Crate Training Puppies
For sure the number one concern for a family raising a new puppy is how to crate train, or hose break, their puppy. This article will start you in the right direction and hopefully lead to success. Be patient with your new fur baby, and don’t give too much freedom, too soon, and you should have a trained puppy in two to three months.
Choose a crate that is just big enough for your dog to stand, sit, and turn-around comfortably. If the crate is too big it may encourage them to soil in it, making house training more difficult. Select a good location for the crate. In your bedroom is good at night, but while you are home during the day, it's best to have the crate near people. Dogs are social pack animals, and don’t want to be excluded from their new family.
Tie the door open or take the door off at first. Let the dog notice the crate and examine it if he wishes. Throw toys or treats in to make the crate more interesting for the dog. Reward him with positive language when he goes in and pet him while he is in the crate. Begin feeding the dog in the crate to make him comfortable with it. Once the dog is comfortable going into the crate (this could take from an hour to several weeks to achieve), you can start feeding outside the crate, and begin closing the door for short periods of time while you are right there.
If the dog whines or barks to get out, don't let him out and don't sweet-talk him. Wait until there is a moment when he isn't whining, then you can let him out. If you let him out while he is whining, you are teaching him that whining works with you. Crate training is most effective when it isn't rushed. If the dog is uncomfortable at a particular step, back up to the previous step.
Once the dog accepts the door closed while you are there, begin leaving the room for short periods and gradually lengthening the time you are gone. Having safe toys in the crate is useful during this step. Remember when you close the dog in the crate remove collars and leads so they cannot choke by getting them caught on the crate.
Close the dog in at bedtime and let it out first thing in the morning. If you are house training a young puppy, you will probably be going outside in the middle of the night for a week or so. Whenever you take your eyes off the puppy you need to have him back in the crate. The key to success is to limit the opportunities for accidents. And to always be there watching when and if there are accidents, in order to give a verbal correction letting him know that he went in the wrong place. As a new puppy, he will be spending just as much time in the crate as he is out of the crate. The crate is a tool and should be used very often to achieve success. Keep the puppy on a steady routine of going out to potty. Have him go out the same door every time. Visit the same spot outside every time. And praise your puppy verbally, and sometimes with treats too, immediately after he finishes his business.
One final tip- never put the dog in the crate as punishment. You want the dog to think of the crate as a positive and comfortable place to stay. This is his new den not a time out spot. Good luck.
Visit again soon. We will be discussing how to wee wee pad your puppy as another option for small breeds, and also elderly or disabled dogs.