STAT Tip of the Day
Lately I’ve received lots of questions about the crate. People sometimes feel it’s inhumane to crate their dog for long periods of time, if at all. I want to clear that up, because crating is a very important skill for dogs to have, and it should be kept sharp their whole life long.
First, it’s in their genetic make up to be crated. They are quite capable to get cozy in a small confined space, and they are able to do it for long periods of time (unless they are pups and need to be pottied more frequently).
Dogs are not people, so don’t come from your perspective when thinking about being confined. People and dogs are different. Crates promote coziness and allow for decompression from stressors, and they provide safety. The bigger the space to roam, the more temptations for your dog. Did you ever notice how a dog with lots of freedom gets into mischief? That’s because freedom can overwhelm the mind of a dog, but not if crated.
Here’s the crate protocol that I recommend for adult dogs who have been through my program: before you leave for the day, take your dog for a 30 minute structured walk, as this will mentally and physically drain her for the day. Make sure there is plenty of water for the day (so long as there are no potty issues) and provide an indestructible toy, such as a Nylabone or Kong to work. You can even have a dog walker come in mid day if you feel it’s necessary, and I would recommend that if you are gone for more then 8 or 9 hours.
If you have any questions, post them here, or go to my website to learn more about the services I provide.