Crate Training – It’s a GREAT THING!

If this looks familiar, think about crate training your dog!

Crate training

Crate training your dog is an essential in puppy training and keeping your dog safe.  Dogs cannot think like a person and, therefore, can be a hazard to themselves!  Do you feel bad that your dog is locked up?  Don’t!  Having them crated keeps them safe.  And if they are properly introduced to a crate, they will enjoy having a space of their own and will seek it out, when they want to relax.
Do you feel bad keeping your dog safe from harm?  Absolutely not!  You would do anything to protect your dog and keep him safe.  Would you feel terrible if your dog seriously injured himself by eating something that is toxic for him?  Of course you would!  So when you think about crating your dog, just picture the safety and well being you are providing by giving them their own space where they can relax their body and rest their brain.

3 Reasons why Crate Training Your Dog keeps them happy and healthy!

1.  Potty Training
The biggest reason for crate training a dog is potty training.  The idea is to keep them in a crate that is sized perfectly to their body size so that they do not have an accident in their space.  Dogs have no problem going to the bathroom in your home, but they do not like having accidents in “their home!”  Your dog will learn bladder control with crate training and this will get them on a regular schedule, rather than just going whenever nature calls.  It really helps expedite the potty training process and makes everyone’s lives much better.
2.  Limits Destructive Chewing
Puppies are prone to chewing.  Crate training a puppy will restrict them from chewing inedible objects which ultimately keeps them safe.  If a dog is left home alone or without stimulation, he will take matters into his own paws and find ways of entertaining himself.  A favorite method of entertainment is chewing on things that are not supposed to touch!  Dogs can become destructive if bored or fixate on chewing things they shouldn’t, keep them safe by crating them.
3.  Provides Security
Most dogs sleep the majority of the day and, therefore, do not need the space of an entire house to take a nap.  If a dog has too much space, he may become anxious/nervous being left alone.  This type of anxiety known as separation anxiety can lead to destructive behavior.  Crating a dog with separation anxiety usually keeps them calm and provides them with a safe place to relax.

Types of Crates

Dog crates come in different sizes, colors, and styles. There are molded-plastic crates and the open-wire types which have a removable plastic tray on the bottom.  Soft-sided crates.  And even decorative crates that are made to mimic furniture.

Molded Plastic

For dogs who prefer a cozy space with less distraction, the molded-plastic would be the best choice. Just note that they are not able to be folded up so having room for a larger crate like this can be tricky.  And you are not able to divide a molded plastic crate into smaller sections for a smaller dog.

Wire Crates

Wire crates are the most popular because many of them fold up and are easy to transport and/or store in an out of sight location.  These crates come with metal dividers so that your puppy can grow into their crate.  You do not want to give a puppy too much space in their crate because if they have an extra inch or so, they will use it to do their business!

Soft-Sided Crates

Soft-sided crates are similar to the molded-plastic crates because they provide a more enclosed area that helps dogs to relax and be in a cozier space.  They are able to be folded up so they are similar to a wire crate as far as ‘putting them away’ and transporting is concerned.  However, the biggest difference is because it is soft-sided, dogs can easily break out of this crate, if they put their minds to it.  It is pretty much just fabric so if they keep scratching at it, they will eventually compromise the fabric and break free!  So they are not the best choice for a dog with separation anxiety.

Decorative Crates

Decorative crates are great if space is limited in your home.  They are made to look like furniture.  As a result, it is hard to tell that this is actually a dog crate in your living room!  Decorative crates are the most expensive, but to be expected since it is considered furniture.  Keep in mind, these crates usually do not have dividers so it would be best to get this for your dog, when they are fully grown.  And, of course, they are not able to be folded up.

What Size To Choose

The size of your dog should determine the size of their crate.  There should be enough room for him to stand up, turn around, and lie down comfortably.  The crate is a place where your dog can relax, sleep, and basically just chill out.  It is not supposed to provide them with room to be rowdy.

When picking a crate, keep in mind the size your dog will eventually be (not their size at the time you get a crate).  A crate that comes with a divider is ideal for crate training a puppy.  The divider allows you to limit your puppy’s space and as they grow, the divider can be adjusted to give them more space.  The MidWest Life Stages Folding Metal Dog Crate is a great choice for puppies because the crate grows with them!

crate training

Don’t Use The Crate For Punishment

It is important to remember that whatever crate you choose, never use the crate as punishment.  Their crate should be their own private home where they feel comfortable to relax.  If you associate it with punishment, it bring about anxious feelings.  Make their crate comfy, cozy, and serene.  Both you and your dog will have peace of mind!