How to Stop a Dog From Breaking Out of the Crate

People whose dogs learn to break out of crates often purchase the more expensive aluminum dog crates. They do this thinking these crates are more secure and will solve their problem. To an extent, this is true and it works because these dogs are not going to get out of the aluminum crates. But some dogs (that have gotten out of a number of crates in the past) actually become so wound up and crazy in their attempt to get out of these crates that they hurt themselves. They get so worked up in the crate that they either cut their mouth or cut their feet from scratching until they bleed.

This is the reason that we do not replace dog crates for dogs that injure themselves trying to get out of the crate.

For many of these dogs, the aluminum crate is only a small part of the solution. These dogs need remedial training along with a more secure crate. Many times, owners will try the training before they buy the aluminum crate and many times, the training solves the problem.

Here are some training options I recommend:

  • Have the dog wear a muzzle in the crate. View our article on how to select and size a muzzle for your dog. I recommend the wire basket muzzles for this.
  • Sometimes simply giving the dog a cow’s knucklebone or a treat toy will work.
  • Give the dog more exercise. Tired dogs have way fewer behavioral problems. Mental exercise is also great for dogs. We recommend marker training your dog and playing relationship games.
  • Train this dog while you are home to be calm in the crate. Run him through a pack structure program. Our pack structure program deals with a dog learning to be calm and submissive in a dog crate.
  • Dogs that have been allowed to develop into this problem may need to have remote collar training to discourage this chewing and or digging in the crate. 
  • Dogs can also wear no-bark collars in crates. The majority of dogs who bite and chew crates will growl and whine when they do this. Our bark collars are the best on the market. They work on vibration and not sound. So even when the dog whines, he is corrected. These collars can have the stimulation level adjusted. Bottom line is, they stop dogs from barking on day one.

Oftentimes, people whose dogs injure themselves trying to break out of crates take their dog to the vet and ask what to do. The vets will prescribe pills to calm the dog. I am not a fan of this. Pills only cover up the problem. They solve nothing.

If vets do not give you the above information, they are not a dog trainer. Bottom line is that 99.9% of vets are either not dog trainers or very poor dog trainers. They offer less than accurate training advice and more often than not, incorrect training advice. In my 30 years of training dogs, I have only met three or four vets that I considered dog trainers.

Picture of Robert Forto

Robert Forto

Training director for Dog Works Training Company


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