Crate Training

Potty Training

Joel helps pet owners overcome the anxiety that accompanies crate training to make it a manageable experience.

The whole idea behind CRATE TRAINING is simply not to give your dog the chance to develop the behavior of relieving himself on your wool carpet or your fancy Brazilian cherry wood floor in the first place. Unlike people, most dogs are quite comfortable in dens or areas that are confined, like a crate. Although a dog might whine or bark initially, he should eventually become comfortable in there. The most important thing to remember in housebreaking is that it is a behavior that begins outside.

One of the biggest mistakes dog owners make is NOT making the crate a positive place in the first place. Some people will go so far as to punish the dog by putting him in the crate. The crate should be something comforting and something that the dog looks forward to.

So a way of beginning crate training is to make the crate as positive as possible. Try putting treats in the crate and letting the dog go in, ALWAYS with the door opened. You might even want to feed the dog his or her meal in there as well. It is essential that the dog know he could go in and out whenever he pleases. You might even want to put the toys in there too. Plan on doing this for a few days.

Once the dog is comfortable in there, start closing the door for about five to ten seconds, always opening the door, and feeding the dog in the crate immediately afterward and then letting the dog out. Once the dog starts to get comfortable with that routine, try closing the door for about 20 to 30 seconds, always opening the door and feeding the dog immediately as before.

Repeat these exercises and gradually increase the amount of time to one to two minutes, then to five or ten minutes. Again, you must always open the door, feed the dog in the crate immediately afterward and allowing him to leave after his meal. As the time increases to an hour or more, ALWAYS take the dog outside to go to the bathroom outside. Sometimes you need to be patient, but you need to make sure he goes.