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We got a lab puppy almost 2 weeks ago. he's really good....but,
I work anywhere from 2 to 4 hours.a day. He goes in his crate really nice and when I leave, I hear nothing. But when I come home I stand outside and listen. All I hear is barking and howling!! Please help! How do I get him to be 'ok' in his kennel?
(it's the plastic type) Oh ya, today he had the kennel upside down!
 

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The first month or two of crate training is tough, but he/she will get used to it. I went through the same thing.

The most important thing you can do is have the dog in the crate sometimes when you are actually home (maybe for 15-30 mins at a time), so he realizes that the crate does not equate to you not being there. Also if he's quiet in the crate while you're at home and you can't hear a peep, I'll usually give him random treats for behaving so well.

I've also heard a warm bottle helps if the dog is feeling lonely. I haven't tried this because I think my dog would just eat it, but it has worked well for others!
 

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I agree with the previous post but would like to add don't make a big deal out of leaving or coming home. When you leave, put the dog in the crate, pick up your stuff and walk out the door. Don't try to comfort or reasure the dog. When you come home, put up your stuff, go change clothes or whatever your routine is, THEN let the dog out of the crate. Don't lavish praise on him or give him a lot of attention until he has been out of the crate for 5 minutes or so.
 

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My older dog Titus hated the plastic crates. He was constantly unhappy in them, I used every trick in the book to get him to be comfortable with it. Even just going in on his own, wouldn't go near it.

We were at a friends house for the weekend who had a metal crate, he LOVED it. Went it all the time on his own, didn't fuss when we went out. For him, it's the visual aspect. He needed to be able to see his surroundings. The plastic crates are very limited in what they can see (basically out their front door and that's it).

I've never gone back to the plastic. I don't know, it may or may not work for you, sometimes it can be training, and other times it's personality of the dog in my experience.

If you do try the metal crate, see if someone near you has one you can barrow first. That way you're not spending money on something that may end up not working. I think the key for Titus is that when he went in on his own, he could still see that I was there and around the house instead of being blocked from view.
 

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I agree with the previous post but would like to add don't make a big deal out of leaving or coming home. When you leave, put the dog in the crate, pick up your stuff and walk out the door. Don't try to comfort or reasure the dog. When you come home, put up your stuff, go change clothes or whatever your routine is, THEN let the dog out of the crate. Don't lavish praise on him or give him a lot of attention until he has been out of the crate for 5 minutes or so.

Also try leaving a radio or TV on.
 
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