My dogs being an aggressive small breed of dog are crate trained. This means that I close them up in a crate, or dog kennel to keep them safe or to keep others safe. Some people may think that this is cruel but I assure you that it is not. The humane society supports the use of crates, and they have a website that offers information about crate training. http://www.humanesociety.org/animals/dogs/tips/crate_training.html We often forget that dogs were once wild animals. Wild canines live in dens, and feel most at home and safe in a small enclosed area. These small enclosed areas such as crates suffice to a domestic dog like a den would to a wild dog. Wild dogs use their dens for sleeping, having puppies, and raising their puppies. The dens also keep them away from natural elements such as wind and rain.
Another thing to think about when crate training is that most dogs will not soil their den. This means that crating works well to potty train your dog. You can keep them in the crate and let them outside to use the restroom in the yard. This eliminates stinky puppy pads, and works well with stubborn breeds of dogs that go on the carpet no matter what you do. It is important when crating your dog, to remember that dogs need plenty of fresh air and exercise. Never leave your dog in a crate for long periods of time. If you keep them in the crate to long, they can become sick. They can also use the restroom in the crate, and nobody really wants to clean up doggy poop.
There are other pros to crating your dog other than keeping them from using the bathroom on the floor in your house. It also prevents them from chewing on furniture, electrical cords, and it keeps them out of dangerous household chemicals. This is a horrible stage that all puppies go through that they out grow when they get older. Crating also helps prevent dogs from being stressed, and helps with separation anxiety. It creates a safe feeling place for them to hide, almost like their own little room. My dogs use to like to tear up pieces of paper, and sofa pillows. I would come home and think oh what happened here? Did a lawn mower run over my sofa cushions? This is a sign of separation anxiety; another sign of separation anxiety is your dog using the bathroom inside the house when he normally wouldn’t do that. It might be a good idea to crate your dog when he starts to show signs of separation anxiety.
Crating a dog makes it easier to transport the dog. If the dog is used to being in a crate it makes the situation easier and less stressful on the dog. Then you can take the dog on airplanes, or in a vehicle without worry of your dog being scared or stressed. Another thing to think about when traveling is that a crate will keep your dog from going to the restroom on expensive hotel rugs. The crate is your doggy’s portable bedroom.
So how do you choose a crate? There are various different crates that a person can choose from. There are plastic crates, much like the ones people take their cats to the vet in. These crates are often used to travel with. There are also ones with removable doors, for when the door is no longer needed. (I leave the doors on my crates, because my dogs bite people.) There are also wired crates, I keep a wired crate for my German Sheppard Heidi. She is half German Sheppard and half bull mastiff. So looks like an over grown German Sheppard. The wired crate works better for her because, of her size. She also isn’t as aggressive as the smaller dogs I own. I can allow her to see what is going on around the room, without expecting her to bark, and snap through the cage. This is another thing to consider when choosing a crate, is the size and the personality of your dog. You should furnish their crates, with a dog bed, dog toys, and put treats in their crate. This will make it a place they can enjoy.