|I am totally for crate training. It is NOT cruel or terrible to put a dog
into a crate. When dogs were wild, they lived in dens and their natural
instincts will think of the crate as their own little den. My puppies will
be crate trained when you recieve them. They think of it as 'their place'
and will feel safe in a strange new house. It also serves as a place for
the dog to go when he needs to be out of the way. It also comes in
handy when you need to leave the dog alone, he can't get into any
trouble or get hurt.
I found an article that was written on potty training using a crate and I
give a copy to all of my puppy buyers. I highly reccomend it.
Housebreaking A Dog Requires Your Patience, Determination
By Deborah Lawson (writing in The Philadelphia Inquirer)
Many dogs are abandoned, given away or put to death because their owners say the
pet can't be housebroken.
Although some animals are more difficult to train than others, virtually any dog more
than eight weeks old can be housebroken. You can even teach an old dog new tricks.
First, be sure the canine is in good health. Than make up your mind to put in the
necessary time and attention to housebreak it.
Be kind and quietly in charge. It is both disgusting and unproductive to rub the pet's
nose in its urine or feces, and striking a pet spells failure.
Confinement is the first magic word in housebreaking dogs of any age. Select a room
where you can keep an eye on the dog (never a cellar or garage) and where the animal
can do little damage. A kitchen, heated laundry room or recreation room usually have
the type of flooring you can mop with soap and water if there are accidents.
The second magic word is crate. Buy one big enough so that the dog can stand up,
turn around and lie down at full length when it is grown up. Virtually no dog more
than eight weeks of age will soil its crate, and it serves many purposes in addition to
housebreaking (it can also be used for car travel or confinement of the pet when
guests arrive). It is not cruel to put your dog in a crate, which becomes its own little
refuge and cozy sleeping place.
Wire crates are the least expensive, and are quite satisfactory. Add some toys and
give the pet a dog biscuit each time it enters. Accustom the dog to the crate
gradually: a few minutes at first, then build up to longer stays.
As an alternative to the crate, an owner can cordon off part of the room so that the
dog is confined to a small space. Never allow a pet the run of the house or even the
room until it is almost housebroken. Even after it is partially trained, confine the
dog during the day when you are busy and can't watch it and during the night.
During housebreaking, take the pet out to relieve itself first thing in the morning, at
midmorning, at noon, just after it wakes from a nap, after each meal, after romping
play, and just before you go to bed. Study your dog. You'll find that it acts in a
certain way just before it urinates or defecates. When you see these tell tale signs,
grab the dog and take it out.
Let the dog urinate once on a washable floor. Mop up the liquid with an old sponge or
rag that you then anchor outdoors with a stake or stone in a spot that you have
selected as the dog's bathroom. Immediately take the dog to sniff this spot when it
Praise the animal lavishly with words and pats when it performs as desired. Soon the
dog will not want to relieve itself anywhere else. If you have a fenced yard and
eventually let the dog out by itself, you'll find that it goes to the designated place,
thus saving the grass and shrubs.
When mistakes are made, sternly say, No!No!No! and take the dog to its designated
bathroom. It is absolutely necessary to immediately clean places on the rugs or
floors where the dog has an accident. Scrub with soap and water. Then apply an
enzyme odor/stain remover product which can be found in any pet store. (I
recommend Natures Miracle- it comes in a white bottle with red writing.)
Do that every time the dog makes a mistake. If odor remains, the dog will return to
the spot and mess again.
The third magic word in all dog instruction is consistency. Suppose your dog makes a
mistake when you are terribly busy. You can't put off disciplining the pet and taking
it outdoors until you are less pressured. Correction must take place immediately and
the dog led to its bathroom spot. What's wrong or right today must be the same
tomorrow, even if you're too bored, tired or hassled to train a dog.
When the pet is performing fairly reliably and making few or no mistakes in its
confined area, you can give it a bigger area in which to play. For example, if it has
been in the corner of the kitchen, you could let it roam the entire kitchen. A few
more mistakes may result. Accustom the dog to freedom gradually.
The fourth magic word is praise. The dog wants to please you above all things.
A pet that suddenly forgets its housebreaking habits may be ill and require