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Just Another Dog Crate Training

Posted by marco

Here is how to crate train your dog step by step. Dog Crate training can be invaluable. Keep reading to learn more.
Crate training a dog can be invaluable. There is a lot of misconception about this way to train your dog. Let’s see how it works and if this is really as inhumane as some people are beleiving.

If you’re not familiar with the term, a dog crate is a rectangular enclosure with a floor, a top and four sides. A door, usually called a “gate,” constitutes the front side of the crate. Crates can be made from a variety of materials, but most are made of wire, molded plastic or a combination of both.

Just Another Dog Crate TrainingThe crate’s purpose is to provide a safe, secure place where you can confine your dog for short periods. A dog should never be confined to his crate to punish him. Instead, a crate should be used for training purposes (when you want to housetrain your dog, for example), to protect your household goods from potential damage while you’re away, to provide a place for your dog to sleep, and for increased safety while you’re traveling with your dog.

Just Another Dog Crate TrainingSome people believe that crate training a dog is cruel and inhumane. That belief could not be more mistaken, especially if the crate training is done properly. The reality is that once your dog becomes accustomed to the crate, he’ll go into it voluntarily and love spending time there.

The Importance of Crate Training a Dog

Just Another Dog Crate TrainingEvery year, millions of people go through the process of crate training a dog. In short, crate training involves teaching a dog to accept his crate as a good place to be. Crate training has a number of benefits for every dog owner – and every dog. Once your dog accepts his crate as his den, he’ll be less likely to experience separation anxiety when you leave the home. As a result, he’ll be much less likely to bark incessantly or destroy household items while you’re away.

A dog crate can also be an extremely helpful tool when you’re housetraining a new puppy, and it gives your dog a comfortable place to sleep if you don’t want him on your bed or other furniture.

Crate Training a Dog – The Process
Crate training a dog involves a number of steps, but everything begins with choosing the right crate and then introducing the dog to the crate properly. If you do things right, your dog will not only go into his crate voluntarily, he’ll enjoy being there. In fact, he will come to think of his crate as his own little “home” – a private haven where he’ll feel safe.

1. Select the Right Size. Your dog’s crate should be just large enough for him to sleep in and be able to turn around, but he should not be able to take more than a step or two while he’s inside. If the crate is any larger, a puppy will be tempted to use one end of the crate as a place to eliminate. As long as your dog is able to turn around inside, putting him in the crate will not be inhumane. Once you choose the right crate, make it comfortable for your dog by lining the bottom with something soft. Put a safe toy or two inside while you’re at it.

2. Find the Right Spot. Place the crate in a quiet area of your home. Many dog owners place their crates in their bedrooms. That way, your dog will have a nice place to nap in, but he’ll also have a safe, quiet place to escape to if he becomes overwhelmed by children, hectic household activities and so forth.

Just Another Dog Crate Training3. Introduce Your Dog to the Crate Slowly and Gently. Begin by opening the crate’s gate and placing treats inside. Don’t force or coerce your dog to go in – instead, let him wander in on his own to find the treats. Once he goes in, don’t close the gate. Let him enter and exit whenever he wants. Once he’s comfortable going in and out, you can close the gate with your dog inside for very short periods of time. This slow, gentle introduction will make sure your dog doesn’t feel trapped and will teach him good things happen when he’s in his crate – he gets the treats.

Just Another Dog Crate Training4. Stay Nearby at First. Until your dog is perfectly comfortable being inside the crate, stay within sight. If you close him inside and leave the room before he’s used to the crate, he’ll probably think he’s being punished. Your presence during the crate training process will comfort him and make him feel safe despite being confined. Don’t confine him inside for more than an hour or two until you’re certain he’s fully acclimated. However, once he’s accustomed to the crate, you can start closing him inside for gradually lengthening periods. Eventually you’ll be able to crate your dog for the entire work day or overnight.

Just Another Dog Crate Training5. Don’t Reward Misbehavior by Letting Him Out. If your dog starts whining, crying or barking while he’s inside the crate, letting him out is the worst mistake you can make, because you’ll be teaching him that he’ll be able to get out if he misbehaves. Instead of letting him out when he starts misbehaving, wait until he’s been quiet and calm for five minutes or so. Once he calms down and you let him out, praise him lavishly and give him a treat to reward him for being calm when he’s inside the crate.

6. Unless He’s being Confined, Keep the Gate Open. If your dog is able to wander in and out of the crate on his own, he’ll probably start viewing his crate as his den – a spot where he can sleep safely and comfortably. You can increase the likelihood your dog will adopt the crate as his den by making it cozy and comfortable and by leaving treats inside occasionally.

Just Another Dog Crate TrainingCrate training a dog is easy, provided you introduce your dog to the crate gradually, make it comfortable for him to be in, and never use it as punishment. When done properly, crate training almost always results in a dog that loves being in the crate, and most dog owners love using crates because they can reduce the occurrence of canine anxiety, property destruction and incessant barking while they’re away from home. They can also be invaluable aids during housetraining and other types of training aside from dog crate training.

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