A crate is a tool. You can transport your dog in one, he may wait in one while at the groomer’s and it’s useful in basic house training. Before you can begin to use it, however, your dog or puppy must first be trained to use the crate. He may sleep in it, wait in it for you to come home from work, and even have his meals in the crate. He won’t learn to use it on his own, and it’s up to you to help him learn to love the crate!
Your dog or puppy must first be comfortable going into and staying in his crate before you can confine him to it for any length of time. Give him a few moments to check out the crate with the door open before you engage him in any training sessions. Once your dog has had the chance to investigate the crate on his own, toss a treat just inside the door. If you use a clicker during training, click when he retrieves the treat. Otherwise, give a “Yep!” or “Yes!” when he sticks his head in the crate to get the yummy treat. [Read more…]