Many dog owners especially new ones or those still considering adopting a dog are asking is crate training good for a dog.
There are some dog training experts that think that crate training is at least not necessary, and present many ways to home train without it.
However, the great majority of dog training experts and experienced dog owners agree that crate training is, in fact, good for dogs.
I personally believe the same thing and for those who are presenting alternatives to crate training; they are mostly just following the current of the social media groups that consider crate training cruel.
There are absolutely no valid arguments to back those claims up, and crate training has not just been proving to be good for dogs; it is also the most effective way to home train them.
So let’s dive into the matter and see in detail if crate training is good or bad for dogs by presenting the elements to consider.
Is crate training good or bad?
The first mistake I believe most of those against crate training make is to take the matter from a humane perspective.
For us confine spaces and crates are considered simply cages and prisons. well not to a dog.
Dogs sure do need an open space for playing and exercising which is an important part of their routine. However, dogs spend most of their day sleeping something that makes their needs completely different.
Dogs don’t spend too much time in deep sleep, so unlike us, they need to sleep more to compensate for that. On average a dog is spending 12 hours a day sleeping.
And even when they wake up half of their time they are inactive just laying around or napping.
When sleeping or just chilling dogs need an intimate place to feel safe and relaxed. And even if you do not provide a crate for your dog, he will find a place to do it.
Dogs evaluate places based on experiences, not how big of a space it is. If they feel great in the crate they’ll get in it without you asking.
If your dog is going to find a place to den up anyway wouldn’t it be a good thing providing a place you can control?
Using the crate right makes crate training good for your dog just like using it the wrong way makes it cruel.
When you evaluate something you should do so based on who’s using it.
Is crate training a good idea for new puppies?
I believe that crate training is the best idea for puppies, in fact for me the younger the better.
I recommend you read this article about the best time to start crate training a puppy.
The younger the puppy the easier to crate train effectively and less time it is going to take. Younger puppies still have no routine nor habits to change, they are more open to training than older dogs.
Crate training a puppy helps tremendously with the potty training which is great. It also helps provide a safe place for the dog especially when you are not around. It is good for establishing communication and helps a lot with installing good house manners and controlling the environment.
What else could you ask for? young puppies spend up to 18 hours asleep per day so how is crate training a bad idea.
Just lose the guilty thinking about putting the dog in a cage and start thinking of how a dog sees it.
If you had a dog for a while you will notice that the dog is sometimes just hiding under some table or behind a couch. So why not provide a place you can place strategically within your house to keep the dog close by and know where he is at all times.
Of course, dogs will need exercising and time outside the crate to enjoy their day. In fact, you can’t have the puppy in his crate unless you exercise plenty and only for a limited time.
Is crate training good for separation anxiety?
This is an important point indeed and a very common question among dog owners.
Crate training is not good for separation anxiety and will under no circumstances help with your dog’s situation.
crate training is not a remedy and you must consult an expert to deal with your dog’s anxiety.
However, crate training does not make it worse and has absolutely no effect on it.
The only good thing that I can think of is being sure that your dog is safe while not around.
Dogs with separation anxiety could be very aggressive and tend to be chewy on everything they can put their mouths on.
So for the safety of your dog, you may want to consider a heavy-duty crate like this one until you’re home.
But again this will not a cure, it is just a confinement plan till you deal with the situation.
Is crate training necessary?
Crate training is not necessary since there are people effectively home training their dogs without it. However, I would consider it strongly recommended especially for working and new dog owners.
It is hard for an inexperienced new dog owner to establish communication and home manners. And that’s what crate training is good for. So it would be better to use it.
If you don’t feel ok with crate training your puppy then you can skip it and try training without it. It’s just that it would be much faster and easier with crate training.
If you choose not to do it just make sure you can dog-proof the area your dog spends his day in when you are not around.
trusting a new puppy in an open space could be dangerous and irresponsible; Since their ability to assess danger is not very good.
If there is a way to do something better and faster with no damage why not use it.
Alternatives to crate training
If you still think crate training is not a good idea for your dog, there are a few other alternatives.
Again I strongly recommend crate training and still think it’s much better and easier to home train a dog.
Using a playpen is very similar to crate training all you do is give your dog a little more space. In fact, most dog trainers advise that you attach a crate to the playpen so if the dog chooses to go in it it’s an option.
The playpen sure gives your dog more space and you can install toys and maybe potting pads especially for young puppies.
This is actually a great solution for dog owners who have to work full time. I would suggest buying one that attaches to a crate so if the dog wants an intimate place he has the option.
You can check this playpen and here you can find the crate that attaches to it.
The dog daycare is great option if you are not around during the day, your dog will be cared for and can have plenty of activities.
It is great to be around other pets and some daycare centers offer many other services like grooming…etc.
Dog-proofing an area of your house could be another great alternative to crate training. You can give your dog a much bigger space while controlling his environment.
All you need are some dog gates to block access to areas of the house you don’t want your dog to be in. You have to make sure there is nothing dangerous left that could harm the puppy when unsupervised.
Why crate training is bad?
The crate is considered bad only if you do it for the wrong reasons or you don’t do it correctly.
Some people are using crates as time out places, to punish their dogs which is cruel and very bad for his training. If you associate the crate with bad experiences you can’t expect the dog to cooperate.
Leaving your dog in the crate for too long is also a bad idea, and very harmful to your dog. Dogs need enough playtime and exercise and also chilling time outside of the crate.
The crate is for sleep and relaxing during the day. If you do work or don’t know how much time your dog should stay in the crate; I strongly suggest you read this article about the crate training schedule.
The intelligent use of the crate is a very great tool to teach your dog house manners, to enhance communication and to provide for him a safe and intimate space.
Using the crate for the wrong reasons, on the other hand, can do just the opposite.
I know everyone has his own ideas about it but if you don’t feel ok doing it we provided some useful alternatives to consider.
But all in all, my final verdict is that crate training is, in fact, good for dogs.