During training you need to provide your dog with a safe place when you are unable to supervise them. A crate or a confinement area will provide your dog with a secure, den like atmosphere.
Confinement should not be confused with the idea of punishment and is not be used as such. It is to provide your dog with a secure environment when you cannot or do not want to supervise. Confinement is not a permanent home for your dog but rather a temporary one used until your dog can be trusted to behave when you are not arount. Confinement should be large enough for your dog to stretch out and turn around inimpeded. Other than bed time your dog should only be left in confinement for 4 hours at a time with lots of exercise in between. For the major part of every 24 hours your dog should be in an area that is at least twice the length of their body.
Using confinement to restrict your dog allows them to feel safe and secure and keeps them from feeling punished. Keep the area out of drafts, and try to make it in a place where everybody lives. The confinement area should be totally dog – proofed. Keep all objects such as curtains, electricial cords and cleaning agents, etc. out of reach. No blankets or rags within the area. You may provide your dog with a nylabone.
If they cry, don’t be harsh; first comfort them without taking them from their bed. If their crying continues, give them a chance to eliminate, then return them to the area. If the crying continues ask your trainer! After a few nights, they’ll sleep quietly all night with no problems.
Dogs are pack animals who prefer to live in small dens. The small confined space makes them feel safe and secure. Unlike a person, who might feel claustrophobic in being confined to a small space, being in their crate is actually comforting to your dog.
When introduced and established properly with your dog, crate training is very humane and comforting to your dog. Imagine snuggling under your covers on a rainy day when you don’t have to get up or go anywhere. You feel comfortable, safe, relaxed, and at peace. Your dog can feel the same way about his crate.
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