Animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on, use for entertainment, or abuse in any other way.

What’s Wrong With Crating?

Written by PETA | November 2, 2007

My pal Mylie has been at me to blog about crating dogs for a while now, and this is a perfect time to do it, since she just finished making a leaflet about it. Check out the leaflet below, and if you’d like to order some to pass out, click here.

Crating_Leaflet_Page_1.jpg

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  • Elizabeth says:

    Wow. Thank you so much author of this article. When I got a puppy the vet suggested that I crate train her! She even gave me a pamphlet about how it’s not cruel it’s more like a “den” for the dog. I gave her a weird look and said “No I have it under control.” She even told me she crate trains her dogs. I told her I put my dog in the kitchen behind a baby gate while I’m gone but the vet still pushed it on me. It didn’t feel like a nice way to treat my dog and it turns out someone else agrees with me. I keep the kitchen free of bad things to chew and alternate toys for her so she always has something interesting to play with Kongs etc. When I get home I clean up her potty. I don’t expect her to hold it and in fact prefer that she doesn’t because what if I had to be gone longer than expected? I think people welcome any idea that means they don’t have to put effort in.

  • Grace says:

    Oh my god. I have never even heard of ‘crating’ before who are all you people who see this as an acceptable way to treat your dogs? In what world is this normal? I have had and been around a number of dogs who were not ‘crated’ and have to say that their owners and their belongings didn’t seem to suffer from it. In fact I’d say that a cat can often be far more destructive to a house than a dog and yet I assume noone would try to ‘crate’ a cat as they’d go berserk. You should let them out and let them play if they would ‘terrorize the cats’ you’ve either bought an inappropriately violent dog or trained it badly. If you need to leave a dog cooped up in a cage for hours at a stretch because you’re away from the house then you are not the right person to own a dog having a pet is a great responsibility not an inalienable right. Once again can I say that I am shocked to discover that this practice exists and is considered normal by so many.

  • Amanda says:

    While I think that crating dogs for too long is bad of course I agree they should be out about and stretching I really don’t get how crating them at night or for a short period during the day is wrong. I have two small dogs that love to cuddle and a large crate full of pillows I also cover the crate with a blanket at night. If I left them out at night they’d terrorize the cats. This way they’re all soft and cozy and secure. I don’t see what’s wrong with that. Also if I left them out in the house while I was just running to the store they’d worry themselves with anxiety barking and screeching. If I put them in the crate for just a little bit they can just take a nap. Also like others have said on here they go into their crates to nap on their own free will when they get bored. So while I agree that crates can be misused and often are I don’t think PETA is addressing that they can be used in the right way. If they think these ways are wrong I’d love for them to tell me why.

  • Bethanie O'Brien says:

    Heather You might want to try training with a trainer for separation anxiety. That is commons signs of Separation anxiety. Bethanie O’Brien

  • Nadia says:

    UM.. Different Subjuct… I have been taking care of my neighbors crated dogdogs for 5 years!!! He has had 2 so far.. They both were WACK JOBS!!!! One was a mut and the other is a pure bred.. Crating stops the activity that Is needed to keep the brain young!!! I have 2 dogs both are muts half breeds. I love them both and I have had dogs for all my life 13 years. I know that The most inportant thing for my dogs is a good days exersize and lots of love. My Friend and I just went up to my neighbors house to take care of their pure bred dog their mut having passed away at the age of 5. We both thought it is so sad about crating dogs it really shortens the life of your loved ones!!!! yup

  • matt says:

    Create training isn’t bad whats next going to zoo and euthanizing all the animals because their not in their natural habbitat? I’d prefer to see a dog in a create thats in the warmth of someones home then seeing one thats been hit by a car and laying dead on the cold shoulder of a road.

  • Jewels says:

    I am very disappointed that PETA is wasting their time on this issue when there are clearly more important issues to be addressed. Crating is not cruel if done correctly and never for punishment. Now i realize there are people who use crates the wrong way however you cannot assume that all people who crate their dogs are cruel and inhumane. What do you suggest people who work all day do? Would it be better to let the dogs run free in house where they can run the risk of getting into something that could be harmful to them? I crate responsibly and am offended by the implication that I am being cruel. My dogs are part of my family and treated as such.

