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I have taken in a street puppy who I assume is about 2 months old, I have taken him to the vet to get his shots and his next shots are next week.

I have opted to crate train him and he is doing super well, he slept in his crate the very first night without a problem, he had an accident once but that was my fault for expanding the crate partition. I have done research and learned that puppies can go about 2-3 hours without having accidents depending on their age, however, I was wonder how long can I crate him during the day? As soon as I wake up, I take him out to do his business and he will relieve himself, I will feed and give water after he has done his business. Afterwards, I will play with him for around 30 mins and take him out again until he does his business. Once he has releived himself, I will put him up in his crate and take him out every 1-2 hours and put him back in. I will play with him in the evening and feed him again. My question is there a certain amount of time he can spend in his crate throughout the day?

Thanks in advance for any advice.
 

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There’s definitely an amount of time that’s more okay. However I always recommend to not crate your dog at all since it can be very harmful and have a great negative impact on the dog. Hence I advice you to skip the crate.
 

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Well, I'm not against crate training. Crating a puppy at night makes life easier on both you and the puppy. And there are other times it does that. However, I personally believe that a puppy that spends 8 hours in a crate at night should be spending as little time as possible in a crate during the day. If all you do is lock them up, why did you get one?
 

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I crated my puppy a LOT the first month or two I had him. My situation was pretty specific for me to do that. One example is that my puppy came with me to work. So on top of being in a crate 8 hours at night he was also crated 8 hrs during a work day in my office, with 30 minute breaks throughout the day to potty, socialize, and train.

But instead of telling you how many hours to crate your puppy, I will recommend that you observe your puppy's health and demeanor. If your puppy seems content in the crate and is getting plenty of socialization and enrichment when he is out, then what you are doing is likely fine. People who dislike crates usually have a personal aversion to the idea of caging a dog. And I will be the first to agree that excessive isolation or confinement is detrimental to a dog's mental and physical health. But it really is not about the number of hours. It is about the quality of a puppy's time inside a crate (or pen, or loose, or anywhere), and the quality of a puppy's time outside of the crate.
 

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It's also worth noting that little puppies can easily sleep 18 hours per day. They need it to grow.

My pup Jet at that age would actively resist sleeping as long as something even vaguely interesting was happening around the house, so he'd get overtired and frazzled and bitey, and then as soon as I'd put him in his crate he'd immediately flop over and conk out. He needed the rest but he wasn't able to make a good choice on his own, lol.
 

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"He needed the rest but he wasn't able to make a good choice on his own." Well said!

Yeah that was Brae as a puppy too. His quality of life was higher the more he was crated. Less stress, less frustration, calmer body language... And still very energetic, social, clear headed, and eager (but not frantic) when he was out of the crate. He was arguably crated the most out of his littermates (not that I know the exact amount his littermates were crated), but had great musculature and bone development per vet and chiropractor visits, multiple Xrays, and OFA eval when he was around 2yo. And actually grew up to be the largest in his litter much to my dismay.

But I want to be cautious here. So I am emphasizing that more crating is not necessarily better for all puppies out there. It was for mine, given my very specific living situation and my puppy's temperament.
 

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People who dislike crates usually have a personal aversion to the idea of caging a dog.
Sorry, can I ask what you mean by that? Of course my opinion is personal but it’s based off of dog’s behavior, needs and facts/studies on the subject. Then it’s also a cultural aspect since it’s illegal to crate your dog where I live and it’s viewed as animal cruelty.
 

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Could you share a study on the topic?
Unfortunately I haven’t saved all the studies I’ve read through out the years but these are some that I found on the subject for now.

The first two are written in swedish, hence I will post a small piece of the study translated to English. I don’t have time to personally translate it so the text is directly copied from google translate.

“Although studies of different ways of dealing with stress in dogs are sparse, research shows that animals that appear inactive under extreme conditions try to manage stress passively, rather than not being stressed. Other dogs can actively manage stress, i.e. be more outspoken (Horváth et al. 2007; Koolhaas et al., 2007). Inactivity can lead to misplaced (unwanted) behaviors, e.g. hyperactivity, outbursts in humans and other dogs and excessive barking (Kobelt et al., 2003). In a survey of 203 dog owners, Kobelt (2003) found a negative correlation between incorrectly placed behaviors and the size of the resting yard and walking frequency, respectively. An animal may try to adapt to a stimulus, e.g. inactivity, by performing an abnormal and repetitive behavior, without a pronounced purpose, a so-called stereotypy. Examples of stereotypes in dogs are excessive licking, chasing their own tail, spinning in circles, wandering back and forth and repeated jumps (Hubrecht et al., 1992; Protopopova & Wynne, 2014). A stimulus-poor environment that prevents the dog from performing its natural behavior is a common reason for stereotypes to develop (Schipper et al., 2008). In a bachelor's thesis, Olby (2017) conducted a survey with owners of 75 dogs in convalescence after orthopedic surgery, as the dog has a lower activity level and limited areas to move on, and found that both the incidence of stereotypical and misplaced behaviors increased.“ https://pub.epsilon.slu.se/16752/1/berg_l_et_al_200309.pdf


