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Should you use crate training to housetrain your dog ?

December 04, 2016 / 12:10:16

If you currently own a dog, have you considered crate training your dog? You probably have as you are reading this article. No method is perfect, but crate training has successfully helped many people housetrain a dog successfully.

The Crate Idea

Many people consider crates to be essential to raising a dog, a puppy or adult. Some people consider the crate as essential to a dog as a pen would be to a bird.


The crate keeps the dog feeling safe and protected. It is akin to the den of a wolf. Dogs generally will not urinate or defecate in their home, so it helps to instill discipline in your dog.


It’s important to get a crate that is large enough so that it’s comfortable for your dog and they don’t feel trapped when within the crate. It’s also important that it’s not too big that the dog feels they can urinate in one area, and sleep and/or rest, hangout in the other area. This is why many large crates come with a divider, so as a puppy grows you can slowly remove it.


Some methods that you can do to ensure your dog is crate trained are as follows:

Introduce the create positively. Let them go in on their own, toss treats in your crate and allow the dog to get it. You do not want the crate to be a place they feel unsafe or trapped in. Once they are in the crate you can practice closing it for brief periods of time. Give them treats while they are in the crate, and they will keep associating it with a positive place.

You can also give them a toy with treats in it, so that they can work the toy, and spend long periods of time in the crate, and see that it’s a good place for them to be.

Make the crate comfortable so the dog feels comfortable lying down and sleeping in the crate. Do not leave it with bare plastic. There are several different types of bedding, but get one that is appropriate.

Make sure the dog is empty and does not need to potty. Walk your dog after their meal (you can wait 20-30 minutes), do not just put a dog in the crate because you feel like you do not want to watch your dog. If the dog is just fed, they may be more likely to want to pee and/or poop.

As soon as you take your dog out of his/her crate take them outside to potty.

Use a phrase such as “good potty”, whenever they relieve themselves. This way you can form a trigger.

Training a dog takes consistency, patience and positive reinforcement. You want to install good habits right from the beginning. Remember your dog is with you for their entire life, but they are only with you for a portion of your life. You are the most important thing in the world to them. Have patience and understand them. They have a strong desire to please, when they make a mistake, be understanding and caring.

This is just a quick primer on how to successfully housetrain a dog using a crate training method. There are plenty of other articles and resources which you should research for yourself. There are also other methods which you can use. Do not restrict yourself, every dog is unique, just like every person is unique.


If your dog fails to get potty trained, it’s not their fault, it’s yours. It takes time and patience, love your dog and don’t fail them.

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