Dog kennels are a safe and secure place for your pet to spend time outdoors, especially the sturdy, durable kennels from Benchmark Kennels. Kennels can even be a calm and relaxing haven for your dog once they get used to it. However, kennel training can be challenging at times.
Many dogs are hesitant or fearful of using the kennel at first. For some dogs, severe separation anxiety could be an issue. That’s why it’s important to kennel train your dog, as it allows them to adjust to this new environment.
Many pet owners wonder about the best techniques for helping their dogs feel safe and well-adjusted while in their kennels. From having the right mindset to using positive reinforcement, there are several techniques that you should try to use when kennel training your dog. We’ll go over these techniques in greater detail so you can ensure your dog is happy, safe, and thriving while in their outdoor kennel.
What Are the Best Techniques for Successful Kennel Training?
Any loving pet owner wants their dog safe, healthy, and happy. Outdoor dog kennels are fantastic spaces to ensure your dog has a secure environment where they feel safe and relaxed. However, it usually takes some work to help your pet adjust to their new kennel. Luckily, there are some easy ways to ensure your dog acclimates to their new environment.
Take Things Slowly
One of the best techniques you should consider is a slow, gradual approach to the kennel. With this technique, you’ll slowly introduce your dog to the kennel. First by spending short, supervised time while they’re in the kennel. You can then gradually adjust the time frames to longer intervals as they become more used to their new environment.
Use Toys and Treats as Positive Reinforcement
Another essential tip for helping your dog adjust to the kennel is using positive reinforcement. With this method, pet owners can use treats, games, and other incentives to create positive associations. This way, your dog will come to love time in the kennel, as they’ll associate it with their favourite things.
Combining the slow approach with positive reinforcement is the best way to get them excited about their kennels. To start using this technique, you might want to try placing treats in the kennel without locking them inside. You should be sure to keep your eye on the time and never leave them alone for too long. Pet owners should also consider giving their dogs stimulating treats and toys to help them enjoy their time in the kennel.
Make the Indoor Area Comfortable
Outdoor dog kennels should be a place where your dog feels relaxed. To help them feel at ease and get rid of any anxiety they may be feeling, you should try to make the kennel as comfortable as possible. You might try outfitting the indoor flooring with padded rubber. Blankets, dog beds, and stuffed toys may also be helpful in creating a comfortable environment.
No matter what techniques you use, always remember to be patient. It’s important to have the proper mindset when kennel training as you want to ensure the best possible outcome. Patience is the best mindset to have when helping your dog adjust to an outdoor kennel since it takes time to acclimate to a new environment.
What Are Some Issues That Could Prevent Your Dog From Acclimating to Their Kennel?
If you’re kennel training your pup, there are a few issues you should be aware of. These problems could prevent your dog from properly adjusting to this new outdoor space. Understanding these issues can help you navigate them better and allow your dog to fully acclimate to the kennel.
Some dogs may experience separation anxiety from their owners. If you haven’t spent much time away from your dog, expecting them to enjoy their kennel right away is not realistic. You’ll want to employ a slow and rewards-driven approach to get them relaxed. You should also try to offer distracting activities to keep their attention occupied. For example, treat puzzles are a great distraction and can keep them busy for a while.
The Size of the Kennel
Another issue that could hinder kennel training is the size of the structure. For your dog to be comfortable and healthy, you’ll need a kennel that’s large enough to accommodate your dog. Dogs should have enough space to lie down, stand up, and stretch while in their kennels.
If you have a smaller-sized dog, you don’t need a large kennel. However, with bigger breeds, pet owners will need to purchase dog kennels large enough to accommodate these types of pups. You should also take into account whether your dog is super playful and energetic. Having more space to move around and play could be essential to your dog’s happiness and overall well-being. For these types of dogs, you may want to consider a larger runner area (the outside part of the kennel). This way, they’ll have enough outdoor space to let go of some energy.
Overall, outdoor dog kennels can be a safe space for your pet. However, it takes time and patience to get to this stage. Often, dogs may need to be coaxed with treats or toys to spend time in their kennels at first. You should also consider outfitting the kennel with comfortable features to ensure your dog can feel relaxed. Blankets and dog beds are a good place to start when creating a comfortable indoor environment. The outdoor environment is also an important factor, so you’ll want to choose a kennel that’s large enough for your dog to play. We offer a variety of different-sized dog kennels so you can choose the option that’s right for your pet.
Getting your dog acclimated to their new kennel is important for your pet’s overall well-being. With successful kennel training, you can ensure that your dog stays safe, healthy, and happy when they’re left alone in their kennels. However, kennel training can be challenging, as it requires time, patience, and the right training techniques.
Without proper training, your dog may deal with anxiety issues or view spending time in the kennel as a negative experience. To successfully kennel train your dog, you’ll want to employ clear commands and use positive reinforcement. We’ll dive deeper into the best practices of kennel training so you can start training your dog to love spending time in their kennel. We’ll also talk about selecting an appropriate kennel, like one from Benchmark Kennels.
Why Is Kennel Training Important?
If you’ve never used a kennel before, you may wonder about the benefits of kennel training. There are several significant benefits you should consider. Whether you’re looking to train a puppy or an older dog, the kennel can be a safe space for your dog to relax and play by themself for periods of time.
Outdoor dog kennels are great for dogs who have to spend time away from their owners. It allows them to be outdoors in the fresh air while remaining safe and secure despite being unsupervised. Though dogs should not be kept in outdoor dog kennels for an extended period of time, they can be useful when you plan to be away from home for a couple of hours.
One of the most significant benefits of using outdoor dog kennels is the safety and security they provide. With a fully enclosed structure, you won’t have to worry about your pet jumping over a fence and escaping. This type of enclosure also provides safety benefits for your pet by keeping out other animals that are potentially aggressive toward your dog.
Dog kennels are also great for pets who thrive outdoors. Some dogs prefer spending time outdoors versus indoors. The kennel provides enough outdoor space for your pet to move around and play. But the indoor area provides shelter as needed.