”Stress can be triggered if the dog's movement possibilities are limited, for example if it is tied up or stays in a kennel or cage for longer periods, but also if it is allowed to be in the garden without being allowed to go out and walk (6, 12). Likewise, if they are left alone too often and for too long, do not feel sufficient belonging to the family or do not have enough to do, they feel lonely and bored.
[...]
Learned helplessness means that the dog experiences that, whatever it does, it can not affect its situation. It gives up after a while and stops even trying, no matter how unpleasant and horrible the situation is (6, 8, 14). The stressful experience of completely lacking control over discomfort destroys the dog's ability to later learn that control may be possible, and despite the possibility of being able to handle the situation, the dog chooses to be exposed to the stressor. According to Jensen P. (1996), a dog like this is very stressed (8). The dog then shows symptoms such as impaired initiative, lack of spontaneous activity, apathy, difficulty learning that it is profitable to fight, reduced aggression, lack of appetite, weight loss, hyposexuality, decreased social behavior and poorer immune system. Situations that can contribute to the dog learning helplessness are if it is subjected to one or more shocks, or if it is trapped in a cage, resting yard or is chained or tied up for longer than short periods. Even abuse or harsh and authoritarian upbringing and training, many bans and few permits can lead to it, as well as bullying or prolonged pain conditions (6)”
https://stud.epsilon.slu.se/10767/1/petersson_h_170913.pdf

Keeping Dogs In Kennels Can Literally Drive Them Crazy

https://repository.up.ac.za/bitstream/handle/2263/43747/Sonntag_Key_2014.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y

https://www.peta.org/issues/animal-companion-issues/cruel-practices/crating/
 

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Sorry, can I ask what you mean by that? Of course my opinion is personal but it’s based off of dog’s behavior, needs and facts/studies on the subject. Then it’s also a cultural aspect since it’s illegal to crate your dog where I live and it’s viewed as animal cruelty.
Happy to clarify! What I meant was I have literally talked to dozens of people about crate training and they blatantly say something like 'I don't like the idea of putting my puppy in a cage'. But at the same time, the reason why I am talking to them is they are stressed about behaviors like 'I'm just trying to sit on the couch and my puppy is biting me' or 'my puppy runs all over the house and I don't even see where he pees'.

I don't think a crate is the be all end all of training. Baby gates, closing doors, tethering, drag lines, pens... There are so many good management options depending on the household and the puppy. But crates=bad is overly simplistic. I appreciate the sources that you listed (though I would not call PETA reputable). None of them claim that crating is harmful. They do claim that excessive confinement of many kinds (even listing tethering and keeping a dog in the yard too long) is detrimental to a dog's physical and mental health. That is a very reasonable consideration. However, I would not use these studies to discount crates entirely. It's totally fine that some countries ban crates. That said, I would wager that if you live in a country where no one crates their dogs, you don't see the positive outcomes of crating either - I spoke with a woman yesterday whose hoarding case dog sees his crate as his safe space. This week I worked with a bitch who gave birth in a large crate of her choosing, even though there was an open whelping box available. At work this week, my coworkers dogs were crated in the staff room, stretched out and snoozing or chewing on a Kong - with plenty of breaks to play with each other in a large field.

To be fair, I've seen horrible, abusive use of crates too. Dogs who grow up in their crate and have splayed feet, severe behavior issues, and other problems.
 

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I want to add on to two of the links provided.

Keeping Dogs In Kennels Can Literally Drive Them Crazy
This one references a study done on 30 police dogs that live in kennel situations. They equate well-trained for police work to ability to settle in kennel environments, which has no correlation. I think if you look at ANY dog in a kennel situation (I work in a shelter), you will get a very different picture. Also, having worked with police and detection dogs, I can agree that they can go crazy... Because often times the training revolves entirely around the work, not on settling. I think any study done on police dogs living in a kennel environment does not give accurate perspectives on dogs that are crated in home settings. It's also interesting that the article references the Stafford shelter in Montana. I know that shelter personally and I even have videos they've sent me of dogs being kennel stressed. "Kennel stress" is a term I use very frequently and it is a very real thing. But again, this is referencing dozens of dogs housed in a wall-to-wall kennel environment. I would not use this to reference dogs who are crated in a home setting.

