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What if you are crate training an adult dog

Adult dogs who have never been crate trained may be a little more wary at first. If you’re just bringing your dog home, it’s best to start by feeding him all his meals inside the crate. On the other hand, if you’re implementing a new routine (or just moving your dog into a comfy new home) the above steps should work just fine. One popular approach with older dogs is to associate the crate with a verbal command and/or hand signal – “jump in” or whatever you like, while tossing a treat into the crate.If this is a completely new experience for your dog, he may need a few extra days to feel really comfortable with it. As with puppies, it can help if you stay within sight as you gradually lengthen the amount of time he spends in the crate. Be sure to offer occasional treats and praise, and you’ll find that you really can teach an old dog new tricks.

How to handle crying & barking

Whether young or old, most dogs will probably protest a little at the beginning. It’s normal, so don’t worry – usually, they’re just confused and want to be let out. The best thing to do in this case is simply to ignore them. As you know, dogs are just like kids, and they’ll quickly learn that they can get what they want by whining. Remember, though, that it’s possible your dog needs to “do its business” – try bringing him outside, but if he doesn’t do his thing within a few minutes, you should return him to his den until he’s ready. In either case, remember to stick to the crating time guidelines listed above for the quickest results, and try not to respond unnecessarily to whining or barking. Wait until your dog settles down before letting him out, and next time, try a slightly shorter crating time, so that your dog is let out before he begins to feel uncomfortable.

IMPORTANT: In some very rare cases, a dog may exhibit true panic in a closed crate. In such a state it’s very possible for the animal to hurt itself trying to escape – should this occur, it’s best to explore alternative methods of house training, because it’s simply not worth the stress on either dog or owner.Remember, stick to the program! Ignore barking, but adjust crating times accordingly. Keep an eye out for “legitimate” barks.

Comforting tips for dogs

  • Pet mattresses and baby blankets make great bedding, but stay away from newspaper
  • Tailor the bedding to the ambient temperature and keep the crate draft-free
  • A bottle of warm water is a great way to keep small dogs warm and comfortable at night
  • Many people swear that ticking alarm clock soothes their puppies into sleeping all night
  • Rotate your dog’s favourite toys and treats through the crate to keep things interesting
  • Choose a large enough crate for your dog to stand, lay, and turn around comfortably
  • Stick to it – dogs thrive on routine and the more predictable you are, the better results you’ll see

Comforting tips for owners

  • Remember, crate training relies on routine – keep an “elimination journal” and stick to the plan
  • Crate training helps encourage your dog to eat and sleep in his own home, minimizing messes
  • Purchase a crate large enough for your full-grown dog – you can divide it until he’s big enough
  • Keep crating times as short as possible because if your dog eliminates inside, training is set back
  • Dogs like dens. If they’re comfortable, crates naturally provide a pleasant and easy house training solution
  • Wood dog crates offer both nicer style and increased comfort over wire or metal cages; everybody wins
  • Unlike metal cages, wood dog crates are designed to last a lifetime – and to stay safe and beautiful

The truth about crate training

Some people think that crate training is really “caging”, subtly disguised. Nothing could be further from the truth!When used appropriately, crate training is easy, effective, and pleasant for both dogs and owners because it works with your dog’s natural instincts – and your desires – instead of against them. Following the tips you’ve learned in this guide will help you and your dog quickly move on from house training to developing the rewarding relationship you both want.

A few final points worth repeating:

  • a crate should never be used as a punishment
  • remember to gradually ease your dog into his new home
  • be flexible with your crate training program, but do your best to stick to it
  • dogs shouldn’t be confined for extended periods of time
  • you’ll both enjoy the benefits of this training tool for a lifetime