Crate Training Your German Shepherd Puppy
Crate training is a safe, natural, effective way to teach a puppy good habits as a crate most resembles the natural environment of a den, where a litter of pups would be raised. A crate helps avoid the headache of dealing with destructive behaviors like chewing, getting into the trash and eliminating in the wrong places.
The size of the crate is an important factor. The puppy only needs enough room in the crate to be able to stand up, turn around, and lie down. Anything bigger gives confusing signals about where to eliminate, so when crate training it is important to partition off the extra space until the puppy grows into it.
Dutch Shepherd, Belgian Malinois or German Shepherd puppies are social animals and keeping the crate where they can see you helps reassure them, keep them calm, and gives them a sense of security that only small spaces can.
Having a crate in the bedroom at night is a benefit especially when you can hear the puppy become restless – a big signal that it is time to go outside for potty.
When crate training never let your puppy out of the kennel when it is making noise. Allow it to calm down and be quiet before opening the door.
Generally, the length of time a puppy should be in a crate at any one time is as many hours as he is in months/ A two month old puppy should be taken out every two hours, 3 month old, every three hours, etc. Towards the end of 3 months, the puppy will be able to stay in the kennel overnight provided the last thing it did before going into the kennel was go outside to relieve itself.
When you begin crate training start by introducing the puppy to the kennel at home, try to make it a pleasant experience and remember to repeat a key word such as “Kennel” so the puppy will become familiar with this command.
If you must leave your puppy in the kennel for longer periods of time and will not be available to take it outside to go potty, leave the door open so the puppy can come out into a confined space like the kitchen where it can eliminate safely.