2.2.3 Crate Training

By January 12, 2021No Comments
Crate training is becoming recognized as an important tool for dog training. While some people misunderstand crates as cruel place to put dogs, it is actually a preferred place for many dogs once they learn crate training. In the wild, it is common for animals to find a small cave in the side of a hill for shelter or concealment. By crate training a puppy you are actually accommodating your dog’s natural instincts.
It is important not to use the crate as a punishment tool. In this course we learn how to use the crate in a positive way such that the dog learns to use it as a den.
Why is Crate Training important?
  • Teach dogs to be alone, prevent separation anxiety
  • Teach concept of controlling access
  • Teach potty training
  • Useful in transporting dogs
  • Safe place
  • Increase motivation before training session
Step 1: Choose the type of dog crate 1) Metal dog crate 2) Plastic dog crate
Step 2: Choose the correct dog crate size
Step 3: Choose the correct place for the dog crate
Step 4: Introduce the crate
Crate Games:
Practice being in crate = treat
  • Throw treat into crate. Treat puppy in the crate.
  • “Good” and treat
  • Increase duration between “Good” and walk away progressively further. Come back to reward them
  • Don’t treat when dog is outside
Practice going in crate + command
  • Throw treat in and out of crate. More/better treats inside crate than outside.
  • Progress: Throw treat into crate before puppy notices
  • Add command “crate” when dog can consistently go in
Crate Training Tips
  • Don’t let them out when they demand bark (“Quiet!” & knock the crate). Let them out if they bark to pee.
  • Don’t create frustration in the crate/excitement near crate
  • Feed your dog in the crate during meal times
  • Drain energy before putting into crate
  • Chew toy in crate to occupy them
  • Treats on top of crate
  • Move the crate around the house
  • Don’t create patterns with the crate e.g. don’t put the dog in only when you are out
Crate Drills
  • Crate dog with handler sitting on chair in front of crate, watching the attention of the dog
  • Create distractions e.g. assistant enter room, when dog is distracted, lightly tap the crate and give treat when dog gives attention
  • Pre-empt distraction and give food so that dog is attentive during the distraction
  • Use higher distractions as attention is built
  • Owner seated beside crate
  • Owner walks out of room, replaced by hidden assistant (beside crate)
Note on Bedding in Crates:
  • Dogs may chew bedding in crates if bored
  • Bedding must be supervised at first
  • If dog chews bedding, tap the crate and direct to chew toy
  • Take it away if they have tendency to chew bedding