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Crate Training Your Dog

February 15 2021
Is your canine buddy crate trained? If not, you may want to rectify that. While you don’t necessarily have to crate Fido every night, it is important for him to be comfortable in a crate. After all, he will need to be crated eventually, either during travel or when visiting his vet or groomer. A Bowmanville, ON vet discusses crate training below.

Choosing The Crate

Choosing the right size cage is very important. If the cage is too big, your pet won’t feel as safe as he should. He’ll also be more likely to defecate in it. If it’s too small, Fido will feel cramped. Your vet will be able to give you specific size recommendations. If you have a puppy, you’ll want to get a cage that will fit your canine buddy when he’s all grown up. Otherwise, you’ll be replacing it pretty quickly.

Setup

You need to make the crate seem cozy and comfortable for Fido. Add some comfy bedding and a few toys. It’s also important to choose a good location. You probably don’t want the crate in the middle of your living room floor, as then your pup will be surrounded by commotion. However, a quiet bedroom isn’t a good option either, as then your furry friend will feel lonely and isolated. 

The Training Process

Start by giving your dog toys, treats, praise, and, of course, belly rubs near his crate. This all helps him form a positive association with his crate. Next, toss some treats into the crate. Fido should willingly go in after his snack. Offer him praise and attention when he does. Once your pup is used to going in and out, start feeding him inside his crate. The next step is to start closing the door. At first, you’ll only leave him in for a few minutes. Over time, keep it closed for longer and longer.

Best Practices

Hopefully this goes without saying, but crates should never be used as punishment. Not only will that make Fido wary of his crate, it will likely make any behavioral issues worse, Also, be careful not to leave your pooch in his crate for too long. Age plays a role in how long is appropriate for a pup to be crated. Ask your vet for specific advice on this. Contact us, your Bowmanville, ON veterinary clinic, anytime. We’re here to help! 

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