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Discussion Starter #1
We've had Emmett for 4 days now, and the worst thing he's done is barking in his crate and hoping up on furniture. The barking seems to be getting worse, and if there hasn't been any problems, then why stress him out?

I hate my carpet, and we were planning on replacing it this summer..... sooooo, yeah, I'm thinking we can ditch the crate.

We have an "open floor" plan, and the cat box is in the utility room. So there really isn't any place to close them in together...

if he has to be "pushed in" and he hasn't chewed anything up or messed in the house, then why crate him?
 

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there are no musts in training :) certainly crate training isnt a must

but it's also, ideally, not a punishment- so whether he's done anything 'bad' so far (and in such a short time) isn't very relevant. i feel like one of the best uses of the crate is helping to make sure that bad habits can't get started in the early days. this is why it's so popular in house training puppies, because their options become so limited they don't get the chance to make a mistake.

but there are a lot of ways to deal with these issues, and if you don't like the crate for whatever reason then don't use it :)
 

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No, it's not a must. There are countries where it's illegal to crate dogs while they're home alone. Also, people managed to raise puppies before the idea of crate training came along.

I'm a member of a European dog forum where many of the members are completely against crating, and they still manage to raise their puppies :)
 

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You definitely don't have to use a crate but some kind of containment system is very important so puppy understands boundaries. I really like Dr. Ian Dunbar's puppy playroom idea:http://www.dogstardaily.com/training/puppy-playroom-amp-doggy-den

It's NOT a good idea to give up on the crate because you don't care about the carpet you currently have. You'll be getting new carpet & you'll care about it staying clean & urine-free so you need to still do proper house training. Dogs don't generalize well and he won't understand why it was okay to pee on that old carpet but not this new carpet. Too confusing. Take a look at the stickies in this forum for advice on training, but you'll find that all of them recommend some kind of method of keeping the dog from free roaming the house. Baby gates or ex-pens can be used instead of doors to create a smaller, safe space for puppy.
 

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You definitely don't have to use a crate but some kind of containment system is very important so puppy understands boundaries. I really like Dr. Ian Dunbar's puppy playroom idea:http://www.dogstardaily.com/training/puppy-playroom-amp-doggy-den

It's NOT a good idea to give up on the crate because you don't care about the carpet you currently have. You'll be getting new carpet & you'll care about it staying clean & urine-free so you need to still do proper house training. Dogs don't generalize well and he won't understand why it was okay to pee on that old carpet but not this new carpet. Too confusing. Take a look at the stickies in this forum for advice on training, but you'll find that all of them recommend some kind of method of keeping the dog from free roaming the house. Baby gates or ex-pens can be used instead of doors to create a smaller, safe space for puppy.
I clicked that link and that is the exact setup my puppy has! And here I thought I was being all clever! His crate in his pen has a bed in it, he has a few toys, his water bowl, and his piddle pad. He's in there overnight and when we're not home or when we can't supervise him. Occasionally he trashes it during the day, but overnight he just goes to sleep in the crate. It's nice because when he's free roaming, if we don't take him out enough he'll just pee wherever he is. When he's in his pen he uses the piddle pad every time!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
He seems to be house trained, actually he might be a bit better at it than Zoe. She just whines until the silly human guesses what she wants. Emmett marches right up and barks directly at us.

The crate isn't intended as punishment or used that way. Just sleeping and while we're at work. The rest of the time he's out.

I'm going to try the "play area' idea!
 

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No it's not an absolute must, just 2 things to think about, 1. Do you like your home because a certain amount of destruction is possible, as Clint Eastwood said in "Dirty Harry" Do you feel Lucky today.
 

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Nothing is a must. Nothing.

However, here are some reasons to consider crate training even if you don't use it on a regular basis:

1.) transporting in vehicles. A car accident is awful with loose dogs.
2.) vet trips that turn into over-night stays.
3.) staying with relatives who have limited tolerance of your dogs.
4.) if you decide to compete and show dogs. They almost must be crated on show grounds.
5.) natural disasters/emergencies.
6.) in the event that you ever have two dogs who don't get along.
7.) if your dog ever gets hurt and needs to be on crate rest.

Everyone at my house is crate trained for those reasons. I also think that a dog that has learned to tolerate crating has a skillset of patience/tolerance that applies to other areas in training and in life. But that's just an opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
QUOTE=wvasko;1154768]No it's not an absolute must, just 2 things to think about, 1. Do you like your home because a certain amount of destruction is possible, as Clint Eastwood said in "Dirty Harry" Do you feel Lucky today.[/QUOTE]

Giving him run of the house is a goal, and when I say "run" I mean bedroom and basement doors are always shut. Trash has been kept in cabinets for years, the furniture is already chewed, and the carpet is being replaced with cork. All that's left is the drywall and wiring.

Nothing is a must. Nothing.

