Houston Humane
Society News

Crate Training Tips from HHS



Many people misunderstand crate training.  To us, putting a dog or puppy in a crate can seem tantamount to jail.  But dogs don’t think about it the same way we do – in fact, most of them WANT a “den” to call their own.  Many crate trained pets will even "take a break" in their crate when they want to nap.  There are plenty of benefits to crate training your dog.  It aids in house-training, helps keep your pet from chewing on your favorite shoes, the TV remote, or even electrical wiring, and keeps them out of garbage cans.  The Houston Humane Society teamed up with Fox 26 Houston to bring you crate training tips during this week’s Pet of the Week segment.
  • Crate training is a great way to get your pet acclimated to their new home.  The crate serves as their natural hang-out.  Because you want the dog to enjoy his crate and go willingly, never send him to his crate as punishment.  If you need a punishment spot, pick somewhere else like a specific "place" for “time outs.”
  • Be sure to give your pet a treat and plenty of praise each time they go in their crate.  This reinforces to them the crate is a safe spot.
  • Stick to your routine.  As soon as you let your dog out of the crate, leash them up and head outside.  Walk until your pet has used the restroom.  This will aid your house-training efforts.
  • Crates are most effective when used in house-training.  Your dog’s natural instinct will be to keep his spot clean; get a crate big enough to give him room to stand up, turn around, and comfortably lie down, but not so big he can soil one end and sleep in the other. 
  • Build up the time you leave him in his crate.  Don't start day 1 at 10 hours! 
  • Crating can also curb destructive behaviors when you aren’t home.  If your dog is comfortable in the crate with toys that entertain him, you won’t have to worry about him getting into things he shouldn’t… like your favorite pair of shoes or TV wires.
  • As an added bonus, crate training makes for easier travel.  Pets are safer in the car if they’re in a crate, and they can then travel by airplane or stay in many hotels.