Shikha loves her kennel thanks to peanut butter Buddy Biscuits (soft). We started by showing her a treat, then placing it just inside the door. The next treat went in just as far as needed so she would take a step in. Then each treat went further back in. In a few minutes, she was going in all on her own. Then we added the cue "Go to your den." And then toss the treat towards the back. Eventually, we slowly closed the door, then give her a treat.
You could try this & slowly work up to longer periods with the door closed. Also, when Shikha is calm in her kennel, I periodically offer her a small spoon of peanut butter or pumpkin through the kennel door. This reinforces that good things happen when she is lying down calmly in the kennel.
Paul Owen has some great techniques on his Original Dog Whisperer dvd (available on Netflix). And Zak George has a good video on You Tube. Look up How to Potty Train and Crate Train. I know you don't need the potty training, but he demos how to get a dog to like a kennel.
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