I do find it funny that so many dog owners think its cruel to crate their dogs. Dogs if properly introduced to a crate usually think of their crates as a safe place. As young dogs learning to housetrain, generally dogs don't like to soil in their beds or sleeping areas. So crating makes housetraining easier. Come home take the dog out from the crate to outside. Dogs are creatures of habit and it won't take long for the dog to realize outside is the where they relieve themselves.
So many dogs suffer from separation anxiety. A crate keeps the dog safe and also your stuff from being chewed up. Stops dogs from having an obstruction from eating or chewing things they shouldn't.
Dogs sleep curled up most of the day as along as the crate is big enough for the dog to stand and turn around that's all you need.
Long stints in a crate, your dog should have water and toys should be available.
I crate my 12 year old Border Collie he loves his crate and runs their for security like a den.
His door is always left open.
Our other younger Border Collie can't be trusted so is crated while we are out or at bedtime.
she too loves her bed.
Crates are a training tool and a secure safe place for your dog to hang out that's his space.