Dog kennels are also a good option for dogs who have destructive habits. Keeping your dog in a kennel may also prevent them from ingesting something they shouldn’t while you’re away from the home. Plus, if you want to avoid coming home to a mess and destroyed items, a kennel may be the right solution.
How Do You Successfully Kennel Train Your Dog?
With so many benefits to outdoor kennels, you’ll likely want to try out this solution for your dog. However, some dogs may be fearful of the kennel or have separation anxiety. Depending on your dog’s temperament and history, kennel training might happen quickly or it could take a long time. It’s important to remain patient during the training process, as you want your dog to stay calm and relaxed during their time in the kennel.
Start Slowly Introducing Your Dog to the Kennel
One of the most important techniques of kennel training is to take things slowly. You should never push your dog to spend time in the kennel when they’re scared or unwilling. For the first step of training, you should introduce your dog to the kennel. Since this is the beginning of the training, you don’t want to try too much too fast.
Let your dog wander and explore the area while offering plenty of verbal praise. If your dog doesn’t want to enter the space, you could try leaving treats inside. All of this positive praise and food will help your dog to view the kennel as a positive experience.
The next time you let your dog interact with the kennel, you might try closing the door. Once they’ve finished exploring or eating their treats, you can let them back out. Keep increasing the time your dog spends in the kennel slowly. Eventually, you’ll be able to leave them alone for short periods of time.
Use Positive Association Techniques
Another tactic you should use when kennel training your pup is to use positive association techniques. The right kind of positive reinforcement will depend on the dog. If your dog loves to play, then you’ll want to place their favourite toys in the kennel. Encourage your dog to play and get comfortable in the kennel by using verbal praise. Some of the best toys to include in the space are ropes, chew toys, and treat puzzle games. These items will help to hold your dog’s attention, which may help to lessen any anxiety or boredom while in the kennel.
You might also consider using food as a positive reinforcement. For many dogs, offering special treats in the kennel will help them to associate the space with positive experiences. Having your dog regularly eat their meals in the kennel can also be helpful during the training process.
Use the Right Commands
During training, you’ll want to teach your dog new commands related to the kennel. You can teach them new commands related to their kennel by using treats and praise. By teaching commands, your dog will know when to go to the kennel. You can choose whatever verbal cues you would like. Simply saying “kennel” is an effective command.
With this verbal cue, your dog will know to enter the kennel. Having this command is helpful as you’ll easily be able to put your dog in the kennel when you’re in a rush. If your dog doesn’t understand this command, getting them to enter the kennel could be challenging and frustrating.
To begin teaching your dog a command for using their kennel, say the verbal cue as they enter the space. Then either use a clicker or say the word “yes.” Hand them a treat for this behaviour, and continue to repeat this process over again. It’s a good idea to practice this verbal cue about ten times per session. You’ll want to repeat this training game daily for a few days.
After several days, you should try to repeat the training game without the treats. Simply, say the command and give verbal praise when they’ve entered the kennel. You may want to include a hand gesture with the command, as it will provide another cue for your dog. After practising training without treats several times, your dog should understand the command going forward.
What Should You Avoid Doing When Kennel Training?
There are several things you should avoid doing when kennel training. By avoiding them, you’ll keep your dog’s kennel training on track. One of the most important things you should avoid doing when kennel training your dog is to avoid using the kennel as a punishment. It’s important to only use positive association techniques with the kennel. If you start to use the kennel as a punishment, your dog won’t feel comfortable in the space. This can make it harder for you to train them.
Another important thing to avoid doing with kennel training is to leave your dog for long periods of time. Even if they start to enjoy spending time in the kennel, you should never confine your dog to this space for extended periods. Dogs need proper exercise and socialization. They’ll also want to sniff and take bathroom breaks away from their kennel. If you plan to leave your house for a full day, you’ll want to hire a dog walker to break up the time spent in the kennel.
You’ll also want to keep all initial time spent in the kennel short, as you want your dog to acclimate to the kennel at their own pace. You should never force your dog into the kennel or leave them alone before they’re ready. Though this technique might seem slow, it ultimately will lead to better success than trying to speed through the training.
How Long Does Kennel Training Take?
The amount of time it takes to kennel train your dog varies depending on a few different factors. As with any kind of dog training, each animal learns at their own pace. So, while some dogs may quickly pick up the verbal cues and acclimate to the kennel quickly, other dogs may need more time.
The length of training also depends on your dog’s age, history, and temperament. For example, it may be hard to train a dog that’s a rescue. You don’t know their background or history, so they may have more complex behavioural issues than you know about. Additionally, older dogs may be more resistant to learning new training. Finally, some pets may not be well suited for outdoor dog kennels due to their temperament. Whether they’re dealing with separation anxiety or they just don’t like to be enclosed, some dogs may be harder to train than others.
How Do You Choose the Right Kennel for Your Dog?
Choosing the right kennel for your dog plays a big role in how well they adapt to their new environment. When you go to pick out a new kennel, you’ll want to choose one that is large enough for your dog to be comfortable. For your dog to be comfortable, you’ll want a kennel where your dog can lie down, stretch, and turn around.
On the outside runner attached to the kennel, you’ll want to ensure that your dog has enough space to play and stay active. Depending on the dog’s breed and temperament, you may want to choose a kennel with a larger runner, as active dogs will enjoy more outside space. They should have enough room to stand on their hind legs and walk about a little. With smaller breeds, the structure of the kennel will likely be small. However, with larger breeds, you’ll need to invest in a big kennel.
Another aspect to consider when choosing the right kennel is the quality of materials. You should aim to pick a kennel that’s made out of durable and long-lasting materials. By choosing a kennel made of high-quality and sturdy materials, you’ll have more peace of mind knowing your dog is safely contained. Especially for dogs with destructive habits, pet owners will want to consider kennels that are resistant to chewing.
