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Using a Dog Crate for Toilet Training

Dog Crate Training Dog Crates Exercise Pens Precision Puppy Training

Pet crate toilet training

When you first get your dog, they may not be properly toilet trained, leaving you with messy carpet and furniture. This is not something you need once you have just bought your new puppy and you will want to get them trained as soon as possible. There are a variety of ways you can toilet train a puppy and some methods are more effective than others. Once you’ve trained your dog to go outside when they need the toilet, it is very rare that you will ever see them have an inside ‘accident’.

One of the best ways to toilet train your new dog is with a pet crate. Not many people take this avenue because it isn’t usually the first method that comes to mind and it’s incredibly effective. Through using a pet crate, you can not only get your dog toilet trained but also crate trained in the process, giving you a double whammy.

This article will go through why pet crates can be used as a means of toilet training and will also show you how to do it. If you use them properly, you can have your new dog trained in a matter of weeks.

Why Are Pet Crates Great for Toilet Training?

When it comes to toilet training a new dog, many owners will frantically try and run their pup outside of the house at the moment they notice any sign that a mess is about to occur. The issue with this approach is that you can never guess when the dog is about to make a mess and this can lead to unexpected findings.

When you use a dog crate, you can speed up the process by using a dog’s natural instincts against them. The idea of using a crate to help with toilet training relies on the fact that dogs don’t like to go in their own home/den. When you use a crate to aid the toilet training, you put the new dog in a small den that forces them to “hold it in”. Whenever you need to remove the new dog from the crate, immediately take it outside and let it associate the bathroom with the outdoors.

The key point of the crate is associate it with a sense of pleasure and homeliness. You should try and teach your new dog that the crate is their home/haven and a place they can go to sleep and relax. This can be done through small rewards for staying in the crate and you may need to entice them with a few sweeties. Once they have associated it with their sleeping area, they won’t go to the toilet anywhere in that zone.

The process of toilet training is fairly straightforward as you will see later on in this article. It is a simple case of rewarding your new dog whenever they go to the toilet in the right place.

Selecting Your Crate

When you are looking for a crate to use with your new dog or pup, you need to select the right size. If you select a crate that is too big, the dog may think that they have enough room to go to the toilet, as well as sleep. If the crate is too small, they may feel isolated and cramped, which will make it harder to associate to a place of pleasure. The crate needs to be just the right size to allow enough room for movement and flexibility but small enough so that the new dog doesn’t feel they can get away with a cheeky toilet break.

If you are shopping around for a puppy, it is important to get a crate that suits their size and then get bigger crates as they grow up. If you can find a crate that grows with the pup, you’ve got a winner. Precision makes a dog crate that allows dividers to be fitted. This allows you to expand the space as the puppy grows without the need of buying an extra crate.

Going with a lightweight plastic crate is a great start and so is a wired option. However, if you go with a wired option, remember to get a blanket for it to make the crate a little more secure. Bedding is also essential to teach the dog that the crate is a place to sleep, not to mess. However, some pups will see bedding as a toilet mat. In this case, take it out and put it back in when the pup understands that the bedding is not a place to go toilet.

The Toilet Training Process

Once everything is set up crate-wise, you can begin the training. Toilet training is simple when you use a dog crate but the real factor is consistency. You need to keep up the routine of removing the dog from the crate and immediately taking them outside to do their business. If you begin to get lazy, the whole process will be for nothing.

Step One – Get Them Familiar with the Crate

When you first introduce them to the crate, you will need to encourage them to use the crate and see it as their home. To do this, place the new dog or puppy in front of the open crate door and throw a few treats in. Watch as they go in and then close the door. You will want to stand in front of the crate door and feed them treats whilst they’re in. Do this with meals and the dog will associate the crate as their comfort zone.

Step Two – Only Let Them Out For Toilet Breaks

Once they are used to the crate, you have to keep them in it while you’re not around. You can’t afford for them to make a mess while you aren’t watching as it will slow the process. When you take the dog out of the crate you need to take them immediately to the toilet area and encourage them to go to the toilet.

When they start, quietly saying key phrases like “go toilet” or “do your business” as they will become associated. As a point of reference, you should take your dog out after meal times, when saying key phrases and when they’ve drunk a lot of water. Pups need to go out more regularly (every 20-30mins).


Pet crates are a fantastic way to toilet train your new dog or puppy. They make the process incredibly fast as they allow you to stop freak accidents and to make associations faster also. You need to make sure that you have the right crate size when you’re training and you need to make it feel homely. It is important to follow a toilet schedule and consistency is the key. With the right mindset, you can toilet train your new dog in a few weeks.

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