Like humans, dogs need protection from the cold weather. Pet parents love buying coats and sweaters for their best friends. The problem is that a lot of dogs don’t like wearing their clothes and will bite at them or pull them off. Some dogs will even resort to hiding their coats or sweaters. The solution is to provide your pup with a bedroom where they’re snug and warm without the dog clothes. A dog crate also called an indoor kennel, where they can use their own body heat to warm their resting spot, is a haven for dogs.
An important point to remember is that a dog crate should only be used for a few hours a day. Your dog should never be in the crate for longer than eight hours. A crate is a place for your dog to observe your comings and goings from a distance and a place to sleep. Dog crates are available in a variety of sizes and styles and have a removable floor tray for easy cleanups.
When To Use A Dog’s Crate
The best dog crate is a canine equivalent to a bedroom. When you’re settling down for the night, your dog can retreat into its den to sleep. When a dog is crate-trained, they feel secure knowing they’re near their human family. You can place the crate in your bedroom, so your pup is close to you at night but has a space of its own in which to sleep.
A crate is a helpful addition when you’re potty training a puppy. Trainers recommend keeping the puppy in a confined space until they learn to go outside for a bathroom break. Some dog owners use gates to keep their puppies confined to one room. However, getting your puppy accustomed to a crate at a young age should be part of its training. Take your puppy outside every couple of hours. Most dogs catch on quickly where they’re supposed to go for a potty break. Your puppy should be praised and rewarded when they catch on, but not punished for making a mistake.
A crate is recommended when you’re transporting your dog to the vet or when you’re on a trip. It’s safer for your pup to be confined in the crate than riding unrestrained on the car seat. Pet suppliers sell restraints that attach to a dog crate as a safety precaution when you’re in the car—find the best portable and travel dog crate for Fido!
When you go on a camping or RV trip, the safest place for your pup is in a crate when you’re not out on hikes or playing. There are many different scents and noises that could frighten your dog. Crating your pup at night is the best option for keeping it safe. A helpful suggestion, crate train your dog before the trip. Starting the training when you’re away from home will confuse your dog.
Dogs that have separation anxiety or get bored can be in their crate for short periods, like when you’re running errands. A crate is the best way to keep your dog safe and stress-free during holiday fireworks  or when there’s a thunderstorm. A couple of favorite toys or treats will keep your pup occupied.
A dog that gets anxious around toddlers or younger children will welcome some downtime in their crate. Your dog can relax and be away from all the activity. Keeping dogs and toddlers away from each other is a good idea unless there’s constant supervision.
A crate is the most practical option when your dog is recovering from illness or surgery. Being confined to a smaller space means less risk or injury. Veterinarians recommend keeping your dog quiet and confined to a small area when they’re recovering to help in the healing process.
Precautions For Keeping Your Dog Warm
Some dog breeds made for cold temperatures. Others however, need help from pet owners to be comfortable in the cold weather and using a dog crate is one of them. To keep a dog crate warm, you must first place it in a cozy location in your house. A smaller room is best since small rooms heat up faster. Place the crate in an area away from drafts where the sunlight filters into the room.
Some dog owners invest in heated pads to keep the crate warm. However, some dogs will chew on the cord, so this isn’t the safest option. If you live in a cold climate, you may want to invest in a heated crate.
The ideal location for your dog’s crate is in a carpeted room. If this isn’t an option, you could place a wood pallet or warm area rug underneath the crate to insulate your pup from the cold.
How To Train Your Dog To Sleep In A Crate
A crate cover-up set or a dog crate mattress is two recommended ways of keeping your dog warm. Most dogs adapt easily to a dark, enclosed place to sleep. However, some dogs may feel anxious about the new environment. Here’s how to help your dog get over anxiety when they’re in the crate:
- Put the cover over the crate and leave the sides up
- Leave the door open and allow your dog to explore the crate
- When your pup goes inside, offer a treat and be enthusiastic with praise
- After a couple of days when your pup is comfortable, lower one side of the cover
- Your dog should get a treat for going into the crate
- When your dog is relaxed, lower the second side of the cover
- Continue the process until you can lower the third side
- You should praise and reward your pup for good behavior
- You shouldn’t leave your dog unattended while you’re crate training
How To Keep Your Dog Warm In A Crate
One of the most effective ways of keeping your dog warm and snug in a crate is with crate cover-up sets. Dogs love a warm, secure place where they can sleep or relax. A standard crate cover set features:
- An outer cover
- Three bumper pads
- Floor crate pad
Crate cover sets make your dog’s crate warm and snuggly. You can put a blanket or even a dog bed like the JOYELF Orthopedic in the crate for extra warmth. Crate cover sets are available in small, medium, large, and extra-large sizes. Before you buy a cover, it’s a good idea to measure your dog’s crate to make sure you order the correct size. You may also learn how to make a dog crate cover.
