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Why should you use the dog crate training method?

Why should you use the dog crate training method?

I’ve trained all of my dogs to use a crate and highly recommend it.


Is the dog crate training method humane? YES

You may look at a dog crate and find it doesn’t inspire much confidence. Don’t be too quick to judge, the dog training method is highly effective.

dog crate training



You may find that the dog crate, one that consists of a rectangular-shaped enclosure with a top, a floor, 3 sides, and a door, could just possibly be the best contraption for your dog. The dog crate training method is especially effective for puppies, although senior dogs can be trained as well.

Adopting an older dog

What do you need to implement the dog crate training method? Buy a sturdy dog crate. These crates are usually constructed of wire, wood, metal, molded plastic or a combination of these materials. You can get a ready-made crate or have it customized, for a puppy that belongs to a larger breed.

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Carlson Pink Secure and Compact Single Door Metal Dog Crate, Small
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  • For smaller breeds and puppies, up to 25 pounds

The dog crate training method recognizes the fact that all dogs whether domesticated or untamed, share a common characteristic, they need their own confined space – what we call a den. A dog crate then is the equivalent of the domesticated dog’s den.

dog crate training

Benefits of Crate Training Your Dog

When you use the dog crate training method, here are some of the beneficial results your dog and you will gain from this training:

  • As a result of the dog crate training, you and your family can enjoy time away from your dog, knowing your dog is comfortable and fine in its den. Your furniture or possessions are not in danger of being soiled, damaged or torn apart by your dog.
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  • By nature, dogs don’t like to do their business in the space they sleep in, and the crate dog training method reinforces this natural instinct.
  • With the dog crate training, your dog will be less disruptive and more pliable when you need to confine him or her in the crate. Some of these occasions when your dog needs to be out of the way, is when preparations for dinner is underway or there is a big crowd of guests for dinner.
What is the Raw Food Diet for Dogs?
  • Because of the dog crate training method, your dog won’t whine or bark incessantly when you put her or him in his or her own carry-all crate when you travel. So the dog isn’t underfoot.
How to Stop Dog Whining
Shhhh... Listen! Do You Hear The Sound Of Dog Barking?
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In order for your dog crate training to be a success, you must set rules.  Everyone in the family must remember that the crate is for the dog’s sleeping comfort.  You can put an old t-shirt and soft padding or warm snuggle safe in the bottom for the dog. But no one should ever put food or water in the dog’s bedroom/crate.

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Another way to make the dog crate training effective is to establish a “crate routine” for your dog. Put the dog in his or her crate during certain hours in a day; a good time would be his or her nap time.  

At night, place your dog’s crate in a place where you can safely leave the door open so that the puppy can relieve him or herself outside of the crate. Once this potty routine has been firmly established, you can stop using the dog crate.

Small Dog Potty Training Tips and Guide

Effective dog crate training will prevent your dog from developing serious behavioral problems, which is a huge headache for plenty of dog owners.  As the dog owner, your part is to practice patience and consistency in carrying out the dog crate training method, so your puppy becomes one disciplined dog.  Just like children, dogs are comforted by structure and consistency. Help them to achieve this with crate training and you’ll have a very happy, healthy dog!

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Crate Training Your Puppy

Before crate training your new puppy, you’ll need to acquire a crate. There are many types and variations of crates available for purchase. It is important to pick the type of crate that will best suit the needs of both you and your puppy.

Preparing for New Dog or Puppy

You should also take into consideration the size of your dog now and how large he may be when fully grown to avoid having to purchase more than one crate. It is also important to remember that the crate will be his own individual space and you want to make it as comfortable as possible so that your pup will enjoy his time there.

What Dog Breed is Right For Me: A Toy or Small Dog

Since the puppy will be spending a lot of time in his crate, you should put several of his favorite toys and treats in the crate for him. Keep in mind that any toy you purchase should be large enough for the dog not to be able to swallow it, to avoid any injury to your pet. Having toys to chew own will not only give the dog something to chew that he can’t destroy, but it will help to prevent boredom while he is in the crate.

Overcoming Boredom for your Small Dog


They tend to really like Kong toys and they can be stuffed with treats, which will usually keep him interested at least for a couple of hours or until he gets all the treats out of it. You can also purchase bones and toys that are specially made for small breed dogs. Regular bones, such as rawhide bones, can be dangerous for all dogs because they can get lodged in their digestive tract.  My dogs love Bully Sticks and stuffed Kong toys.

