Every Dog Should be Comfortable in a Crate
Crate training your dog allows you to capitalize on your dog’s natural instincts to seek a comfortable, quiet, and safe environment when the environment around them becomes too loud or overwhelming. An essential tool for keeping young dogs from chewing on household items or during housetraining.
You never know when an emergency will arise that requires you to kennel your dog. It’s usually a good idea to have your dog crate trained. They are also useful when introducing more pets to your family. Crates become important equipment for crate and rotate routines.
Crate Size is Important
Get a crate that is sturdy, comfy, and the right size for your dog. Wire crates are popular because they allow for better ventilation and view.
Purchase a crate that will accommodate your adult-sized dog. If you have a puppy, you may make the crate smaller by inserting a partition. Give them extra space as they grow.
Collapsible, metal pens
Gorilla Crate – extra heavy duty
Plastic (often called “flight kennels”)
Fabric on a collapsible, rigid frame
A crate must be large enough to allow them to move about freely within it. They must be able to sit up straight without bumping their heads against the top. There must be enough space for them to spin around and stretch their legs out. Simply said, the kennel should be big and airy rather than crowded. Depending on the mature size of your Pit Bull, they may require:
Never Use a Crate for Punishment
Crates are valuable tools, dogs may come to love it, but just as you would not spend your entire life in one room of your home, they should not spend most of their time in their crate.
A Crate Should Always be Associated with Good Things!
The more the dog associates the crate with good things, the more they’ll ultimately enjoy hanging out in there. Crate training can take days or weeks, depending on your dog’s age, temperament, and past experiences.
It’s important to keep two things in mind while crate training: It should always associate the crate with something pleasant, and training should take place in a series of small steps.
TIPS & TRICKS
Some dogs take right away to a crate and others will need time to adjust to a crate. Keep it slow and steady; although the slow training may seem tedious, you may end up having to start at the very beginning again if you go too fast.
Place the crate in an area of your house where the family spends a lot of time, such as the family room. Put a soft blanket or towel in the crate. Open the door and let the dog explore the crate at their leisure. Some dogs will be naturally curious and start sleeping in the crate right away. If yours isn’t one of them:
After the introduction, begin feeding them their regular meals near the crate. This practice will create a pleasant association:
When your dog is eating their regular meals in the crate with no sign of fear or anxiety, you can confine them there for short periods while you are at home.
Once your dog can spend about 30 minutes in the crate without becoming anxious or afraid, you can begin leaving them crated for short periods when you leave the house.
Especially True for Young Dogs
Send your dog in the crate using your regular command and a treat. Initially, it may be a good idea to put the crate in your bedroom or nearby in a hallway, especially if you have a puppy. Puppies often need to go outside to eliminate during the night, and you’ll want to be able to hear your puppy when they whine about being let out. Older dogs should also initially be kept nearby, so they don’t associate it with social isolation.
Once your dog is sleeping comfortably through the night near you, you can begin to gradually move it to the location you prefer, although time spent with your dog—even sleep time—is a chance to strengthen the bond between you and your pet.
Not All Dogs Take to a Crate Easily
If your dog whines or cries while in the crate at night, it may be difficult to decide whether they’re whining to be let out of the crate, or whether they need to be let outside to eliminate. On the condition that you’ve followed the training procedures outlined above, and your dog have not rewarded them for whining in the past by being released from their crate. Try to ignore the whining. Your dog may be testing you, they’ll probably stop whining soon.
Should the Whining Continue
Should the whining continue after you’ve ignored them for several minutes, use the phrase they associate with going outside to eliminate. When they respond and become excited, take them outside. This should be a trip with a purpose, not playtime. Convinced that your dog doesn’t need to eliminate? the best response is to ignore them until they stop whining. Don’t give in; if you do, you’ll teach your dog to whine loud and long to get what they want. As long as you’ve progressed gradually through the training steps and haven’t done too much too fast, you’ll be less likely to encounter this problem. Should the problem become unmanageable, you may need to start the crate training process over again.
Attempting to use the crate to remedy separation anxiety won’t solve the problem. A crate may prevent your dog from being destructive, but they may get an injury in an attempt to escape. Resolving separation anxiety problems through counterconditioning and desensitization procedures works best. You may want to consult a professional animal-behavior specialist for help.
Courtesy in part HSUS.