The subject of crates brings up strong feelings in many people.
For those of us who grew up with the typical dog-in-the-house pet, crates were not something we had. The dog had the run of the house, or at least part of the house, and wasn’t confined in any type of crate.
They needed FREEDOM, right?
I had that type of childhood and it wasn’t until I got my first dog from a breeder – and that breeder insisted we use a crate – that I had to address the assumptions I had from when I was a kid.
For the record, I was NOT a fan of this. Why the heck did I have to put my dog in a crate? It was a pet, one of our kids, and locking him up was just not something I really wanted to do.
But, I had agreed to this as a part of the purchase and I felt I had to do my best. Part of that best involved learning about crates and crate training so I could responsibly crate my new dog.
What I found out while learning about crating was simply amazing! My assumptions changed completely when I stopped looking at a crate as a “prison” and starting thinking of it as a “den.”
Dogs LIKE dens. They like the security of being in an enclosed space. They feel SAFE and learning that was a game changer.
What crating can do:
- Aid in housebreaking as most dogs do not like to mess in their den.
- Keep a young dog safe from ingesting a choking object when alone in the house.
- Protect a young dog from chewing on personal items, as well as dangerous items such as power cords.
- Aid in the care of a sick animal (particularly bowel and bladder issues)
- Provide a secure resting area for a dog who’s had surgery and needs to rest or be confined in their movement.
- Give the dog a physical break from an over-stimulating environment, such as excited children or a party.
- Create an area where the dog of it’s own choosing decides to enter their crate to rest.
Crates are amazing when you think of this as your dog’s den, their home in your home.
As for me? Since that first dog, the one where I was required to use a crate? I’ve used a crate for every dog we’ve had the pleasure of sharing our lives with and it’s been a positive experience for all of us.
I hope you’ll find this is the same for you.