It is not unusual for dog owners to put their dogs in crates because it helps to discipline them. However, a dog barking in a crate is not uncommon either. When a dog owner first introduces a crate to their dog, it may find the new environment slightly uncomfortable and unfamiliar. This discomfort and unfamiliarity may cause the dog to act up and start barking.
Dog barking in a crate at night is a common problem you face. You should know what to do and what not to do. You must understand that giving it attention for bad behavior will only encourage the same bad behavior. Ignoring the barking and rewarding your dog only if it learns to stay quiet is okay.
It is essential to know when a dog’s barks are genuine, distress barks, or just attention barks. Click on this How to stop dog barking in the crate: crate training basics, to find out more about what you can do if your dog won’t stop barking in the crate at night or during the day.
What it may mean when a dog won’t stop barking in crate
Dogs bark all the time; after all, it is their only way of communicating. A dog may bark because it feels excited, hungry, or anxious. They may bark to warn and fend off intruders as well. One thing to note here is that all these barking reactions are short-lived. These barks usually stop after they convey their needs to their owners.
Concerns and problems arise when a dog keeps barking for an extended period. These barks are because they want attention. Your dog crying in the crate will be a common problem during the initial stages of the introduction. Spending time alone will cause the dog to want attention from you. This attention-seeking behavior is the main reason why a dog barking in the crate is very normal at the start.
A common mistake that dog owners do is scold dogs or give them treats to keep them quiet. Regardless of whether a dog owner punishes or rewards a barking dog, the dog is getting attention either way. This attention will encourage the dog to keep barking and reinforce the whole problem.
Even if your dog is whining in the crate at night, you should learn to ignore these barks because that will help the dog to learn that it is not going to get any attention despite its efforts. You should also learn to follow a routine with the crate. If you lock your dog up for too long, it may be barking because it wants a comfort break.
The common question ” Should I put my dog in a crate at night?” answered
Many dog owners ask whether they should put their dogs in a crate. Although some people think it is inhumane and cruel to put dogs in crates, nothing can be further from the truth. All living creatures, regardless of how social they may be, long for some alone time. Dogs also like to relax on their own sometimes, and crates are a perfect space for them to get that time. Your dog barking in the crate that does not mean it feels abused.
So to answer the question, “should I put my dog in a crate at night?”, yes, you should put your dog in a crate at night. The crate life is beneficial for both the dog owner and the dog. Some of these benefits are:
- Crates can become a place of security for the dog once it gets accustomed to staying inside it. Adolescent and adult dogs do not have trouble controlling their bladder, so putting them in crates at night when you are asleep will keep the dog safe and give it a sense of comfort as well.
- Putting puppies in crates at night is also beneficial for the dog owner. Although puppies have smaller bladders and tend to relieve themselves often, keeping them in a crate at night will give the owner a feeling of relief. This relief is because the puppy will not move around the house and make a mess while the owner is asleep. Putting dogs in crates help in disciplining them and also help them to learn to relax.
- Crate training will help the dog to remain calm and collected even if you have people over for parties. The dog will know that inside the crate, it is safe from the strangers and reduce their anxiety.
- Teaching a dog that bad behavior leads to a time out in the crate without attention is very useful in disciplining it. It will learn that the crate is both a place of comfort and security, but also a place of punishment when the situation calls for it.
- Teaching a puppy to sleep in crate benefits by making it understand that alone time is not bad. The puppy learns to be independent and also learns how to entertain itself in the absence of its owners.
- Crate training helps the dog to learn to stay inside a crate so that even while traveling, the dog does not get anxious inside a moving car or any other mode of transport.
- A dog barking in the crate even after it has been crate trained may mean something other than looking for attention. This time is when you should pay heed to the incessant barkings.
What is the perfect crate for your dog?
