Though there are concerns raised about crate training, when done effectively, it can be very helpful to both you and your dog.
Crate training does not only provide your puppy with safety, it also provides you peace of mind at home.
Here, we will set your mind on crate training your puppy and help you assess if this is something that fits you and your fur-baby.
Choosing the best crate for your dog
"No matter what you choose for your pup, always remember that the crate should not be small enough that he can no longer move properly."
The first thing to crate training, is of course, having the right crate. There are plastic crates and metal dog crates available. The plastic ones offer more privacy for your pup and is good for a little bit of travel. While metal dog crates provides your pup high level of ventilation and visibility while inside. They can also be collapsible which is a great option for your fast-growing pup. With metal dog crates, you can just purchase a bigger size already and just close off the remaining extra space while they're small.
No matter what you choose for your pup, always remember that the crate should not be small enough that he can no longer move properly. It should also not become too large that he can lie down on one side and soil the other side
Introduce slowly crate training
Puppies are free-spirited and whatever limits them to run and play free everyday can be viewed as a punishment. For crate training to be successful, introduce the crate slowly to your pup. Place the crate somewhere near where your dog usually spends his time and just leave the crate door open. Your pup will become curious and will soon explore the crate.
Do not ever force your dog to step inside the crate immediately and force him to become familiar with it asap. This will scare him away. To encourage him to explore the crate, you can place treats or his favorite toy near it.
Start your pup's 'meals on bed'
Now your pup must've probably found comfort in going in, out and chilling for some time in the crate and has gotten himself quite familiar with it (his soon-to-be new home!), you can now start feeding him inside.
When he is eating, begin closing the door and open the door as soon as he finishes eating. From there you can then increase the time of your pup inside the crate for up to 10 minutes.
Your pup will probably yelp during this stage and this could be a sign that you've moved too fast with the training. You need to return back to the length of time inside the crate where he's comfortable and doesn't cry.
Move on to longer crating periods
If your dog no longer yelps and shows no signs of fear or anxiety, you can now increase the time they're inside the crate. If he makes it the whole time without crying, praise him and offer treats.
Repeat this process a few times a day until he's ready for you to be out of sight. By then, you can begin leaving him whenever you're out to do/get something for a couple of hours.
Depending on the given circumstances of your availability for crate training your pup, lifestyle, etc., there are other ways you can prevent him from peeing/pooping in all the wrong places in your house and still give him the freedom he deserves.
Doggie Playpens. These are also called exercise pens. Available in many sizes, you can create a little area for your puppy within a room. They are larger than crates and provides your dog a more open area.
Fenced Yard. If you have a spacious lawn, you can secure a fence, and keep your dog outside. Just make sure he has a kennel /dog house to give him shade or protect him when it rains.
Dog Diapers / Belly Bands / Pee Pads. These are great options if you keep your dog inside his crate and don't want him to soil it. Dog diapers, belly bands and pee pads give your dog the freedom to pee and poop and still keep his crate clean.
You, of all people, should know how crate training will help you and your pup in many ways. Put that game face on to begin training and see how easier life gets when you and your pup are both healthy and happy!
"Dog diapers, belly bands and pee pads give your dog the freedom to pee and poop and still keep his crate clean."