The best place for a dog crate is…in a high traffic area, and a quiet one.
Really! Here’s why.
High traffic area
Whether you’re crate training a new puppy, or you’ve had a dog for awhile and believe a crate will benefit him, your pup is a member of your household and it’s nice to have him in/near the hub of the home. In my case it’s the kitchen or living room but that may differ for you. Whether you’re doing some training getting him used to the crate, or he just likes to hang out in it, putting it where the action is means he can see what’s going on and be included in the family. Even if you’re going out, he should still be able to be in a familiar room.
Hiding the crate away in a basement or laundry room for instance, just isn’t fair is it!
Having just told you what a great idea it is to keep a crate in a busy area so your dog is part of the family, I am now going to tell you how important it is to put it in a quiet corner. Let me explain before you start calling me a hypocrite!! I should add an LOL to that so you know I’m kidding!
As great as it is to have your dog included in everything, sometimes “everything” can get to be too much. Parties, guests, animated family meals, loud music, kids’ friends coming around can all lead to anxiety in your dog. That’s when alone time comes in. Having somewhere quiet for him to escape to is important, just think about how much you cherish quiet time.
What about your bedroom?
I can’t say whether that falls under the category of high traffic area or quiet corner so I’m giving it its own paragraph.
If you have a puppy it’s a good idea to start him off sleeping in the bedroom with you. He’s been taken from his litter mates, and/or adopted from a shelter or foster home, and brought into this strange place. That can be overwhelming, if not downright scary! Allowing him to be close to his family, at least for the first few days, will enable him to feel safe and secure.
Your puppy doesn’t know anything about a schedule yet, so your sleeping pattern may encourage him to sleep.
If he’s fussing or crying you’ll hear him. You’d probably rather not so you can get a good night’s sleep but it is important. If he’s letting you know he has to go out but you don’t hear him, he’ll be forced to pee or poop in his crate, and that could hinder your training efforts.
If you don’t plan on letting your puppy sleep in your room long term, after a few days (or weeks, depending on how things are going), start moving the crate to where it will finally live. Each night move it a few inches, until you get to the spot you’d like him to eventually sleep.
When choosing the location…
- Be sure it’s not draughty
- Do not put it close to a radiator or fireplace
- Keep it away from direct sunlight
- Avoid areas of extreme cold or heat
Second crate or lots of moving?
If you like the idea of having a crate in more than one location, the question now is – do you move one between the two or more areas, or buy more than one?
I don’t know your situation, so I can’t answer this question for you. I can, however, give you a few things to think about that may help.
1) Is your crate portable enough to move back and forth?
2) How long do you plan on letting him sleep in your bedroom? If it’s not for long, you may be able to get away with just one.
3) Are you willing/able to invest the money in a second crate?
4) If you do decide on purchasing another, think about what other uses it can have – i.e. airline approved for flying with your dog, safety during car travel, overnight stays…
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