Dogs like their wild ancestors,
instinctively want to seek shelter. A
crate serves as a den for the domesticated dog. Crates are the quickest and easiest way to housetrain your Kid. Your Kidz’ Mom has already trained him not to
eliminate in the den. Confining your Kid
to his crate will encourage him to ‘hold it.”
Puppies usually arrive at their new
home at 8 - 9 weeks of age. Just like
babies they cannot control their bladders until they mature. This is usually between 3 and 6 months. Be patient and expect accidents. Reward good behavior and ignore bad behavior.
How to Crate Train:
Ø The size of the crate is very important, your crate should
have only enough room for him to stand, turn around and lay down comfortably. Purchase a crate that will accommodate his
full-grown size and that has an adjustable partition. The crate will be your Kidz’ bedroom, his den.
Ø The ideal location for a
crate is in a room full of activity so that your Kid will feel that he is part
of the family and enjoy his new room.
Start a schedule and
keep a log of your Kidz’ eating, drinking and elimination times. This will help you predict when he’ll need to
go. A puppy normally needs to eliminate
after eating, playing, and waking from a nap. As a general guideline, puppies can ‘hold it’ one hour for every month
of age, up to 8 hours.
Ø Acclimate your Kid to
his crate by first confining him for 5 minutes. Gradually increase the time as he becomes more comfortable. Do not show excitement when releasing him or
he’ll think of leaving his crate as a reward. Crate him several times a day, not just when you leave.
Ø Just as a baby cries in
his crib it is common to expect some distress at first. Your Kid may whine but don’t let him out
until he stops as your Kid will see this as reward for bad behavior. Crate covers help reduce the amount of
distractions for your Kid.
Ø Always take your Kid to
his designated place outside when you remove him from the crate and only reward
him when he eliminates.
Do not abuse the crate
by confining him too long. If you will
be away for an extending amount of time, arrange a pet sitter or neighbor to
take your Kid outside.
Never use the crate as
At nighttime your Kid
will need to relieve himself less frequently. Put the crate next to your bed and if you hear whimpering take him outside. You may want to set an alarm for halfway
through the night to take him outside and avoid accidents.
Don’t leave food in the
crate at bedtime. This will discourage accidents in the crate.
If your Kid soils his
crate you more than likely left him in too long.
Always keep a close
watch on your Kid until he’s trained. It
might be helpful to keep him on a leash when he is not crated. This way he cannot sneak off and have an
accident when you are not looking.
Ø Never put housebreaking
pads or newspapers inside the crate. It
is important to take advantage of your Kidz’ natural instinct not to soil his
Remember, be consistent and patient
and, your Kid will quickly learn that his bathroom is ‘outside’!