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What do you think of crate training? I found this article - crate training a dog. Does it make sense?

I'm a new dog owner so I'm not sure what to do. Crate training seems cruel :(. Does anyone have any experience with this? Does the dog benefit from it in anyway? Are there other options to both keep my house and the dog safe? I want a happy dog...

I own a parrot and they just eat crates - and everything else they can get their beak on :)!
 

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I can tell you I was always against crate training only because I myself am extremely claustrophobic. However, no matter what MY problems are, as long as it is done right, crate training seems to be the way to go. Emphasis on the "done right" part, because I've read too many horror stories of people using the crates for punishment. :( It's even gotten to the point where I am about to get a crate for my puppy, and if you knew of my claustrophobia, well, you'd understand how hard it is for me and how beneficial it can be to the dog. GOOD LUCK!!
 

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The primary purpose of the crate is a safe, comfortable sleeping place that keeps the pup out of wastebaskets, chemicals, chewing furniture, etc. when you don't have time to supervise.

The secondary benefit is that it helps with the potty training. Pups dislike soiling themselves and laying in thier own waste.

That's why crate training (food, games and a sensible potty schedule) are key elements for success.
 

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We crate trained both of our dogs. I was right there with you, thinking it was cruel, etc., but they actually like the den-like feel of a crate (some people who get the open wire crates often cover the top with a sheet to make a more cave-like feel).

The key is to introduce your dog to it a little bit at a time. Don't start off with an 8 hour stretch. Do it when you are at home...and ignore any whining, barking, etc. All that does is tell your dog that when he whines, he gets out. Be prepared to go without sleep for a couple of nights because he will probably whine, but don't give in (or give up!)

It got to the point that mine would go in it and sleep with the door open. When we had a rescue dog here for a couple of days, he got into the his crate to sleep when I was working in my office. Silly dog actually got into it while my husband and I were putting it together. He viewed it as a safe space in a new house.

Crate training is good if you work at it and as someone else said, don't use it as a punishment. You don't want your dog to associate it with something bad. It also will give you peace of mind while you are gone--you will know right where your pup is and that he isn't destroying anything or getting into anything that he shouldn't.
 

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The primary purpose of the crate is a safe, comfortable sleeping place that keeps the pup out of wastebaskets, chemicals, chewing furniture, etc. when you don't have time to supervise.

The secondary benefit is that it helps with the potty training. Pups dislike soiling themselves and laying in thier own waste.

That's why crate training (food, games and a sensible potty schedule) are key elements for success.

In addition to that, crate training has really saved me, because my girl wanted to eat everything!!! She actually had a bowl obstruction due to eating random stuff she shouldn't be eating. As well this trained her quicker in the house. only start by putting the dog in the crate for a short while...if it whimpers say "no", then gradually start increasing the time it's in the crate. If you teach them gradually..you'll notice that at night, your dog will go in the crate to go sleep ..they will feel it's there nest. I started very gradually with ours...and she did fantastic...I put her in there only at night time now..my mind is at ease she's not chewing things..It's GREAT!

Jessica.
 

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Kina loves her crate. We have it in our bedroom, that's where she sleeps at night. We leave the door open all day long to it and have noticed at times when we can't find her that she's actually in her crate with the door open taking a nap!!

I would recommend crate training to anyone who is getting a new dog. Whether it is a pup or an adult dog.

My older dog Sadie was a year and a half when I first got her. I was having a heck of a time with her in the beginning. I then hired a trainer and the first thing he said to me was get a crate for her. I like you thought it was cruel. I actually broke down when I first put her in her crate the first night. I thought I was the cruelest person out there for putting my dog who already had a horrible start to life in a cage at night.

Then I thought of what the trainer that I hired had told me. He said that the crate is like their "Den" a safe place for them. Just like you have your own room, the crate is like your dog's own room. And like Tooneydogs mentioned, dogs don't like soiling themselves where they sleep. After a few days, like Kina now, I use to find Sadie napping in her crate even when she didn't have to be in there.

Now I wouldn't do it any other way. We started crate training Kina right from the very first day.

Good luck to you.
 

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When I was young, I babysat for a family who had two young kids and a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. That was the first crate-trained dog I'd ever met. He loved his crate, and when the kids were being too noisy/energetic for him, he would go in there of his own volition and sleep. The parents had a rule that no one could bother the dog while he was in his safe space, and he obviously knew and loved that!

My papillon is the first crate-trained dog I've ever owned. I will never have a non-crate-trained dog again. She sleeps happily in there at night. She doesn't need to spend a lot of daytime in there, but it's great to know that if no one's home, she's safe in there and not out chewing anything she shouldn't! When we go on vacation, I take her crate and she sleeps in there in the hotel rooms, so she has a little piece of home with her and is not anxious about being in a new place. Most hotels will not allow a dog to be left alone in the room unless it's crated, so it's nice to know I can go out to dinner or a movie and she'll be safe in there -- something I couldn't do if she wasn't crate-trained. I haven't found a single drawback to crating her; she is a very happy little dog. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I can tell you I was always against crate training only because I myself am extremely claustrophobic. However, no matter what MY problems are, as long as it is done right, crate training seems to be the way to go. Emphasis on the "done right" part, because I've read too many horror stories of people using the crates for punishment. :( It's even gotten to the point where I am about to get a crate for my puppy, and if you knew of my claustrophobia, well, you'd understand how hard it is for me and how beneficial it can be to the dog. GOOD LUCK!!

Thanks. It just feels wrong to me.
 

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Both my dogs love their crate, they didn't at first obviously. For me, it's all about safety. When our Belle was young we didn't crate, we had one but we didn't use it. We came home one day and the remote control was all chewed up (among other things) and we couldn't find the batteries. Of course we were freaking out...that could be really bad for their throats and stomachs. We eventually found them under the couch...but we used the crate from then on out!!! Now that Belle is older, she will be left out of her crate more often.
 

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I understand where you are coming from. I was totally against crate training to. I thought it was cruel but then we had a dog that we couldn't housebreak was very rambuctious and just a lot to handle. I finally decided to crate train him and he was so much better. Now I always use a crate for a new dog.

We have one of those wire crates instead of the plastic ones that people use for travelling with their dogs because I really didn't like the plastic one's. We never used it for punishment we have only used it for when we are in bed at night and when we aren't home.

We have our one dog out of the crate and our other one is still in it because we have a cat and while I don't think she intends to hurt her, everytime she sees the cat she looks at it as playmate but she doesn't realize the cat is only 10lbs and she is 70lbs. But that's another story :)

I think so highly of crate training now that I have recommended it to both my parents and my brother and they found that it was much easier to potty train their dogs. Just don't use it for punishment because that will do more harm than good.

Tracy
 
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