Our Commitment to Quality Kennels
If you’re looking for high-quality dog kennels that are made out of durable materials, you should consider one of our options. We offer wooden or eco-thermal kennel options. Additionally, our kennels are available in a range of sizes so you’ll be able to find a kennel that’s large enough to comfortably accommodate your dog.
If you have a small breed, such as a chihuahua, you’ll want to look at one of our smaller options. This 6 X 3 feet kennel is perfect for small breeds. However, for bigger breeds, you’ll want to consider an option that’s large enough. This 14 X 8 feet kennel is best suited for large dogs. If you’re looking to kennel train multiple dogs, you should consider one of the double kennels or multi-bay kennels.
Kennel training provides a lot of benefits, but it may seem challenging at first. It’s important to stick with the training and provide positive associations with the kennel. This way, you’ll ensure that your dog comes to feel safe and at home inside the kennel. If you’re looking to find a kennel that will be comfortable for your dog, check out our full selection of kennel options that come with a professional fitting.
Are you trying to kennel train your dog? The best way to ensure your pup comes to love spending time in their kennel is to build positive associations with it. You can do this through rewards, like special treats or meal times. You can also place their favorite toys in the kennel to keep them entertained. Though training can be slow and challenging at times, if you’re patient about the process, you’ll help your dog to feel safe and happy in their outdoor space eventually. We’ll dive deeper into the ways you can use positive reinforcement training to help make your dog love their kennel from Benchmark Kennels, the most reputable kennel company in the UK.
How to Make Your Dog Love Their Kennel
Kennel training takes time and patience. Your dog may adapt quickly to the kennel environment or they may need some positive reinforcements to acclimate to the new space. There are many easy ways for you to build positive associations with the kennel so your pet will grow to love spending time there.
One of the quickest ways to build positive associations with kennels is to offer special treats within the kennel. Choose a particular treat that your dog will only receive while in the kennel. This way, they’ll quickly become excited to head to their dog kennels for their favorite treat. You could also try giving your dog an interactive treat puzzle. These types of treats are great for keeping your dog’s attention occupied, so they can spend longer time periods in the kennel without fussing.
Another method for helping your dog adjust to the kennel is to feed at least one meal a day in the kennel. Dogs enjoy their meal time, so incorporating food into their kennel is a great way to build positive associations with the kennel. For this method, you’ll want to try to place their food dish as far back into the crate as possible. Some dogs may be fearful of the crate at first, so you may need to start out by placing the food dish near the opening. After some time, you can try closing the door while they eat and opening it back up when they’re done.
Toys and Games
Many dogs love playing with toys and their humans. To build a positive association with the kennel, you’ll want to encourage your dog to play in or near their kennel. You can leave some of their favorite toys in the kennel, such as ropes, bones, and chew toys. These toys will be beneficial once your dog is ready to stay in the kennel for more significant periods of time, as the toys can stave off boredom and anxiety.
You may also want to consider placing comfortable or familiar items inside the interior of the kennel. These items can help them relax and adjust to being in the kennel. Try placing a comfortable dog bed, blankets, or stuffed toys into the kennel. When your dog is ready to relax and take a nap, these comfort items will make them feel more at home.
Things to Avoid When Kennel Training
There are several things you’ll want to avoid doing when kennel training to ensure you’re creating only positive associations. To begin with, you’ll want to avoid using the kennel as a punishment. Though a time-out may seem appropriate for naughty behaviour, using the kennel to punish your dog will create negative associations with it. Instead, you should use only rewards around the kennel to ensure your dog has positive feelings about it.
You should also avoid leaving your dog for long stretches of time in the kennel. Outdoor kennels are designed to keep your pet healthy, safe, and secure. However, they are only meant for temporary shelter. You should ideally leave your dog only for a couple of hours at a time. Most dogs will need to walk, socialize, and take a bathroom break away from their kennel fairly frequently.
When you first start kennel training, you should take care to start in short increments. You’ll want to take things slowly, so containing your dog in the kennel should only be for short periods of time. Eventually, you’ll be able to build up to longer sessions in the kennel, but that may take weeks or longer depending on factors like your dog’s age, history, and temperament.
Choosing the Right Outdoor Kennel
When it comes to choosing dog kennels, there are a few different factors you should consider. One of the main considerations when picking out dog kennels is the size. For your dog to have positive associations with the kennel, they’ll need to be comfortable.
Therefore, you’ll need to choose a kennel large enough for your dog. They should be able to lie down, stand up, and stretch inside the interior part of the kennel. You’ll also want to consider the outdoor runner. There should be space enough for your dog to move around and jump, so they can have room to play and exercise. For larger breeds or active dogs, you’ll want to consider one of the big dog kennels we have available. However, for smaller dogs, you’ll be able to opt for one of the kennels of a lesser size.
For pet owners who are looking to kennel train their dogs, creating a positive association is the best technique to ensure your pet feels safe and comfortable staying in the kennel. While this strategy may take some time, eventually, your dog will come to love spending time in the kennel. You can start building positive associations with the kennel through the use of food and toys. However, your kennel will need to be the right size for your dog. A kennel that is large enough for your dog will ensure comfort and safety. We have a large selection of various kennel sizes to suit your dog’s needs.
Teaching your dog to enjoy their time in an outdoor kennel is much like crate training. You’ll want to use treats, toys, and other comfort items to ensure your pup comes to love spending time in dog kennels. However, outdoor kennels are slightly different from crates. Since kennels are much larger than crates, there are more opportunities for fun activities your dog enjoys. We’ll go over some of the best ways to create an inviting and fun space for your pet so they become acclimated to their outdoor kennel.
