Tips for Crate Training
Introduction to the Crate
To make the puppy know that there is a crate, keep it in an area where the family spends maximum time. Take the puppy to the crate, talking in a happy and loving tone. To avoid scaring it off, it will be good to keep a soft towel or blanket over the crate.
The next thing would be to entice the pup to enter the crate by dropping small goodies around initially. Then, keep them just at the door and then inside the crate. It is natural if the dog refuses to go in, but whatever happens, never force it. Keep on tossing treats in the crate. If your puppy does not respond positively to goodies, try throwing a toy.
While doing all this, remember to have a shorter training session or crate training schedule and do not rush into things. It is a gradual process.
Meals in the Crate
Once you introduce your puppy to the crate, carry out another strategy. Give it its meal near the crate. This will develop a association of the crate in the psyche of the dog. If your pet has already started entering it, then keep the dish at its other end inside. On the other hand, if the puppy is yet to enter it, then keep the food just inside the door.
After doing this for a while, close the door while the dog is eating. Gradually, increase the time to about 10 minutes after the food is finished. If you have increased the time gradually, then the puppy should not whine. In case the puppy whines, do not let it out. Repeat this process a few times in a day.
It's Bed Time
Puppies do need to go to the loo at night. So at the onset, it is better to have the crate in your bedroom or nearby. This will tell you if the puppy is whining to be let outside. Further, to prevent it from crying and barking, put some toys in there. This works well, especially at night. Even if it whines, do not get it on your bed.
In case of older dogs also, you can have the crate in your bedroom or close by. The reason is that they should not feel isolated, rather than the elimination part. You can ask the puppy to go in the crate anytime once it is used to it. Never command it to go in there as a punishment. Your dog will be obedient to you only if you are good with it.
Crate training is not a very big deal once the puppy gets comfortable with the idea of a crate. However, you need to be very gentle and talk in a loving manner. Only then will it listen to your commands. This is not an act of cruelty, but a training needed for convenience. It also avoids messing up of the house.