Have you ever heard that it's impossible for an old dog to learn new things? Know that it is quite possible. Although they are a bit more stubborn than their younger counterparts and are not used to certain behaviors, it shouldn't be too difficult to train them to stay in a cage without them being have to bark or whine. Try to apprehend the way yours thinks, give it the right encouragement, and make it adapt to what you want to make sure you can cage it effectively.
Part 1 of 3: get your dog used to the crate
Step 1. Put his cage in a fixed place
This will help him adapt to this place as a kind of home base where he will feel comfortable. Place it in a place where you are used to spending a lot of time. You could place it in the living room or in a home office.
Step 2. Put a towel or blanket on it
The softer and more comfortable it is, the better. Remember to remove the door and try to let him explore the cage as he pleases before locking him up. Some dogs will be naturally curious and may start sleeping there right away.
Step 3. Encourage him to stay there with treats
Encourage your pet to enter their crate by putting some treats nearby. Then put them on the threshold of the door. Finally, place them deep inside or behind the cage. If it doesn't go in deeply, be patient and don't force it.
- Keep throwing the treats in the cage until he calmly goes inside to get the food. If this is the first time he's done this, don't close it.
- Pick a treat he likes. While some dogs will get excited about eating anything, others will get more excited if they are particularly delicious treats. It is very likely that it will if you give it a treat made with bacon.
Step 4. Encourage him to stay there without treats
Treats are the best option, but if you think you're overfeeding it and haven't hit your goal yet, you may be fine without it. Take him inside the cage and play with him or talk to him in a happy voice. Make sure the door is open and secure so that it doesn't touch him and scare him.
Throw her favorite toys into the cage, just as you would if they were treats
Step 5. Feed him inside his cage
After introducing him, try to feed him regular meals in or near the cage. In this way, he will positively associate the cage with the food and will begin by becoming more familiar with it.
- If he's reluctant to go in, just put the bowl near the door. You will have to introduce it gradually further, at each meal.
- Once he is comfortably inside eating his meal, close the door while he eats and is distracted. If this is the first time he has done this, you must open the door as soon as he finishes his meal. At each meal, keep the door closed a little longer until it stays there for about 10 to 20 minutes after eating.
Part 2 of 3: train him to stay in his cage longer
Step 1. Encourage him to stay there regularly for a short period of time
Once he is fully introduced to his cage, you can confine him indoors for short periods of time when you are at home. Call him in and give him a treat or order him in by saying firmly, for example “come in”.
- Sit quietly by the cage for 5-10 minutes, then go to another room and stay there for a few minutes. Come back and sit quietly for a short while and let him out. Repeat this process several times a day while gradually increasing the amount of time he will spend inside.
- If it sits there quietly for about 30 minutes (mostly out of sight), you can start leaving it when you are away for short periods of time. Also, you can let it sleep there at night.
Step 2. Put it in the cage when you go out
If he can spend about 30 minutes there without being anxious or noisy, you can start leaving him indoors for short periods of time when you go out. Try to make your leaving as normal as possible (not too exciting and prolonged), otherwise he would be unable to cope with being alone and this may cause him to suffer from separation anxiety. Congratulate him briefly, give him a treat if he fits in the cage, then leave quickly and quietly.
- Put him in the cage by ordering him to enter with the command you used to use and give him a treat. You can also leave him some toys inside.
- Vary the times you put him in the crate during your routine so that it can prepare him for when you are away. You have the option of putting him in the crate for 5 to 20 minutes, although you should avoid putting him inside for long periods of time before you go.
- As soon as you get home, don't reward him for getting excited by welcoming him enthusiastically.
Step 3. Put him in the cage at night
Put him in the cage by ordering him to enter with the command you used to use and give him a treat. It would be a good idea to place the crate in your bedroom first so that it is close (to you) so that you don't make it think that staying inside is like being in isolation.
If she happens to sleep there all night without whining or barking, start moving her gradually to where you planned to put her
Part 3 of 3: Coping With Your Bad Behaviors
Step 1. Get him to stop whining or barking
If he's moaning, barking, or crying in the cage at night, it can be hard to tell if he's doing this because he wants you to let him out or because he just wants to relieve himself. If he's just trying to get out, he'll probably stop after a few minutes.
- If he continues to cry even after you've ignored him for a few minutes, use the command you usually use to go and relieve himself (for example, go pee). If he reacts and gets excited, put him outside. It is important not to let him indulge in games or a walk when trying to train him to stay in a cage.
- Make sure you don't reward him by giving him a treat when he whines, otherwise he will do it whenever he wants one.
- Never hit it, not even a little. By doing this, you are abusing him, and it can cause him anxiety or depression. Shaking the cage or yelling at him can also have the same effect.
Step 2. Prevent him from chewing on the cage bars
Chewing on the cage bars is quite normal for an anxious dog who wants to go outside. But it won't be good for his teeth. Moreover, it may annoy you. To get him to stop, start by using verbal commands you usually give him to keep him from doing anything inappropriate. Try to say “no” in a firm tone. Repeat this until he pays attention.
- If verbal punishment doesn't seem to be working, try something else. Some dogs will interpret verbal punishment as a form of reward because it will get your attention.
- Put something else in it that he can chew on. For example, you could put a rubber or bone chew toy.
- Spray the bars with bitter apple essence. It is not harmful to dogs, but can leave an unpleasant taste in their mouths which will deter them from licking or biting them again.
Step 3. Avoid him suffering from separation anxiety
You should not use the cage so that he ends up suffering from this disorder. He could injure himself trying to escape. You will need to condition him properly so that he spends time alone.
- If you have to be away for more than a few days, have someone feed it, take it for a walk, and spend time playing with it, hoping that it gets tired and can sleep after that person leaves. This will decrease his anxiety.
- Try turning on the radio or television so that he thinks there is someone else in the house. This can help him calm down.
- You also have the option of consulting an animal behavior specialist for help.