  • Elise says:

    There is not a doubt in my mind that crating the strays I foster for a few hours at a time is less humane than letting them potentially hurt my cats or dog or leaving them outside in the heat or cold. When I get a new foster dog my own dog is generally protective of her old crate and jealous of the foster dog using it. Just as TV should not be used to babysit human children crates should never be used to relieve responsibility. Additionally CRATES SHOULD NEVER BE USED FOR PUNISHMENT.

  • rachel says:

    I’m really dissapointed to see Peta waste energy on this issue. Attacking people who crate their dogs just gives the general public and people who truly do care about animals an excuse to see Peta as crazy instigaters who will pick a fight with anyone which invalidates Peta and their supporters. People are definitely not ready to hear something like that when the majority still think it’s ok to eat animals for food or wear them as clothing. It sounds really off the wall to fight something that when done correcty IS NOT cruel! Only a very wealthy person would be able to spend every minute with their dog or could pay someone when they couldn’t be there. Most people have to work full time to support themselves and their dogs! So in that case crating your dog is a much better option than tying him up outside or leaving him unattended in your house where they could hurt themselves. Crate training does have to be done properly and there is certainly the opportunity for it to be cruel but people who would leave their dogs stuck in a crate for 10 hours obviously do not care about their dog in the first place. We shouldn’t bother harping on them about the crate when in reality animal services should be taking the dog away from them. People who are crating responsibly would really take offense to being told they are abusing their dog. Dogs should all learn that being in a crate is not a scary thing because sometimes they may have to be in one traveling overnight stays at the vet etc.. I am lucky my dogs do not have seperation anxiety at all but any animal that is left alone will get bored just like children and it’s much safer for them to be in a crate with their toys than roaming the house chewing on things that could hurt them. My dogs do love their crates they go in them and sleep or play all the time. I find it very insulting for someone who must have such a wonderful life that they can spend all their time hanging out with their dogs to tell me I am abusive because I have to work for a living and want to keep my dog out of harm’s way when I am not home.

  • Caboose (Combine Slayer) says:

    Lisa Turn the fucking caps lock off!

  • Emma says:

    I am happy for those of you whose dogs can go for any length of time by themselves throughout your homes. Mine cannot. She has separation anxiety she’s a beaglelab mix so obviously she’s hyper and despite getting long walks every day and being an older dog now she still gets into everything the moment I leave. I was against the idea of a crate in the beginning and thought them horrible. I was wrong and so I think are you. My dog never had a problem with being house trained and was in fact completely house trained as a puppy before I ever got a crate. I needed the crate because she was destructive to herself and her surroundings. Do not think I was worried about my belongings I was not. She means everything to me and is way more important that possessions and always will be. But. She was hurting herself by using her teeth to pull up the fake tiling of the floor and jumping up and tearing at the walls… finding wires I didn’t know were there or even tearing through the walls. We went to the vets a lot. Then I got a crate and gradually she came to not only like it but chose to go there anytime and THAT is when I started to close the door to the crate and leave for maybe fifteen minutes at a time then come back and praise her. She was safe she did not hurt herself and I even left a recorder going to make sure she wasn’t whining or barking in it the times I was gone. She wasn’t. She is never in it for more than four hours at a time and that is rare and she is never made to go in it for punishment. this ad is irresponsible for cases like mine if not for other cases. there are going to be dog owners with dogs like mine out there that now will simply give up and take their dog to the pound because you say crates are inhumane. That is not right. Shame on you.