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If your furry family member will be spending more than two hours in the crate, it is a good idea to equip it with a water bottle in case he gets thirsty. Many pet stores sell the same type of water bottles that are used for hamsters or gerbils, just in larger sizes. These tend to work well in the crate.

You should also put some kind of bedding in the crate to help your small puppy be more comfortable. Old towels or soft blankets usually suit this purpose very well. Occasionally, puppies will chew their bedding; if this happens, be sure to remove all the pieces so that the puppy doesn’t swallow them.

If the puppy wets his bedding, just remove it until the puppy stops using his crate as a bathroom, then put it back in. I also use bed warmers for my dog crates.  I recommend the Snuggle Safe as there are no cords or anything to chew on.  I warm it and put it under a blanket or cushion.

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Since the crate is your dog’s own private space, it is important not to let children or visitors play with him while he is in his crate. He should be left alone to play or rest as he likes. If someone wants to play with him, he should be taken out of his crate first. You want your pup to like being in his crate and feel comfortable spending time there.


Soft Dog Carriers and Soft Dog Crates

  • Soft dog carriers and soft dog crates are a great way to transport your small dog.  A soft-sided dog crate will give your dog a sense of comfort and home. Soft-sided dog carriers allow the dog to feel comfortable when they brush or lean against the wall.
  • Fabric carriers allow for you and your pet to be more comfortable.  Fabric carriers can be used for small dogs and cats. A fabric dog carrier can be as unique as you are and match what style you have.  A fabric dog carrier may also be a designer dog carrier as many companies now cater to pet owners.
  • A dog purse or a carrier bag for small dogs is a great way to tote your dog with you and not have to worry about the awkwardness of a hard dog carrier.  A dog purse or a dog tote can also be unique. Soft dog carriers will make carrying your small dog or cat easy.

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When looking for a soft dog carrier, you need to keep in mind that the size of your dog does matter, especially if you are looking at a carrier bag.  You also have to keep in mind how heavy your dog is. If you have a small dog, but it is a heavy dog, then make sure that your soft dog crate or soft-sided dog carrier has a secure bottom so that your dog receives the support that it needs.  

Whatever you decide is the best method for toting your dog and carrying your dog, be sure that you train your dog on how to use the soft dog crate.  My dogs know the word “crate”. Whether it’s a wire crate or soft crate, I just point to it and say “crate” and they go right in.

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Small Dog Crate Training

Many people believe that crate training a large or small dog is cruel and unusual punishment. Nothing could be further from the truth!  Most dogs find that having their own “space” is comforting and gives them a feeling of security.

Before we talk more about crate training, I need to point out that it should never be used as a form of punishment. Also, a crate is not a substitute for spending time with your dog and don’t ever fall into the trap of leaving your fur baby in his crate for more than 4 hours at a time. Many dog owners use crates improperly and end up with more problems than they initially started with.

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First, it is important to identify the problem that you are trying to solve by crate training your small dog. Is it potty training? Chewing and destroying things while left unattended?

Small Dog Potty Training Tips and Guide
Stop Unwanted Puppy Chewing

The next thing that you need to do is prepare your dog’s crate. If you notice that your dog starts to get uncomfortable in his crate, make sure to take him outside so he can relieve himself. Once he does, remember to praise him excitedly and give him a treat for reinforcement. Crate training your dog will take some time and a little bit of patience, especially if you have a stubborn dog.

Positive Reinforcement for Dogs

When first beginning the crate training routine at home, it is not uncommon for the dog to whine or bark. The biggest mistake that many owners make is feeling sorry for the dog and letting them out of the crate. Whatever you do, don’t do this. Your dog needs to know that barking is not the solution and he needs to take some time to get comfortable in his new environment.

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Shhhh... Listen! Do You Hear The Sound Of Dog Barking?

Crate training is a responsible practice that all dog owners should use. It provides a safe place for the dog to hang out and relax and it maintains order around the house at the same time. I strongly encourage you to start a crate training routine with your beloved dog today!


Dog Crates Demystified

If you are a dog owner but don’t own a dog crate, then you are missing out! Dog crates make pet ownership much easier and are a great way to train man’s best friend. They also provide a safe haven for your dog to rest and relax and are very useful if you travel. So, what should you look for in a dog crate? Depending upon the crate’s main use, you’ll want to consider safety, size, durability and how easy it is to clean.

Safety First

To determine whether a particular dog crate is a safe choice for your particular pet, take a good look at its design. How does the front door close? Steer clear of spring-loaded doors, which can snap shut on unsuspecting paws and tails. If the dog crate is wire, make sure that the grid size is small enough so that your dog’s paws can’t fall through. And it goes without saying that there should be no sharp edges or exposed wires.


