What better way to introduce a foldable dog crate to your pups than to play games with them?
Training your furbabies through games might sound too relaxing of an activity.
However, it’s actually a fun and exciting way of crate training since they won’t think too much about it at all.
Instead, they’ll focus more on having a great time with you.
So if you’re wracking your brain trying to come up with training games for this purpose, we’ve got you covered in this article.
Let’s get started.
Why use a foldable dog crate?
There are several reasons why pet parents would prefer a foldable dog crate over any other crate.
Most of the time, foldable dog crates are lightweight, so you can just carry them whenever you want to move or travel.
Furthermore, these foldable crates are helpful when you have limited space at your home.
When you aren’t using them, you can fold them flat and store them in a corner.
11 training games that will make your dog love his foldable dog crate
Foldable dog crate training game #1: Quiet when the door’s closed
Plenty of dogs we know tend to be loud inside a foldable travel dog crate. This game should help you out with this issue.
First, put your pup inside the crate and quietly close the door. When you find your dog whining and crying inside, wait for your furbaby to stop. You click or say a command word and give your pup a treat when your dog stops making noise.
It’s a game that aims to reward your pup for waiting in the crate without making noise. You can gradually increase the time inside when they get used to the process.
Foldable dog crate training game #2: Treat toss
To start this game, make your big furry companion go inside their large foldable dog crate. Use the commands “Stay” or “Lie down”, then toss them a treat inside their crate.
When they’re done with their treats, let your dog out. Then repeat the process until your pooch is happy and willing to enter the crate on their own.
Remember to play this game only if your pooch is up to it. You should also make sure to check your pup’s daily intake of treat calories when playing this game.
Foldable dog crate training game #3: Time to chill
Use a command to make your furbaby go inside their foldable travel dog crate. But, don’t command them anything else, like “Lie down.”
Instead, patiently wait for your pup to lie down or relax. Once your furbabies do, give them a treat.
This way, you can teach your pooch that they can relax in the confines of their large foldable dog crate.
Foldable dog crate training game #4: Easy does it!
You may already have experienced your dog bolting out of their foldable travel dog crate during your travels and now want to prevent that from happening again.
Well, with this game, your dog learns how to remain calm inside the crate.
Command them to “stay” or hold up your hand to make your pooch stay in the crate while you open the door.
Once it’s open, use your command for “here” or anything close to it, and then give them treats once they obey.
This game is perfect for teaching small yet energetic breeds to be calm when they exit their small dog travel crate.
Foldable dog crate training game #5: Magic crate
One exciting game that can make your furbaby love their foldable travel dog crate is when you turn their crate into a gift that keeps giving high-value treats.
When your canines aren’t looking, place some high-value treats in the crate so they would think it’s the crate giving out goodies.
You can also guide them so they can find the treats inside. Toys are also good substitutes if that’s preferable for you.
With this training game, your pups learn to love their small dog travel crate and see it in a positive light.
Foldable dog crate training game #6: Where is it?
This exciting game is one variety of fetch. Fetch is a classic game that promotes a positive association with the foldable travel dog crate.
All you need to do is toss one of your pup’s toys inside the crate and close it.
After a while, wait for your Fido to look for it while they try to open the crate and get the toy. Let your dog inside when you see them excited to fetch it.
You can repeat this game for a few days until you can see your pup sitting happily in the dog crate.
Just make sure your dog knows how to play fetch because it will take quite a while if they don’t.
Foldable dog crate training game #7: Hide-and-seek
One of the games close to your heart where you also get to play is hide-and-seek.
First, put your pet in the foldable travel dog crate and let them stay by your command.
Once they are in the crate, hide somewhere close and call out for your dog. Once they find you, give them treats and good pats.
There’s also another version of this game that uses your dog’s scent.
Put your dog inside the crate again, and close the door of your foldable travel dog crate.
Hide some stinky treats anywhere in your house like a scavenger hunt.
Once you’re done, you can release your dog and let them run and find those treats.
Making them wait makes it easier to associate treats with their best foldable dog crate.
Foldable dog crate training game #8: Treat trail
You may want to pull a Hansel-and-Gretel style on your pup. Remember when Hansel used bread crumbs to create a trail back to their house?
Set up a line of treats that can lead the way to your dog’s large or small dog travel crate. Don’t forget to put a pile of goodies inside the crate at the end of the trail.
With this, your pooch will associate the path to their crate as exciting.
Foldable dog crate training game #9: Fetch it
Open the door of your pup’s small dog travel crate, and stand with your dog a few feet away from it. Take out your pup’s favorite toy and play a game with them.
Once you’ve been playing for a few minutes, throw the toy in the crate and ask your pooch to fetch it.
If they hesitate, gradually throw it closer to the crate until your dog gets tempted to grab it from the crate.
Don’t forget to reward your pooch when they get the toy and bring it back to you. You can even use it to play with other dogs.
Foldable dog crate training game #10: You’re in, you’re out!
Before starting this game, your pup should be in their crate. You need to open the door and reward your dog when they decide to stay put rather than bolting out.
Step away from the crate and call your pup to come to you. When they do, don’t give them any reward.
When your Fido returns to their soft foldable dog crate, reward them immediately with tasty treats and praises. Repeat it while gradually moving further away.
It may not work for the first few tries, but eventually, your pup will notice which action can get the rewards.
Foldable dog crate training game #11: Tug teaser
A game similar to “You’re in, You’re out”, but with a twist.
Hold a tug toy behind your back, and open the door with your other hand when your pup is inside the crate.
You can only open the door when your pooch sits quietly at the back of their large foldable dog crate. Show the tug toy to your dog when you call them and have a tug-of-war.
After that, take the toy away, and wait for your pup to return to the dog crate. When your pooch returns to the crate, immediately give them treats and praises while hiding the toy.
This game aims to teach your pup to return willingly to their small dog travel crate, despite the distraction of a toy.
Basic guidelines to take note of before implementing crate training games
Remember, these games aim to let your pup get used to a foldable dog crate.
Therefore, you must keep your training games fun and short. Also, don’t turn the session into a grind within a day.
Prepare a release word to let your pup know they’re done and can come out. Don’t forget to put a little more ring to the word and help them out.
Remember that your dog can sense your mood, so you should be in a good one when you play training games. Otherwise, your mood can affect your dog and the session.
Lastly, for an effective training game using a foldable travel dog crate, you should play each game for a couple more days before moving to the next game.
This will get them used to the lesson you’re trying to impart.
General crate training tips using the best foldable dog crate for your pups
Besides following the general guidelines in implementing games, remembering the do’s and don’ts in crate training is also essential.
Feed your pup meals in their crate while leaving the door open so they can exit after eating.
It’s better to put their soft foldable dog crate in social areas of the house so that they get used to people around them even when they are in their crate during travels.
Training your pooch to love their foldable dog crate can be challenging. But you don’t want to force this onto your pup. So, using training games is one of the best ways to encourage them to love their crates.
After all, with games, you can give your furbabies positive memories that may last an impactful impression on their well-being.