Crate Training – The First Step to a Better Dog

There are many benefits of crate training with your dog. However, before you seriously consider boarding kennels in San Rafael, first try to understand how to teach your dog to appreciate their crate.

First and foremost, remember that whatever your emotions and ideas are about a crate will be transferred to your puppy. So get yourself in the right state of mind before offering your pet a new lifestyle habit. A crate is indeed not a prison unless you consider it or use it as one.

Consider the crate as a sanctuary and a private place where your dog can rest and feel safe, away from the stresses of the world. Keep in mind that your dog is a “den” animal by nature. Dogs seek out small, enclosed spaces in nature as areas of refuge and protection. Consider this when practicing crate training.

Don’t Rush Things

If your dog has never been in a crate before, start by placing their food bowl on the far side of the crate, so theyhave to step fully into the crate to feed.

 ➢ Keep the food inside the crate and open its doors. 

 ➢ During this time, no other food or treats should be provided. 

 ➢ Remind them that the only way they can get food is through the crate’s open door. 

 ➢ You might keep water outside of the crate.


Expect a hunger strike from your dog, as it will most likely take some time to persuade them that the crate is the center of all healthy and delicious stuff. And if food is available, no dog can go hungry.

 ➢ When your pet enters the crate happily for each meal, close the door before they finish feeding.

 ➢ Then, when they are done, shut the door for a few minutes as you leave the bed. 

 ➢ Work for a total of 15 minutes.

 ➢ Feed your dog in the cage, close the lock, and leave the room or house for 30 minutes. 

 ➢ When you return home, allow your dog to step out of the crate. 

 ➢ This should be done during the day to avoid upsetting the neighbors.

 ➢ Finally, after their last potty break of the day, the dog should spend the night in the crate. 

Things To Avoid

Avoid keeping the dog’s crate overnight in your bedroom where they can see you. Otherwise, all the effort you’ve put into building your dog’s trust in the crate will be in vain. The allure of seeing and hearing you – right there in front of them yet out of their reach – can trigger fear in your dog. That’s not right.

Instead, keep the crate in a quiet, different place. To limit outside stimuli, you can also cover the crate with a sheet if desired. Just make sure the dog doesn’t try to eat the sheet by pulling it into the crate. When the dog barks or whines, do not let them out of the cage.

Remember not to put your pooch inside the crate when they are angry or upset. Their welfare and well-being is all you should be focused on. For boarding kennels in San Rafael, call Bridewell Hilltop at (415) 897-5471.

Bridewell Hilltop Boarding Kennels & Cattery is dedicated exclusively to the care of dogs, cats, and small animals other than reptiles. Bridewell specializes in dog boarding, cat boarding, pet grooming and more for the areas of Novato, San Rafael and Marin County.