How To Train Your Dog To Like Their Crate

Posted on April 1, 2022 by paigepesko

Crate training is vital for you and your dog because it prevents your pup from damaging your furniture and belongings while you’re out of the house. Crate training takes advantage of your dog’s natural instinct to curl up in a place that makes them feel safe when they’re overwhelmed. Let’s look at this guide on how to train your dog to like their crate.

Introduce Your Pup to the Crate

Put your dog’s new crate in a busy room of your home, like the kitchen or family room. Place a soft blanket or bed inside. Then, open the door and let your dog explore their crate. Your dog may be curious and begin to feel comfortable in the space, but others may not.

If your dog has difficulty adjusting to the crate, bring them over to it and speak in soft tones. Encourage them to enter by placing treats nearby, right inside, and all the way inside. Don’t force them in if your dog doesn’t want to go right away. Continue putting goodies in the cage until your pup walks in on their own. Throw in a toy if your dog isn’t paying attention to the treats.

Feed Your Dog in the Crate

After introducing your pup to the crate, feed them meals in or near the crate so they associate the space with a pleasurable experience. If your dog readily enters the space, place the food in the back of the crate. If they’re still reluctant, put the bowl or toy closer to the door. Every time you feed your pup, place the bowl further back.

Once your dog seems comfortable eating in the crate, close the door while they’re eating. The first time your dog eats in the crate, open the door immediately after they finish. Slowly build up to ten minutes left in the space after their meal. If your dog starts to whine, let them out because you’ve increased the time too quickly.

Practice Longer Crating Periods

Once you notice your dog’s gotten more comfortable in the crate, confine them for short periods while you’re at home. Here are some steps to take at this stage of crate training:

  • Command your dog to the area and give them a treat when they come.
  • Create a vocal cue, like “crate,” and encourage your pup by motioning to the crate with a treat or toy.
  • When they enter the crate, give them praise and a treat. Close the door behind them.
  • Sit quietly next to them for ten minutes. Then, leave the room. Return and sit for another few minutes.
  • Repeat this method a few times throughout the day, slowly increasing the amount of time your dog spends in the crate.
  • Once you reach the 30-minute mark, you can begin leaving them in the crate for an extended time, even overnight.

Crate Your Pup When Leaving

When you leave the house to run errands, put your dog in the crate. Use your vocal cue and give your pup a treat when they enter. Leave a few toys in the crate with them. Crate them for five to 20 minutes before leaving. Don’t prolong your goodbye. Give your dog praise for going into the crate so calmly, and then you’re off.

If you follow this guide on how to train your dog to like their crate, your pup should be happy with it in no time. If your dog still seems a bit anxious when you leave, Gorilla Dog Beds has an excellent variety of chew-proof collars to prevent destructive chewing. Shop for one today!