Puppies and older dogs can get into trouble when left alone all day. Pet gates offer a crate alternative that keeps your pup safely contained while you are away, while still giving Rover some room to run and play.
Pet gates work to keep Rover out of certain areas of the house. Your tall chowhound may be able to pluck food items from the kitchen table, but not if you gate the entryway. Your happy-go-lucky puppy may have a yearning to chew your shoes, but not when you gate off your bedroom. Pet gates work well for restricting access to any part of the home you don't want Rover to access while you are out.
Gates work well to protect senior pets or injured pets from taking a tumble down the stairs, and can be used to separate pets that don't get along. They offer pets more room to roam than pet crates, which also provide protection. Multi-pet households can look for pet gates that have an opening at the bottom for smaller animals to sneak through. This successfully keeps the pup behind the gate while allowing other animals free passage.
There are two basic types of pet gates: Those that screw into the doorway and remain mounted there, and those that use a pressure-mount system and can be moved. If you play to gate your dog in the same area of the home, a wall-mounted pet gate may make sense. Pressure-mounted gates are less sturdy but offer the ability to contain your dog in different areas of the home, so are a more flexible option.
It can be tempting to use a baby gate for Rover, but baby gates are relatively flimsy. Especially for big dogs, you'll want something that can hold up under pressure. Pet gates come in wire, wood and plastic models. Pups can chew on wood and plastic models, so wire may be your best bet for mouthy puppies. Choose a tall enough gate to adequately contain your pet, as large dogs can jump over low gates.
- The Dog Bible: Everything Your Dog Wants You To Know; Tracie Hotchner; 2005
- Vet Info: The Benefits of Indoor Dog Gates
- The Whole Dog Journal: Handbook of Dog and Puppy Care and Training; Nancy Kerns; 2007
- Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images
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