Before adding a new dog or puppy into your life, you’re probably considering how long and how hard the training process will be.Many dog owners choose to crate train their pets before they complete any other types of training as completing this first will make other aspects of dog ownership much easier.

The length of time it will take to successfully crate train your dog will depend a lot on the animals personality as well as your consistency. Some dogs immediately take to their crates, while others are resistant at first. There are few dogs that cannot be crate trained.

Before you begin your training, you’ll need to get the right equipment. Having the right tools will make the process easier and less time consuming. First, you’ll need a good dog crate. Wood dog crates are popular for older animals, while adjustable wire dog crates are more desirable for puppies that will grow a lot. You’ll also need a dog bed or crate mat that fits snugly in the crate and some treats. Another helpful crate training tool that is often overlooked it a dog crate cover. The crate cover makes the crate seem more like a den which works wonders for calming a nervous puppy or dog and helps them relax. Restricting a dog's view by using a crate cover also prevents the dog from feeling like they can whine their way out of the crate.

Once you have your equipment assembled, you can begin your training. Spend the first day or two letting your dog sniff and explore the crate. Leave it in your main living space, so your dog can see that you’re comfortable with it. You can even find stylish dog crates that fall more into the furniture category if you would like to keep it in your living room.

Dogs also love their treats. So using food to make the crate a "happening" place is one method many pet owners have found successful. For more detailed information on crate training with treats and other methods, visit our dog crate training resource page.

After your dog is familiar with his dog crate, you’ll want to start putting him in it for short periods of time, gradually increasing the length until he can remain in it overnight or throughout the workday. Your four legged friend will grow accustomed to his home in less time than you may think and then you may begin other training regimens.