Bring Their Favorite Toys Into the Kennel
One of the best tips for helping your dog acclimate to the kennel environment is to bring their favourite toys into the enclosure. By incorporating toys into the space, your dog will stay stimulated and happy when left alone in the kennel. Here are some toys you may want to include:
- Treat-stuffed toys (like a kong toy)
- Treat puzzles
- Chew toys
It’s important to consider your individual dog’s needs and play habits. You’ll also want to be careful with the type of toys you leave in dog kennels. Some toys are easily breakable, which could be a choking hazard. If your dog has a tendency to chew or destroy toys, it’s best to only leave non-destructible toys in the enclosure.
Add Sprinklers or a Wading Pool to the Outdoor Area
During the warm summer months, you might think about including cool-down activities in the outdoor part of the kennel. If your dog loves the water, adding some aquatic activities can bring some fun into the kennel. Try putting in a sprinkler or small wading pool so that your pet can stay entertained and comfortable when the temperatures are soaring.
Set up Enrichment or Sensory Activities
Besides toys and water activities, there are other kinds of activities you can set up in dog kennels to make the space more enjoyable. For example, you might include sensory features in the kennel. Some fun and stimulating activities might include tunnels, hoops, and obstacle courses.
You might also include rubber padding or fake turf on the ground of the kennel. Some pet owners may even decide to include real plants in or near the kennel to provide a sensory experience for their dogs. However, with this option, it’s essential that you only include non-toxic plants. You may also want to consider putting real grass or a sand pit into the enclosure to provide stimulation.
Providing fun and stimulating activities for your dog ensures they will remain entertained, comfortable, and satisfied with their time spent outside. There are simple additions to dog kennels that can make a significant impact on your dog becoming acclimated to their kennel, such as treat-stuffed toys or small wading pools. To ensure your dog has space to play, you’ll want to get a kennel that’s large enough. Benchmark Kennels has a wide selection of dog kennels in varying sizes, so you can find the option that’s right for your pet.
Have you decided to invest in your dog’s safety and comfort by buying an outdoor kennel? If so, you’ll need to figure out the ideal size for your pup. There are a few factors to consider when choosing the right size structure to ensure your pet is happy and healthy while spending time in their kennel. We’ll discuss in more depth how large outdoor dog kennels should be, so you can find the option that’s perfect for your pet. Learn how Benchmark Kennels can help you find the right-sized Kennel for your pet.
Choosing the Right-Sized Outdoor Kennel
Why is choosing the right-sized outdoor kennel important? When picking out dog kennels, you should consider your pet’s comfort. Kennels should be large enough to ensure that your dog has enough space to stand, lay down, and move around. Though you shouldn’t leave dogs cooped up all day, the kennel should be comfortable enough for them to spend periods of time there. A space that is too confined isn’t healthy for your dog, so it’s important to choose a kennel large enough.
For smaller dogs, you can opt for a small structure, as they won’t need the space that a large breed requires. You may find that our small 6 x 3 ft kennel is perfect for your small breed. For big dogs, you’ll need a large enough structure so they can move around. We have various dog kennels that suit medium to large-sized dogs. Our 14 x 8 ft kennel is one of our largest options available. This kennel is spacious enough to suit most breeds.
To determine the ideal size, you’ll need to consider the height and length of your dog. Measuring your dog is simple–determine the correct height and then add three to seven inches to the final measurement. The extra inches ensure your dog will have enough room to stand on its hind legs. Likewise, when determining your dog’s length, you’ll want to add around five to ten inches to the final measurement. With extra inches added to the measurement, you’ll have surety that your dog can stretch, wag its tail, and turn around comfortably.
Besides measuring your pet, you’ll also want to consider the size of your garden. You’ll need to have adequate space to accommodate an outdoor kennel. Typically, most people try to keep the kennel far enough away from the house so as not to deal with bugs or smells.
Choosing the size of outdoor kennels is important for your pet’s overall well-being. You’ll need to ensure your dog has enough space to comfortably move around. When you’re measuring your dog, you’ll want to add a few extra inches into the final measurements to ensure you get the right size. You’ll also need to consider other factors, such as the location of the structure. Make sure that your garden has enough room for a large kennel. We offer many different sizes of dog kennels, so check out our full selection to find the one that’s right for you.
Are you thinking about getting an outdoor kennel for your dog? Many people choose to purchase dog kennels for their gardens, as they have significant benefits for both pets and humans. However, you may have questions about these benefits. If you’re wondering if an outdoor kennel is right for you, we’ll dive deeper into the reasons why outdoor kennels are good for dogs.
Kennels Keep Dogs Safe and Secure
Keeping dogs safe and secure is one of the most significant benefits that dog owners care about when deciding whether to purchase an outdoor kennel. Well-designed and sturdy dog kennels provide the safety and security your pets need while spending time outdoors. A durable and secure kennel ensures that your pets remain contained while you’re gone, so you won’t need to worry about them escaping and roaming the neighbourhood. It also keeps other animals from entering the space and potentially risking your dog’s safety.
Kennels Are Good for Dogs’ Overall Comfort and Happiness Levels
Another reason why you may want to consider dog kennels is the effect on your pet’s well-being. Outdoor kennels ensure that your dog is comfortable. With fresh air and space to move around, your dog can rest and remain comfortable for periods of time.
For pet owners who need to be away from their homes, outdoor dog kennels can be a good solution. Your dog will have space to walk the length of the fenced outdoor area of the kennel, which allows for bathroom breaks and playtime. The kennel will also have a covered and potentially insulated indoor area if the weather conditions turn foul.
Kennels Are Great for Dogs With Destructive Habits
Some dogs deal with anxiety and destructive habits when left home alone. Not only is it frustrating for pet owners to come home to chaos, but it could potentially be harmful to the dog as well. You may find that your dog chews through things it shouldn’t or possibly eat something poisonous. An outdoor dog kennel is a smart solution to ensure your dog remains healthy and your house remains intact.
Well-built dog kennels are made out of durable materials. Our kennels are made of high-quality materials, so you won’t have to worry about your dog chewing and destroying the structure. We even offer anti-chew strips to place in the area surrounding the entrance.
