Positive House Training With a Crate | Teacher’s Pet With Victoria Stilwell

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The crate can be a valuable tool to use for house training your puppy. But the key to success is to gradually build up the puppy's positive association with the crate. Today, I'm going to show you several ways to use the crate in positive way with your puppy, so they can feel confident and happy.

In Teacher's Pet, Victoria Stilwell shows you how to employ her Positively Method to train your dog the right way, growing your level of communication to strengthen the bond between you and your pet.

Have a question for Victoria? She'll be checking in regularly, so be sure to leave your comments and questions below.

Victoria Stilwell is widely known as a dog trainer, author, and television presenter. Stilwell served as a judge on the CBS show Greatest American Dog and is best known as the host of the Animal Planet dog training TV show It's Me or the Dog, where she counsels families with problem pets and solves their dogs' behavior problems. In 2010, she launched Positively, the world's first global network of hand-picked world-class dog trainers dedicated to providing the public a brand name they can trust in humane, force-free training.

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23 Comments on “Positive House Training With a Crate | Teacher’s Pet With Victoria Stilwell”

  1. Hello Victoria! I have watched and loved your videos. I hope you will be having a video showing how to teach a puppy to stay. My friend’s Lhasa Apso gave birth a month ago and she’s giving me a puppy. I want him not to get out of the house when the gate’s open. And what other tips can you provide for first-time owners? Thanks! Hope to hear from you soon! =)

  2. Hi Victoria! I have a question. My puppy doesn’t like the chew toy I bought for him. It’s a spiked ball. I used it to lure him into his crate but he doesn’t want to be in his crate. I also tried food and ended up with the same result. Is there a difference between custom made crates and those crates for sale in the market? I asked a carpenter to construct a small crate for my puppy a week ago. Please help me. Thanks!

  3. We kennel train all our dogs saves us a lot of money never did this when we where training them as a puppy during the night we would throw toys in it along with one with treats in it and put the puppy in it, then lock her in, both of my dogs wined for the first week but after that they where fine Aly, now my 3 year old brown lab/border collie loves her kennel she uses it everyday even if we don’t ask her, my 3mon old golden labretriever doesn’t so much because Alys in it a lot but she is trained

  4. Yes! We have a great one from Victoria all about food guarding. Just delete the spaces in the URL:

    youtube . com / watch?v=ZdB1Rb1kGxE

  5. what do you do if you don’t have a playpen for yur new puppy? just a little bed? would you still need a playpen/crate or is it ok just to have a space for he/she/it?

  6. victoria is a great trainer and i like it when the crate is used for positive training. however, i have a friend who locks her dog in the crate for hours on end (every day when she goes to school). poor dog 🙁

  7. Thanks for the great tips!! Will definitely share them with the family.
    I have one quick question: We have our puppy for almost a week already, is there still enough time to start toilet training? We have a Jack Russel terrier pup.
    Thanks in advance

  8. Something she forgot to mention that I think some people don’t realise is that if you leave a dog or puppy in their crate for hours on end, thereby forcing them to toilet in it, you are teaching your puppy not to care where he toilets.
    Dogs naturally won’t soil their bed, or right by their food unless they absolutely cannot hold it, which is why crates are useful in house training – they should be just big enough to be a comfy, spacious bed, and small enough so that the dog realises that, to soil in there, would be to ruin their sleeping area. This motivates them to hold it (within reason). If you leave them there and make them soil their bed then eventually they ‘un-learn’ that natural inclination to stay clean and that makes house training so hard.
     Its a problem you see a lot in dogs from puppy-farms/mills/overcrowded understaffed shelters that have been kept in cages too long…

  9. Clearly there are some good techniques and tips here on crate training. That said, if this trainer is training people on how to train dogs using positive reinforcement, then why are viewers being scolded for the last two minutes of the video? Ms. Stilwel raises her voice, sharpens her tone, she wags her finger, and puffs up and waves her hands in a dominant, authoritative manner. If these techniques don’t work with dogs, why does she use them with people viewing?

    Also, is there any evidence that leaving a dog in a crate for more than an hour or so (one hour) causes any kind of damage? I did a quick search of the scholarly and wasn’t able to find anything. If you read these comments, as the info section states that you do, Could you suggest a few articles, Ms. Stilwel? I’d love to read some. All I was able to find were articles suggestion that puppies places in crates overnight have fewer accidents (Taylor and Mills, 2006). Also, I found that dogs sleep an average of 12.9 hours per day or 53.8% of a 24-hour period (Wauquier et al 1979), and other work suggests that puppies sleep even long. It seems like a dog could stay in a crate while it sleeps for longer than an hour. If you actually do read these comments, I’d love to hear your thoughts. Thanks!

    1. +vinovampire That’s because humans are usually the cause of canine behavioral issues. Dogs shouldn’t be reprimanded for something they didn’t do. We are the ones dogs look up to for guidance and we need to know the proper techniques and pitfalls of our unintentional mistakes.

  10. i have made a mini room for my puppy around 2 meters long with only one feet long opening from which air can come in. is it fine if i use that room for my puppy instead of a crate ?

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