Dog training best starts when your pup is still young. After you've weaned it from its mother's milk, and once it has started exploring on its own, you will need to train it. This will curb any unwanted behavior, and will teach your dog the proper ways to behave in the household.
Dog crates are among the first things you can use for this purpose. These helpful boxes help housebreak your puppy. These are also good for transporting your puppy from place to place (such as bringing him to the vet). However, the difficulty with dog crates is that the space is limited. Your puppy will inevitably urinate or soil itself while in the crate.
- Choose an easy-to-clean crate. For best results, you should go for a crate that's easy to clean. Most crates made today feature a removable bottom or panels. This makes the crate easier to clean.
- Choose the appropriate cleaner. Dogs' urine is rich with ammonia. Therefore, the use of cleaners and detergents that are based on ammonia are likely to attract your puppy to urinate in the crate even more. Therefore, you will need to use an ammonia-free cleaner. For best results, use bleach diluted in water. Be sure to be in a well-ventilated area when you use this, though.
- Disassemble the crate. Take out any plastic tray or removable walls or floors. If there is no need to clean the walls, then you can simply clean the bottom, if it's soiled or urinated on.
- Wash plastic crates. If you have a garden hose with a spray nozzle, you can use this to thoroughly rinse the crate, to initially rid it of any foul odors. Use a bleach or disinfectant based solution for extra measure.
- Vacuum or sweep wooden crates. Wooden crates are not meant for washing. These are mostly for outdoor purposes, so you don't usually need to wash them. Additionally, wooden crates are best for use with dogs that are already housebroken. The smell of urine is very difficult to remove from wood. Vacuum dust and debris from the wooden crate, and wipe it with a damp piece of cloth.
- Wash soft-sided crates. Some crates are built for transport, and can be made of canvas or other soft fabric. Because of the construction, these are easily soiled. However, these are also easy to wash. Use soapy water and a brush or sponge to wash the crate's fabric. If there is minimal soiling, simply dip a sponge in soapy water, wring it until it's just damp, and wipe the fabric clean. For easier cleaning afterward, you can buy soil repellent and spray or wipe it on the fabric.
Pet care is a big responsibility. Care for your pet's sleeping and living area is part of this. Cleanliness promotes health and a happy pet/owner relationship. When dealing with dog crates, consider the age and abilities of your dog. Choose the crate that's appropriate to its age and training level, and that you can easily clean, given these needs.