If you’ve never used a kennel before, you may wonder how the outdoor structure may benefit your dog. For many pet owners, outdoor dog kennels are a great solution to keep pets happy, comfortable, and safe. The durable structures provide security, shelter, and safety in all weather conditions, so you won’t have to worry about your pets while you’re busy with other activities. We have a large selection of dog kennels in varying sizes, so you can find the right one to fit your needs. Look for the best kennels and accessories at Benchmark Kennels.
Research shows that humans thrive on structure and routine. While it’s important to leave room for a little spontaneity, most of us do best when our days have a pre-determined order to them. Did you know that the same holds true for your pup?
Part of bonding with your furry friend is establishing a daily routine that you can both enjoy and look forward to. Ideally, this should include plenty of time for eating, sleeping, exercising, and the best part—spending quality time with one another.
Today, we’re sharing how to establish a schedule for dogs that will benefit their physical, mental, and emotional health. These activities can add variety and stimulation to the day, optimizing their overall well-being, especially for pups that spend the majority of the day in dog kennels.
The Value of Consistency
While it’s important to create a daily routine for your pup, it’s even more critical to create one that you know you can stick to. It’s easy to get overly ambitious when designing their day, only to realize that the steps you’ve scheduled won’t exactly work with your lifestyle.
To make sure your pup stays comfortable and doesn’t get overly anxious or stressed, try to keep your setup as consistent as possible. Make sure they have time each day for the four following activities:
As you’re crafting your plan, remember that each dog and pet parent are unique. While these are the necessities for a dog’s well-being, it’s important to be realistic and adaptable when necessary. For instance, if you work an overnight shift, you may need to adjust your morning schedule to the afternoon. As long as you’re predictable and steady with that routine, your dog should be able to adapt.
Remember to keep things realistic and make sure that you can maintain the setup that you’ve designed. If you can, it will be much easier to stick with the schedule once it’s in place.
Feeding and Watering
Most dogs benefit from eating two times each day with about eight to twelve hours in between each feeding. For most people, this will mean feeding their pup once in the morning and once in the evening. However, some smaller breeds and more active dogs may do better with smaller meals given more frequently, which can keep their blood sugar levels more consistent.
During each mealtime, remember to allocate plenty of time for your pup to use the potty after they eat. You may also need to walk them around a little before they’re ready to go. This way, you can avoid any accidents after they’ve finished digesting their kibble.
While this may hinge on your work schedule, try to avoid feeding your dog right before bedtime. They need time to move around a little and settle their stomachs before they’re ready to settle down for the night.
In terms of water, most experts recommend that your dog consume one ounce of water per pound of body weight each day. When developing your dog’s feeding schedule, add a reminder to check their water bowl. They should have access to fresh, clean water throughout the day.
For dogs in single kennels, this will require frequent checks to make sure their water levels are where they should be. If the outdoor temperature rises above 80 degrees Fahrenheit, they need water more often, and in greater amounts.
Your dog’s main meals will be in the morning and evening. However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t give them anything else throughout the day. Running around dog kennels all day can make pups tired, and snacks can help replenish their nutrients and restore their energy.
While you can find plenty of healthy treats on the market, you can also hold back a little of their kibble and use that as a snack. This helps space out their caloric intake so they aren’t getting too much all at once. You can also use their food as a reward when they complete a stimulating activity, such as a food puzzle.
Incorporating snacks into your dog feeding schedule not only incentivizes good behavior, but it can also help them stay full throughout the day!
Daily Physical Exercise
Dogs kept in single kennels will get a good amount of exercise while exploring their grounds every day. However, it’s still important to set aside dedicated time for play.
There’s no exact time when this needs to happen, but the important thing is to make time for it every day. This might mean taking your pup for a quick walk right when you get home from work or during your lunch break. You may be able to squeeze in a game of catch in the evening or take a neighborhood stroll in the morning.
Each dog will have its own unique needs in terms of the amount and duration of exercise that it requires. Keeping your own schedule in mind, try to give your canine multiple bouts of activity instead of one single session. Three 10-to-15-minute periods are usually more effective than one 30-minute period.
As you plan your dog’s exercise routine, remember to keep their temperament in mind. If they tend to react negatively when they see another pup, it might be easier to walk them in the early morning or later in the evening. Try to avoid strenuous exercise right before or after mealtime to avoid dangerous conditions such as gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV) or bloat.
Types of Exercise
While walking is one common dog exercise, it’s far from the only one. If you don’t live in a walkable neighborhood, don’t worry. There are lots of other ways you can give your pup a great workout that stimulates their body and mind.
For instance, you can teach your dog a trick or practice simple obedience skills. Both of these activities allow you to bond and provide excellent stimulation. Remember to take your pet’s unique senses and capabilities into consideration, especially for senior dogs.
Look for ways to get creative with exercise, and remember to add a little play in there, too! Exercise should go hand-in-hand with a healthy dog feeding schedule so you can make sure your pup is staying physically fit.
Walking, playing, and spending time outdoors are great ways to help your dog exercise. These activities keep their mind and body engaged while allowing you both to spend quality one-on-one time together. If possible, you can also incorporate dedicated time into your pet’s routine for mental stimulation.
This can be as simple as letting your dog sniff and explore while you go for a walk. You can also give them a puzzle toy that requires them to unlock a compartment before they are rewarded with a healthy treat. You could even set up a puppy obstacle course to strengthen their agility and mobility.
Not sure where to start? Here’s a list of the best brain games for dogs, straight from an expert.
As far as how much time to allot to this activity, each dog is different. Active, adult working dogs—such as German Shepherds—will naturally require more mental stimulation per day than a newborn puppy. While the best amount for your dog will depend on their age, breed, and temperament, puppies usually only need 15 to 30 minutes while adult dogs can tolerate more.
A healthy schedule for dogs should include plenty of time for your precious pup to rest. It’s easy to overlook sleep when you’re scheduling out your pet’s day, but this downtime shouldn’t be overlooked.