However, here are some reasons to consider crate training even if you don't use it on a regular basis:

1.) transporting in vehicles. A car accident is awful with loose dogs. - *sigh* you're right... it's just so much fun to watch them sniff the breeze. I've never been able to break myself of it.
2.) vet trips that turn into over-night stays. ok, you got me here
3.) staying with relatives who have limited tolerance of your dogs. valid thought
4.) if you decide to compete and show dogs. They almost must be crated on show grounds. even obedience or agility?
5.) natural disasters/emergencies. this one never crossed my mind
6.) in the event that you ever have two dogs who don't get along. that would really suck! that's why it took so long to find Emmett, looking for just the right match. :(
7.) if your dog ever gets hurt and needs to be on crate rest. ok, you got me a 110% on this one. I'd like to leave him out, but getting a friendly terms with the crate is now on the agenda.

Everyone at my house is crate trained for those reasons. I also think that a dog that has learned to tolerate crating has a skillset of patience/tolerance that applies to other areas in training and in life. But that's just an opinion.
Emmett would be the first dog, we've had as a couple, that is not crate trained. He seems to get very upset with it, so I was getting worried about somehow entrenching any separation anxiety that could be lurking under the surface. You make some fantastic points, so even if he's fine and dandy on his own, we're still going to work on it. Like you said, in the long view there are some very worthwhile reasons to crate train him!

about 6 years ago, we had to return a dog to a rescue because I didn't know how to manage his separation anxiety. there were other issues at play, but I still wish I could have done better... so I'm trying do my very best now.
 

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I am going to go against the grain here and tell you yes a crate is a must. For the safety of your dog use a crate. I know of to many dogs that have eaten something deadly while home alone. Even the roll of toilet paper can kill your dog. Make sure the crate is large enough for the dog to lie down but small enough if the dog pees it will have to lay in its pee. So your dog barks when you put him/her in the crate. Cover the crate with an old sheet and play some calming music for the dog. Ever been in a milking barn ever wonder why the farmer has a radio on 24/7 it calms the cows.
The biggest failure for crate use is the size of the crate. This is the most important part of crate training and is the most over looked.
A young pup must go potty every couple of hours. If you can’t come home to potty a young dog every couple hours then take them to puppy daycare of get them an outdoor kennel.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Emmett is a 5 year old, owner surrender, from a very poor county on the WV/OH border. Everyday he reveals a little bit more of his knowledge, but the crate was really upsetting for him. Somebody worked pretty hard with him, he seems to have about a 60% success rate with basic commands, that left me wondering if he could be out on his own.

When he was in the crate, he did damage the frame, and my understanding is that's a big red flag. Today I left him out with Zoey for about 30 minutes, just to see what he'd do. When I returned, all was well, even checked the door frames. So I decided to take a gamble and leave them out together the rest of the day, everything was peechy keen when hubby got home. We have an appointment with the vet on Saturday AM, will talk to them about possible early signs of SA. I read a book by John Bradshaw that mentioned that antidepressants could be helpful to dogs coming home from shelters, make for easier transitions... we'll also finish up shots (like i said, it's a poor county, so he still needs Rabies and HW test.) Next week, I'm going to check into so doggy day social visits, or maybe my Dad can even watch him some days...

I'm still intent on teaching the crating thing, I just don't want to push it too much, he was really REALLY upset! He has to be scared, in the matter of two weeks he was surrendered at the pound and then got adopted to a family far away from home. keeping my fingers crossed that he can keep this up
 

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I am going to go against the grain here and tell you yes a crate is a must. For the safety of your dog use a crate. I know of to many dogs that have eaten something deadly while home alone. Even the roll of toilet paper can kill your dog. Make sure the crate is large enough for the dog to lie down but small enough if the dog pees it will have to lay in its pee. So your dog barks when you put him/her in the crate. Cover the crate with an old sheet and play some calming music for the dog. Ever been in a milking barn ever wonder why the farmer has a radio on 24/7 it calms the cows.
The biggest failure for crate use is the size of the crate. This is the most important part of crate training and is the most over looked.
A young pup must go potty every couple of hours. If you can’t come home to potty a young dog every couple hours then take them to puppy daycare of get them an outdoor kennel.
You don't need a crate to keep puppy safe. You need a puppy safe room. My puppy hated the crate and I didn't force it on her. Instead, I created a safe place for her with which we were both comfortable.
 

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You don't need a crate to keep puppy safe. You need a puppy safe room. My puppy hated the crate and I didn't force it on her. Instead, I created a safe place for her with which we were both comfortable.
Only problem is you can't take the room to a Vet's office etc.
 

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Only problem is you can't take the room to a Vet's office etc.
True. Fortunately, my dog is small so she travels to the vet wearing a travel harness in the car & I don't set her down until she goes onto the exam table. I could definitely see that being an issue with a bigger dog. If she ever needed to be crated while at the vet's office b/c of illness, she has been in a crate before so it won't be totally unfamiliar and I'd imagine she'd be too sick to worry. I hope I don't ever have to find out.
 
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