  • LISA FOX says:

    CAN I JUST SAY YOU PEOPLE WHO EXPLAIN THAT A DOG NEEDS TO GO INTO A CRATE WHILST THEY WORK IS UTTER CRUELTY TO ME. I HAVE A LABRADOR AND YOU CANNOT GET A PUPPY WHO IS AS DESTRUCTIVE AS HE IS. THIS IS BECAUSE HE IS TEATHING THE SAME WAY AS A BABY DOESAND BECAUSE WE DONT PUT OINTMENT ON THEY GOTTA CHEW CHEW CHEW. ANYTHING THEY CAN GET THERE HANDS ON. THEY DONT UNDERSTAND THAT YOUR SHOES SOFA KITCHEN CHAIRS ARE OF VALUE THEY JUST NEED TO CHEW THERE TEETH THROUGH. IF YOU CANNOT PUPPY SIT UNTIL THEY ARE OLD ENOUGH TO BE LEFT HOME ALONE YOU SHOULDNT HAVE ONE. HUMANS THINK BECASUE THEY ARE JUST DOGS THEY DONT NEED THE SAME ATTENTION AS A BABY DOES WELL I BEG TO DIFFER. I FIND THE PEOPLE WHO HAVE DOGS ARE THE WORST PEOPLE TO UNDERSTAND THEM. ESPECIALLY WHEN THEY VERBALLY SHOUT ABUSE AT THEM. A DOG IS A DOG IT DOESNT UNDERSTAND HUMAN CONVERSATIONS. ANYONE WHO CRATES A PUPPYDOG SHOULD GET IN ONE THEMSELVES AND SEE HOW THEY WOULD FEEL. YOU DONT CRATE A BABY OR CHILD SO DONT CRATE A PUPPYDOG. IF YOU FEEL YOUR HOUSE WILL BE SPOILT THEN DONT BLOODY BUY A DOG. MY DOG IS APART OF MY FAMILY. I WAS AWARE OF THE MESS AND DISTRUCTION HE WOULD CAUSE SO I MOVED THINGS OUT OF HIS WAY AS NOT TO SELF HARM. THEY ARE VERY SOCIABLE ANIMALS AND VERY LOYAL. UNLIKE PEOPLE. MY DOG IS ALOUD TO ROAM FREELY AROUND MY HOME WHILST I AM OUT DURING THE DAY OR NIGHT. I AM WILLING TO HOOVER HIS HAIRS UP AFTER HIM AND CLEAN UP HIS MESS. NO HASSLE TO ME. HE GIVES ME PLENTY SO IN RETURN I DONT MIND CLEANING UP AFTER HIM AFTER ALL HE IS WELL WORTH IT. YOU WOULDNT CRATE A BABY SO DONT CRATE A PUPPY. IGNORANT AND CRUELTY COMES TO MIND!!!

  • Riannon R. says:

    This is the silliest thing I have ever seen! If you really believe that crating is inhumane than you have either seen it done wrong or know nothing about dogs!

  • Rose says:

    I’m glad I just read your article about crating dogs. I just got a 15 week old Shit Zhu. Everyone keeps telling me to put her in a crate to potty train her.I don’t like crates and my dog is happier in bed with me.When she is ready she will get the hang of it and learn how to tell me she has to go out.Mean while she will not be in a crate. Rose

  • Claudette says:

    THANK YOU for this posting….I just printed it out to hand out at work to new puppy owners. I work at a large vet hospital. I teach all new puppy people that dogs don’t live in cages!!! When asked about my own dogs I tell them I have 5 dogs that all but one are rescues and were adults and I do not own cages never will. My puppy who is now 5 never used a crate and my other dogs were not housetrained using cages. My dogs have free reign of the couch or chair of their choice…bedrooms are off limits as one likes to nest in the comforters but at night they can sleep with us if they choose. During the day they are free to walk around not turn around in a cage they can jump up and down look out the window watch TV interact with each other bark sniff pee on the floor if they have a problem I do not correct if they have an accident you don’t just go to the bathroom set times a daythey can play with toys or not play with each other or not. What kind of life is it to sit in a cage and stare at the walls for 1012 hours and no wonder they are hyper when the owner gets home then they are corrected for being hyper and put back in the crate to sleep the night. Might be a reason why you see dogs at shelters. I have coworkers that keep their dogs crated and only allowed out to pee 3 times a day and play then back in their “den” or “cave” funny but last time I saw a cave it didn’t have a locked door. A place to sleep is one thing a cage with a locking door is another. If people took the time to teach and play and care with their dogs I am sure dogs would be more loving and relaxed. So THanks again for the info and be sure it will get passed out to all new dog owners and puppy owners.

