Here’s how to set up your dog’s kennel or crate. A dog crate or kennel is an essential tool for all dog owners. This enclosure protects your dog from escaping, but is also a good training method when you’re first training your puppy or adult dog. The important thing about your pup’s new “den” is that they feel safe and secure in it. There are different sizes and materials to choose from in an indoor or outdoor dog kennel. To explain, your friends at Union Lake Pet Services are here to show you the ropes on how to set up your dog’s kennel. 

Indoor Dog Kennel Basics

Your indoor dog kennel or crate should be roomy enough for your dog to get up and move around comfortably. If you are crate training, the right size will help your pet understand that the crate is their bed, so it discourages them from relieving themselves inside. You can adjust the size of your crate to meet the needs of a growing puppy, but remember not to create too much room (to avoid accidents). You can also make a divider wall for puppies, providing for more room in the crate as they develop.

Place the dog kennel in an area where the family spends the most amount of time, like a den, kitchen, or living room. Your pet needs to know that they aren’t isolated from the family, so they are able to form a positive association with their crate. 

Make the Kennel a Comfortable Spot

Once you have the kennel, and it’s all set up, what do you place inside? Keep in mind, this is a place your dog can go and relax. It should be inviting to them, never a punishment. Place some blankets or towels to line the bottom, along with their bed. If you are still house training a puppy, we recommend sturdy towels that you can easily launder. 

Place fun toys and a few dental chews, like Nylabone and Kong (filled with a bit of peanut butter), inside the kennel. These forms of enrichment make being in the crate a lot more enjoyable for your dog. Start slowly, using treats and food to make a positive association with the crate. Leave the door open for your dog to go in and out as they please initially when you’re home.  

Remember to use the kennel or crate for no more than a matter of hours or as long as it is a place they want to be. You can crate puppies and dogs overnight as they adjust, but take the puppies out often so they can relieve their small bladders.

How to Set Up an Outdoor Kennel

Outdoor kennels range from those that are portable to ones that built to stay in one location. Big dogs or multiple dogs do well with an outdoor kennel built on a concrete foundation or other easy to clean surfaces. The outdoor kennel’s aim is to let your dog or dogs spend time outside, but still protect them from the elements and wildlife encounters, and secure them from running away.

To set up your outdoor kennel, keep the following tips in mind:

  1. Make sure your dog kennel offers some shade, either under trees or through the use of nylon sails.
  2. The ground under the kennel or its base should be flat and allow for water to drain.
  3. Elevate your dog’s bed or resting area, so your dog can nap on a dry surface. 
  4. Keep a few durable toys in the kennel that are suitable for the outdoors.
  5. Provide several large bowls of water to keep your dog hydrated.

Make sure to bring your dog inside after a few hours, or when the temperatures are too hot (over 90 degrees) or too cold (under 50 degrees). 

Additional Tips on How to Set Up Your Dog’s Kennel

We hope this overview has been helpful. Your dog’s kennel should be a fun, relaxing place for them to enjoy toys, dental chews, and a cozy place to rest. If you would like additional help on how to set up your dog’s kennel, please do not hesitate to call us.