If you’re currently planning on introducing a four-legged friend into your family, then we’re sure that you’ll agree with us when we say that, when it comes to preparation, there’s a lot to do!
If you’re going to be using a crate, you’ll need to make sure that it is set-up correctly, and this is what we’re here to help you achieve.
- What should you put into a puppy crate?
- Is it appropriate to leave food and water inside?
- What about the location of the bedding?
If you are currently asking yourself these types of questions, then rest assured that you have come to the right place.
Below, we are going to be taking you through how you can set up your dog crate ready to welcome your new puppy.
Just keep on reading to learn everything that you need to know about puppy crate set-ups (see also ‘When Should I Stop Crating My Puppy?‘)!
Where Should You Keep A Puppy Crate?
So, before we get into the nitty gritty of how to set up a crate correctly, we’re sure that you’ll be super interested to learn a little more about the best places to keep your puppy crate.
Even though it is very important to make sure that you are setting up your crate in the best way for your puppy’s comfort and safety, it is also very important to make sure that you are placing your crate in an appropriate area of the home, too (see also ‘What Should I Leave In My Puppy’s Crate Overnight?‘).
Given the fact that you are going to be using your crate initially to keep a puppy in, we highly recommend that you consider placing your crate somewhere near you or other members of your household (see also ‘7 Tips For Crating A Puppy‘).
This is because many studies have shown that puppies adjust to their new home life the best when they are near their family as opposed to being left to their own devices in a more isolated area of the house.
This is especially important given the fact that dogs are known to be social animals and need to live in groups.
Along with making sure that you are keeping your puppy near you, you should also consider the following:
To help ensure that your puppy has a “safe space” they can retreat to whenever they need to, you should make sure that you are placing your puppy crate in an area of the home that is also going to be quiet and not commonly disturbed.
Along with making sure that your puppy has a quiet space, we also recommend that you are making sure to keep your puppy crate in an area of the home that is temperature controlled.
The last thing you want is to keep your puppy crate in an area that is too cold or too warm.
Away From Hazards
Last but not least, you should also make sure that you are opting to keep your puppy crate in an area that is as far away from hazards as possible.
This will help to significantly reduce the chances of your puppy getting injured while they are in their crate as well as the surrounding areas of it.
Of course, if you are finding that your puppy is having a hard time adjusting to living in their crate or you are unsure of where you should place it in our home, we also highly recommend that you consider speaking to either your veterinarian or a dog behavioral specialist for more assistance.
However, for the most part, if you are taking the time to make sure that you are following the steps that we have outlined above, you should find that your puppy is able to adjust to their new crate, family and surroundings without any issues at all.
How To Set-Up A Puppy Crate
Now that we have covered the importance of the location of the dog crate, we are now going to be running you through the main items that you are going to need to properly set up your dog crate ready for your puppy to begin enjoying.
Let’s take a look at the main items that you are going to need below:
First things first, you are going to need to make sure that you are getting a calming dog bed for your puppy to sleep in and relax in.
There are many different options out there on the market, and we strongly recommend placing the one that you choose to go with along one of the corners of the crate.
This will help to ensure that the bed is separated from other areas of the crate.
Water and food
While we’re sure that you might have seen many dog owners recommending that you avoid keeping food and water in the crate, we don’t agree (see also ‘Should You Put Water In Your Dog’s Crate?‘).
There are many great water bottles and food dispensers that have been specifically optimized for dog crates, and will help to ensure that your puppy gets all of the food and water they might need without making a mess.
Along with a bed and food/water, you should also make sure that you are keeping a selection of toys inside the crate.
This will help to keep your puppy entertained throughout the night or while you need to pop out to run errands.
Plus. by making sure that you are providing your puppy with all of the necessary toys – you will also be able to ensure that they have proper stimulation that can help with their development as they go from being a puppy to a young, adolescent dog.
While this one ties in closely with toys, you should also make sure that you are including some chews in your puppy crate if they are suitable for your furry friend to enjoy.
Along with toys, chews are a great way to help keep your puppy entertained and stimulated while they are enjoying independent time, and can even help to assist with the dental hygiene of your puppy, as well.
Last but certainly not least, you are going to want to make sure that you are making your puppy’s crate as comfortable as it can possible be for them – especially as they are going to be going through the often challenging process of adjusting to a new environment, as well as a brand new family.
One of the best ways that you can help to create a safe environment for your puppy is by making sure that their crate is as comfortable as it possibly can be, which is why we recommend that you add in plenty of blankets along with the bed.
Should Your Puppy Wear Their Collar In The Crate?
As we have already mentioned above, it is important to make sure that your puppy’s crate is a place that they feel comfortable and safe in.
For that reason, you are going to want to make sure that your puppy is as relaxed as they can possibly be while they are in their crate, which is why it is often recommended that dog owners remove their puppy’s collars while they are spending time in their crates.
Besides ensuring that your puppy will be as comfortable as they possibly can be, opting to remove your puppy’s collar from around their neck prior to placing them inside their crate will also help to ensure that they do not get injured.
It is very common for puppies to get injured by getting their collars caught on the bars of the crate, which can lead to injury and fear of being inside it.
However, if you do feel that you would like to keep your puppy’s collar on while they are in their crate, then we highly recommend that you consider placing a collar on your dog that can “break” easily should it become jammed or stuck in one of the bars.
The Bottom Line
You’ve made it to the end! Now that you have taken the time to read through all of the above, we hope that we have been able to give you a much better idea of how you should go about setting up your crate for your puppy.
By making sure that you are following the advice and guidance that we have provided you with above, you should find that you are able to set up your crate in the safest way possible for your puppy, while also ensuring that they have plenty of comfort as they adjust to their new family.
Of course, as we have already mentioned above, if you are finding that your puppy is not adjusting well to the crate or you would like some further assistance, we recommend speaking with your vet or a dog behavioral specialist for more guidance.
Thank you for taking the time to read through this guide, and good luck with your new puppy!