Crating Dogs | PETA
PETA is an extreme activist organization. A lot of what is said in this link is extremely one sided or flat out wrong. Unrelated to crate training, but this article shows that PETA euthanized 90% of their animals in a Virginia shelter in 2014: https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/religion/at-petas-shelter-most-animals-are-put-down-peta-calls-them-mercy-killings/2015/03/12/e84e9af2-c8fa-11e4-bea5-b893e7ac3fb3_story.html Their intake was around 3000 animals. They blame this number on the number of unwanted pets, no-kill shelters turning pets away.

But this municipal shelter (ie, they do not turn pets away and intake all surrenders) in the same state, 3 hours away, has an annual intake of about 4000-5000 animals, has had a 90% or higher live release rate since 2013.

Just showing that PETA is far from reputable, in the sheltering world or in the training world.

Here is a far more reputable source by the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior: Housetraining Tips - AVSAB
The article is on housetraining, but they speak fairly on the use of a crate as well. It is hard to find a position statement on crating among American organizations because it is unanimously accepted that a crate is a great tool when used correctly.
 
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What I meant was I have literally talked to dozens of people about crate training and they blatantly say something like 'I don't like the idea of putting my puppy in a cage'. But at the same time, the reason why I am talking to them is they are stressed about behaviors like 'I'm just trying to sit on the couch and my puppy is biting me' or 'my puppy runs all over the house and I don't even see where he pees'.
To be fair I understand that people don’t want to put their dog in a small cage just to prevent behaviors that bother us humans. And there are other ways to deal with these issues that are better for the dog. On the other hand I’ve talked to dozen of owners that need help with their dog that shows clear signs of distress, under-stimulation, discomfort and separation anxiety, meanwhile they’re crating their dogs for hours each day and stand by that method.

None of them claim that crating is harmful. They do claim that excessive confinement of many kinds (even listing tethering and keeping a dog in the yard too long) is detrimental to a dog's physical and mental health.
How is that not claiming that crating is harmful do you mean? I will say that these might not be the clearest studies. However I base most of my opinions on the science and facts of dogs, behaviors and needs more than from studies. And common sense that is to say.


That said, I would wager that if you live in a country where no one crates their dogs, you don't see the positive outcomes of crating either
On the other hand my experience is that people are so used to crating that they doesn’t even consider other solutions. Coming from a country where no one crates their dog I can reassure you that they’re not needed (in general). People are often so infatuated by crating that they don’t understand the harm it causes the dog and the way it confines the dog from their natural behavior. They don’t see the positive outcomes of not locking your dog up in a small cage. As well as the negative affects from doing so.

Please enlighten me on how crates are beneficial for the dog. The only reasons I’ve been told is to give the dog a quiet, safe place and to keep him safe from harming.

My answer to that is that you’re perfectly able to create a safe and quiet place for the dog without the need of locking him up. To keep the dog safe you can restrain him to a safe space, a space that’s not as small as the dog itself which won’t allow the dog to move around for hours. Keeping the dog in a crate is a danger it self since many dogs try to escape due to distress or panic which can cause great damage.

The fact is that I’ve never heard a good argument for crating that’s beneficial to the dog. I can’t seem to wrap my head around how it would benefit the dog to be locked up in a small cage. Generally speaking. I understand that it’s necessary in some situations like injury for example.

According to me it’s an easy and comfortable solution for us humans since it allows us to avoid responsibility to properly train and take care of the dog. My thought on this is that it’s beneficial and comfortable for the human and therefore also have become a popular method. To consider the negative effects for the dog would result in higher demands on us humans and therefore it’s not explored or exposed. It’s comfortable to believe in crate training and therefore it’s not questioned.

It’s easier to shut the dog in a crate where they can’t make no mess, than to properly take care of them and train them.
 

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I want to add on to two of the links provided.

