Crate-Training Your Pomeranian
Using a crate for training has several benefits.
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If you discover the piddle spot after the factmore than three or four seconds — later you're too late. Puppies only understand in the moment, and will not understand a correction given more than five seconds after the deed. Correcting any later will only cause fear and confusion. Just forget it and vow to be more vigilant.
Never rub your puppy's nose in his mistake or strike your puppy or adult dog with your hand, a newspaper or other object to correct him. He will not understand and will only become fearful of the person who is hitting him.
One final, but most important, rule of crate use: never, ever use the crate for punishment. Successful crate use depends on your puppy's positive association with his house. If the crate represents punishment or bad dog stuff, he will resist using it as his safe place. Sure, you can crate your pup while you clean up after he has sorted through the trash. Just don't do it in an angry fashion or tell him "Bad dog, crate!"
Crates are not only useful in housetraining but also necessary for travel. Likewise, in the home, a crate gives your Pom a place to which he can retire with a special bone, out of the way of foot traffic and not underneath you in the kitchen. A Pom puppy is too small to be loose in the house during busy times, like in the morning when the family is trying to get ready for work. Place the Pom in his crate with a toy and know that he's safe.
Show puppies also must learn to use a crate, as a crate is the preferred mode of travel to and from the shows. During the show, the Pomeranian will have to remain safely in his crate when he's not being groomed, trained or exhibited. When you commence crate-training, remain within sight of your dog and give him a toy or something to occupy his mind. Always create a positive association.
To begin with, leave him in the crate for very short spells of just a minute or two, then gradually build up the time span. However, never confine a dog to a crate for long periods. For example, a 3-month-old puppy should never be expected to stay in his crate for more than two or three hours at a time. As the puppy's bladder control develops, the length of time can be extended, but never for more than five or six hours at a time (unless overnight when the puppy is sleeping). If you are away at work all day, arrange for a neighbor or dog walker to visit midday.
Next Step: Training Overview
Reprinted from Breeder's Best: Pomeranian © 2005 Permission granted by Kennel Club Books, an imprint of BowTie Press.
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