One of the best things you can do for your puppy early in life is crate training. Many people are under the misconception that crate training a puppy is cruel but this is far from the truth.
Dogs actually get a lot of benefit from having been crate trained and they generally come to like the fact that they have been crate trained. Many people also assume that crate training is difficult, but this is also far from the truth. Dogs, naturally avoid soiling the area where they will eat and sleep and this is one of the reasons why crate training is important.
It is essential to take notes of the times when your puppy likes to eat, sleep, and ‘go to the toilet’ because this will help determine the best times for the crate training. Crate training is not about keeping your dog locked up for extended lengths of time. Crate training needs to be handled with the care that one would expect from a family member.
You should remember that, done correctly, crate training will enhance the lives of both you and your dog. There are bound to be mishaps along the way when your puppy might ‘mess’ in the crate but he/she should not be punished for this, as it is highly unlikely that it would have been intentional.
Crate training is the best method of potty training a puppy by far, so it is well worth doing when they are young to eliminate one area that can be a problem with dogs, as they grow older. While it might seem that your dog doesn’t like crate training initially, (many dogs will fuss, whine and bark when they first start crate training) most crate trained dogs learn to love their crate as their own place, much like children have their favorite blanket for security that they will carry around. Crate training usually starts with short periods of 10 to 15 minutes slowly building up to two hours as they become more accustomed to their crate.
Please note: This article is part of a collection of dog-related content that we purchased the rights to. Opinions expressed may or may not agree with those espoused by Master Dog Trainer Adam G. Katz. When in doubt, please refer to the advice given in Adam’s dog training book. This article is provided for your enjoyment, only. It’s relevance to real world working dog training may be limited.