Puppy crate training is one of the most effective ways to housebreak your new puppy. Puppy crate training takes a little patience, but it's a good way to set your puppy on the right path. This method has an impressive track record.
Be sure to prepare everything ahead of time. Even before you bring your new puppy home, have the puppy crate ready and waiting.
The size of the crate is important. For proper puppy crate training, you should have plenty of room in the crate for the puppy to turn around, stand and lie down, but don't get one that's too big. Puppies feel uncomfortable in a crate that's so big they rattle around in it.
If your puppy is a breed that will grow large, it's okay to buy a bigger crate for him to grow into, but make sure it has an adjustable partition in the back. This lets you keep his living space comfortable and cozy, but you can still expand it by moving the partition back as your puppy grows to full size.
When you are ready to begin puppy crate training, place your new puppy gently in his crate. Make sure you've also put a towel or small blanket and a treat or toy in the crate. If you're using a wire crate for puppy crate training, always remove the puppy's collar first so it won't get snagged on the wire.
You may hear some whining or even crying at this point. You need to ignore it. Sometimes it helps to cover the crate with a blanket so his home feels a little cozier. Remember, dogs are not claustrophobic. They like an enclosed space. It's their den.
After your puppy has remained in the crate for about twenty minutes, remove him from the crate and take him outside. As soon as he goes potty, praise him, pet him and make him feel loved and close.
The next step in the puppy crate training process is to bring your puppy back inside and play together for twenty to thirty minutes. Then it's time to put your puppy back in the crate. You'll be able to gradually increase the crate time to two hours.
Puppies will not usually go potty in their crates. If your puppy has an accident, never scold. They really don't understand the idea that going potty is bad, so scolding doesn't help. It only confuses them.
For best results with puppy crate training, you'll need to have a schedule. And when you take your puppy outside, always make sure you take him to the same spot each time. Especially at first, every time you remove him from his crate, you'll want to take him outside. This builds a clear association in his mind.
As your puppy begins to get the hang of puppy crate training you'll be able to leave him in the crate for longer periods. Eventually he'll feel so at home in the crate that you'll be able to leave the crate door open overnight and for short periods during the day.
Successful puppy crate training has two simple requirements: patience and a regular schedule. With those two things, your new puppy will soon be a happy, well-adjusted member of the family.
Puppy Crate Training -- Fast Track to a Contented Dog
by Charles Burke
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