Crate Training Tips Success: Expert Strategies for Training Your Dog

Crate training is an effective way to housetrain your puppy or dog and create a safe, secure space for them. When done properly, crate training provides many benefits for both you and your furry friend. In this article, we’ll cover essential tips and strategies to help you achieve crate training success.

Why Crate Train Your Dog?

Crate training is beneficial for several reasons:

1. It helps with housetraining by leveraging your dog’s natural instinct not to soil their sleeping area.
2. It provides a safe, comforting space for your dog to retreat to when they need rest or quiet time.
3. It can prevent destructive behaviors when you’re unable to supervise your dog directly.
4. It aids in traveling with your dog and can be useful in emergency situations.

Choosing the Right Crate

Selecting an appropriate crate is crucial for successful training. Consider the following factors:


The crate should be large enough for your dog to stand up, turn around, and lie down comfortably. However, it shouldn’t be so spacious that your dog can eliminate in one corner and sleep in another.


Crates come in various materials, such as wire, plastic, and fabric. Choose a durable, well-ventilated option that suits your dog’s needs and your home’s aesthetic.

Introducing Your Dog to the Crate

A positive introduction to the crate is key to success. Follow these steps:

Make it inviting

Place a soft bed or blanket inside the crate, along with a few favorite toys. You can also cover the crate with a lightweight blanket to create a den-like atmosphere.

Use positive reinforcement

Encourage your dog to explore the crate by tossing treats inside and praising them when they enter. Never force your dog into the crate, as this can create a negative association.

Feed meals in the crate

Begin feeding your dog their meals inside the crate with the door open. This helps create a positive association with the crate.

Establishing a Crate Training Schedule

Consistency is essential when crate training. Establish a schedule that includes:

1. Regular potty breaks
2. Playtime and exercise
3. Meals in the crate
4. Quiet time in the crate

Gradually increase the amount of time your dog spends in the crate, but never leave them inside for too long.

Crate Training During the Night

To help your dog sleep through the night in their crate:

1. Place the crate near your bed so your dog feels secure.
2. Take your dog for a potty break right before bedtime.
3. If your puppy whines, take them out for a quick potty break, but avoid engaging in play or cuddles.
4. Gradually move the crate further from your bed as your dog becomes more comfortable.

Addressing Common Crate Training Challenges

Whining or barking

If your dog whines or barks in the crate, wait for a brief pause before letting them out. This teaches them that quiet behavior, not whining, leads to being released.

Separation anxiety

If your dog shows signs of separation anxiety, consult a professional trainer or behaviorist for guidance. Crate training alone may not be sufficient to address this issue.

Resistance to the crate

If your dog resists entering the crate, be patient and persistent with positive reinforcement. Never use the crate as punishment, as this will create a negative association.

Transitioning Out of the Crate

As your dog becomes more reliable with housetraining and behavior, you can gradually increase their freedom outside the crate. Start by allowing supervised access to one room at a time, and slowly expand their access as they demonstrate good behavior.

Maintaining the Crate as a Safe Space

Even after your dog is fully housetrained, it’s essential to maintain the crate as a safe, positive space. Keep the crate available for your dog to retreat to when they need rest or quiet time, and continue to associate it with positive experiences, such as treats and comfortable bedding.

Looking to achieve success with crate training for your Tornjak? Check out our articles on potty training benefits with crate training, Tornjak training tips, common crate training mistakes, and the importance of reinforcement in obedience training for valuable insights and advice!


Crate training is a valuable tool for dog owners, providing numerous benefits for both you and your furry companion. By following these tips and strategies, you can help your dog develop a positive association with their crate, leading to a well-behaved, content canine. Remember to be patient, consistent, and always use positive reinforcement for the best results.

Matthew Farthing

Matthew Farthing

Сontributing author at DogCareHacks, Certified Dog Behavior Consultant.

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