One look at the title of this article and many people would take great exception to the thought of crating a dog. Many think it’s cruel and unusual punishment. Others who have used crate training to bring up puppy KNOW it’s the best thing since sliced bread. If used properly, crates become safe havens for your canine mavericks and mavens.
Maybe you’re thinking that’s a lot of bunk, but if you do your research, you’ll find out using a crate to house train your puppy is a proven effective method to teach them when, and in some cases where not to eliminate, and where they can go to be safe and quiet. And if you don’t want a sharp set of teeth redecorating your kitchen, living room or bathroom while you are gone, then the crate is the place for your small horse with sharp teeth. Safe for your dog and safe for your house. If you’ve ever not crated a pup and come home to a mess, there is no point in disciplining them, as they do not understand what they did wrong.
Crates can and have been abused by people who do not understand their proper use. It is NOT a place to go for punishment. It is intended to be a safe and quiet place for the dog to nestle when you are not home and being its companion. Crating teaches and actually reinforces their natural den instincts. Your dog will grow up knowing the crate is safe, ok to be in, not a place for punishment and can be a great place to go when the humans in their lives drive them nuts.
How long do you leave a pup in a crate? Answer is for the shortest time possible if you can, realizing that sometimes life gets in the way. But pups should not be left in crates for hours on end, as it severely affects their socialization skills and is considered to be abuse. The general rule of thumb on crate times is no more than one hour for the age of your pup. For instance, one month old, one hour. Two months old, two hours. Three months old, three hours. You get the idea. This of course is just a general rule of thumb and may vary according to your dog.
Make sure the crate is big enough to stand up in and turn around. If not, that would be like you getting shut in a closet where you couldn’t move in any direction. If the crate is too big, you might find puppy dear has puddled in the corner. So stick to the den size feeling.
Guaranteed, if you crate train properly and effectively, your pup will grow into a fine canine citizen with great manners and clean to boot.