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I have a 7 month old puppy (rescue). He is a very good dog, no real problems. He is happy to sleep in his crate, he takes his meals in his crate. But, if I try to leave him in there for let’s say an hour, he cries the whole time (I videoed him). I have tried doing 10 minutes each hour for several days in a row, not giving him any special attention when I let him out and only letting him out if he is quiet. I put a kong with peanut butter in there and he doesn't touch it - he seem too upset to eat. We have run upto 3 miles together before going into the crate....nothing seems to help.

I really want for him to have a safe/comfortable place in the house when he is alone, but the crate problems don't seem to go away and I am not really sure why he needs to go in the crate at this point - he is 100% potty trained. I am also worried if he continues to have bad experiences in there, he will stop going in there at night.

Is it important to understand why he hates his crate during the day? I think he doesn't like to be alone. I have just ordered him a gate to try leaving him in the kitchen, however if the issue is not being alone, I could be setting him up for failure? That said, when we are home together in the house - he just does his own thing like I am not even there, hangs in the yard, on the couch. He is fine being left alone in the car too. Could it be the confined space of the crate he doesn't like? I also know when I have boarded him overnight, he stays in a 6' X 4' pen, and reportedly - he doesn't enjoy that either.

Any idea on pin pointing a cause so I can help him get comfortable at home alone? If he is sensitive to being left alone, any exercises or training that can help with this?

The only destructive behavior he has shown, has been towards the blankets in his crate!
 

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I'd worry about leaving him in the kitchen if he is anxious being left alone. He is going to figure out how to relieve his anxiety - which might be at the cost of your baseboards and cupboards (chewing). You say you tried the 10 minute interval thing, but what about smaller intervals? Have you tried leaving him in for 30 seconds at a time, while sitting in front of the crate, then opening? Slowly increase the time with you sitting there. You didn't mention where his crate is while you're doing the training. It's important that he gets crated while you are in the room, so he doesn't associate crate with you going away.

I'm sure there is more advice on this from others with rescue pups - I bet he has some special issues having been a rescue.
 

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If he really is that upset about 10 minutes in a crate, you may have to take baby steps, and try 30 seconds. Put him in, no fuss, walk outside for 30 seconds. Do that several times a day. After several days try increasing to 1-2 minutes. Basically, just start with very short bits of time, and gradually increase.

Some dogs are more anxious in small confined spaces alone, but are fine in larger spaces. Some are more anxious in larger spaces, but are fine in small places because it feels like a safe cocoon. Depends on the dog. You might try leaving him in the kitchen, and see how he does.

You could also try leaving him for a very short period of time with the whole house to himself. If he is potty trained, and doesn't destroy anything, he may be fine not being confined at all.

That might be asking too much from a 7 month old pup, though, as if they get bored, and are left with the whole house to roam, there are lots of things to get into, to make fun for themselves.

Also, 7 months old might be too young for running with you. You always want to make sure that you don't start running with a young pup, because their joints are not fully developed and you don't want to cause problems.
 

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Hi,

I had a question to piggy back on this one,

Butters is suddenly peeing on her bedding in her crate in the middle of the night, and only cries to wake me up after the fact - I want to make the crate comfortable and homey for her which is why i have the bedding inside, but I can't keep washing the bedding over and over again, as the smell is starting to stay permanent at this point and the blanket looks ragged.

How can I teach her to hold it in her crate with bedding?? I want her to enjoy being in the crate and comfortable, not just lying on a hard surface when she sleeps...The crate is just big enough for her to stretch out, though she can't fully stretch out 100% from head to toe. She can however, curl up, and there will still be space in the crate for a toy,bowl, etc. SO, depending on her position, is how much space she takes up in the crate. Or do I just need to let her sleep in it with no bedding until she's reliably only pottying outside?

She is proving hard to housebreak and doesn't enjoy confinement (i.e. if she really needs a nap, she'd rather sleep outside, than in her crate), even ex-pen confinement as she is a bit of a wild puppy and needs a lot of space to roam. My previous dog would vountarily go into his crate when he was getting tired at night, all I had to do was open the door for him, but she wouldn't go in voluntarily unless I threw a treat in there for her :(

Any ideas?
 

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Chubby, definitely take the blanket out. Some dogs will pee on a blanket and push it aside. Dogs are typically happy enough to sleep on the floor so don't worry too much about padding. You mention a dish - water isn't necessary overnight either and may not be helping her situation. How old is she? If she's still very young she might just still need a midnight potty break. My dog won't nap in his crate either and I still toss a treat in with him to get him in there at naptime - nothing wrong with that. Eventually our dogs may decide they enjoy the crate, but I am happy with Murphy just tolerating it when I need him to!
 

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chubby, how old is Butters?
Lots of dogs need a midnight potty break when they're young. Mine did. Harper needed it til he was about 10-11 weeks old, but Abby needed it til about 16-18 weeks, and even now, still, occasionally, and she's 2 years old. She's a tiny thing, though, and could never hold it as well as Harper.