Plenty of sleep is critical to dog well-being, but again, that can look different for each one. The age, size, breed, and overall health of your pup will determine how much shut-eye they need each night. Most dogs will sleep between 12 to 14 hours each night, though this number can be much higher for puppies.
If your puppy sleeps most of the day, you might find that they’re more active at night. Once they’re a little bigger and you can establish a daily schedule for them, you should be able to keep them on a normal rest/wake cycle. Give your dog their own bed and place to sleep, making sure their environment is as comfortable and cozy as possible.
Of course, your dog’s schedule should also include practices designed to keep them looking their best. Good hygiene habits are essential to their health, and will not add too much time to their routine.
Your dog’s breed will play a role in how often you need to groom them. Certain breeds—such as poodles—will require more frequent sessions than other, more low-maintenance breeds. General hygienic practices you can perform regularly include:
- Nail trimming
- Teeth brushing
- Ear cleaning
- Coat brushing
All dogs need these routines, regardless of their breed. While you can perform many of these tasks yourself at home, you can also take your pup to a professional groomer. You can rest assured that they will have the proper tools, knowledge, and experience and that your dog will look wonderful after their appointment.
At-home grooming practices can include brushing, bathing, and dental care. Make sure you’re using the correct gear (e.g. doggy toothbrushes) to keep your pup safe. While regular bathing is a critical part of canine hygiene, take care not to bathe your dog too much, which could strip their fur of its nourishing, natural oils.
Pups in single kennels may be at home for periods throughout the day. Whether you work in an office all day or you can be at home for part of the time, there will be periods when they’ll be alone. This is why it’s important to build socialization time into the schedule for your dogs.
There are many different ways to do this, depending on what your schedule (and your dog’s temperament) will allow. Some ways you can expose your pet to social situations and build their tolerance for other animals and people include:
- Dog parks
- Doggy play dates
- Puppy classes
- Walks in a public space
Take it slow and try to not give your pet too much stimulation, or too fast. Keep small treats on hand to offer as a reward when they successfully handle a social situation. Remember that they can read your temperament, and if you’re nervous about a new encounter, they’re more likely to react the same way.
The earlier you can gently expose your dog to a variety of people, places, and situations, the easier it will be for them to socialize down the road. It will also play a role in how their temperament develops. While socialization is easiest to grasp in the puppy stage, older dogs can still learn to navigate new situations with confidence.
Slowly introduce your dog to new sights, smells, and sounds. Be sure to supervise them closely and emphasize positivity through praise and treats.
Establish a Healthy Schedule for Dogs
You love your pup and want them to feel healthy from the inside out. The key is to give them a foundation based on nourishing daily habits. From physical exercise and stimulation to consistent feeding and positive socialization, many factors play a role in dog well-being.
By prioritizing a consistent schedule for dogs, you can give your pet a lifetime of health and happiness. At Benchmark Kennels, we’re here to help. We offer a variety of kennel options, from six-bay to single kennels, designed to keep your pet happy and safe. To learn more, contact us!
It may come as a surprise that pets are more likely to go missing in the summer. Compared to winter months, there are 81% more pets reported missing (stolen or lost) in the summertime.
As you prepare to install your outdoor kennel, you have to consider dog safety. This includes preventing your pet from escaping. A high-quality outdoor kennel can ensure you know that your fluffy friend is safe, provided you take the right steps.
Kennel safety is more than keeping your dog securely enclosed. Always create a space that’s comfortable and keeps your dog mentally and physically occupied.
If you’re unsure where to begin, this helpful guide has you covered. It explains how to create comfortable kennels for dogs so you can have peace of mind knowing your beloved pet is protected.
Choose the Right Location
Outdoor kennels should be free from distractions. If your neighbor has a pet that’s always outside, you should install your kennel away from any shared fence lines.
If other outdoor activities disturb your dog, always look to install your kennel away from them so long as your dog is still in a location with plenty of airflow and ventilation.
You should also choose an area close to a water spigot so you can easily clean your dog’s exterior space and provide frequent water refills.
Always consider the weather when installing enclosed dog kennels. Look for areas with shade so your dog remains cool when outside.
If your yard has an area that’s prone to excessive amounts of wind, avoid installing it there.
Focus on Flooring
It’s best to use whatever type of flooring your yard provides, such as a patio, grass, or dirt. However, you need to consider your dog’s temperament before installing a kennel on grass. Do they dig holes and run the risk of escaping?
If so, you’ll need to take precautionary measures. You can line the perimeter of your kennel with any type of large rock, brick, cinderblock, or paver.
Your kennel floor should be comfortable for your dog’s pads. Pea gravel is among the softest materials and doesn’t retain too much heat.
Another option is a concrete base or even artificial grass. The main drawback is that fake turf is hot to the touch when it’s warm out, which means it has to be in an area with plenty of shade.
Place to Sleep
An elevated sleep area isn’t just a luxury for your pet. It keeps them safe by helping air to circulate so they stay cool, and it helps you keep their sleeping area sanitary.
Raised sleep areas work to reduce callouses on your dog’s elbows and can work to keep your pet clean. Older dogs are more prone to elbow sores if they spend a lot of time sleeping on hard surfaces, so always provide them with something soft.
Dogs need activities to stimulate them mentally and keep them healthy and in shape. Depending on the breed, your dog could need at least two hours of exercise daily, if not more.
You can attach a rope toy to a post along your kennel’s frame or install a sand pit for them to dig in. You can also use a small children’s pool so your dog can splash around and stay cool during warm months. When possible, attach your kennel to a dog run for extra exercise.
Follow These Dog Safety Tips
When you install your kennel, refer to these dog safety tips. You want to consider a location that provides your pooch with plenty of shade while removing harmful distractions.
If you’re looking for a new kennel, Benchmark Kennels has you covered. We have something for every pet owner. Reach out to us today for help with your purchase.