  • dogsbestfriend says:

    I have been a supporter of PeTA for years. But this I must disagree with. I’m sure the author of this flyer is correct that many people use crates incorrectly for the convenience of themselves and that many people are using them in line with their unrealistic expectations of their young puppies. However my family’s dog who was adopted from a shelter over 11 years ago really DOES love his crate. He came from an abusive home in his puppyhood and suffered from severe separation anxiety if left at home even for brief periods of time. He was never alone for long days for the first 3 months he was with us there was an adult kids who were not working at all or in school and so were home most of the time to give him love attention and take him to doggie training classes. His crate IS his den his safe place. He goes in without complaint NOT only when we tell him to go in but when we are home and the door is open. Often he’ll stay snuggled in there even when he’s being called by someone who would love to invite him on their lap or throw a toy for him. Even when no one is home if his crate is unintentionally left open he’ll still be curled up in there contentedly upon his peoples’ return. This is the most loved dog you could imagine and his anxiety levels have decreased dramatically since we first brought him home as an mistreated anxious aggressive little dog. We love him unconditionally and he returns the favor. PeTA usually has it right on and there certainly is some truth in this flyer but they really miss the mark on a lot of their points in this one.

  • Jen says:

    Let them free? Now THAT is cruel. Dogs were created by humans and they need to be cared for by humans. If you cannot crate a dog how will you travel with it safely? I’m sure dogs don’t like flying through windshields or being strapped to seatbelts.

  • Caboose (neutral, blue army. Blood Gulch Outpost Alpha) says:

    I am not any lower than you are just because of what I may have said. Cheerio

  • Caboose (neutral, blue army. Blood Gulch Outpost Alpha) says:

    Whoah! So much crossfire over a simple question Then again I may have added to it . ! I dont fully disagree with PETA but the stance against meat and other traditions not tradition such female genital mutilation I disagree with.

  • Ariel says:

    Mazie Yes it would be beautiful to see domesticated animals running free living their lives as they were meant to be. However this is not a perfect world in which we can set them free. Although they can survive at best with their natural instincts if let alone they would unfortunately still be victims of the horrible atrocities that some of cruel mankind would inflict upon them including vivisectors confiscating them as they do anyway for excruciatingly painful nonsensical experiments. And some domesticated animals would be victims of the weather elements. We don’t refer to ourselves as “owners.” Rather as responsible caretakers of the animals who are furry members of our families. One might say that they have been entrusted to us. It really bothers me to have to keep my cats indoors while knowing how much they would love to roam outdoors. But cruel humanity doesn’t give them or me the option to risk their lives and health. Now what animal rights’ doesn’t condone is harboring nondomesticated animals and calling them “pets.” For example tigers snakes any wild animal who has been taken out of their natural habitats. Then we have the circuses which we don’t condone animals taken out of their natural habitats for the purpose of exploitation for the almighty dollar. After the wild animals have maxed out their $$$$$ potential if the the circus owners don’t kill them they abandom them. Then nonprofit wildlife animal sanctuaries take them to live out the rest of their lives as naturally as possible. Thank you for your input.

  • Dana says:

