Purchase a sturdy crate large enough for your Golden Retriever. These medium-sized dogs need room to sit up, stand, turn around and lay down comfortably, without touching the sides of the crate. If your dog is a puppy, purchase a crate that grows with him. These crates are large enough to accommodate a fully grown Golden but have panels to make the crate smaller for growing puppies.
Line the crate with a blanket and your dog's favorite toys to make it inviting and comfortable. Place it in an area of your home close to other people to keep your golden retriever close by; these social dogs need human interaction and companionship.
Introduce your Golden Retriever to the crate slowly. If they are reluctant, lure them in with a treat. Do not toss the treat into the crate; that will only teach them it's okay to eat flying food and that habit is hard to break. You don't want your dog going after dropped food and sometimes it is hard to distinguish between the tossed treat and dropped food. Verbally praise your dog when they enter the crate. Repeat this procedure several times in a row each day until your dog freely approaches the crate and enters it without provocation.
Feed your dog in the crate as well, closing the dog inside the crate during every meal, then letting the dog out when they are done. Increase the amount of time your Golden Retriever spends in the crate after a meal each day.
Teach your Golden Retriever a verbal command to go into the crate, such as "Crate" or "Bedtime." Say the command, then give the treat when your dog enters the kennel. Close the door and give your dog verbal praise and another treat.
Exercise your Golden Retriever prior to crating the dog overnight or for a longer period of time during the day. This will tire this energetic breed of dog and make crate training easier when the dog doesn't have excess pent-up energy.
Ignore your dog's whines to leave the crate if your Golden Retriever seems upset with the confinement, unless the dog is a puppy and needs to go to the bathroom. If you are unsure, take your dog out, leash your dog and take them to their potty spot outdoors; should the dog show no signs of needing to eliminate, return the dog immediately to the kennel. Always take your dog out to eliminate after confinement in the crate for an extended period of time and prior to crating for the night.