Maximizing Enrichment in Outdoor Kennels: Advanced Strategies for Mental Stimulation and Emotional Well-Being
If you think dogs aren’t very smart, think again. Canines are so intelligent that they can learn language skills, and understand human gestures and social cues. This means that pet mental stimulation is important; otherwise, your pup may become unhappy.
When keeping pets outdoors, you need to provide plenty of enrichment to keep a dog happy. That way, you can have peace of mind knowing they have lots to do, and they have a fulfilling and enriching life.
Here are some ways you can ensure your outdoor kennels have plenty of enrichment.
Add Interactive Toys and Puzzles
Interactive toys and puzzles will get your pet’s brain working. Puzzles help them fight off boredom, as they’ll get to maneuver their way through the challenges before they get to the reward inside.
These can also double as sensory enrichment. For example, a chew toy stuffed with a frozen treat can provide new scents and a mental challenge to keep your canine friend occupied.
Make sure you regularly rotate the toys and puzzles to ensure they stay fresh and interesting. Dogs can get bored with their toys, too.
Have Agility Equipment
Depending on the dog breed you have, your pet may have more energy to burn than others. Regardless, it’s ideal for them to have agility equipment such as open tunnels, jumps, and weave poles.
These things allow your dog to burn off excess energy, which can decrease behavioral problems. They’ll have some mental stimulation too, as they’ll have to figure out how to clear each obstacle.
Provide Music Therapy
It might sound like a strange concept, but music therapy is actually very useful for canines. Like us, they can suffer from anxiety, and this kind of therapy can help curb issues like barking. In addition, it can decrease pain from chronic issues, and improve your pet’s quality of sleep.
Provide them with soft and relaxing music, such as soft rock, reggae, or classical pieces. You’ll see a huge improvement in your dog’s well-being.
Give Them Socialization Opportunities
Dogs are descendants of wolves, which are pack animals. As a result, they’re highly dependent on social interactions and can suffer greatly when they don’t get enough stimulation.
It’s essential that you often visit your pet outside to interact with them. Also, give them ample opportunities to play with other dogs and you.
Keep Your Dogs Happy in Outdoor Kennels
Keeping dogs in outdoor kennels can work, as long as they have enough enrichment and are comfortable in their surroundings. In addition, you shouldn’t neglect other aspects of regular care, such as walking, playing, and other bonding activities.
If you have a roomy backyard and the means to provide your four-legged friend with a cozy kennel, then it’s a fantastic project that will keep them happy and safe outdoors.
If you’re ready to keep your pets in a comfortable outdoor kennel, then browse our selection of wooden dog kennels now.
Do you have a single dog kennel at your home? A beautiful addition to any property, these structures are designed to keep your four-legged best friend safe, sheltered, and comfortable.
Just as you regularly clean your own home, it’s important to keep your pet’s kennel clean and sanitary. This is where your pups spend the majority of their time, and you want to make sure the environment is healthy.
Today, we’re sharing a few cleaning and hygiene tips to help you keep things neat and tidy.
The Importance of Dog Kennel Cleaning
As a responsible pet owner, you have many responsibilities to attend to. This includes creating a daily schedule that keeps your pup healthy, active, and well-fed. You have to think about socialization, physical activity, mental stimulation, and more.
You spend the majority of your time in your own house. As such, it’s easy to overlook the condition of your outdoor single-dog kennels. However, this is one task that you cannot afford to skip.
The chief reason why dog kennel cleaning should be a priority is that an unsanitary living environment isn’t just uncomfortable for your pet to live in. It can also be detrimental to their health.
When conditions are left uncleaned and unkept, there’s a greater risk of contamination. Your pup could be exposed to bacteria that could lead to infections, viruses, and other concerns. By taking the time to clean the floors, sanitize their feeding equipment, and disinfect the surfaces, you can help reduce those threats and keep your beloved pet safe.
Remember: This is your dog’s special space. Single dog kennels are meant to be an oasis by giving pups room to relax, unwind, and find protection from the elements. Within this large covered area, they’re free to get some fresh air, removed from the everyday chaos of the family home.
The cleaner and more comfortable it is, the more enjoyable it will become. Let’s take a look at a few ways to get there.
Choose a High-Quality Kennel
The first step in dog kennel cleaning is a simple one. Begin by choosing a premium-quality structure that’s easy to maintain and keep clean. At Benchmark Kennels, we have a wide variety of options for you to consider, including wooden and eco-thermal plastic models.
Our kennels are designed with materials that naturally resist rot and decay, as well as insect infestations. They also include special features such as heavy-duty roof coversto protect the interior from weather damage.
Our kennels will complement the exterior of your home and give your pup a reliable place to rest and relax. One example is our 10×6.5-ft Dog Kennel. Features of this kennel include:
- Tansalised and pressure-treated framework
- Tongue-and-groove shiplap cladding
- Structurally sound OSB 3 sheets on the roof
- IKO felt roof cover
- Sturdy galvanized dog run panels
The prices of our kennels also include professional fitting and installation. You can rest assured that your kennel will be properly constructed and completely safe for your pet to use. When shopping for one, remember to prioritize expert construction and solid materials.
These kennels are easier to maintain and keep clean than ones that are made from inferior products. Those structures are more susceptible to problems, such as mould and mildew, which can turn into major health concerns for your pup.
Set Up Your Kennel Properly
While it’s important to regularly dedicate time to cleaning a dog kennel, there are steps you can take at the beginning to make this process easier and more efficient down the road.
For instance, one of our top hygiene tips is to position your dog’s food bowl, water bowl, and bed toward the front of the kennel. Why does this matter? Put simply, it encourages your pet to use the bathroom toward the back of the space, as they prefer not to eliminate their waste near the same area where they eat and sleep.
This way, you can use your hose to spray the kennel down from the front to the back during cleaning sessions. You don’t have to worry about the dirty water touching your dog’s feeding or sleeping space. In addition, keeping all of their necessities toward the front allows them to walk in without stepping through the waste spot.