Keeping Dogs In Kennels Can Literally Drive Them Crazy
This one references a study done on 30 police dogs that live in kennel situations. They equate well-trained for police work to ability to settle in kennel environments, which has no correlation. I think if you look at ANY dog in a kennel situation (I work in a shelter), you will get a very different picture. Also, having worked with police and detection dogs, I can agree that they can go crazy... Because often times the training revolves entirely around the work, not on settling. I think any study done on police dogs living in a kennel environment does not give accurate perspectives on dogs that are crated in home settings. It's also interesting that the article references the Stafford shelter in Montana. I know that shelter personally and I even have videos they've sent me of dogs being kennel stressed. "Kennel stress" is a term I use very frequently and it is a very real thing. But again, this is referencing dozens of dogs housed in a wall-to-wall kennel environment. I would not use this to reference dogs who are crated in a home setting.
On the other hand these dogs are provided with a lot of stimulation, activity and exercise when not kenneled. A part from the general dog in america. They’re also kept in kennels which still allow them to move around normally unlike crates that really confines the dog in its position. I understand the issue with lack of focus on settling down but apart from the general dog they’re at least provided with a lot of activity and exercise.

Crating Dogs | PETA
PETA is an extreme activist organization. A lot of what is said in this link is extremely one sided or flat out wrong.
What in this article is wrong do you mean? I disagree with peta on many subjects but on this subject I totally agree with them.


Unrelated to crate training, but this article shows that PETA euthanized 90% of their animals in a Virginia shelter in 2014: https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/religion/at-petas-shelter-most-animals-are-put-down-peta-calls-them-mercy-killings/2015/03/12/e84e9af2-c8fa-11e4-bea5-b893e7ac3fb3_story.html Their intake was around 3000 animals. They blame this number on the number of unwanted pets, no-kill shelters turning pets away.

But this municipal shelter (ie, they do not turn pets away and intake all surrenders) in the same state, 3 hours away, has an annual intake of about 4000-5000 animals, has had a 90% or higher live release rate since 2013.

Just showing that PETA is far from reputable, in the sheltering world or in the training world.
Yes this is very unrelated and irrelevant to crating so I don’t see the reason for bringing this up in this discussion.

A part from that it has nothing to do with crating a high adopt rate says absolutely nothing to me. It doesn’t take the dogs wellbeing or problems, rehoming, euthanasia after they’ve been adopted. A high number doesn’t alway mean it’s good. What’s important is the quality of the homes they’re adopted to. I can’t see how that would show that peta isn’t reputable.


Here is a far more reputable source by the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior: Housetraining Tips - AVSAB
The article is on housetraining, but they speak fairly on the use of a crate as well. It is hard to find a position statement on crating among American organizations because it is unanimously accepted that a crate is a great tool when used correctly.
Oh I get big warning flags from this source. Just by the fact that they claim that wolves are den animals.. This is in fact not true. The only time that wolves uses dens are when having puppies. So that is not a reputable source and contributes to misinformation. This article will debunk that myth Are Dogs Really Den Animals?

I disagree with them being okay with crating since I think it leads to reduced quality of life for the dog as a result of keeping it convenient for us humans, regardless if it’s properly introduced. And the “acceptance” could easily just be learned helplessness.
 

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I think the good of crating is it enables many people who couldn't otherwise to have dogs and get through the puppy stages without giving up and dumping the dog in a shelter or losing their temper and doing harm. It's also beneficial to a dog to be able to accept confinement for safety when traveling and as a necessity after medical treatment.

As someone who shows her dogs, it's necessary at dog shows unless you want to spend hours with your dog on a leash in environments where dogs are forbidden in restrooms and show cafes. IMO the day-on-a-leash is harder on the dog and everyone else (some of us really don't think your dog is as cute as you do and don't want it bugging us) than the dog spending that time safe and peaceful in their crate. And for that to be possible, the dog has to have learned to feel safe and at peace in a crate.
 

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I think the good of crating is it enables many people who couldn't otherwise to have dogs and get through the puppy stages without giving up and dumping the dog in a shelter or losing their temper and doing harm.
That’s my point. It’s a convenient and comfortable solution for the human that allows us to escape responsibility to properly train and care for the dog. In my opinion those people aren’t qualified to own dogs then.


It's also beneficial to a dog to be able to accept confinement for safety when traveling and as a necessity after medical treatment.
Yes, to train the dog to accept being in a crate is beneficial. However this doesn’t justify to daily lock up the dogs for hours. Training them accept being in a crate is not the same as regularly locking them in there for long period of times.

As someone who shows her dogs, it's necessary at dog shows unless you want to spend hours with your dog on a leash in environments where dogs are forbidden in restrooms and show cafes. IMO the day-on-a-leash is harder on the dog and everyone else (some of us really don't think your dog is as cute as you do and don't want it bugging us) than the dog spending that time safe and peaceful in their crate. And for that to be possible, the dog has to have learned to feel safe and at peace in a crate.
Yes I agree with this. Even though crates are illegal here, there are exceptions. You’re allowed to crate while transporting, if resting is recommend by the vet, when hunting, or during competitions. But even then you need to take the dog out every other hour.

