Crate training is an important training that every dog should go through. This training is one that makes use of your dog’s natural tendencies. It is focused on the fact that your dog’s den is its crate. When in this crate, it has to be comfortable and secure. In the absence of a crate, your dog might spend so much time running around your house and destroying things before it gets completely trained.
As your dog learns to abide by rules, you will need to keep it in a crate. Furthermore, if you intend to move it around in your car, a crate will come in handy.
You should make use of a Crate the Right Way
A crate can do a lot for a dog, as well as its owner. It, however, should not be treated as an immediate answer to lots of the challenges associated with owning a dog. When a crate is used in the right way, the dog, as well as its owner, will benefit very greatly. However, if it is used wrongly, it could make a dog feel frustrated and trapped.
There are tips that can help you get the best out of the use of a crate to train your dog. These tips are;
On no occasion should your dog crate be used as a means of punishing your dog. If you make use of it to punish your dog, it will become scared of getting into its crate.
Your dog is supposed to spend some time in its crate. It should not be in a crate at a stretch for too long. If your dog spends so much time in a crate, it will not get the right amount of exercise and this will definitely have a toll on its health. Beyond having a bad effect on your dog’s health, when your dog spends so much time in its cage, it might not have the opportunity to relate with humans as much as it should. This can make it anxious and constantly depressed.
We live in a very busy world. Due to this, it might be difficult for you to have enough time to get your dog out of its crate occasionally. Nonetheless, if you have to alter your schedule to get this done, then, go ahead and alter your schedule. If, however, you try to alter your schedule but things do not fall into place, the next alternative will be to hire a pet sitter. Furthermore, you can register your dog in a daycare facility. Doing any of these will help you keep your dog from spending too much time in its crate.
As quoted from My Dogs Top Reviews, when training a puppy, you should not leave it in a crate for more than three consecutive hours. The reason for this is it is almost impossible for puppies to control their bladders, as well as bowels for a long time. This rule does not apply to puppies alone. If a grown dog is being housetrained, it should not be kept in a crate for more than three consecutive hours. This is not because older dogs cannot control their bowel and bladder. When dogs are grown they are able to control their bladder and bowels. However, dogs that are housetrained do not know they should do so.
Your dog should only be kept out of a crate when it has your trust and you are certain it won’t go around damaging things.
How to Choose the Right Crate
There are various types of crates available to every dog owner. Some of these crates are;
- Collapsible, metal pens
- Plastic (flight kernels)
- Fabric on a collapsible, rigid frame.
In addition to being of different types, there are various crate sizes for different dogs. To buy the right crate size for your dog, you must know how tall your dog is when it stands. The ideal crate for a dog is one that is high enough for it to stand and contains the right space for it to turn around. It is easy to select a crate size for a dog that is already grown. However, if your dog is not fully grown, you must have an idea of how large it will be when it’s fully grown. This way, you will not struggle to choose a crate size that will accommodate it.
When you buy a crate for a dog that is not fully grown, you will need to come up with ways to keep it from making use of the excess space in its crate. This way you can stop it from eliminating in one part of the cage.
The Process of Crate Training Your Dog
There is no definite set time for crate training a dog. It is a process that can be as short as a couple of days and as long as some weeks. The factors that affect how long crate training will last are your dog’s experiences, age, and temperament.
To get the best out of crate training your dog, you must take things gradually. The following steps will help you crate train your dog properly
Get Your Dog Introduced to Its Crate
At the start, the crate should be placed in a part of the house where family members spend a lot of time. The floor of the crate should be padded with a soft towel. Curious dogs might begin spending time in the crate on their own. However, some dogs will need to be encouraged to get into the crate.
Give Your Dog its Food in the Crate
This is one way to make your dog comfortable in the crate. For an anxious dog, you need to position the food just at the point they will feel comfortable in the crate. However, for dogs that are free in the crate, you should position the food at the end of the crate.
It is okay to close the door while your dog eats its food and open it after they are done eating. You can go on with this until your dog is comfortable with spending time in the crate even after eating.
Get Your Dog to Enter the Crate without Food in the Crate
The next step is to teach your dog to get into its crate when there is no food in the crate. You can do this by pointing to the crate or by saying “Kennel”. After your dog gets into the crate, praise them and give them a treat.
Let Your Dog Spend some Time in the Crate
This is the next step to make as soon as your dog begins getting comfortable in its crate. After doing this for a while, you can go on to crate it at night. As soon as your dog gets comfortable with spending time in its crate and begins sleeping in it at night, make attempts to move it to where you want its crate positioned until it gets used to it.