How To Crate Train Your Dog
Learning how to crate train your dog can save you a lot of headache down the road. There are times when your dog will need to be confined, and crate training is the perfect way to help your dog establish a good relationship with the crate. Remember, crate training will take time and patience but it will be well worth it. This article will show you how to properly crate train your dog.
To crate train your dog, you will need:
- dog crate
- Purchase the crate. The first step in learning how to crate train your dog is to buy a crate. Choose a crate that is large enough for your dog to turn around in. It should also have room for a bed, toys, food and water. You don't want to get a crate that is too large and roomy or your dog may feel comfortable going to the potty in it.
- Introduce the crate. Bring the crate home and place it in the room you will be in the most. You want the dog to feel comfortable exploring the crate. If it is placed in another room away from you, then the dog won't take to the crate very easily. For the first couple of days just allow your pet to come and go freely; don't try to make your dog go into the cage. Simply place the crate in its location and let the dog get used to it being in the house.
- Instruct your dog to go into the crate. Now is the time to tell your dog to go inside of the crate if it hasn't already. To make this process easier, throw treats into the crate for your dog to go after. Praise your dog when it goes inside of the crate but don't make it stay in there if it doesn't want to. Your dog will enjoy the crate more if it is filled with a cozy bed and toys. Try feeding your dog inside of the crate as well. You want to make the crate a fun and happy place.
- Confine the dog. After your dog has had time to explore and accept the crate, start confining your dog for short periods of time. This will help the dog to get used to being locked inside of the crate. When you first confine your dog, do so when you are at home and only for about five to ten minutes at a time. Praise your dog while it is in the crate and leave the room for brief periods of times.
- Gradually increase your absence. This step in crate training your dog will probably be the most difficult. Gradually increase the amount of time the dog is locked in the cage with you being out of the room. When you leave the room, tell your dog goodbye, give him a treat and leave. Don't drag out the goodbye. Your dog will probably whine and cry. Eventually, your dog will learn that you will return and he will be let out of the cage.
Return happy. When it's time to let your dog out of the cage, greet it with praise and a reward. Never leave your dog in a crate for more than three to four hours and never use the cage as a form of punishment.