A Kong toy can be your best friend while training! Especially when it comes to dogs with separation anxiety, a Kong toy can really help keep their focus on something positive while you're away.
Now if you're not familiar with what a Kong toy is, they are those strange looking, hollow beady little rubber things you see at all of the pet stores, they come mostly in red or black and they're proclaimed "indestructible". WOW.
There are a few levels to how awesome of a dog owner you can be when filling up your Kong toys:
I started out a mediocre dog owner just like you, I filled them with PEANUT BUTTER. even the occasional Cheese Wiz was thrown into that rubber hole, and you might be thinking, "What's wrong with peanut butter and cheese wiz, Jessica?!?!? My dog eats peanut butter treats all of the time!"
Well, Peanut Butter is BASIC. Lets face the facts here, dog owners, your dog isn't going to stay crazy over peanut butter for hours. We have to try a little harder here, what is your dog going to just go CRAZY for?
What will make them lose they're freaking minds.
Meat, obviously. These are dogs, they're really not all that complicated. Don't think about this too hard.
I have heard that some people will actually make a liver pate paste? of some sort. Now, that's awesome, above and beyond kinds of dog ownership, but really all you need is some canned dog food.
What I do is fill it up pretty good every night and then freeze it, in the morning, it's a pretty cool little meaty Popsicle for your dog,
IT DOESN'T STOP THERE.
Every day, about 10-15 minutes before you leave, pull that Kong out of the freezer, show it to your dog. Let him know about the goodness that awaits him during the day today. After he's good and excited. Throw that Kong in their crate and close it up, Leave them out of it. Now, go about your route, They're gonna be so fixated on this Kong toy, and getting their meat Popsicle that when it's time for you to go they're gonna pop right into that crate and not even notice that you're leaving.
Now it's not like you're putting them into the crate, it's that you're finally allowing them to get into the crate. You want this dog to know that being compliant with your household rules works out to his best advantage.. Now he's eating a Kong full of super yummy stuff, and after a day of gnawing and licking at their new Popsicle, they're take a little nap of being full and tired and wake up to you being home, like you never even left.
I hope that this trick helps some of you in your crate training endeavors.