Now that they’re comfortable with their kennel, keep them in there for longer periods of time. Give them a command like “kennel” or “crate” and reward them when they go in their crate on command. Start doing this when you leave the house for short periods of time. Slowly extend the amount of time you are away, and eventually you can leave them in there for a couple hours at a time.
You may also choose to crate your dog at night. Your dog might prefer to sleep in their crate because it feels safe and comfortable. This also ensures that your dog will sleep through the night and not get up and wander around. Keep your puppy’s crate in earshot so you can hear when they need to go out to potty.
Things to Keep in Mind
You may encounter whining when crate training your pup. When your dog is whining, they may need to use the bathroom. However, they may also be bored. If you think your dog is whining for the potty, let them out. Otherwise, ignore their whines. If you let them out every time they whine, they learn that they can whine, they will be rewarded by being let out to play. Only open their crate if they are quiet.
Don’t keep your dog in the crate for too long, especially at first. The crate should not be a replacement for human attention. Only use the crate when you are away and your dog cannot be trusted to be unsupervised. If your dog is well behaved while they are alone, they don’t need to be shut in the kennel.
When you are home and you can pay attention to you dog, let them out of the crate. They can be independent for a short amount of time, but they also need to spend a lot of time alongside their human. If you keep your dog in the crate during the day, make sure they get tons of exercise during the day. These dogs have a ton of energy, so they need to be able to stretch their legs.
Crate training is easiest if you are positive and calm. Successful crate time should be met with praise and treats. When you leave, don’t make it a big deal, or else your dog will get upset. When you return, stay calm, otherwise they get wound up waiting for you to get home. Labradoodles can quickly pick up on human emotions, so if you don’t show a lot of emotion, they can’t be affected by it.
Crate training can make your life easier and make your dog feel safe and secure. You won’t have to worry about your Labradoodle pup making a big mess around your house when you aren’t home to watch them. Your dog’s time in the crate should always be a positive experience and never make them feel isolated or punished. With a little bit of practice, your Labradoodle will be hanging out in their crate in no time.
Image sourced from www.adorabledowneastlabradoodles.com.