How to Choose the Right Dog Crate
“A dog crate is more than a safe place to leave your puppy, it’s your puppy’s safe place” – Gayle Ballinger
If you’re getting a new puppy, one of the first items you should be purchasing is a dog crate, his/her own little safe haven where she can feel secure. When thinking about dog crates, think of them as an enclosure rather than a cage, that will help you put the right perspective to them as you are searching for the right one.
Did you know that before dogs were domesticated, and they lived on their own in the “wild”, their favorite place for shelter was in spaces that were just the right size for the dog to go in, turn around and lay down. They were “close” yet comfortable for the dog, and kept them relatively safe from their animal kingdom enemies. Just as wolves and bears like their dens, so did the wild dogs. In fact, so do the dogs of today.
When you are looking for the right crate, keep the image of wild dogs in their den in your mind. If you’ll remember the comfort and the security you are trying to create for your “best friend”, you’re already on the right track.
The type of crate I recommend:
I prefer and recommend a crate made of plastic, not a wire crate. Again, think of the crate as a den, where your puppy can feel safe and secure…this won’t be found in a wire bodied crate. Rather, give her walls that surround her, where she will be able to relax and even take naps. Another good criteria for your new crate is to buy one that is airline approved.
Other advantages of a plastic crate:
- They are light weight.
- The bottom can hold a pillow, blanket or towel and be used as a dog bed.
- It provides more shelter and warmth when the temperatures are cooler.
- Some can be purchased with detachable bowls for food and water.
- They are durable.
The size of the crate:
As I’m sure you’ve noticed, there are various sizes…if you are buying a new crate for an adult dog, she should be able to stand and not have to duck her head, turn around, lie down, and stretch out for comfort and not feel cramped. (Remember the dens of the wild dogs)
If you are buying a crate for a puppy, you will need to consider the size she will be when she is grown. Some carriers come with dividers in them, so they can be sectioned off when she is young and small, then expanded as she grows.
After the crate, the next thing you should consider for your puppy is training.
We believe that the most effective method of dog training revolves around teaching your dog what you want them to do, how to behave, how to act in their environment, and what appropriate behaviors are under given circumstances and situations.
Check out our Family Friendly Training Classes