Why and how to use a crate?

The crate, when used properly, has several uses.

  • It makes housetraining easier and serves as a place of comfort and rest for the dog.
  • It also represents a reassuring place for the dog when you leave him at home alone. But for this, the crate must be perceived as pleasant. How?

From the beginning, the crate should never be used as a punishment. We want the crate to be associated with a positive feeling. If we use it to punish, it is a negative emotion that we are teaching the dog. In which case he risks developing an aversion to his crate.

Then, the crate must be made pleasant and comfortable for the dog to want to go in it and stay. Here are some steps to follow to do this:

1. Start by putting a few treats in the crate to encourage the dog to get in. Once inside, continue to reward him with more treats. If the dog is afraid of the crate, start by placing treats on the ground leading up to the crate until he gets inside.

2. Repeat the exercise while closing the door of the crate once the dog is inside. Then give him a treat.

3. Put the dog in the crate with a few treats. Close the door. Distance yourself while remaining in the dog’s field of vision. Return immediately to reward the dog and let him out of the crate.

4. Repeat exercise 3 but this time, leave the dog’s field of vision before coming back. It is possible to leave the dog in his crate for a long period of time with a bone, a Kong or other toy likely to keep the dog occupied during your absence.