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First time crate training

First time crate training

For those not aware, we recently welcomed Coco into our family. Coco is a Siberian Husky girl. Before we welcomed Coco home we made sure we was fully prepared for her as we wanted to make sure we had all the basics in place needed. Before we collected Coco we defiantly wanted to make sure we had a crate.

Reasons to get a crate

Our reason behind getting a crate and crate training her is because we believe a crate can help with preventing destructive and obnoxious behavior when we can’t be with her and keep her safe. We also want Coco to feel that a crate can be a safe and happy place for her to go when things get too much for her and she wants to be left alone.

A crate also helps when going out in our car to make travelling safe for her. Our aim for crate training is purely for safety and positive reasons and is never used as a punishment for her. Coco is never in her crate for long periods of time, an hour at the most.

Type of crate

When the decision was made to get a crate for Coco we then had to decide on what type of crate as there are a few different types to choose from. After our research into the crate we decided that a collapsible metal crate would be best for training her. We then had to decide on the size of crate to get.

With Coco only being a pup but a puppy that will grow quickly we went for a medium size one to start off with and will change size as and when needed. We hope that a medium size crate will be of correct size for her for a while, allowing her to have the height and movement room needed to stand and turn round.

Comfort of the crate

Cocos crate is located in our living room. This is where we are most of the time when we are at home. She can see us at all times when she is in her crate so she still feels apart of everything but feels safe at the same time. Her crate is in the corner of our living room so she gets a full view of whats going on. In her crate she has a lovely comfortable bed for added comfort

Making the crate welcoming

We wanted to make the crate a welcoming place to her, a place she will love to go so we made the crate comfortable with a bed. We made it a rewarding place to go so she gets a treat of some kind when she goes in, either a treat or her meal. We have placed a blanket over the top of the crate to cover the back and sides to give it a den feel to help her feel that bit more safer.

Length of time in the crate

Coco is only in her crate for short periods of time (no more than an hour maximum) when we ask her to go in, otherwise the crate door is left open for her to freely go in and out as she pleases. She always has access to water when inside with the door closed. We gradually increased the length of time she is in the crate starting off with just a few seconds at a time as we didn’t want her to be scared of going inside. The length of time inside the crate with the door closed was increased upon our judgment of Coco being confident enough.

Make it fun

With Coco only being a puppy everything to her is a game. We found that if we turned entering the crate into a game she listened more and picked up commands much easier. It’s a way of making learning fun. To her it is just a game but for us we are getting her to listen and do as asked but in a rewarding way so it’s a win win situation.

When playing ball after a while roll it into the crate – When it’s treat time hide 1 or 2 in the crate and say go crate – We fill her Kong toy up and ask her to go crate to have it and she can only have it if she stays in her crate, if she comes out with it we put it back inside and command go crate, this is repeated until she knows she only has it if in her crate. Another thing we do with coco is when we are doing daily training we now do them inside her crate – such as sit, down, paw etc as each command completed she gets a treat.


Coco wasn’t keen on the crate at first but we allowed her the time to get used to it being there before we introduced her more to it. We started off by getting her to enter the crate using the command go crate and come out as she wished, making it as fun as possible and using the command EVERY TIME we want her to go inside her crate.

We then got her to enter the crate and try and keep her inside for a few seconds with the door open and us sat by the door. Treats are given each time she enters the crate. I use a few treats and then some of her dry food biscuits from her meal, saves on an upset stomach. From here we then went on to feeding her some of her meals inside the crate, after a few feeds we then gradually worked ourselves further away from the crate door leaving it open.

Once we felt Coco was happy enough we then went on to closing the door, starting off with a few seconds at a time and gradually increasing this each time. We always reward with a treat of some kind upon entering the crate, NEVER on coming out – reason being because we want it to be more fun staying put once inside otherwise she will be crying to come out to get a treat. We want her thinking that her crate is a good positive place to be!

We have had Coco six weeks now and she is currently happy to go in and out of her crate on her own. It took a few weeks to get her to do so but being patient paid off in the end. We have now moved on to Crate training Coco in the car – so far it is going very well. If you would like to follow our travels and adventures you can do so over on our travel blog.

Do you have a pet?


Coco 6 weeks on

 Coco 6 weeks on

Some of you may know that 6 weeks ago we welcomed Coco into our family. Coco is a beautiful Siberian Husky. Before we made the decision to get another dog since sadly loosing our beautiful boy Buddy a lot of research was done and then a lot of preparation. Before bringing her home we wanted to make sure our home was puppy safe and that we had all essentials needed for her.

This was Coco when we first met her. She was only 7 weeks old at the time.

6 weeks later…

We have now had her for 6 weeks and what a 6 weeks it has been. She has certainly put a smile back on all our faces and she fills our hearts with so much joy, we all love her dearly. She has us up on our toes where we’d normally be sitting around – we are now up and out on long family walks, chasing leaves whilst enjoying and exploring the great outdoors.

Sadly since we have had Coco we have had to visit the vets every week with her. She has had a bad skin condition. She has been on two different lots of antibiotics and is now on a medicated shampoo to try and help it. She has recently had a test done and we are waiting on the results. We have been advised that is could be a wheat allergy and to check for this in any food or treats that we give her until advised otherwise by the vets. In the meantime our poor little girl has to wear this horrid cone to prevent her from making herself sore with her biting and scratching at herself where her skin irritates her. It is for her own good we know but we can’t help but feel sorry for her. At her last weight check 10 days ago she was 6.6kg.

Still a happy Coco

Even with her uncomfortable skin complaint going on our little Coco has still been a very happy and playful girl who loves everybody and everyone loves her. She loves to be chased, she has a thing about socks at the moment and loves nothing more than to pull them off your feet. Her favorite ball at the moment is one of Lees beer-pong balls that she claimed as hers when he left it laying about (that will teach him to clear his things away) finders keepers after all.

When out walking she absolutely loves to see people and wants sorry expects everyone to make a fuss of her and when they do so loves it. She is currently getting braver with being around other dogs, she has been a little nervous but is getting braver everyday. She is currently going through the teething stage as to be expected so everything that can be moved has been put away or up high when not being used.

Our clever girl

She shocked her vet on her first visit as we trained her rather quickly with a few commands. In her first week of joining our family we had her knowing the commands sit, paw and lay down. We remembered from dog training classes we went to with Buddy and are now teaching the same with Coco. Over the past few weeks we have now taught her to roll over and get in her bed when told. One command we are struggling with and that is to leave, when we put things down we would like her leave it until told she can have it but she is way to keen/excited and wants things straight away. She is still a puppy at the moment so we can’t expect too much from her just yet. We will keep at it as we are sure she will pick the command up soon.

As far as house training goes we are getting there, she has good days and bad days. Coco has a habit of forgetting herself now and then and needs reminding on the odd occasion. Also when playing ball or tug if she gets excited she starts peeing without realising and has to be put in the garden fast. She will soon get the hang of it and is getting better each week.

Coco 6 weeks on

She melts our hearts everyday and brings so much joy to each and every day. Do you have a pet?  

Check out our Instagram if you would like to see more photos of Coco – Instagram