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Crating Your Dog

Crating Your Dog

It is important to train your dog to love going in their crate or kennel. The crate should be their safe place. It should be a place where they like to lounge around and hang out. I highly recommend not using the crate as a form of punishment. This will confuse your dog if you want their crate to be a safe place. For some breeds, it might be easier to train. However, Baylor took six months to adapt to his crate. The reason it took so long was because I bought him from a pet store. He was traumatized from being cooped up in a  small cage for several months.

We tried several methods to crate train Baylor. The first method was putting his food and water in his crate. Later, I found out that was a bad idea. When I came home, Baylor had spilled his water and food everywhere. Also, something could happen while you are gone and they could end up choking on their food.

The next method I used was putting treats in his crate so he would like going in there. That positive reinforcement did not last long. I think the treats only reinforced his whining behavior because he still cried whenever I left.

After that method failed, I started filling up his kong ball with peanut butter and putting it in his crate right before I left for work. I think the reason he wouldn’t whine when I put the kong in his crate was because by the time he got done eating the peanut butter, he forgot that I was not there anymore. The most important factor in crate training is being consistent in the way you are training your dog. After a month of putting peanut butter in Baylor’s kong ball, the minute Baylor saw the kong in my hand, he would immediately go in his crate.

The best thing you can do is ignore the whining. If you give into your dog’s whining, you are only reinforcing their behavior to whine. Also, I always take Baylor’s collar off before I put him in his crate. The collar could get stuck to the crate and they could choke. Just take all precautions so you don’t have to worry about anything while you are gone!

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4 thoughts on “Crating Your Dog

  1. Excellent suggestions:) Yes, do remove everything your dog is wearing when you put him in his crate. I do agree with you about crate training. Some dogs do take longer to crate train, but you have to be consistent and not use the crate as punishment.

  2. This was so helpful! I have made mistakes before of not crate training. I now feel like I know the secrets to sticking to my guns about making sure my next dog is crate trained!

  3. I have a puggle and my big question is did you have issues with biting or teething? We crate trained – so I liked reading your experiences. Just didn’t know if you experienced a lot of biting and what worked for you. Mine just bites and bites and nothing we do seems to work in getting him to stop!

    • Does your puggle bite you when you try putting him/her in their crate? Or just in general? If they are biting you, what you can do is say “Ow” really loud and show them. The tone of your voice will shock them. If they are chewing or teething in the crate, I would suggest leaving enough toys for them in the crate. I used to put a deer antler and a kong ball in the crate for Baylor. I also would leave children’s music on for him as well. I just went to Pandora and put on Barney’s playlist. It helped soothed him. Let me know if this is helpful or if you are looking for a more specific answer.

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