Determine the Crate’s Intended Use

How you are going to use the dog crate should determine which kind you purchase. For example, if you travel by car, a foldable/wire crate will fit the bill. If you travel by airplane, you’ll most likely want a plastic, airline-approved model. Both wire and plastic crates are easy to clean and durable. Wire crates have the added benefits of increased visibility and ventilation.


Crate Size

The size of the crate is very important. The crate should be large enough so that the dog has plenty of room, but not so large that it isn’t cozy. The dog should have plenty of room to stand up and turn around, but should not be able to run from side to side. The only exception to this rule is if you are buying the crate for a puppy. In that case, you’ll want a crate that your dog can grow into. They offer crates with dividers for growth.

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More Dog Crate Tips

Throughout your dog’s life there will definitely be situations in which he will need to be kenneled. To that end, getting your dog used to being crated is very important! The goal is to get your dog to love, accept and find comfort in his crate.  He’ll never do that if he comes to associate it with negative circumstances. While a crate can be a very important part of your dog’s overall training, don’t use it to isolate your pet because of bad behavior.

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Where to Find Your Dog Crate

Dog crates come in all different shapes and sizes, for a wide variety of purposes and are available from local and online pet retailers. Many pet-related retailers have articles and information regarding dog crates that can help you make the right choice.

Dog Crates and Cages

So you are looking for a dog crate and you want the highest quality you can get for the best price. What options are available to you and what are the pros and cons of the various types of dog crate?

Firstly, let’s first look at the black epoxy coated crates. They look great when they are new, but they chip so easily and look bad after only a few uses; and let’s be honest, if you are spending good money then you will want real value for your money and not something that is going to look bad within a short period of time.

Secondly, let’s consider those plastic bases that some companies put in the crates. Plastic bases often crack, split and dogs often chew them.  There is no advantage to a plastic base except for easy cleanup if your pooch has an accident.

Thirdly, there is chrome for cages – they look great at first and then you find they also chip and flake because chrome is just another coating. Be aware that the flaking chrome, if ingested by a dog, could make them unwell. In fact, you don’t really see many chrome ones around these days which is a good thing. So what are you left with?

Well, you are left with galvanized wire crates. These are by far the best option and the top-quality galvanized crates have the following features:

  • Galvanized for no rust and long-lasting
  • Polished finish
  • Anti-tamper locks
  • Very heavy gauge mesh frame
  • Metal tray that can’t be chewed and won’t split or crack
  • Assembles in three moves
  • Won’t chip or flake
  • Lasts for years
  • Slide-out tray
  • Wholesale Prices

The major difference between types of galvanized dog crates is the gauge of the mesh used. Some companies are now offering 9mm gauge wire mesh which has incredible strength and lasts a long, long time.

Dog Crates / Dog Cages offer an effective way to housebreak puppies and keep your pets safe either at home or away.  Dog and pet crates can also be used by professional show dog owners. Some crates now offer an innovative build and design that allows simple assembly and disassembly in seconds and are galvanized which prevents rust and deterioration and is safe for your dog – this means they will look great for many years to come. When not in use, the cage/crate folds flat for easy transport and storage.


Crate Training Your Toy-Breed: Will It Help Your Dog?

Crate training is one of the most often misunderstood dog training techniques. Many questions often come up when discussing the topic of crate training such as:

  • How can I use crate training to teach my dog to behave?
  • What are the pros and cons of crate training?
  • Is crate training safe to use as part of my overall dog training program?

This part of the article will definitely help you understand crate training and what it will do to help your pet. After you’re done a reading, I’m confident that you’ll have a much better understanding of crate training.

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I get many questions from new dog owners on the subject of crate training. Most people really have no idea what crate training is or what purpose it serves. Quite simply, a “dog crate” is an enclosed cage area that prevents your dog from getting into trouble.

You can crate train your Pooch both inside the house and outside. You’ll want your dog to have plenty of room to stand up and lay down.

So what are the benefits of crate training? There are many reasons why crate training is a good idea. One reason is that a crate will prevent your dog from destroying the inside of your house when you are away. Eventually, you’ll be able to leave your dog loose when leaving the house and he won’t be destructive while you’re gone.

