How to Make a Dog Relax in a Kennel

Whether kenneled inside or out, your dog still needs regular attention.
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Kenneling your dog keeps him out of trouble and makes training easier. If he is only allowed to roam freely in the house while you are around to keep an eye on him, he will quickly learn that he is not permitted to chew up electric cords, shoes and other household items, and you will have a much easier time house-training him. While most dogs whine or bark when they are initially introduced to the kennel, with patience, they typically learn to relax while kenneled. Whether you use a traditional indoor metal or plastic kennel or a larger outdoor kennel, expect a period of transition while your dog learns that this spot is his home.

Introduce your dog to the kennel in a matter of fact way. Don't make a big deal about the introduction, simply place him in the kennel, shut the door, and reach through to pet and praise him. After a few minutes, let him out. Repeat the process several times until he easily goes into and out of the kennel.

Provide bedding to help your pup feel comfortable. If you are using a traditional crate type of kennel, a dog bed or kennel pad will make the kennel more comfortable. If you are using an outdoor kennel, clean straw or cedar shaving make good bedding material. A comfortable spot to lie will encourage your pet to curl up and relax while he is in the kennel.

Exercise your dog before putting him in the kennel. Don't fall into the trap of putting your dog in the kennel all the time because you know he will stay out of trouble that way. He will be able to relax much easier in the kennel after a rousing game of fetch or a brisk walk.

Keep a special toy he only gets when he is in the kennel. If your dog has a favorite type of chew toy, keep it put up and only give it to him when he is in the kennel. Puzzle-type toys, which you stuff with treats that your dog has to work to free, are a great choice to give to your pup while he is kenneled.

Items You Will Need

  • Bedding
  • Toys