Crate Training an 8-Week-Old Lab Puppy

Crates keep Labs safe when you're unable to supervise.
i puppy image by SKYDIVECOP from

Crate training your Laborador retriever is the easiest way to potty train your puppy while also preventing everything in your home from becoming a chew toy. Making crate training a positive experience for your Lab will have him lounging in his new den in a matter of weeks.

Step 1

Introduce the crate to your Lab puppy. Place the crate in the center of your living room with the door open. Create a cozy environment for your pup by enticing him with a comfortable blanket and chew toys toward the back of the crate. The Lab is a naturally curious breed that is likely to investigate the space. Boost his desire to enter the crate by throwing his favorite food treat in the back of the crate. Continue these steps for a few days.

Step 2

Feed the Lab his meals inside the crate. Place the breakfast food bowl in the back of the crate and leave the door open. Allow him to eat his first meal with the crate door open. Place his evening meal into the crate with a couple delicious treats, such as cut up pieces of turkey hot dogs or liver treats. Once your Lab is inside the crate, close the door while he finishes the meal. Stay in the room while your Lab finishes eating with the door of the crate closed. If your Lab whines to come out of the crate, ignore the whining. Once your Lab is quiet and done eating, open the crate door.

Step 3

Gradually increase your Lab's time spent in the crate. During the first few hours of crate training, crate your puppy for a matter of seconds. Lure your Lab into the crate with his favorite treat and close the door for 30 seconds and let him out if he's quiet. Increase the duration of time in the crate to five minutes with you in the room and continue to increase the duration in five-minute increments until your puppy is calm in the crate for 30 minutes with you in the room. Return to five-minute increments inside the crate, but with you out of the room. Gradually increase the time until your puppy can spend 30 minutes calmly inside the crate without you in the room.

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