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zoovilla Merry Products Triple Door Medium Dog Crate, Dog Kennel, Dog Cage
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  • Includes three doors; two front doors, one side door - the dog cage is designed to keep your pet safe and comfortable
  • Double hinged front doors - dog kennel crafted from solid MDF wood with sturdy hinges
  • Removable tray for easy cleaning

Another example of when crate training can be helpful is when you’re traveling in your vehicle for a long period of time. Allowing your dog to rest in his crate during the trip will ease his fear if he has any issues with traveling.  If your dog gets nervous when traveling, please read my dog anxiety article for help with this.

Top 13 Tips on How to Travel With a Dog
Separation Anxiety - Dog Anxiety Remedies

Lastly, crate training is a vital component to properly house training a new puppy. Using a crate to assist in potty training is a very good idea and will help cut your puppy’s learning curve down drastically.  Be sure to sign up for my step-by-step house training.


Crate Training Tips: How to Crate Train Your Dog

The best place to place a crate would be where your dog can see the environment and family members, hear and smell your house – the kitchen or family/living room is usually a good spot.

An ideal crate should be large enough to allow your dog to stretch out, stand without hitting his head and be able to turn around. The crate should not be so large that your dog can relieve himself in one corner and play and sleep in another.

If your puppy is still young and is not fully grown, try to block off a certain section of the crate with cardboard or wood boards.  Some crates come with a divider that you can remove as your pup grows.

dog crate training

When using the crate for potty training, you will want to remove the water at night to avoid an accident.

You must introduce the crate slowly to your dog. Crate him in smaller intervals, about 10 minutes, then gradually increase over time. Your dog needs time to get used to being in the crate. Never crate him for more than 30 minutes or longer for the first time.

It is not advisable to crate a young puppy for a long period of time – about 2 hours tops and the pup should always be exercised before being crated.

Dog Exercise Ideas - Keeping Your Toy Dog Happy and Fit

It’s quite normal for dogs to kick up a fuss, bark and moan while in the crate. If these things happen, do not give your dog any attention! Yes! Do not even look in his direction.  As Cesar Millan would say, “No touch, no talk, no eye contact”.

Dogs are intelligent animals. Don’t let him know that he’ll get your attention when he kicks up a fuss. Simply ignore him! Let your dog out only when he’s calm and settles down.  If he gets attention when acting out, this will only encourage more whining and barking.

Smart Dog, Dumb Dog - Can You Really Tell?

The only exception is if you think your dog has to relieve himself. Even so, bring him out only after he stops fussing. Another exception is when your dog is chewing on himself. Let him out immediately and consult a trainer or behaviorist.  If you think it’s anxiety, this article will help.

What To Do If Your Dog Gets Chewing Lice or Sucking Lice

Lastly, your dog should not be in a crate for too long day after day. He’ll develop destructive behaviors and anxiety problems. If you notice that your dog displays hyper active behavior compared to before, you might be crating him for too long!

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Most important of all, never ever punish your dog in the crate. He’ll dread going back to the crate. It is meant to be a comfortable and safe space, not where he’ll get punished.


Benefits of using a crate

  1. a) For occasions when the dog cannot run around freely, placing them in a crate will be a good choice for controlling their movements.


  1. b) The dog will feel relatively safe inside the crate especially when located in places where they are most vulnerable.


  1. c) They would have a place for solace when they want to rest or when feeling stressed.


  1. d) A crate could also be used to limit dogs with problem behaviors.


  1. e) It is also a good place for puppies that are still untrained and might cause some trouble inside the house like accidents and biting.
Indoor Dog Exercise Ideas - For Small Dogs
  1. f) This could also be good for dogs with separation anxiety.


  1. g)  It could secure the dog whenever the owner has to bring him outside.


  1. h) It increases his confidence due to the security it provides.


  1. i) Could enhance training by giving the dog a direction for routine activities.


How to introduce the crate to the dog

The best time to introduce the crate to a dog is when you feel that they are ready for it. After buying the right crate, you could place it somewhere in the house where it would catch the dog’s attention. Let him explore his crate first for the first week with the door removed or open.

If he does not show any sign of interest, try leaving some of his favorite treats inside. After a couple of days, try feeding him inside. This would condition his mind that the crate is for him and he could safely do some activities inside it.

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I hope this helps you with your decision about crate training your dog. Your dog will think of it as his “den” and safe spot to go to. The crates I use for my dogs are listed below, including the purse! ????


Dog Training Lessons and Behavior Help

A Well-Trained Toy Breed Dog
Small Dog Potty Training Tips and Guide
Overcoming Boredom for your Small Dog
Dog Training at Home - Guide and Lessons



What are your thoughts and feelings about crate training?  Please leave your comments and questions below. Thank you for reading!


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Written by Johannes


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Dog Training at Home - Guide and Lessons

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