For new dog owners, the question of crate training their dog is often one that seems a little confusing.
Off the cusp, it may seem like an inhumane thing to do. After all, you wouldn’t want to be trained to enter a single room at any given time – for any length of time. However, dogs have a different instinct and nature, which makes crate training appropriate.
You may wonder, is crate training good for your dog? In fact, crate training is very good for your dog and for you.
Natural den instincts.
Crate training is actually a fairly ingrained instinct within dogs.
If trained properly, they will treat their crate similar to how a wild animal would treat their den. It is their home, their safe place.
If your dog is afraid of things such as the vacuum or fireworks, you’ll often find them in their crate when they hear either one. While you never want to see your dog scared, it is actually reassuring if you find them in their crate during these situations because it means you have trained your dog properly.
One of the main benefits of using their natural den habits, is that they won’t soil their dens.
Your dog should have enough room to stand up, turn and lie down in virtually any position within their crate. However, they should not be given enough room to soil in one corner of the crate and completely avoid it by walking to the other side of the crate.
Using a crate is a great way to potty-train your puppies. Even a puppy’s natural instinct is to hold it as long as they can so that they don’t make a mess up their crate.
Good for boarding.
Another reason that crate training is good for dogs is that it prepares them should you ever have to leave them with a family member, friend, or board them in a kennel.
While your intentions may be to never leave your dog overnight, there stands a good chance that you will have to at some point in time.
If your dog is not crate trained, this can be an extremely traumatic experience for them. Not only is their human gone longer than normal, but they are now locked inside a crate that they are not familiar with.
If your dog is crate trained, having someone else watch them is much easier.
While their human may be gone longer than usual, they have their safe “home” to lay in.
A lot of doggy daycares and kennels will have guests bring in their own crates since the dog is familiar with it. This gives the dog a sense of comfort when away from its owner.
Having a crate trained dog is also a good thing for those quick trips out.
Whether you are out meeting with friends or running errands, leaving your dog alone in the house can be a bad idea. This holds especially true if it is a puppy or relatively young dog.
Curiosity will win out even the most well-trained of dogs. This could mean tipped over trash cans, unrolled toilet paper rolls, or even damaged furniture.
If your dog is crate trained, you can have them in their crate while you are away from your home. This will definitely prevent your home from being destroyed and allows you to remain in control of your dog.
If you aren’t there to reinforce positive behavior or stop negative behavior, your dog’s great training will be disrupted.
Not a form of punishment.
One of the key mistakes new dog owners make when crate training is using it as a form of punishment. This is the last thing that you want to do.
It is essentially the dog’s bedroom.
If you start using the crate as punishment, that is what the dog will begin to associate the crate with. For example, if your dog urinates on the floor and the first thing you do is scold them and force them into their crate, they will associate the crate with a bad experience.
Now, the next time you want them to go in their crate because you are leaving for a couple of hours, they might refuse to enter it because they feel like they are being punished.
Always use positivity when leading the dog into their crate so that they enjoy going inside of it.