Monday, May 18, 2009

Housebreak Your Pet

If you are trying to potty train your pet, crate training is the best way to housebreak and train any puppy. Canines do not like to defecate or urinate in the place where they sleep. Therefore, with some precautions, keeping a puppy in a crate during the day and night are good for both the owner and the puppy. Puppies take naturally to crates as wild dogs do to their dens. A crate therefore becomes the puppy's den, a place of security, and the owner should not think of it as a "cage".

When crate training your pet, be sure to keep the crate away from any noisy places in the house. It should be big enough for the puppy to turn around and lie down. If it is a faster growing breed, then it would be best to start out with a bigger sized crate and then put a barrier up at first to make it smaller or else the puppy will go to the bathroom at one end and sleep at the other, thus ruining the training.

After a crate is picked out, you will need to decide on a crate training schedule. Most small puppies can only hold it in for 3-4 hours or so before it must go to the bathroom. Be sure the puppy has a chance to go out 20-30 minutes after it eats and drinks in the morning before it goes in the crate. As the puppy gets older, the longer the puppy will be able to hold it in. As night, the puppy again should be let out before it goes to bed. This will keep your pet in routine and your puppy will become accustomed to the scheduling of when it gets to go out.

Once the puppy knows the crate as its den, it will love that place and happily go inside any time the owner goes out. When crate training, it is important to remember the following:
1) No food or water in the crate
2) The younger you start, the better; older puppies not crate-trained will have a difficult time accepting confinement and may even break the cage.
3) Never send a puppy to the crate as punishment as that will defeat the purpose of crate training.
4) Always remove the collar before putting the puppy in the crate otherwise it could get stuck on a part of the cage and choke itself.


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Monica said...

Great post. I have heard both sides of crate training, but I am a big believer in starting out pet's young and never making it a punishment. My Labrador loves to go to his crate after a long day of play and stays inside with the door open! Thanks for sharing these great tips.

Tina Morgan said...

Thank you for the great tips! I just got a new puppy and I hope to try this out on it!

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