    Mazie You used the words no one should own a pet. I agree with you on that just not in the way you think. No one should ever use the term own when referring to a pet….pets are not owned they are not property they are instead part of the family…We do not treat our animals as property they are an extremely important part of our family. Now on to the rest I can imagine our little babies wanting to be placed on the streets to run free as strays….just dont think that starving on the street is a pretty picture in your let them run free theory….dogs are not wild horses!!! As for this crate thing I expressed my beliefs on this above….Our dogs are puppies…puppies chew because they are teething. Like I said before what situation fits best sitting on death row in the pound or spending a few hours two days a week in a crate while I work? I think more energy needs to be place on dogs that are chained out 247 barely receiving food or water…or spayneuter which is the non lethal solution….instead of focusing a lot of attention on our dogs being in a crate a couple of hours a week….I can think of many worse things at this point that are abuse…our dogs do not need for anything and besides the few hours a week we are gone they get 100 of our attention our world revolves around doggie social functions doggie parks and walks. Right now as of this minute there is an animal control officer that has starved his female boxer and left her behind when he moved…when she was taken from his property she weighed 35 pounds when she should have weighed 5565 pounds just to see her was extremely sad sick. This officer spent a total of 35 minutes in jail…pled guilty…the judge then let him off with time served the whole 35 minutes he never paid a fine or the first dime….he is still an animal control officer………….There are much more issues such as this that are considered neglect abuse….my girls are healthy well fed warm loved and cared for to the extent most dogs are not..they have everything a doggie could want…and we have to spend hours upon hours trying to make me feel bad for crating my dogs because for one I want them alive when I come home and two I want to have something left when I do………..they have toys kongs chew bones….there toy box is full but just like kids they want to chew on the things that are not theirs…walls chairs couches electrical cords…ect….my one girl gets much more entertainment trying to chew up the toy box instead of the toys…………I work closely with an animal rights group….I volunteer a lot of my extra time to helping animals……..I am working on a will to include my dogs care after I am gone but because I put them in a crate keep in mind a crate they go into when the door is wide open on their own I am now an animal abuser……….GET REAL!

  • Mazie says:

    I cannot believe that PETA would ever condone anyone OWNING an animal. How can you live with yourself if you have any pets? It just doesn’t make any sense to confine an animal at all. They are not people. And they should not be controlled. Set them free open your door and just let them go. It will be beautiful to see them running free living their lives in the wild as they were meant to be!

  • Caboose (neutral, blue army. Blood Gulch Outpost Alpha) says:

    sorry for Nov 5 2007 1016 pm. To make it up to u here is a RvB quote “Help me! I cant find my solar powered internet enabled blowdryer! I have a lot of moistness that I need to desmoisten! Also I need to do it while I am webpaging about moistness.” Caboose. Red vs Blue Technology PSA.

  • Ariel says:

    Excellent comments Michele especially supported by excellent TRUE examples!

  • kim says:

    My dog LOVES his crate. He goes there when things get a little crazy at our house which it does with 3 dogs two toddlers. He also will whine look at his crate when he wants to go to bed. Not all dogs that are crated are neglected in those kennels. But my dog’s also about 10 pounds and I think it’s harder on larger dogs to be confined.

  • Caboose says:

    Michele Socialist is not an insult but rather a variant of Communism. Well there has to be some rules in society for order! But when PETA wants to get their way and goad us into being vegan and believing what they say and telling us what to eat drink wear no fur advocating here and maybe do it’s to much!! That’s why I say socialist.

  • Caboose (neutral, blue army. Blood Gulch Outpost Alpha) says:

    Michele You are still socialistnot a bad word just a variant of communism I dont advocate abuse or murder nor do I agree with PETA on some issues. Only idiots not you relate religion to life. Its different than with what you said because there has to be some order but PETA telling us what to eat drink wear not a fur advocate either and maybe do is too much!

  • Caboose (neutral, blue army. Blood Gulch Outpost Alpha) says:

    Michele You are still socialistnot a bad word just a variant of communism I dont advocate abuse or murder nor do I agree with PETA on some issues. Only idiots not you relate religion to life.

  • claude says:

    there is nothing wrong with putting a dog into a crate. my wife brought home a pug puppy a little while back and he was always pissing and shiting in the house whenever he pleased. most of the time when he did it he had just been brought in from being in the yard. so when he came in the house for the night he went into the crate and quess what now he has the whole house to move around in at night because he no longer relieves himself in the house. crating is not cruel it is not inhumane it is one of the best ways i have found to house break a dog because it works.

  • Gian Paolo says:

    Schulz is a lively playful and energetic sometimes adrenaline driven 10 yrs old German Sheperd slightly oversized by some Siberian blood in his genetic past. He has never been in a crate never will be in one. At very early an age he lost interest in slaying pillows and plaids. Never damaged furniture seriously. Never had furniture been more important than Schulz by us. He never gave trouble even to those people he openly dislikes. He will never wear a mouthgard either. A policeman once asked why did Schulz wear no mouthgard. We answered that he could well wear one himself if interested. A crate? If you cannot handle it with a dog just leave this to whose who can. A crate give me a break.

