Why Crate Training Your Pup Is So Important
Many people still believe that dog crates are cruel. I used to be one of those people until I actually a) got a dog b) bought a crate. I soon realised that crates and crate training are vitally important when bringing a new pup into your home. My dog quickly came to love his crate, he reveled in the fact that he had his own little ‘den’. I’d go as far as to say that a dog crate is THE most important and useful thing that I have ever bought for my Labrador.
The main reasons why you should consider crate training your dog:
- A dog crate is an excellent housebreaking tool. I’ll go into this in more detail later.
- A crate can provide a safe haven for your puppy so when he or she is feeling a little scared or anxious then he or she will have a safe refuge.
- Dog crates are also a perfect solution to puppies that become overexcited. All you have to do is put your puppy inside the crate in order to help him relax.
- Safety and peace of mind. Personally, this was the main reason I bought a crate for my dog. If your dog has to be left in the house unattended for a few hours, then having a crate is a stress-free way for you to be gone from the house and not worry about your puppy getting into trouble around the home, injuring herself or soiling the carpet.
- Dog crates are also a great way to feed your puppy in case he becomes easily distracted. Simply put his food bowl inside and off he goes in an enclosed area where he can focus on eating his meal.
Why you should use a crate to housetrain your pup
I can think of no better way to housetrain a pup, crate training gets the job done quickly (in most cases) and easily. Dogs don’t soil the area in which they sleep. So, when you are housetraining a puppy using a crate, she will alert you during the night when she needs to go outside to do her ‘business’. Okay so this will mean you have to get up and let her out into the yard but that’s all part of owning and housebreaking a pup. If she wasn’t in a crate, chances are she’d simply eliminate wherever she pleased, leaving a nice surprise for you to clean up in the morning!
Having the right dog crate when you start housetraining a new puppy is vital. If the crate is too large, she might be tempted to eliminate at one end of the crate and sleep in the other. Some dog crates come with a divider panel. This is a great idea because it allows you to buy a larger crate but gives you the freedom to reduce the amount of space within the crate while your pup is still small. The crate essentially grows with your dog. I would strongly recommend the Midwest Life Stages Dog Crate. They cost a little bit more but are well worth it!
And here are a few more tips when it comes to crate training:
- Make sure that you get the appropriate size crate based on your dog’s height and width. This is especially important if you are housebreaking your puppy with a dog crate. If the box is too large then your puppy may use the bathroom on one side, but keep sleeping on the other side, which defeats the purpose of crate training in terms of potty training. If you are looking to buy a dog crate that your Labrador can grow into then I’d recommend bying a crate measuring approximately 42″ long x 28″ wide x 31″ high.
- If you have a fast-growing puppy, then consider buying a large crate that is meant for an adult dog but that has a divider built into it. This way you can divide the crate in half so that your puppy will be able to lie down comfortably and still be able to turn around if needed. A divided dog crate can also be used for crate training larger puppies by removing the division bracket.
- Kit your dogs crate out with comfortable bedding and perhaps a toy. You need to make your dogs crate into a place she’s happy to spend some time in. Dogs like their comforts as much as we do and a hard metal or plastic floor won’t be at all appealing to your pup. If you leave your dog in her crate with a toy, make sure it’s not a toy that she can chew and destroy. She could easily choke on small parts of the toy in your absence.
- Never use the crate as a way to punish your dog. If you do this, your pup will seen begin to associate time in her crate with being punished.
If you’re considering crate training your dog, there’s some good reviews of popular dog crates here.
EASY CRATE TRAINING is a 30 page, no nonsense guide to quickly and successfully crate training your dog. This superb, easy to follow e-book covers the following:
- Why you should crate train your dog
- How to crate train a puppy
- How to crate train an older dog
- Housetraining your puppy
- What items you should place inside your dogs crate
- Potential crate training problems and how to deal with them
- Crate training tips and tricks
- A list of useful crate training resources
The EASY CRATE TRAINING e-book comes in PDF format and costs just $10.
25% of this will be donated to Labrador Rescues.