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old dog new tricks
human companionship
old fellow
sleep time
safe way
important point
safe haven
time out
Dogs And Crates
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Dogs and Crates

Teaching an old dog new tricks is not always easy but crate training older dogs is not impossible either. Of course, older dogs are set in their ways and may have already decided that dogs and crates do not mix but if you get along with your pooch you already know they want nothing more from life than to make you happy. So it is quite likely they will go along with you and teach you how easy crate training older dogs is.

Your pet will need a lot of patience and love to entertain your new plan and like older people they may forget easily. If you are lucky your old friend will not be insulted and he will understand why it is necessary for him to go into this new, foreign structure. Which brings me to a very important point. Make sure the crate you plan to use is the right size for your pet. A good rule to follow is your dog should be able to walk in, turn around and lay down with comfort. Nothing will end your dog's cooperation sooner than trying to force them into a crate that is not big enough. On the other hand if the crate is too big a smaller dog may feel insecure and dislike it just as much.

The old fellow may be wondering what your reasons for crate training a dog at this stage of the game is. He has no way of knowing many of his friends use crates for sleep, time out, a safe haven from thunderstorms or a safe way to travel. Another owner oriented reason for dogs to be crated is some pets become destructive when their owners are away from the house. Yet another reason is that some older pets may eliminate in the house if not crated. If elimination is the issue you should always check with your vet to rule out medical problems. You may also consider crate training a dog if your female is in heat and you do not want to breed her.

Of course you would never want to put your dog in a crate for extended periods of time. Pets need human companionship and love this is especially true when crate training older dogs. Crate training is meant to be used as a tool for the owner and pets comfort.

Tips for crate training older dogs

  • Let your pet get used to the crate before you use it. (Allow him to sniff and get comfortable by leaving the crate door open.)
  • After a few days put your dogs food in the crate.
  • In a few more days begin closing the door when he is eating. (He will start seeing the crate as his.)
  • Leave the room when the crate door is closed. (Your pet will relate being crated to your absence.)
  • Let him out when you return to the room. (He will see that you will not forget him.)

Things not to do when crate training a dog

  • Do not let children or other pets in the crate.
  • Do not let anyone beat, shake, rattle or kick the crate.
  • Do not use the crate as punishment.
  • Do not look at crating as something negative yourself. (pets pick up on our vibes.)

A common command that vets and groomers use to get pets into their crate is, "kennel up." You may want to think about using this command when you want your dog to use his crate. You may use another command but whatever you decide be sure you use the same command each time so your pet will understand what you want..

Crate training older dogs is much like crate training any dog. The only difference is that it may take a bit longer and it will require a bit more patience and understanding,

Street Talk

I agree. I have read many of your articles and enjoy them Shawn.

  about 1 decade ago

I think how you do it is the key. great points!

  about 1 decade ago
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