If you’re the parent of a curious canine, you’ve probably experienced that overwhelming feeling of dread when silence suddenly falls across the house. Instead of enjoying the peace and quiet, panic quickly rises as you rush through the house to locate that too-quiet pup. And then, when you finally discover your playful pooch, you also discover the source of his or her silence, which is usually a mess that has been left for you to clean up. The mischievous nature of dogs can quickly lead them into a mountain of trouble within minutes of being left to their own devices.


Crates may seem like a harsh punishment at times, but cuddly pups are a subspecies of the gray wolf, which means that their crate serves as their den or private space where they can feel safe and enjoy a little alone time. When picking out a crate, make sure that there’s enough room for your dog to stand up and turn around, but it shouldn’t be big enough to create a space for a bathroom.

For puppies, a crate is instrumental in housetraining since it can be used as a soil-free space for you and your dog. If you need to be away for a few hours, a crate helps to ensure an accident-free zone while you’re gone. However, puppies under six months should not be left alone in a crate for more than three or four hours. Dogs are naturally social creatures, so a long stint in the crate could turn their den into an unfavorable place.

Once your pup has conquered housetraining and your home has become an accident-free zone, the crate can still be a great resource for you if your pooch is a thrill seeker. If you’ve come home to teeth marks on shoes, cotton bursting out of pillows, tissue covering the length of the hallway, or scratches on your furniture, then your dog knows how to party; unfortunately, you’re only invited to join the cleanup crew. Using a crate to house your dog during your time away from home will help ensure that he or she doesn’t get into too much trouble while you’re away. It will also guarantee that your dog doesn’t get hurt by eating a harmful substance or getting into something restricted. Once your pup has earned your trust, feel free to open up the house for roaming, so he or she can enjoy a favorite spot in the sun.

Safety Gates

Safety gates help restrict parts of the house that aren’t dog proof without your having to rely on a crate. You can give your dog enough freedom to run around and play while limiting areas of the house that could lead to trouble. When choosing a safety gate, make sure that it doesn’t allow your dog to stick his or her head through any part of it. If you decide to use safety gates over crating, make sure that your dog is housetrained and has a comfortable spot for napping.

Indoor or Outdoor Fence Solutions

Both indoor and outdoor fence systems can help you establish boundaries for your pets that will keep them from harm and out of trouble. If you want to target specific areas of your house as “no-dog zones,” installing an indoor fence system is a good option. While some indoor fence models include a wire to protect larger areas—for example, the kitchen or a piece of furniture—there are wireless options available that can be used to guard smaller areas. Outside, underground pet fences use a buried wire and a transmitter to establish a safe play area.

Remote Trainers

Remote trainers provide quick and consistent behavior correction, which helps to easily teach and reinforce good behavior. With a remote trainer—a handheld transmitter and a collar fitted with a receiver—you can communicate remotely with pets by giving them an audible or vibration signal when they’re demonstrating bad behavior.

Dogs will be dogs, but a sniff in the wrong direction could put your pup right in harm’s way. With proper training, you can safeguard your dog against a costly catastrophe. Take the time to research the right training products, so you can choose one that will improve the relationship between you and your favorite furry friend.

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Sources: Atlanta Dogwatch Hidden Fence; Humane Society.

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