There’s a much lower chance that they’re going to accidentally walk through the mess and spread it throughout the kennel when it’s isolated to the back.
Invest in Premium Materials and Accessories
Another quick and easy step to take at the beginning is to think carefully about the materials you bring into your dog’s kennel. All accessories from their beds and bowls to their toys and games should be weather-resistant and easy to clean. You should be able to use a hose and disinfecting solution on the surface without worrying that you’ll damage it.
You can find everything you need on our Accessories page. We offer a range of products that can help tailor any kennel and run to your pup’s exact needs. We have designed these accessories after years of manufacturing kennels, and we know exactly what pet parents need.
From draught excluders designed to keep the wind out to anti-chew strips to fortify the entrance, we have it all. You can also outfit your single kennel with our ultra-sturdy, rust-resistant, stainless steel double dog bowl holder and bowls.
Choose the Right Products
There are lots of different products designed to remove dirt and debris from your dog’s space. However, knowing how to clean kennels in the correct way means being very selective in the ones you choose.
While you might choose super-strong solutions to clean your own home, this isn’t always the best approach when it comes to your furry pal’s home. The most important consideration to keep in mind is whether the product is safe for your pet.
Want one of our top kennel cleaning tips? If possible, stick to natural, ammonia-free cleaners. When ammonia is used, this chemical can have a smell that’s surprisingly similar to urine, which could trigger anxiety in your pup or trigger his need to urinate.
You’ll need a cleaner that you can use to wipe down surfaces, and a floor cleaner that can completely disinfect the play spaces and dog run.
Once you have your surface cleaner and mopping solution in hand, pay close attention to the gear you’re using to apply them. This includes everything from your scrubbing brushes to your squeegee and mop heads. Before each cleaning spree, carefully wash and sanitize these items to make sure they’re clean and ready to use.
You should also clean them again if you’re moving from one area of the kennel to another. This helps avoid cross-contamination and keeps each space safe.
Put Safety First
Any time you’re cleaning a dog kennel, it’s critical to keep your dog’s safety at the forefront. To clean thoroughly and deeply, you’ll need to use chemicals, and it’s essential to keep your dog safe from those solutions.
Before you get started, be sure to remove your pup from the enclosure. Never try to clean their kennel while they’re still inside. While you may think this could be easier and save time, it could also expose them to chemicals that are dangerous for them to inhale or come into contact with.
Once you’ve made sure they’re safely relocated, remember to protect yourself, too. Always wear safe and protective clothing when cleaning single dog kennels, which includes the following pieces:
- Long pants
- Long-sleeved shirt
- Closed-toe shoes
- Eye protection
Before you begin using, mixing, or applying chemical products, remember to read each label carefully. There are certain solutions you cannot safely mix, such as bleach and vinegar. Doing so could catalyze a dangerous chemical reaction, which can be unsafe for both you and your pet.
Instead of reintroducing your pup to the kennel immediately after cleaning, remember to everything dry first. This way, you can be sure that they won’t come into contact with anything harmful.
Follow a Strategy
The sequence in which you clean your dog’s kennel matters. One of our next kennel cleaning tips is to make a plan before you start. Here are the basic steps to follow when you’re ready to get started.
- Safely remove your pup from the kennel
- Remove every loose object from the kennel (e.g. feeding/water bowls, bed, toys)
- Scoop out waste
- Sweep up dirt, dust, and fur
- Hose the kennel down from front to back
- Apply disinfecting cleaner (using a mop and bucket, multi-purpose sprayer, or power washer)
- Scrub the kennel with a stiff-bristled brush (ceiling, floors, walls, doors)
- Allow the disinfectant to stand for the appropriate time
- Rinse interior surfaces with water (top of walls to the floor)
- Remove excess water with a squeegee
- Allow floors and all surfaces to air-dry
- Place accessories back into the kennel
Remember to allocate plenty of time for the floors and surfaces to dry and never rush the process. Once everything is completed, your dog can safely return to their newly cleaned home.
How Often Should You Clean a Single Kennel?
Knowing how to clean kennels is the first step. Once you have all of your tools in hand and your strategy in place, you’ll need to think about how often to tackle this task.
Cleaning once a week is best for most pet owners, especially if your pup isn’t sharing a kennel with any other dogs. However, it’s always best to over-clean rather than under-clean. The longer you allow their kennel to sit unsanitized, the more time potential viruses and bacteria have to spread and reproduce.
It can be weeks before the first signs of an illness such as distemper or parvo start to appear. You might not know that your outdoor kennel is hosting such diseases before it’s too late. This is why it’s best to err on the side of caution and make cleaning a part of your regular kennel upkeep routine.
If you have more than one dog or if your pup visits the dog park and other public places to socialize, then you may need to clean their kennel more frequently.
Daily Spot Cleaning
You should set aside time each week to deep-clean your dog’s kennel. However, that doesn’t mean that you can leave it completely untouched for the other six days of the week.
In between those cleaning sessions, pay close attention to the way the kennel looks. If you spot a mess, clean it up. Remember to completely remove loose debris before you begin applying a cleaner or disinfectant to make sure the solution sinks in completely.
If you’re simply sweeping up dust in the back, you may be able to leave your pup in the kennel while you spot-clean. However, if you’re using chemicals of any kind, it’s always best to remove them from the space before you begin.
Follow These Kennel Cleaning and Hygiene Tips
Now that you know how to clean kennels effectively with these hygiene tips, the task should be less intimidating. The key is to invest in a strategic design from the beginning, use the right products, and be consistent with your efforts. You should also follow a repeatable process that makes each step easy to remember and complete.
Of course, it all starts with choosing a great-quality kennel that’s reliable and easy to clean. When you’re ready to upgrade yours, start with us. Our wooden and eco-thermal plastic kennels are low-maintenance and designed to resist extreme weather, UV rays, moisture, insects, and more.
Check them out today and let us know if you have any questions!