“Can I crate a dog over night?” You may be asking yourself if this is an appropriate thing to do. If so, you have probably been told to never leave a dog in a crate for more than 12 hours. This warning may seem quite harsh, but if you were a dog breeder, you would understand this because the breeder has probably crate-trained their dogs from puppyhood. Also, this warning may prevent your dog from being crate-trained, thus causing a breach in training.
Dogs need daily, weekly, and monthly breaks from play and activity to be healthy, happy, and to eliminate destructive behavior such as chewing, digging, jumping, or any other destructive behavior. You cannot crate a dog for more than 12 hours, it is cruel, it affects your dog’s emotional health, and the crate itself is just used for sleep and a few naps over the day, your dog requires enough space and activities to play and move around, even when left alone. If you are wondering how long your dog should be in his or her crate, the answer is “as long as they can go in there.” Most dogs can stay in their crates for up to a month without problems.
Even though dogs can stay in their crates for a month or longer before needing to be removed, it is important that you only remove a dog from his or her crate for very limited reasons. Ideally, you should never remove a dog from its crate for more than a couple of hours at a time. Remember, you can’t go more than two days between crate walks or house breaks, so this rule of thumb will keep your dog happy and healthy. It is best to introduce your dog to its crate during one of its house breaks. (You may want to bring a friend along, too, to keep the dog company.)
Why should you crate a dog more than twice a day? Dogs need their own space and alone time to rest, to eliminate, and to rehydrate. When a dog is in its “tired” state, it is less likely to want to go to the bathroom. When you crate a dog more than twice a day, you are giving the dog too much freedom to defecate. As a result, it has to hold on to that bag of poop for a longer period of time every time. This can result in feces and urine being left behind, which can lead to bigger problems.
Dogs who suffer from separation anxiety will do anything they can to stay away from the object of their anxiety. This means that they will tear down curtains, shred up furniture, chew shoes, and jump on people. You can see why crating a dog is extremely important. Not only is crating the dog safe and healthy, but it is good dog training. Crating a dog for more than twelve hours every day can lead to the development of serious behavioral issues such as chewing, destruction, and jumping.
The best way to crate train your dog is to figure out her maximum time frame in which she wants to be crated. To figure this out, you will need to ask the dog owner for a crating schedule and document it when you get home. When the dog is crated, take her to the designated area, close the door, and play with her for a short amount of time. Once you’ve had a chance to bond with your dog, take her outside and stand near the door. If the dog does not follow your instructions, then close the door again and start over.
Of course, dogs are a little different, but they all want to be able to go outside for an extended period of time, so there is no set limit to how long they should be crated. Some dogs may need to be crated for a few days while they recover from a illness, or maybe they have been diarrhea or spoiled by a pet. Other dogs are very well house broken, but may need to be crated for a long period of time because of their size or activity level. Obviously, dogs that have special needs need to be cared for appropriately, but most dogs will adapt to a few hours inside a crate if they are properly taken care of. It is not uncommon for older dogs to need crating time, especially if they are over ten years of age.
If you’re crate training a puppy, then you can leave her in the crate for a couple of hours at a time during the first couple days, and then continue on with her until she’s come home ready to take on her new role as part of the family. Most dogs adjust pretty quickly to being crated for a short amount of time, even if it’s only for a couple of hours. You should make sure that you leave her in the crate when you are away from her for a good portion of the day. This will ensure that she gets used to the idea that she is coming home to be handled in a specific manner. If you leave her alone for too long, then she could develop anxiety or fear of the unknown. If you are going to crate train a dog longer than two days, then you should set aside a couple of hours during the day so that you can play with her, or spend some time having fun together, just like a real family would do.