If you're crate training your dog or puppy using a wire crate, cover it with a lightweight sheet, cloth, towel, blanket or purchased crate cover. Covering a crate can contribute to a cozy and private environment that's similar to dog dens. It can be especially helpful at night when your pooch needs to wind down and go to sleep.
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Privacy and Silence
Covering a crate not only can be beneficial for giving a dog privacy and a sense of security, but it can be beneficial for encouraging overall silence and peace. If you cover your pet's crate, it can reduce the sounds of the typical disruptions of your household -- think your television, music playing, people walking around and phone calls, for example. Cover the back sections, sides and tops of your dog's crate to provide him with a quiet and relaxing environment. Cover the crate loosely to allow your pet to look out from it easily, too.
Covering often can be helpful for soothing dogs and puppies who are crying inside their crates.
It isn't uncommon for dogs and puppies to feel nervous and uneasy inside their crates. These feelings sometimes cause them to tug on the materials covering their crates. If they successfully drag the material into their crates, they can chew on or eat them, which can lead to serious health emergencies that may require surgery. Prevent your dog from being able to do this by folding the sides of the blanket, cloth, towel or sheet underneath the crate.
Crate Covering and Car Trips
Crate covering can come in handy for a reason that's totally unrelated to privacy and rest. If you're taking your dog on a trip in the car, covering his crate can be a great idea. Dogs often become frustrated when they're in vehicles. This frustration is often a combination of all of the things they spot zipping by through the windows and the movement of the car in general. Covering your pet's crate may decrease his stress by calming him and taking the nonstop, overwhelming stimuli out of the equation. Beyond that, crating dogs in cars is important for safety considerations.
Ready-Made Crate Covers
If you don't have an old towel, blanket or sheet available to cover your dog's crate, never fear. Many pet supplies stores sell ready-made crate covers that are designed to give dogs much-needed privacy and relaxation. Since these covers are form-fitting and hug crates snugly, you don't have to worry about restless dogs pulling them off. They're much easier to keep in place.
Crate covering is not suitable in all situations. It isn't always suitable for dogs who have thick and heavy coats, for example, particularly during the warm or hot spring and summer months. You don't want to keep your pet in an environment that's overly hot and therefore uncomfortable. When you cover your dog's crate, it's vital to make certain he has ample airflow, too.
- American Society For the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals: Weekend Crate Training
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- Dog Training For Dummies; Jack Volhard and Wendy Volhard
- Animal Rescue & Foster Program: Crate Training
- Royal Society For the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Victoria: Crate Training Your Dog
- Partnership For Animal Welfare: Using Crates to Help Train Your Canine Family Members
- Golden Retrievers For Dummies; Nona Kilgore Bauer