I have people who ask the question all the time, “Why should we put our dogs in a crate?”, says Master Trainer Michael Soler.
The first major reason is safety. A crate is a small section within your home that prevents the dog from going anywhere they want. This protects them from getting into things, digging into poisonous items such as cleaning supplies. It also does an excellent job of preventing your dog from having accidents around the house.
However, there are a few things to note about having your dog in the crate. You shouldn’t have too much in the crate with your dog. This includes items that they can choke on. It is also a good idea to not have a collar on your dog when they are in the crate as they can get caught on the crate itself and cause your dog to panic.
The crate is a beneficial item, but you must take the steps to keep your dog safe. Use it to limit your dog’s freedom when you’re not around to show them the rules of the house. However, the crate shouldn’t be seen as a negative place. If you are only placing your dog in the crate whenever you are leaving the home, it will be seen in a negative context. You need to create harmony. There are a few ways in which you can do this. First, feed them their meals in their crate. This creates a safe space for them to eat their food at their own pace and digest their meals in peace. If you are home during these mealtimes, then you are bringing the positivity back into the situation. There are many times when dogs rush to eat because they are afraid that the food will be taken. If they have their own safe space, they will not feel the need to rush. This gives them a place to relax and decompose as well as a place where no one will mess with them. It is important for the owner to follow through on this aspect so they trust that they will not be bothered. Creating this space also gives your dog the opportunity to communicate with you and let you know if they do not want to be bothered. Use the crate as a beneficial tool, not a punishment. Your dog deserves a spot in your home that belongs to them.