Do Dogs Need Their Own Space?
A private space for the dog , yes they need their own, safe place.
Here they can sleep, rest, eat their bones or withdraw if it is too busy for them. When choosing a suitable sleeping place for the dog, there are a number of things to consider. There are many different options to give your dog a place of its own.
For a puppy, a crate is often a suitable aid in education. ( see here a post on Puppy Crate Training) This is a kind of ‘cage’ of metal or plastic. A prerequisite for using a crate is that you must first teach it in a positive way, so that the puppy will find it a nice place.
After learning, a crate can be used for, for example, toilet training or to prevent the puppy from sinking its teeth everywhere if you cannot pay attention. A crate can also serve as a temporary aid for behavioral problems, or to ensure that a dog takes a rest after, for example, an injury or surgery. In such a case it is beneficial if the dog is already used to a crate.
Once you have crate trained your puppy, an open crate for the dog is often a wonderful place for your dog, shielded from the rest of the room, where they can retreat. However, a crate is not intended to keep your dog locked in for hours! Only close the crate for short periods. The idea is that you train your dog to behave in such a way that you can leave the crate open from now on.
You can read detailed information about crate training and how to crate train your puppy at night in the article ‘How To Crate Train Your Puppy At Night’.
For a closer look at crates models you can have a look here: Models and prices
Do Dogs Need Their Own Space – Dog bed
For an adult dog that behaves nicely in the house, a Dog Bed is often a nice place to lie down. There are all kinds of dog beds, made of plastic, reed or fabric with a polyester mattress core. Preferably choose a dog bed that is easy to clean (including flea control) and made of sturdy material. Some dogs like to chew and might break a fabric dog bed. Make sure the dog bed is large enough for your dog to lie comfortably in.
As there are many different types and shapes when selecting a dog bed, here you can further check on the latest models and compare prices.
Do Dogs Need Their Own Space – Stretcher / dog bed
A stretcher can be a convenient and easy to carry dog bed. An advantage is that the dog is a little off the ground so that cold and drafts do not get a hold of him. A disadvantage may be that there are no side edges, so that drafts from the side are not stopped. It is wise to put a blanket or cover over the stretcher so that you can wash it well.
Some models and latest pricing you can find here
Do Dogs Need Their Own Space – Cushion / Dog Pillow
Some dogs need a blanket or dog pillow to lie on. With a rug you have to take into account what type of coat the dog has, because for a short-haired dog only a rug on a hard surface is sometimes too hard. In that case it is better to buy a dog cushion.
The advantage of a rug over a pillow is that it is easily washable. Fortunately, many pillows have a removable cover. A pillow itself is difficult to clean. Sometimes it can be useful to teach the dog to lie on both a rug and its own place, such as a dog basket or crate.
After all, you can easily take a blanket or rug with you when you eat out, go on holiday or visit friends, so that your dog can lie down or sleep on his/her own familiar place, even in a strange environment.
Do Dogs Need Their Own Space – On the ground
Some dogs who have double coats or undercoats like our Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever Stippy don’t like to lie on anything. They quickly get warm in the house and prefer to lie on the cold floor. Then make sure that there is a good space for them so that they also have their own place.
Do Dogs Need Their Own Space – Choose a suitable place
A second consideration is where you will choose the dog’s recline. Keep in mind that a dog likes to be in the company of his group and often wants to keep an eye on everything. But the place must also be located in such a way that the dog is not in a space where it’s busy, where you and your family walk around much like a hallway or in the kitchen for example, because then your dog will not relax. A corner of the room is often a good choice, so that your dog can retreat but still keep an overview. Also make sure you have a place out of the sun, not next to the heating (unless you have an old or cold-blooded dog, they often like a warm place) and not in the draft. Right next to the television or next to the stereo speakers is also not a good spot.
With a dog that is too strongly tied to the owner, it can make sense to place the crate or dog bed in such a way that distance is created between the dog and the owner but your dog can still see and/or hear you.
Do Dogs Need Their Own Space – On command
It is very useful if you can send the dog to its place on command. By the way, never do this for punishment: the dog will start to see his crate, bed or blanket as a place of punishment instead of as his own, safe resting place.
Grab a treat, walk over to your dog’s place and call him over to you. With the treat in your hand, lure your dog onto the rug, basket or crate and say the word “place.” As soon as your dog is on or in it, give it the treat. Later, you can use the treat to send him in a sitting or lying position before giving the reward. You can then practice this from a short distance by making a clear pointing motion towards the place while saying the word “place.” You can also teach this exercise with the help of a clicker. For more details and useful tips you can read my blog about Clicker Training.
Give him a rest
Your dog’s lying area is a place for him alone. Therefore, leave your dog alone when he or she is there. Teach children not to pet the dog and not to approach your dog when he or she is in the basket or crate. A sleeping dog can be startled by a sudden touch. Never let your child sit in the dog bed or crate! If you want something from your dog and your dog is in his or her crate, rather call your dog to you than you go to your dog.
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