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The Benefits of Crate Training Puppies (and Adult Dogs) by Anna Schwartzenberger, Performing Paws

April 18, 20242 min read

Crate training is the fastest, most effective way to mold desired behaviors. It also helps to satisfy their instincts to be in a den. The dens are their homes and safe places, so crating a dog provides security and helps prevent anxiety. It teaches them to self soothe in stressful situations without being dependent on their owner. Owner dependency is the leading cause for anxiety in dogs.

Crates are the best tool for potty training. Most dogs do not like to potty where they sleep. You can help your puppy build their bladder muscles and control their bowels by having them in the crate when you aren’t able to keep an eye on them or overnight. In case of an emergency, it will help your dog so much to be able to have a safe space to retreat to. For example, a flood may force you to leave your home, so you must take shelter elsewhere for a while. That itself is stressful. Your dog will have a much easier time if they already love their crates and feel safe inside them.

Another reason to crate train is for rehab purposes. Most dogs get spayed or neutered, which requires them to have to stay quiet. Imagine how stressful it would be for a dog to get put in a crate for the first time during this time. It could actually cause them to hurt themselves or break open their incision. If they are used to and enjoy their crates, then they can heal properly.

Crate training also allows for safer travel with your dog. Did you know a dog riding free in the car puts them at risk for being ejected in the case of an accident? Having a crash tested crate in your car keeps your dog safe. It also cuts down on motion sickness.

Keeping your dog in a crate when you are unable to watch them or need to leave the house protects both the dog and the house. You won’t have to worry about them getting into anything dangerous and ingesting something that could hurt them. It also saves you money since all of your belongings will remain intact.

Crates are a great place for naps during the day. It is not good to leave your young dogs to roam free all hours of the day. They need to have nap times like human babies. They need to have time to unwind and relax—especially if you and your dog have done a lot together like going to the park to play fetch or going to the vet for a check-up. It is never too late to start crate training. Keep it fun and positive and any dog can learn to love their crate.

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