Cage Training

Cage Training

Having a puppy that likes to use a cage is of great benefit for not only travel or at a dog show but as a place of its own for time out and to stop a puppy playing in the middle of the night or chewing every think when teething.

Location of Cage
Whenever possible, place the crate near or next to you when you are home. This will encourage the pup to go inside it without his feeling lonely or isolated when you go out. A central room in the house (i.e.: living room or kitchen) or a large hallway near the entrance is a good place to crate your puppy.

Introducing the Cage to Your Puppy
Occasionally throughout the day, drop small pieces of dog biscuits in the cage. While investigating his new cage, the pup will discover edible treasures, thereby reinforcing his positive associations with the cage. You may also feed him in the cage to create the same effect. If the dog hesitates, it often works to feed him in front of the cage, then right inside the doorway and then, finally, in the back of the cage.

In the beginning, praise and pet your pup when he enters. Do not try to push, pull or force the puppy into the cage. At this early stage of introduction only inducive methods are suggested. Overnight exception: You may need to place your puppy in his cage and shut the door upon retiring. (In most cases, the cage should be placed next to your bed overnight. If this is not possible, the cage can be placed in the kitchen, bathroom or living room.)

It is advisable first to cage your puppy for short periods of time while you are home with him. In fact, cage training is best accomplished while you are in the room with your dog. Getting him used to your absence from the room in which he is caged is a good first step. This prevents an association being made with the cage and your leaving him/her alone.

You may also play this enjoyable and educational game with your pup or dog: without alerting your puppy, drop a small dog biscuit into the cage. Using only a friendly, encouraging voice, direct your pup toward his cage. When your puppy discovers the treat, give him enthusiastic praise. The biscuit will automatically serve as a primary reward. Your puppy should be free to leave its cage at all times during this game. Later on, your puppy's toy or ball can be substituted for the treat.

It is advisable first to cage your puppy for short periods of time while you are home with him. In fact, cage training is best accomplished while you are in the room with your dog. Getting him used to your absence from the room in which he is caged is a good first step. This prevents an association being made with the cage and your leaving him/her alone.