout the process. The experience must be pleasant in order to be successful.

Dos And Don’ts of Crate Training

Never use a collar on a dog that is housed in a crate in the event it may get caught. Never crate a sick dog or when the outside temperature is high. Always leave water inside a crate in an anti-tip bowl. Do not allow the dog to eat or drink anything one hour prior to being crated. Ensure crated dogs receive enough exercise since lying around in a crate all day can allow the dog to gain weight. Do not disturb him while he is in the crate. Do not react immediately if he barks or whines to get out. Instead, wait a little bit of time to see if he needs to relieve himself or if he just wants out.