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Thread: Crate and potty training

  1. #1

    Crate and potty training

    I have anew puppy that I am crate training. I have her on a schedule. She is learning potty training pretty well. She sleeps in the crate then I bring her out to potty then play and eat then potty again. Then back in the crate. She never really has too much free time as I am always supervising her to ensure no potty issues arise. My questions though is how long do I keep this up? At what point will she be able to just stop being crated during the day and at night?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Working breed 12 to 14 weeks old usually. A toy breed closer to 18-22ish. (They have alot smaller bladders)

    With that being said. The dog should only be in the kennel when it can't be supervised. It needs to be out exploring (be a pup)

    As for how long - it varies from dog to dog. The more it's out of a kennel the better it will get. Let it explore. When it gets into something give it a stern no. No is the first command most dogs learn. Then go in baby steps. After it's potty trained. Kennel for a week while your at work, then a puppy proofed kitchen with a baby gate for a week or two. If that doesn't work go back to step one. And gradually give it more rooms as it progresses. Make sure you are doing your part though to pick up anything that a puppy would be curious about. Shoes, socks, paper towels. The same as you would for a baby.

    Never use the kennel as punishment. You want the dog to feel safe there.

    Kennel training takes alot of patience. Start off with
    Dogs name, kennel or crate whatever you want to call it. I find it easiest to lead the dog in with a treat. As soon as all 4 legs are in give the dog lots of praise. Do this a couple times a day for the first few days. The next step, same comand. But close the door for a minute (do not let the dog out if it cries, wait until it stops) do this a few times a day. After that do the same steps, but leave the room for longer and longer periods at a time. Never let the dog out of the kennel without your say so. Give a release command each time. Then praise. Eventually the dog will put two and two together and associate it as his or her den.

    Night kennel is up to you after the dog is kennel trained or conditioned it can go from sleeping on the bed to sleeping in the kennel without issue. By this point you should be able to command the dog to go in the kennel without even getting out of bed. When I'm home, most nights the dog sleeps in her kennel. An average dogs body temp is around 100 degrees and she makes me too warm.

  3. #3
    Platinum Member Snny's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    My questions though is how long do I keep this up?
    Short answer: when they stop having accidents (being ill is the exception).

    Best answer: when they stop teething. Once they have differentiated what they are allow to chew (a bone vs. your table, chairs, couch, shoes, carpet, dryer sheets, etc).

    My dog is 3 and LOVES his crate. He sees it as his own private bedroom. He has his toys, bone, puppy blanket, and bed in there. I don't crate him anymore, but he goes in it on his own.

  4. #4
    Platinum Member j.man's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    While dogs do have an instinct to den, there's very little evidence to suggest crates actually facilitate that instinct. Dens don't have lockable doors. My grandmother has always had 4 dogs at a time. Since I was a kid, I've helped raise them with her. Never once have they been closed up in a crate. They've had the option of one, but they've never been closed or locked into one. Really, if you have furniture or carpet you care a lot about, don't get a puppy. There are plenty of house trained dogs available for adoption.

    That said, I'm not quite PETA level when it comes to being opposed to them. Dogs tend to love an open but cozy crate. It's very easy to use positive reinforcement and food motivation to train a pup to prefer a crate during their downtime. I would never crate a puppy if I were home and awake. And any sympathy I have for the practice would end around 7- 8 months, when (as Snny pointed out) they typically are done teething. But really, with a little bit of diligence, you should be able to potty train it a couple months sooner than that and that would when I'd pragmatically desire people stop crating.


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