How to Crate Train a Puppy in 9 Steps
Crate training your puppy is a tried-and-true method for helping young puppies become housebroken and keep them safe and secure while their owner is away. You can train a puppy to go in the crate using the nine tips listed below.
Crate Training: What Is It?
The crate training takes modest efforts to teach a dog to view a crate or cage as a warm, safe place. Crates help potty train young puppies by encouraging the development of full bladder and bowel control. Additionally, they help prevent dogs from mistreating household things when you aren’t home.
Crate training is essential for the following five reasons:
Crate training is a crucial component of puppy training if you want your dog to feel at home in their crate. If you start with short periods and work up to longer ones, young puppies will gradually learn to value their crate time. There are five key benefits of crate training.
- It makes internal training easier. House training is the most effective method for potty training a puppy.
2. It protects your home. Even if you’re gone for a short period, a dog that is allowed to wander freely may harm a house. A dog that has been taught to use a crate will not damage your carpeting, furniture, or other possessions while you are away from home.
3. It protects your dog. Puppy parents can reduce the risk of their dog becoming wounded or poisoned. At the same time, they leave the house by using the excellent method of crate training. A new dog who forms a positive relationship with its crate may experience less separation anxiety when you are gone for an extended period.
4. It makes transportation easier. Driving is more straightforward when your dog is safely restrained in a crate.
5. It gets your dog ready for the kennel. Crate training helps dogs enjoy their stays at kennels and doggy hotels.
9 Steps for Dog Crate Training
Crate training a dog might take anywhere from a few days to weeks. Move slowly and avoid rushing through the dog training phases, no matter how long it takes.
- Select an appropriate dog crate. Foldable wire crates are typically the best option, except for dogs who prefer to sleep in the dark, who will prefer an enclosed plastic crate. Because they come in different sizes, you must choose the appropriate crate size. If you choose one too big, your dog can sleep on one side and go to the bathroom on the other. You’ll experience discomfort if you choose the incorrect size. Pick a crate that allows your puppy to stand up comfortably, turn around, and sleep on its back. Since you should always size your crate depending on the size of an adult dog, if you’re crate training a puppy, you’ll need to acquire a crate divider to lower the room within the crate temporarily.
- Add soft blankets and chew toys to the crate to make it more appealing. If you include some plush blankets in the crate, your dog will feel more at home. To make your dog understand that his crate is a happy place, you could also put some of his favourite toys in it. You may also use a dog bed instead of blankets, but be careful—some dogs might mistake the bed for a bathroom.
3. Choose the ideal location for the crate. Choose a room where you frequently spend a lot of time, such as the family or living room. Place the crate as close to an exterior exit once the room has been chosen. If you do things this way, your dog will have no trouble going outside and using the bathroom before entering the house.
4. Entice your dog into the crate. Open the crate door after setting some treats on the ground nearby. While your dog is standing in front of the crate, toss some treats inside and watch as he enters to consume them. While some dogs go directly into the crate, others might take a few days. No matter how long it takes, let them come in on their own without being forced. For the time being, make the crate door open at all times.
5. Feed your dog companion within the confines of the crate. For dogs already used to being there, put the food bowl in the back of the crate. If your dog is still uncomfortable being in the crate, place their meal bowl precisely at the entrance and move it further inside each lunchtime.
6. Slam the container door closed. Once your dog is comfortable eating meals in the crate, it’s time to shut the door at the beginning of mealtime. When you close the door for the first time, wait until your dog is done eating before doing so. After eating, keep the door shut for an increasing period. Even though your dog may whine about persuading you to open the door and allow them out, you must wait until they stop whining before doing so. If you cave in and let your dog out while they’re still whining, they’ll start to believe that whining is the only way to get out of the crate.
7. Permit your dog to enter the crate. Teach your puppy a command to enter the crate so you won’t always need to bribe him with treats. Point to the crate door and say “crate” or “kennel up” while holding a treat in your hand. When you’re inside, feed your dog a treat and give them praise. Start using the crate command without a treat in your hand as you go along, working your way up to not needing the treat at all.
8. Increase the time your dog spends in the crate gradually. Start by crating your dog while in the room, and work your way up to the point where you can leave the room for a short while. You can let your dog out of the crate for a limited time when you leave the house entirely once they are used to spending 30 minutes in the crate while you are away from the room.
9. Keep your dog in a crate overnight. Unlike adult dogs who have developed bladder control, puppies who aren’t housebroken will likely need to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night. Before your puppy spends its first night inside, place the crate close enough to your bedroom so that you can hear it whining. When you hear them whimper, give your housebreaking command to see whether your puppy becomes thrilled in response. If they react, make them back inside the crate after taking them outside to relieve themselves without pausing for play. If your puppy ignores your housebreaking command or you don’t believe they need to go potty, keep them in the crate for the rest of the night.