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Gift Your Dalmatian The Right Crate

Apr 23, 2008
It is very important that you provide just the right home to your Dalmatian. Dogs have carried over from their ancient ancestors the instinct to use a den for comfort and security. If you can harness this instinct you will not only add a wonderful tool to teach manners in the home, but will also give your dog a place to go when feeling stressed or tired.

The majority of new pet owners misinterpret the purpose of a dog crate. In fact, a crate really is a wonderful tool when used correctly. It is not used to punish a puppy. Crate training can be fun for the puppy if you make it a positive experience. The basic idea behind crate training dogs is that whenever you aren't able to supervise your dog or aren't home, the dog goes in the crate.

When you have a new puppy or dog, you will use a crate to limit his admission to the entire house until he learns all the house rules. A crate is also a secure way of transporting your dog in the car, as well as an opportunity to take him places where it may not be appropriate for him to run without restraint. Another surprising advantage: dogs who are afraid of thunderstorms or fireworks, often find refuge in their familiar crate/den.

Also very important, the crate needs to be in a place where your dog will not feel as if he is part of the family and not isolated. You can locate the crate in the kitchen/dining room, usually the most occupied area of the house. . Make sure it doesn't become the equivalent of a prison for your dog! Giving the pup special "treats" is a perfect way to introduce him to his crate. The only time the puppy receives these special treats is when he is in the crate; so the treats become associated with the crate. Remember though, repetition is essential. Your puppy will not understand what you want unless you repeatedly show him exactly what is required of him.

If a dog is correctly trained to love his den, his instinct will be to keep it clean. This is the foremost reason why a crate works in potty training. An attractive crate makes for a welcoming den - a comfy blanket, tasty treats, and a favorite toy help to make the pup comfortable.

Remember though, crate is not a magical solution. If not used correctly, a dog will feel trapped and frustrated. As an example, if your dog is crated all day while you're at work and then crated again all night, he's definitely spending far too much time in much too small a space. Also remember that puppies under six months of age should never stay in a crate for more than three or four hours at a stretch. They can't control their functions for longer periods.

You need to be certain the crate is the correct size for the pup/dog. If it is too big, the pup may try to use part of it as a bathroom and this is something you definitely need to avoid. The crate needs to be big enough to allow the dog to stand up and lie down comfortably. Crates may be plastic (often referred to as flight kennels) or collapsible, metal pens.

But, the crates that are most preferred are the wooden ones with removable side panels, which are ideal for cold weather where the panels in place to keep out drafts and in hot weather where the panels are removed to allow better air circulation. You can buy flat pads for the bottom of crates to keep your dog comfortable, since lying on uneven plastic is not a feel-good event, particularly for older dogs.

In fact, used properly, a crate will often become a very enjoyable part of your dog's day. So crate 'em up!
About the Author
Article by Kelly Marshall from Oh My Dog Supplies - to find ceramic dog bowls to match any decor, go to http://www.ohmydogsupplies.com/dog-supplies/dog-bowls/
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