ParrisHill Standard Poodles
Crate Training

CRATE TRAINING: The crate should be a safe place for a pup to go to, not a prison. When you want the pup to go into the crate, put a treat in the crate so the pup has a reason to go in. Give the pup a slight push into the crate while tossing the treat in ahead of it. Put a soft plush toy in, and also put a macho stick in which is safe to leave with the pup or a chew hoof. Feed the pup its chicken necks and other raw meaty bones in the crate. Always put the pup in the crate when you can’t watch it to be sure it doesn’t get into things, chew woodwork, electric cords, etc. It’s the only SAFE place for a pup when it’s out of your sight.

When you get the pup home, put it in the crate for short lengths of time, with its meal or with a treat. If the pup cries, say "NO" in a gruff voice or make a sound of displeasure. If the pup doesn’t stop, use a spray bottle with water and spritz the pup’s face while saying "NO." Put the bottle down in front of the crate and if the pup continues to complain, spritz it again. You can also use a plastic cup with 1/4" of cold water in it. Toss the water in the pup’s face, then refill 1/4" and set it down in front of the crate. You can also take an empty soda can and put some pebbles or pennies in it. Tape the opening closed and use it as a shake can to get the pup’s attention when you say "NO" or use it as a toss can to startle the dog in the crate if it continues to cry. Just throw it down on the floor near the crate while you say "NO." This will definitely get the pup’s attention. It’s also good to use if the pup is chewing on something it shouldn’t and a strong "NO" isn’t getting its attention.

Put the pup in the crate periodically during the day so that it gets used to being in there and will eventually fall asleep. Dogs sleep 80% of the day and pups even more, so sometimes the pup will need an enforced rest period especially if you have children that want to play with it. If you go out, leave a radio on. I usually play WOR 710AM talk radio all day long, occasionally switching to classical music, or country, etc. When you take the pup out of the crate, take it outdoors right away as it will have to pee. Don’t forget that pups pee when they wake up, when they’ve been playing and after they’ve eaten. Use the same words all the time. I say to the dogs, "let’s go out." Then when outside, "go tinkle" "hurry up" and praise when they do it. Some owners have taught the pup to ring a bell on a string on the door knob to go out by taking the pups paw and hitting the bell, then going out, and praising and treating.

If you have a large crate to use for the pup when it’s full grown, block off access to the back with a milk crate or carton. The pup should only have enough room to be able to turn around and stretch out to sleep. If there is too much room, the pup will turn the back into a bathroom area which is a very hard habit to break.

Overnight, you may want to put the crate by your bed so you can quiet the pup if it cries without having to get out of bed a number of times. Hopefully the pup will have settled into the crate routine during the day and will fall asleep quickly. It may wake you during the night crying to go out. Pick the pup up and carry it outside so it doesn’t have an accident on the way. It should sleep through the night in a day or two according to what other puppy owners have told me.

Remember to always give the dog a treat when you put it in the crate. It should be a safe, quiet place for the pup to escape to anytime during the day when it wants to take a nap.

Revised 2/2007
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Ch. Pinafore Parrish Hill

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