Crates that have plastic and metal floors are cold to lie on at night. You should place a crate pad or crate mattress on the floor of the crate for extra warmth. Some dogs like having blankets to burrow into. A warm blanket can go on top of the mattress or crate pad. The extra padding will insulate your dog from the cold at night.
If you prefer not to use a crate cover you can turn up the thermostat in the room to a comfortable level. Another option is to use a portable heater. If your choose a heater make sure it isn’t on too high. A portable heater should be plugged into a socket that’s not close to your dog’s crate.
One or two blankets will keep your dog warm at night. You might fold one up and place it on the floor of the crate and cover your dog with the second blanket.
If you don’t have a crate mat you can insulate the bottom of the crate from the cold by placing a thick towel or blanket on the floor underneath the crate. The extra layers will insulate the bottom of the crate.
The ideal place for your dog’s crate is in a small room away from doors and windows that may cause drafts. It’s best for your dog if the room is carpeted. If the room isn’t carpeted, a plush rug underneath the crate is an excellent heat insulator and keeps your dog warmer.
1. Does putting a blanket over a dog crate help keep them warm?
Putting a blanket over the kennel can help to eliminate drafts, therefore making a dog’s crate warmer. A warm blanket over the crate can help to reduce visual stimulation and barking or whining. This works well especially for a wire crate. Soft-sided dog crates and plastic crates typically already have solid walls. However, your dog should have adequate protection from cold floors. Metal or plastic dog crates are cold at night unless you provide a layer of insulation. A thick blanket can be put in the crate to provide warmth for your pup. You may use a second blanket to cover your dog. One of the reasons dogs love blankets so much is their maternal den instincts.
Ancestors of domesticated dogs gave birth to their litters in dens where the puppies were safe and warm for the first 10 – 12 weeks of life. Today’s dogs seek comfort in places that are warm and secure. This is the reason a dog will retreat into its crate if it feels anxious or needs a safe place. Dogs love soft blankets because it gives them a sense of security.
2. How can I keep my dog warm at night?
Several options are available for keeping dogs warm at night. A crate-cover-up set is ideal for keeping your dog snug and warm. Pet suppliers make crate covers that are extra thick and insulated for warmth. Crate cover sets consist of a thick pad for the floor of the crate, bumpers for the sides and back, and a cover that extends over the top and sides.
Insulating the floor of your dog’s crate with a crate mattress will keep it warm at night. For extra warmth, add a snuggly blanket. A warm, plush area rug between the bottom of the crate and floor provides an extra layer of insulation.
3. How do I know if my dog is cold in his crate?
Dogs are very susceptible to changes in temperature and can get cold easily. These are signs that your dog is cold and needs more protection:
- Tucked tail and hunched posture
- Barking or whining
- Shaking or shivering
- Behavior changes like anxiety
To prevent your dog from being cold in its crate take the proper precautions before the weather turns cold.
When you choose blankets for your dog’s crate, here are some helpful tips to consider:
- Choose the best blanket for your dog. Ideally, you should choose blankets that are made from unbleached, organic materials and don’t contain any synthetic materials.
- Your dog’s blanket should be seasoned so it has a familiar scent. If you’re adopting your puppy from a breeder allow the mother dog to snuggle on the blanket with the puppy before taking your new friend home. If that’s not an option get your scent on the blanket.
- Have the blanket available for any situation in which your dog may feel stressed. For example, if you’re driving and your dog gets upset being in the car. Thunderstorms and fireworks are triggers for many dogs. Have the blanket ready in your dog’s care before any loud noises get it stressed.