  • Relmond Hoffman says:

    If you meet a fireman ask which would he prefer to find in a life or death rescue situation A frightened snapping dog loose but cowering behindunder a large piece of furniture….. or one in a crate which can be easily slidcarried to the nearest safe exit?

  • Caboose (neutral, blue army. Blood Gulch Outpost Alpha) says:

    You think you are better Ariel? F ing socialist.

  • Michele says:

    I see that Caboose has decided that “socialist” is a bad word it isn’t and is throwing it around as the new attempt at insulting the ar people just like the worn out “hypocrite” comments we were getting from the bad steve et al in the past. BORING! Caboose have you heard of “Thou Shalt Not Kill”? hmm though I am not religious I am aware of the 10 commandments and am aware that most countries have laws against murder. So if I am to interpret either the Bible or a particular country’s criminal code then it would seem that the church andor the state is TELLING people what to do. Wow that’s pretty evil and socialist telling people that they are not allowed to kill others. I guess I better have a meeting with my son’s school principal for telling the children that they are not allowed to hurt others! To think that school principals could be so socialist by telling the children what to do. I should also complain that I am not allowed to send any food in my son’s lunch that may have nuts in it obviously the school has some nerve telling me what my son cannot eat at school. I can only hope that most people reading this blog can see how idiotic this sounds. People do have the right to engage in certain activities without state interference but helloooo that does not give everybody the right to do whatever the heck they want.

  • Christopher Cochran MD says:

    If a northern African American is incensed because I am a southern white male then they are as bigoted and prejudiced as kelly. You folks are some of the most elitist people I have ever encountered.

  • Caboose (neutral, blue army. Blood Gulch Outpost Alpha) says:

    Wow Ariel straight from a socialist. Telling us what to eatweardrinkdo isnt evil?

  • Ana says:

    Hello Ariel Always enjoyable to read your posts. Killing does not take much intelligence to accomplish any yokel lout or member of a hate group can do the same. When anyone has to throw their purported intelligenceeducation at anyone in order to feel superior there lacks character and selfesteem. Declaring being a white southern male are fighting words for Northern blacks and other ethnic groups. Seems I have read that on several white supremicists’ sites. But you are right animal advocacy is growing most especially among the youth who are the future of this nation and the world. A college student went in search of me on Friday in order to tell me he had become vegetarian. Reading the autobigraphy of the Mohandas finally convinced him to take the leap and he is overjoyed with his decision. Of course he is Latino poor and an undergraduate student but he is very insightful and intelligent. I like you have great faith in the integrity that animal advocates display. It takes a base nature to enjoy killing and ending the lives of beings that do you no harm. Only those with highly developed sensibilities can develop compassion for all beings not just the human ones. Keep fighting the good fight and stay well! Peace!

  • Jeri says:

    I suspect my comment will not appear in your comments section as I am in disagreement with a hard stance against crating. I don’t know where Mylie got her information but it may be that crating just doesn’t FEEL right. That is true for humans but we can’t confuse what is comfortable for us with what is comfortable for dogs. Dogs evolved from wolves who do live in dens and enjoy closed in places that feel safe and secure. This behavior especially is evident when a dam is about to whelp pups. She will look for the quietest most cavelike space she can find in the back of a closet under a bed etc. I have several dogs many sleep with us and some sleep in their solidsided crate. I never hear a peep from them they sleep comfortably all night long. Now I also don’t have them in crates during the day unless they are being potty trained. They come and go as they please however I will go into their sun room during the day and find them happily napping in their crate by their choice. They have the choices of being out on the deck in a fenced 25×70 gravel yard or a fenced 25×70 grass yard or roaming around the house. They have doggie doors to come and go as they please. I don’t believe in OUTDOOR dogs. If you want a dog then keep it inside and be home most of the day or make sure the dog you have if purebred or mixed is of the temperament that is comfortable being separated from people. If a dog has been especially bred for companionship then don’t adopt it unless you’re home! They need their people!

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