Crate Training

March 11, 2014

Providing your puppy or dog with an indoor kennel or crate can satisfy many dogs' need for a den-like enclosure. Besides being an effective housebreaking tool (because it takes advantage of the dog's natural reluctance to soil its sleeping place), it can also help to reduce separation anxiety, to prevent destructive behavior (such as chewing furniture), to keep a puppy away from potentially dangerous household items (i.e., poisons, electrical wires, etc.), and to serve as a mobile indoor dog house which can be moved from room to room whenever necessary.

The Cost of Not Buying a Crate

1. your shoes & boots

2. books & magazines

3. your plants

4. your livingroom furniture

5. throw rugs and carpet

6. electric, telephone and computer wires

 

Ultimately, the real cost is your dog's safety and your peace of mind.

 

 Alternative Method Of Confining Your Puppy

Use a small to medium-sized room that has a non-porous floor (no carpet!). Set up the crate on one end, the food and water a few feet away, and some newspaper or wood pellets (approx. 3'x3' area) on the other end of the room, opposite of their food, water and crate. Confine your puppy to this room or area using a 3 ft. high, safety-approved child's gate rather than shutting off the opening by a solid door. Don't forget to puppy proof the area!!!

 

Important Reminders

Collars: Always remove your puppy or dog's collar before confining in the crate. Even flat buckle collars can occasionally get struck on the bars or wire mesh of a crate. If you must leave a collar on the pup when you crate him (e.g.: for his identification tag), use a safety "break away" collar.

Warm Weather: Do not crate a puppy or dog when temperatures reach an uncomfortable level. Cold water should always be available to puppies, especially during warm weather. Never leave an unsupervised dog on a terrace, roof or inside a car during warm weather. Also, keep outdoor exercise periods brief until the hot weather subsides.

 

Be certain that your puppy has gone potty before being crated. Be sure that the crate you are using is not too large. Rarely does a pup or dog eliminate in the crate if it is the right size and the dog is an appropriate age to be crated a given amount of time. If your pup/dog continues to eliminate in the crate, the following may be the causes:

 

Furnishing Your Puppy's Crate

Toys and Treats:

  Place your puppy's favorite toys at the far end opposite the door opening. Do not include stuffed animals. Toys should always be inedible and large enough to prevent being swallowed. You may also place small bit size chunks of cheese or dog treats in the crate. This is used initially to entice the puppy to explore and accept the crate. After they have determined that the crate is a safe place and now part of their den you can stop placing treats.

Bedding:

  Place a towel or blanket in the crate to give your pup a soft place to rest. If the puppy chews it up, remove it. If the puppy pottys on it, remove it until to accidents are under control. Do not place a blanket or pillow in the crate that has stuffing.Location of Crate

 

Whenever possible, place the crate in a central room of your home. This will encourage the pup to go inside it without feeling lonely when you go out.

 

Introducing the Crate to Your Puppy

Occasionally throughout the day, drop small pieces of cheese or dog biscuits in the crate. While the pup is investigating his new crate, he or she will discover the treats, which will reinforce his or her positive associations with the crate.

 

In the beginning, praise and pet your pup when he or she enters. Do not try to push, pull or force the puppy into the crate.

 

Overnight exception: You may need to place your pup in his crate and shut the door upon retiring. Once the pup is comfortable with the crate, try leaving him or her in the crate while you are home.

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