Training a puppy or small dog to be content in a crate with soft bedding is a good way to keep them safe and confined during house training and at nights.
Choosing the right crate size
Choose a crate size that will comfortably hold your dog even when they reach adult size (for large breeds this will be quite big!). The crate can then be somewhere that you leave your pup when you are out of the house for short periods.
Away for short periods
Being out of the house for short periods means a few hours. How do you measure that? Rule of thumb during the day is up to the number of hours of the pup’s age in months plus one. So you can leave an eight-week-old pup (two months of age) for up to three hours and a 12-week-old pup (three months of age) up to four hours.
Away for longer periods
If you are gone for long periods each day, you will need to provide a larger confinement area, like an exercise pen or small room, supplied with a dog bed and comfortable bedding. Leave a safe puppy chew for entertainment.
If they are only in the one confinement area when you leave, it becomes a social isolation area that they may eventually resist entering. Most puppies quickly accept crate confinement when you make the introduction fun.
With proper crate training when you place them in their crate, they will feel safe because nothing can get to or harm them. They will sleep and chew and wait for you to return.