There’s a difference between occasionally using a crate when needed, such as when transporting, competing, injury etc and to crate the dogs for hours every day.

What I’m talking about is the regular confinement of dogs in small cages. Not occasional use of crates when needed.
 

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That’s my point. It’s a convenient and comfortable solution for the human that allows us to escape responsibility to properly train and care for the dog. In my opinion those people aren’t qualified to own dogs then.
Sorry. You're basically saying, "Mine Is the One True Way," and I can't agree with that. Yes, people can overdo crate use. Yes it's possible to raise a puppy without a crate. But your attitude that anyone who doesn't do it your way should never have a dog is pretty arrogant. Let's euthanize millions more every year because so few people are good enough to have a dog? I can't prove it but I doubt your average crate-trained dog would rather be dead or spend its short life in a larger-than-a-crate kennel at a shelter.
 

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(Then it’s also a cultural aspect since it’s illegal to crate your dog where I live and it’s viewed as animal cruelty.)

Can I ask then, how do you keep a puppy safe?
We crate a puppy at night, so hopefully we can get some sleep and while we are gone to keep them safe... say from chewing cords or ticked off siblings.
I don't think it's possible for any human to be with a new pup 24/7.
Also, crating is good training for when they will be spending the day at vet or groomer.
Interested to hear how y'all get it done, thanks.
 

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Sorry. You're basically saying, "Mine Is the One True Way," and I can't agree with that. Yes, people can overdo crate use. Yes it's possible to raise a puppy without a crate. But your attitude that anyone who doesn't do it your way should never have a dog is pretty arrogant. Let's euthanize millions more every year because so few people are good enough to have a dog? I can't prove it but I doubt your average crate-trained dog would rather be dead or spend its short life in a larger-than-a-crate kennel at a shelter.
I find it to be an issue that crate training isn’t questioned in the aspect as it should be. Generally I’m against crating but I’m sure there are people that use crates in a more acceptable way or for necessary reasons and in those situations I’m prepared to agree with the use of crates. However, I’m against the daily lock up of dogs in small cages for long period of times.

I wouldn’t say that’s arrogant. I have my view on this method and my opinion is that it’s harmful to the dog. Hence, I don’t think a home where the dog will spend hours in a crate everyday is a suitable home for a dog. I’m sure you have your standpoints in dog care where you draw the line for suitable home/owners. Maybe you stand by the fact that a dog shouldn’t be beaten and therefore think that people who hit their dogs does not qualify as good dog owners? It’s the same thing, just a different opinion.

I will say that I don’t believe that people who crate their dogs consciously are mistreating their dogs. Just that they don’t know better and have been taught this way and since never questioned it. But regardless it’s an issue.

If we established harder demands on the dog owner in first place, as well as the breeder, it wouldn’t be as many dogs in shelters.

Then I also think that many owners could get rid of the crates without a problem. They just haven’t considered it to be an option. And if you can’t, then it might be time to look over the dogs well-being, if you’re so dependent on a crate to keep a dog.

If you need to compare the method of training with death to justify it, then it maybe isn’t such a good method. I’m not saying that all people who do crate are not qualified as dog owners, but that it might be time to look over and rethink how we keep our dogs. It’s really more about reconstructing the view of how to keep dogs.
 

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Can I ask then, how do you keep a puppy safe?
We crate a puppy at night, so hopefully we can get some sleep and while we are gone to keep them safe... say from chewing cords or ticked off siblings.
I don't think it's possible for any human to be with a new pup 24/7.
Keep them with me in a puppy proof bedroom or put up a puppy pen. Then you puppy proof the house or at least in the areas where it will be. Preferably you’re able to supervise the puppy the majority of the day. When not, you could put the puppy in a safe place like a room or puppy pen. I’m not against restraining the dog to a certain space. My issue is the small size of a crate.


Also, crating is good training for when they will be spending the day at vet or groomer.
Interested to hear how y'all get it done, thanks.
I’ve responded to this prior. Training a dog to accept being in a crate is not the same as locking it up for hours daily. To train the dog to accept crates does not justify keeping the dog in a small cage everyday for hours.
 

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Oh, ok. My brain is using crate/pen the same, I guess.
We use a pen, plenty of space to move around.
Crates are used for transport only...or the one ornery old bat for feeding.
Thanks.
 
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