If you’re new to dog owning, you might be wondering whether or not it’s worth the hassle the crate train your pup. In this post we’ll dive deeper into the purpose of crate training your dog and why it’s highly encouraged by industry professionals.
Crate training is an exercise in patience and understanding. It’s about putting the needs of your dog first, while also maintaining a well-balanced lifestyle for yourself. It allows you to create a safe space for your pet that provides them with their own private area where they can be comfortable, confident and secure. All the while giving you peace of mind knowing that your pup is out of harm’s way. As a bonus, it will help make housebreaking easier and reduce destructive behaviors like chewing or barking!
Let’s dive into some of the most common reasons to crate train your doggo.
Industry Professionals Highly Recommend Crate Training
It’s definitely not uncommon for a dog owner to feel some guilt when they first start crate training their pup. But don’t let this guilt keep you from following through! In time dogs really do understand what we’re trying to tell them with crate training. This is because dogs instinctively desire small spaces that resemble a den for their shelter that’s 100% theirs.
A few of the many reasons vets and breeders recommend crate training are; they’re a safe, secure place for aging dogs, make emergencies a smoother process (as smooth as they can be), and the most common reason being a great training tool for pups.
It’s not to say that crate training is a time-consuming process. As long as you’re consistent with reinforcing the good behaviors, it should only take your pup about one week to understand what they can or cannot do in their new environment and how it affects them. From there on out, life becomes much easier for both parties involved!
When it comes to emergencies, having your dog comfortable being in their crate will make getting them the attention they need ASAP, easier. Not only will they be cooperative going in their crate when taking them to the vet… They’ll also be calm and in a familiar space while staying at the vet.
If/when you have to leave your pup at the vet they will be in a crate. If they aren’t familiar with crates this will create added stress to an already stressful situation.
The goal is for your doggo to feel safe and relaxed when they’re inside their crate.
Generally It Makes Life With A Pup Easier
The major purpose to crate training is it helps your dog feel safe and secure in a crate when inevitably they need to be crated.
House training is the first thing that comes to most peoples mind when they think about crate training. And it’s 100% true that crate training helps house train a dog. It gives them a place they can call their own and because of this they don’t want to soil it.
This means, for the most part, that when they’re in their crate they won’t go number 1 or 2. Now periodic backyard visits or walks will be used for bathroom purposes. Continuing to do this while their bladder gets bigger and the habit cements will ensure house training success.
But, this is just one area where crate training makes life with your doggo easier.
Another is travel. If you ever plan on doing some longer distanced traveling with your pup you’ll want them crate trained. Not only will they feel anxious going to an airport… But being dropped off by you in an unfamiliar place, then put on a plane, while being in a crate! This is far too many new experiences at once which will leave your pup anxious & stressed.
Your dog will likely have a much more calm travel experience if they are crate trained. They know their crate is their safe space. While the chaos going on around them may upset them, if they’re familiar with their crate it will allow them to relax much easier.
Another big purpose for crate training your dog is emergencies…
If your pups needs to go to the vet and have some work done, they’ll be crated after the surgery. If they aren’t crate trained this can lead to complications immediately following the surgery. As opposed to peacefully relaxing in the crate they’ll likely be more anxious without being able to settle.
This can lead to them getting all worked up. Which can also lead to them accidentally opening their wound and making their recovery take longer than it would need to.
Crate training also simply makes everyday life at home more peaceful for your dog. If your dog ever needs a break from all the commotion in your home. They can easily retire to their crate to ‘get away’. When crate training is done correctly it can even help your dog learn to self soothe and better deal with situations that would normally alarm them.
Generally, if your dog is crate trained, it can help make their life a whole lot less stressful when it comes to whatever life throws at you and your pup.
Benefits Dogs At Any Stage Of Life
The two stages of life that need the most help are puppyhood and when they become seniors. Obviously crate training is super effective while they are teens and adults as well, but during their early and later life it’s effects are most pronounced.
As mentioned above, crate training is a great tool for house training and helping them strengthen their ‘hold it’ ability while in their crate. But, it’s also great to teach them boundaries as well as good habits.
When you’re not available to keep an eye on them they can happily hang out in their crate.
It also helps teach them what areas in the house are okay for them to be in and which areas are not. As their crate training progresses they will learn that they get more space to explore in your home as their potty training concludes.
The benefits for a young pup are more obvious. But, for an older doggo you have to give it a little more thought.
As the saying goes, “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks”…
As your pup ages they will likely encounter some new challenges, may that be hip/elbow dysplasia, weakened bladder control, or arthritis, to name a few.
Learning anything new is taxing, not just with people but dogs too! And when your dog starts to get to their senior years, the best thing you can do is help them be as comfortable as possible. Crate training once they’re already set in their ways isn’t the best idea and pretty darn difficult to do!
If they’re already crate trained from puppyhood, getting their much more needed rest and quiet time will be easier in their crate. Also, if unfortunately more vet visits start to happen, being comfortable transporting in their crate will make their experience that much less stressful, as mentioned earlier.
Helping your dog learn to love their crate at an early age will be beneficial to them throughout their entire life.
Benefits A Wide Variety Of Dogs
Whether you’ve adopted a rescue dog, have a dog with separation anxiety, a new pup or a hunting dog, crate training will benefit them all.
The biggest reason for this is it provides a small space that they feel safe and secure in. Some dogs are more territorial than others but a crate gives them a small space they can protect adequately. This enables them to relax easier because they know for sure their quarters are secure from any intruders.
And for those who hate when you’re away and are more vocal. Providing them with crate training and a familiar scent (a piece of your clothing) can help them feel less anxious when you’re gone.
What is the purpose of crate training your dog? Well, put simply, it can (and will) make both your lives a whole lot easier.
Taking the time to train them while they’re young will have beneficial effects for their entire life. Not only will it help them with issues they may have developed in the past, but it’ll also make their future that much better.
There are a lot of benefits for both you and your dog when training crate-training so I hope this article has given you some ideas as to why you should get started. Dogs can be trained to use crates at any age or breed – it just takes the time and put in the effort!