The best times you should use a kennel is when you’re training a puppy or bringing home a rescue dog. You can use it for housebreaking, controlling undesirable behaviors and for keeping the dog out of trouble when you can’t supervise. But, you should never use a kennel to punish your dog or lock it away for a great portion of the day.
Kennels can be a great accompaniment when caring for any dog, old or young. But, if a person misuses the kennel, or crate, it can be very psychologically damaging to the dog. So, it’s a gentle balance that dog owners must be mindful of.
Table of Contents
- At What Age Should You Begin Kennel Training a Dog?
- Should You Put a Dog in the Kennel After or Before Potty Time?
- Should You Use a Dog Kennel When You Leave It Alone?
- Should You Leave the Kennel Open or Closed Even When the Dog Isn’t In It?
- Should You Put a Puppy in a Kennel When You Can’t Supervise Them?
- Is It Good to Use a Dog Kennel for Initial House Training?
- Can You Use a Kennel to Discipline a Dog?
- What Other Situations Are Appropriate to Use a Dog Kennel?
At What Age Should You Begin Kennel Training a Dog?
You should begin kennel training a dog the moment you bring them home as a puppy. You can also do this when they’re older, but if they’re a rescue, they may already have a condition called Kennel Crazy. This is because they have already been in the pen for far too long every day. So, in this case it’s going to take a lot of time.
That said, if your dog has a bad aversion to kennels, stave off until you can build some trust. It’s important the dog learn to relax and put its faith in you. When you know a bond is building, then slowly begin to train the dog to go into a kennel.
Should You Put a Dog in the Kennel After or Before Potty Time?
Ensure your dog goes to the bathroom before you put them into the kennel. This will help safeguard against the dog soiling its den-like atmosphere. Also, make sure the dog gets a little exercise before kenneling too. This will wear them out and make the time pass faster while the dog is in there.
Should You Use a Dog Kennel When You Leave It Alone?
It is absolutely imperative that the dog only spends brief amounts of time in the kennel at regular intervals throughout the day. This shouldn’t be ONLY when you leave the house either. You don’t want the dog to make the association of the kennel equating to loneliness. This will create reluctance and hesitancy.
Should You Leave the Kennel Open or Closed Even When the Dog Isn’t In It?
You should always leave the kennel open. As a matter of fact, it’s crucial that you do. This will allow the dog to voluntarily waltz in and out at its own whims. Doing such a thing will make it easier to crate when you do have to lock the door.
It also builds a sense of trust and safety, especially for rescue dogs who are Kennel Crazy. Also, it gives the dog a sense of freedom and peace. And this will come in handy if you have small children.
Should You Put a Puppy in a Kennel When You Can’t Supervise Them?
If you’re at home and you want to clean or do something for a brief period of time, it’s advisable to put your puppy in the kennel. This is because puppies are notorious for chewing on and eating everything and anything that will fit in their mouths. In these initial months, it’s imperative that you supervise the dog.
FREE Training… Is your dog easily distracted? Do they sometimes ignore your commands? If so you need to try the Airplane Game to quickly get their attention no matter what’s distracting them. Click to get this FREE 5-min training NOW!
If your attention is elsewhere, the dog WILL get into something or swallow an object that it shouldn’t. So, if you have to take your eyes off of your adorable troublemaker to get some things accomplished, put it in the kennel.
This is also true for small children. Never leave a puppy or dog alone with children for an extended period of time. This is because little ones play rough and a dog or puppy may misinterpret this behavior. Naturally, the dog will attack, nip, bite and etc. Such a scene will not end well. Therefore, crate the dog.
Is It Good to Use a Dog Kennel for Initial House Training?
Using a dog kennel during the process of housebreaking is good for puppies. You can begin honing the dog’s innate sense of keeping its den clean and it quickens up the house training process. This will be useful when you can’t be with the dog to observe when it needs to go to the bathroom.
In fact, when initially monitoring their behaviors, you can put them in the crate for a brief period of time with the door closed. The dog will avoid going in their kennel when it comes time for them to go. At this point the dog will yelp a little, pace or other similar behaviors of needing to go.
Also, if your pup tends to go to the bathroom in other places around the house while you sleep at night, using a kennel can be ideal. But you should not leave the dog alone in its kennel for too long, especially a puppy.
Can You Use a Kennel to Discipline a Dog?
It’s a fine line in using a kennel to discipline your dog. On the one hand, it can be a good timeout for puppies when they start getting overexcited and nippy. You can put them in the kennel until it regains control of itself. Likewise, this is good for managing problem behaviors, especially with rescue dogs.
HOWEVER – never use the kennel as a form of punishment. So, if you use it as a brief area for timeout, it’s fine. But, you want to ensure they don’t develop negative associations with the kennel in any way, shape or form.
What Other Situations Are Appropriate to Use a Dog Kennel?
Some other situations where it’s appropriate to use a dog kennel are for when you want to introduce a new puppy to an older dog and for safety in traveling. For introducing new pups, it’s ideal for when the older dog isn’t very accepting of the situation. Plus, during travel, the kennel is deal for keeping the dog out of trouble while the car is in motion.