After introducing your dog to the crate, begin feeding him his regular meals near the crate. This will create a pleasant association with the crate. If your dog is readily entering the crate when you begin Step 2, put the food dish all the way at the back of the crate. If your dog is still reluctant to enter the crate, put the dish only as far inside as he will readily go without becoming fearful or anxious. Each time you feed him, place the dish a little further back in the crate.
Once your dog is standing comfortably in the crate to eat his meal, you can close the door while he’s eating. At first, open the door as soon as he finishes his meal. With each successive feeding, leave the door closed a few minutes longer, until he’s staying in the crate for 10 minutes or so after eating. If he begins to whine to be let out, you may have increased the length of time too quickly. Next time, try leaving him in the crate for a shorter time period. If he does whine or cry in the crate, it’s imperative that you not let him out until he stops. Otherwise, he’ll learn that the way to get out of the crate is to whine, so he’ll keep doing it.
Put the crate in an area of your house where the family spends a lot of time, such as the family room. Put a soft blanket or towel in the crate. Bring your dog over to the crate and talk to him in a happy tone of voice. Make sure the crate door is securely fastened open, so it won’t hit your dog and frighten him.
To encourage your dog to enter the crate, drop some small food treats near it, then just inside the door, and finally, all the way inside the crate. If he refuses to go all the way in at first, that’s okay – don’t force him to enter. Continue tossing treats into the crate until your dog will walk calmly all the way into the crate to get the food. If he isn’t interested in treats, try tossing a favorite toy in the crate. This step may take a few minutes or as long as several days.
Why do dogs growl? The reason is simple, its to ward of any danger and also to alert their pack that there is an issue. However, we don’t want our dogs to growl at a person, particularly a friend or family member. Sometimes it can be even more alarming, if your pup keeps growling at the same person. This behavior should be corrected through positive training and good socialization.
The best thing to do is to gain your dog’s respect. This can be done through positive reinforcement training. You should teach your dog the basic commands – “sit”, “stay”, “quiet” – I recommend practicing these every day with your dog.
A Tired Dog is a Good Dog
When we tire our dogs out they are much more laid back and docile. This is a good way to keep them calm around that person that they are growling at. No energy, no growling.
Don’t Reward Bad Behavior
One of the primary rules of being a dog owner is to never reward bad behavior. So you cannot pay them attention when they bark or growl. Don’t even show attention. Here is a good chance to teach a command or two, like “quiet” or “be still.” Speaking these commands in a firm, but calm, tone is ideal.
Socialize your Dog with the Person
Socialization is the answer to so many puppy problems. Get your dog together with the person that they growl at. The best thing to do is to have the person sit still and offer the dog treats. Win the dogs trust and talk to the pup in a calm tone. If the dog growls, remove him from the room and wait a few minutes to start again. Your dog will begin to associate the person with treats and they will be able to gain the dogs trust. The true test will be testing commands like “sit” and “stay” to see if the dog is going to give the person respect. Then go for a pet and a nice head scratch.