Deciding on a crate depends on what kind of dog you own. Some crates may be too flimsy for big dogs, while some crates may be too large and inconvenient for small dogs. There are several factors dog owners must consider before settling on a dog crate. Some of them are:
Material: Plastic dog crates are durable and safe. With ventilation on only one or two sides, it offers maximum privacy, and airlines allow these types of crates for travel. Petmate Vari is one of the dog owner’s favorite dog crates.
Travel dog crates offer the most durability. Dog owners use this type of dog crates for training as well as air travel. 2PET came up with a travel dog crate that has excellent reviews.
Wire dog crates are very portable and provide the most ventilation of all three types. They are also easy to clean and use.
Dog crates come in many different sizes, and you should buy one according to the size of your dog. The perfect sized crate for your dog will be one in which the dog can stand up comfortably as well as fully stretch while sleeping.
It is necessary to find an exact fitting crate and not one which is too broad because if it is too big, the dog may relieve itself in one corner and go to another corner to sleep. There are some adjustable dog crates whose size you can adjust as your puppy grows into an adult. One such dog crate available on Amazon is MidWest Homes Dog Crate.
Dog crates keep an unattended dog from destroying furniture and also keeps it safe from danger. You should securely fasten your dog crate before use, to avoid any accidents.
You have to keep in mind that some dog breeds are more active than other breeds. Active dogs may need a little more space than others. However, this need does not mean that you buy it an extra-large crate. If you are not sure about the perfect size for your dog’s breed, you can buy one that fits its standing height and the length while the dog is lying down. If the crate is too small, the dog barking in the crate may mean it feels suffocated.
How long does it take to crate train a dog for the first time?
The crate training duration can take several days to weeks depending upon factors like the age of the dog, the way its past owners brought it up, the nature of the dog, and also how well the dog owner follows the steps of crate training. A dog barking in the crate during the first stages of the crate introduction is normal.
Crate training duration for puppies
Puppies can learn very quickly. They are curious animals and naturally want to please their owners. If the dog owner can follow the steps of crate training effectively, it will take only a few days for the owner to crate train the puppy fully.
If the owner does not follow the initial steps properly and gives in to the puppy’s attention begging demands, it may take several weeks to get it trained.
Crate training duration for adult dogs with no prior crate training
Like puppies, these dogs will also bark for attention because they were never left alone in a confined area in the past. The dog barking in a crate will be a problem in the beginning. They may take days to weeks, depending on the owner’s ability to follow through with the first steps of crate training.
Crate training duration for adult dogs with prior crate experience
If the previous dog owners have crate trained your dog, going into the crate will take no time. It will come naturally, and the dog barking in the crate will not be a problem for you. The answer to “how long does it take to crate train a dog which has already had prior crate experience?” is a few days at most.
Crate training duration for active dog breeds
Active dogs may comparatively take longer to get used to staying in confinement in the form of a crate. Since they are naturally energetic and need exercise, they will find the small space a bit restricting. It may take a few weeks for you to crate train the active dog.
Crate training duration for relaxed dogs
Your relaxed dog barking in the crate will stop fairly quickly. These types of dogs like to sleep and will not mind spending time in the crate. Although it may be a little tricky in the initial stages of crate training, these types of dogs will get accustomed to the crate life quickly.
How long should a dog be in a crate during the night and daytime?
Different breeds of dogs have different needs. Therefore, the question, “how long should a dog be in a crate?” will differ from breed to breed. However, regardless of the kind of dog, there are some general rules regarding the time spent inside a crate. Experts do not recommend any breed of dogs to stay crated for more than five hours. As far as possible, you should minimize the time a dog spends inside a crate.
Crating during the day
Some dog owners need to go to work during the day and prefer to keep their dogs crated until they return home. Unless the dog owner works a nine to five job, it is okay to keep the dog crated for four to five hours during the day.
This duration is acceptable because regardless of if the owner is there or not, most dogs sleep up to an average of 16 hours per day. Some dogs breeds sleep up to 18 hours. So even if it is inside the crate for those four hours, it can sleep through the whole ordeal.
