Crates don’t have to look like a big old ugly cage, one of my trainers recently told me about this one, two of my trainers from Brighton had a custom indoor kennel made under the stairs, cost a fortune but they always had a lot of style.
I really like this crate, but only god knows, what the heck that dog is doing on the furniture LOL
The single most important aspect of housetraining is that you reward and praise your dog each and every time he eliminates in the right place. The more time you spend with your dog, the quicker and easier it will be to housebreak him. When you first get your puppy, take a couple of weeks off work, and housebreak him, using a crate.
Unfortunately most people don't really understand the power of crate training, they see it as a nasty cage thing. Don't look at the crate as a cage for punishment, look at it as a One bedroom self contained apartment for your dog. Crate trained dogs love their crate. it makes them feel safe, and comfortable.
The key to housetraining is to establish a routine that increases the chances that your dog will eliminate in the right place in your presence, so that he can be praised and rewarded; and decreases the chances that your dog will eliminate in the wrong place so that he will not develop bad habits.
It is important that you make provisions for your dog when you are not home. Until your dog is housetrained, he should not be allowed free run of your house. Otherwise, he will develop a habit of leaving piles and puddles anywhere and everywhere. Confine him to a small area such as a kitchen, bathroom or utility room that has water/stain resistant floors. Confinement is NOT crate training.
What is Crate Training?
Crate training is one of the most efficient and effective ways to housetrain a dog. Dogs do not like to soil their resting/sleeping quarters if given adequate opportunity to eliminate elsewhere. Temporarily confining your dog to a small area strongly inhibits the tendency to urinate and defecate. However, there is still a far more important aspect of crate training.
If your dog does not eliminate while he is confined, then he will need to eliminate when he is released, i.e., he eliminates when you are present to reward and praise him
Be sure to understand the difference between temporarily confining your dog to a crate and long term confinement when you are not home. The major purpose of confinement when your are not home is to restrict mistakes to a small protected area. The purpose of crate training is quite the opposite. Short term confinement to a crate is intended to inhibit your dog from eliminating when confined, so that he will want to eliminate when released from confinement and taken to an appropriate area. Crate training also helps teach your dog to have bladder and bowel control. Instead of going whenever he feels like it, he learns to hold it and go at convenient scheduled times.
Crate training should not be abused, otherwise the problem will get drastically worse. The crate is not intended as a place to lock up the dog and forget him for extended periods of time. If your dog soils his crate because you left him there too long, the housetraining process will be set back several weeks, if not months.
Your dog should only be confined to a crate when you are at home. Except at night, give your dog an opportunity to relieve himself every hour. Each time you let him out, put him on leash and immediately take him outside. Once outside, give him about three to five minutes to produce. If he does not eliminate within the allotted time period, simply return him to his crate. If he does perform, then immediately reward him with praise, food treats, affection, play, an extended walk and permission to run around and play in your house for a couple of hours. For young pups, after 45 minutes to an hour, take him to his toilet area again. Never give your dog free run of your home unless you know without a doubt that his bowels and bladder are empty.
During this crate training procedure, keep a diary of when your dog eliminates. If you have him on a regular feeding schedule, he should soon adopt a corresponding elimination schedule. Once you know what time of day he usually needs to eliminate, you can begin taking him out only at those times instead of every hour. After he has eliminated, he can have free, but supervised, run of your house. About one hour before he needs to eliminate (as calculated by your diary) put him in his crate. This will prevent him from going earlier than you had planned. With your consistency and abundance of rewards and praise for eliminating outside, he will become more reliable about holding it until you take her out. Then the amount of time you confine him before his scheduled outing can be reduced and eliminated.
Mistakes and Accidents
If you ever find an accident in the house, just clean it up. Do not punish your dog. All this means is that you have given him unsupervised access to your house too soon. Until he can be trusted, don't give him unsupervised free run of your house. If mistakes and accidents occur, it is best to go back to the crate training. You need to more accurately predict when your dog needs to eliminate and he needs more time to develop bladder and bowel control.