If she can't hold it overnight, regardless of how old she is, it's better to take her out, than to allow her to have an accident in the crate. That just teaches her that the crate is an acceptable toilet, if necessary.

As for bedding, if you really wanted it in there, you could keep it, but just wake up during the night, (set your alarm since she doesn't tell you) and take her out. Make sure there's no play, no fuss, just all business, and back to bed.

If you wash the bedding with some enzymatic cleaner, in addition to laundry detergent, that will take care of the smell and stain. Or, just throw about 1/2 cup of white vinegar in with the laundry. If you are just using laundry detergent, the enzymes may remain, and that causes it to smell, AND, your dog will be able to smell it, and be attracted to it when she needs to go.
 

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Hi everyone,

Butters is almost 8 months old - 8 months next week,

That's why it's a bit concerning why she needs to pee at 3 in the morning every night -
 

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I know this goes against what almost all people say (ie, you should get a crate that is close to the dog's size with some extra wiggle room to turn, etc.), but we learned really fast with one of our rescued pups that did not calm him down. He ended up feeling safest and loving the crate size for a lab even though he is a miniature poodle mix. I know he was a breeder dog in a puppy mill and kept in a small crate, so that might have something to do with his hatred of small crates.

He would get really anxious being left alone, but we learned if we positioned a chair in front of a window where he could lay down and look out that he would be fine free roaming the house when we are gone (we have a tile floor though so there isn't too much of a worry about accidents). At first we left him alone for 10 minutes, then 20 minutes, etc. We would set out little treats around the floor at first so for the first few minutes he would hunt those down.

Getting a second dog is what actually almost completely fixed his anxiety of being left alone (I know this isn't an option for most). You just won't know what works for him until you try. Good luck!
 

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Hi, everyone.

I need some advice/help!

My boyfriend and I are new puppy owners (yay!). We adopted a 9-week old lab mix one week ago (her name is Pippa). She does very well with the crate-training at night if we are careful to wake her up twice to pee. If we don't wake her up at 12:30 am and 3:30 am, she will pee a little bit in her crate.

Worse than this, however, is the pooping in the crate. It is quite distressing. It happens only sometimes, and she makes a terrible mess of it and seems to be pretty upset.

We never have left her for more than 3 hours in the crate, we walk her/exercise her a ton in the evening and a considerable amount in the morning & lunchtime, we make sure she's both peed and pooped before going into the crate, have partitioned it off so it's not too big, etc: all the things we've been told work.

For a bit more context: the crate is in our bedroom at night (right next to our bed), and we move it to the kitchen during the day. It's a wire crate, which means she can see all around her. I am wondering if the pooping has something to do with anxiety? Or over-stimulation? Would not moving the crate, or perhaps covering it up, help to stop her from soiling it?

I thank anyone who can offer any morsel of advice and/or insight!
 

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I posted this somewhere else but can't find it.

Oliver is three months old. For the first weeks I had him, he'd be fine in his crate at night (next to my bed) from 10 PM - 5 AM. Now, however, he wakes up and whines every morning around 3 AM and I take him out.

I still haven't figured out what's changed. I didn't change his food or the times I feed him and give him water. (Last food at 6 PM, last water at 8 PM.)
 

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I don't play with him at 3 AM. I barely talk to him. I just open his crate, hook him to his lead, follow him down the deck steps into the yard, watch as he pees and (usually) poops and bring him right back into this crate. I am trying really hard not to encourage 3 AM wake up behavior.
 

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Butters is 8 months old and cries to get let out to pee at 3am or 5am or somewhere in between :( I feel your pain. And no one seems to know why :(
 

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For Oliver, I would say it's totally normal for him to need to go out at 3 am. I mean, really, if he GOES PEE AND POOP when you take him out at 3 am, then he NEEDS to go. If you don't take him out then, you could end up with pee and poop in the crate. He's still a baby.

For Butters, my advice is, well, pretty much the same. If she's peeing at night, then she needs that nighttime potty trip. Why? Because she needs it. I don't know what else to say. If she wakes up and whines to be let out, but doesn't end up peeing, then, I would say she doesn't NEED the trip and you need to ignore her. But, if she's actually peeing in the middle of the night she needs the trip out.

Again, why? Well, dogs are different. My two year old dog will still occasionally need a nighttime potty trip, 2, maybe 3 times a month, depending on her level of activity during the day. She's potty trained, doesn't have accidents, but, she can't always hold it, and needs a trip out. She tells us she needs it, so, we're ok with taking her out. The alternative is having a mess.
My other dog has a bladder of steel, could control it early on, can hold it for what seems like forever.

People are different, too, for that matter. My nieces tell me I have a bladder the size of a grain of salt because I always have to pee. No medical reason, just the way I am. My sis is totally the opposite, and can hold it forever. Just the way she is.
 
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