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Hi, I am new to this and I have read a few of the posts on crate training but am still unsure what i need to do...

I have a 5month old Cocker Spaniel male, I got a crate for him and introduced it to him from day 1 when i brought him home, he has never been afraid to go inside, but when i use treats to get him in he will go in to get them, i will praise him and he will come straight back out. When he was really young I would put him in to sleep but not close the door yet, as soon as he would realise I left the room he would wake and come out...he never wants to stay in there... i probably should have closed him in from the start and kept him in the room with us overnight (gettin up to let him out to pee) but i didnt want to be getting up during the night. I dont leave him the crate when we go to work as sometimes we may not be able to get back within the 4hours recommended and i didnt think this would be fair so he has the run of the kitchen...
However about a month ago I started to take the crate to the bedroom and close him in because i really want him to love his crate and it didnt seem to be working. He will always whine when i close the door of the crate but used to stop within about 5mins... he was waking up around 3am and 6am at first and i would bring him out and he would pee, but he seems to be getting worse now... he wakes up more often and whines for longer eg last night went to bed at 11.30, he woke at 12.30, 2.30, 6.00... I try to leave him for a while before taking him out as I dont know if he does need to pee or if he is just looking for attention, but as he is getting worse I feel like I am doing something wrong and I dont know whether to stick with it or ditch the crate... I would really like a full nights sleep...

any help would be greatly appreciated....
 

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We started with the crate in an expen, and he would sleep in the crate but come out when he wanted, then slowly shrunk the expen until it was barely bigger than the crate, then just closed him in the crate at night. That transition seemed to work well with us, and he has no problems with just going in his crate at night now.
 

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Unfortunately, you probably won't get a full night's sleep for another month or two. Since you've been taking him out more frequently, he knows whining is working and does it for longer. You just have to endure the whining until he realizes it isn't going to work anymore. It might be a couple of sleepless nights, but he'll get the picture. You might have to deal with an accident, then you'll know his really needs to go out or not, and then base whether or not to take him out on how long he was able to hold it in that night. When our puppy was younger, I would know if she was bluffing or really needed to go by how restless she was in the crate. She would rattle around a bit frantically when she needed to go, but when she wanted attention she would just lay there and whine. It was hell, she's a small breed Peke/Shih tzu and needed to go every 1-2 hours the first couple of months when we first got her. I was a complete zombie until she turned about 7 months old, lol.

Do you take him out to potty before bed? Do you take water away a couple of hours before bed? This will help the pup hold it in a bit longer throughout the night. Try exercising and playing with him a little bit before bed so he can be extra tired, and might sleep through the night.
 

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Do you take him out to potty before bed? Do you take water away a couple of hours before bed? This will help the pup hold it in a bit longer throughout the night. Try exercising and playing with him a little bit before bed so he can be extra tired, and might sleep through the night.
yes I always take him out. Before I go to bed, as soon as I get up and regularly throughout the day, he is very good and we don't get many accidents in the house.
He gets lots of exercise & mental training from when I return from work until bedtime, sometime think I spend too much time with him while I am there!! But im away from 9 to 6pm so I try to make up for that. I get a friend to take him out at lunchtime to break up the day, I would love to leave him in puppy day care. But don't know of any around where I live!
Will try taking the water off him earlier and leaving him whining until he gets more restless so I know it's for a pee rather than attention... I just hate to hear him whine, he's in the crate right. Now doin it, sounds like he is being murdered!! :-(
 

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yes I always take him out. Before I go to bed, as soon as I get up and regularly throughout the day, he is very good and we don't get many accidents in the house.
He gets lots of exercise & mental training from when I return from work until bedtime, sometime think I spend too much time with him while I am there!! But im away from 9 to 6pm so I try to make up for that. I get a friend to take him out at lunchtime to break up the day, I would love to leave him in puppy day care. But don't know of any around where I live!
Will try taking the water off him earlier and leaving him whining until he gets more restless so I know it's for a pee rather than attention... I just hate to hear him whine, he's in the crate right. Now doin it, sounds like he is being murdered!! :-(
Sounds like he's giving it his all, lol. It will stop, once he's hit his peak he will give up. It's like a child throwing a tantrum to get what they want, they'll keep on increasing the intensity until you give in. And once they learn your limit, they'll keep reaching that top intensity because they know it works. But if you hang in there, no matter what he does, the only option left is to settle down because he's not going to be given attention. It's with anything too, dogs do what works and will try any option and push every button with ever increasing intensity. You can do it!!
 

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When you do take him out at night, slip a leash on him, carry him to the grass, give him ONE minute to go, then pick him up and put him back in the crate. No talking, no treats, no playtime, no water, no toys, no walk. NO FUN. If you are doing anything other than that, then it's even more of a reward to him to whine and carry on, because he's getting a party. I find this helps cut down the night time potty thing fast because they realize it's not much of a bonus to go out then. During the day, big difference, party and praise and so on. I think of night time potty breaks as 'one minute to not sleep in a wet bed'. Also you can start to spread out the time he does get out slowly - if for example he has just been out an hour before and wants out again, make him wait 15 minutes then do the one minute out thing and back. No more breaks after that for at least that hour and fifteen. And so on. A few nights later, it's an hour and a half and so on, and after a few weeks it should be him sleeping most of the night.

I did the same thing with the human babies, night feeds became 'boring' once they were a bit older and I made sure there was a difference between night and day. And the 'milk bar' became closed at set times and for longer each time till I wasn't insane from lack of sleep.
 

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It's normal. Even puppies that love their crates don't always want to be shut in, when they're not used to it. Plus, you've put off doing this for awhile, and just let him be in the kitchen at night, right? So, he's used to that, now you're changing things on him. It will take time. Good luck! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Thanks for the advise Wicket. It is working a treat, i have left him whining and not taken him out once during the night since, he has never had an accident in the crate so now I know it was just for attention. He is still whining but is improving so we will get there :)

Thanks everyone for the advise and words of wisdom.... we are getting there :)
 
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