Crate training your dog should always be a positive experience, whether you are considering a new puppy or perhaps you have adopted a dog who needs to learn how to become house broken. These are excellent examples of when you should introduce crate training. It can instill a routine for your dog and assist with control over their bladder. Establishing particular times for potty breaks helps your pet immensely.
A crate can become an area where your dog can feel safe and secure. A place to go when they feel anxious or tired or just wish to get away from perhaps loud noises such as a party, fireworks on the Fourth or if they are just not feeling well. As you begin crate training it is very important to ensure you don’t associate any negative experiences to the crate or the process. If you do, then your dog won’t wish to spend time there as they will view it as a punishment.
Please understand that dogs are social animals. They want to be near their “people”. Do not simply purchase a crate and stick your dog in it for the day. This is not the purpose nor is it remotely close to training. If you do not have the time and desire to spend with a social animal such as your dog then perhaps you should not be adding one to your family. Your puppy should not be spending much time in the crate. They require socialization and time with you. Don’t underestimate just how important human touch and interaction is for your dog. Some suggested guidelines on time inside a crate are: a two month old pup should not be crated longer than two hours a day. If you are going to work and still training your pet, keep in mind they will need a potty break at least mid day. Its a good idea to contact your local pet sitting service for further details on how they can help with caring for your pup if you are unable to get home during working hours.
Please make sure you are getting a crate large enough for your pet to be comfortable in. They need to be able to stand up and stretch, turn around and lie down. You will need a cushion and some chew toys to keep your pets mind active. Its even a good idea to cover the crate partially with a blanket to make it nice and dark for them. Associate praise and positive vibes to the time spent in the crate. Once they have accomplished some time in the crate and show they can hold their bladder, praise them! When they get the hang of it use it less and less as it will boost their confidence. Many pet parents begin by giving their dog a treat each time they are crated. You will be surprised how quickly your dog will go to his crate on command.
Remember, do not use a crate to “store” your pet. Use it minimally and once they have been trained, loose the crate. Make it a resting place for them, but leave it up to them. Don’t lock them away. Once they have established their routine and are house broken the crate has done its job!