Providing a Safe Doberman Puppy Den

The use of a crate (kennel) is an effective way to train a new Doberman Puppy. The kennel imitates a den. In nature, puppies stay in a small den, just big enough for everyone to fit. While the adult pack members are off on the hunt, the puppies stay behind, safe in the den usually with an adult puppysitter. Only when the pack returns will the puppies emerge to happily feed on regurgitated food.

Instinctively, a puppy will have a feeling of safety and will not want to mess inside his small kennel. To properly kennel a puppy, the kennel should have just enough room for the puppy to fit comfortably laying down, standing up, and he should be able to turn around. The kennel should be built specifically for dog safety with only small spaces between the bars. The kennel should also be of high quality and in good condition without bent or broken bars, and with a flat cleanable floor.

Doberman puppies grow fast, so it’s often a good idea to purchase a crate made for a full grown Doberman, 42” x 30” x 31” or larger. Some crates are equipped with a divider to make the floor space inside the crate the right size for the puppy as it grows. With a regular crate, a box or other large item it can be placed inside to take up the unneeded space, where the puppy would otherwise mess.

The puppy’s crate should never be used as a punishment. Inside there should always be plenty of interesting chew items, toys, and a comfortable bed or blanket. If the puppy is to be left in the crate for longer than a couple hours, a small bowl of water should be made available.

Using the crate for training is simple. Anytime a person is not able to pay full attention to the puppy, the puppy should be safely secured in his crate. Upon removing the puppy from the crate, he should be immediately shuffled outside to the area you intend for potty breaks. On the way, the puppy owner should happily use a key word command such as “Outside.”

Training the puppy to enter the crate on his own is important. A command should be taught such as “kennel up” or “in your house.” Simply give the command and throw into the crate a toy for the puppy to chase. The puppy will eventually associate the command with entering the crate and will usually enter happily just from its owner handling the kennel door.

If a Doberman puppy owner chooses to feed the puppy inside the crate, additional care should be taken. The crate should be sanitized often and no amount of food material should remain in the crate after the puppy eats. This food material will breed bacteria and result in hygiene issues such as puppy acne.

Crate training will teach the puppy that messing is only to be done outside and will keep the puppy out of trouble when no one is available to carefully watch him. As the puppy matures and no longer needs the crate, it’s often a good idea to keep the crate available for when the family is out of the house.

Even after the adult Doberman has proven his ability to stay out of trouble when home alone; keeping the crate available is still helpful. It will continue to be a safe place for the dog to go where he can rest and be away from the traffic of the home.

Maintaining kennel training will also make times easier when the Doberman is required to once again stay in a crate at the groomer’s, a boarding kennel, or at the veterinarian’s office. If the Doberman owner chooses to remove the crate from the home, a similar area should be established such as a dog bed where the Doberman can relax and feel safe and out of the traffic of the home.