If the dog owner works for eight hours a day, some adjustments will need to take place. Dogs cannot stay inside a crate during the day for eight hours. They need to exercise and also relieve themselves often. If you keep your dog inside a crate for more than five hours, it will bark, which is common.
In this case, a working dog owner will need to hire a dog walker or a dog sitter to take care of it while the owner is at work. Allowing the dog to move around and also relieve itself after every two hours is an ideal schedule for these kinds of situations. If your dog doesn’t stop barking in the crate during the day, it could most likely be distress barking. You will need to let it out to relieve itself.
Active dog breeds like Dalmatians, Labradors, Golden Retrievers, and Huskies require a lot of exercises and walks to stay fit and healthy. Therefore, these types of dogs should not be inside a crate for more than two hours. If the dog owner cannot tend to these needs because of work, it is compulsory to hire a dog sitter to take care of them while the owner is unavailable.
Crating a dog during the day for a short period to give it a time out for wrong behavior is okay as long as it does not happen too frequently. The thing one has to keep in mind is that using the crate, more than necessary, as a place of punishment will make the dog start to dislike it. The dog will refuse to get inside the crate during times of emergencies like situations of travel or surgery. At this point, your dog barking in the crate will have no solution.
Crating at night
Crating at night is a necessity, especially for puppies and troublesome dogs. If you do not crate your puppy at night, it will not learn to discipline itself. As for hyperactive dogs and destructive dogs, crate time during the night is a time when they can learn to relax and stay away from destroying furniture and making a mess while you are asleep. A dog barking in the crate at night is much more common than a dog barking in the crate during the day.
You can keep your dog in a crate for as long as you sleep, that is six to eight hours if your dog does not mind being in the crate. This tip is for adult dogs. Crate trained adult dogs prefer to sleep in their crates. You can lock the crate the first few weeks or so, and once it is crate trained and has learned to discipline itself, you can keep it unlocked. The dog will remain in the crate until morning, even though you did not lock it.
Your dog whining in the crate at night is perfectly normal if the crate training is only beginning. During the initial stages, a dog barking in the crate at night is a sign of wanting attention. Because it is not familiar with spending time alone yet. You should try your best to ignore these barkings. However, if the case is your dog barking in the crate even after you have crate trained it, these barks may be distress barkings. You will need to let it out of the crate even at night to relieve itself.
If the dog owner can get up after every three hours to check on the dog to see if it wants to relieve itself, that will be very good for the dog. However, it is entirely okay not to do this for adult dogs. After all, humans also need at least six hours of uninterrupted sleep to stay healthy.
Crating time for puppies and dogs with problems
Puppies need a pee break every two hours at most. However, do not let it out when it is barking. Wait for some time to let it cool down and stop crying before you decide to free it from the crate. This method is the only way to crate training a puppy.
Crate training a puppy is necessary for it to learn how to discipline itself and find a safe place to relax. It is crucial to keep in mind that puppies have much smaller bladders than adult dogs. An adult, crate-trained dog, barking in the crate may mean it wants to relieve itself, however, for puppies, crying and barking in the crate at night is to get your attention.
Puppies are not familiar with spending time alone at night. After all, it has companionship all its life from birth (with its siblings) and after adoption (from loving owners). Being alone is entirely new to puppies, and thus, they will naturally cry and bark if you put it in a crate at night. You should try not to give it attention in any way when the puppy barks in the crate at night.
Dogs with problems also need more attention than other dogs. Therefore, a dog owner may have to let the dog out more often than other healthy and fit dogs.
Dog owners should not see crate training as a sort of punishment. They should never use the crate as a method of disciplining the dog all the time. The dog barking in the crate is very normal if the dog owner did not crate train the puppy. Dog owners should learn the difference between a dog barking in the crate for attention and a dog barking in the crate as a sign of distress.