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Discussion Starter #1
Hi, Our 10 week old puppy's "living area" is arranged according to Ian Dunbar's setup (crate and potty patch inside the exercise pen). The pup is fine with the crate as long as the crate door is opened. He has no issues sticking his head in to get at a Kong or step in/out as he pleases. However, the moment we close the crate door on him, he starts desperately whining/semi-barking and scratching the inside of the crate. We ignore him even though he goes on for the whole hour. His crate is a full size one (one that will fit him when he gets bigger) with a plastic box inside to make it smaller but with enough room for him to turn around. With or without the plastic box, he goes crazy when he is locked in. He has no issue with the crate when we are driving around with him in it. However, if we are home and we put him in the crate, he goes nuts. Each night, he sleeps outside of the crate within the exercise pen area. We want to crate him so that he can start to train himself to hold his pee/poo. Right now, he pees/poos whenever/whereever he wants to. We tried to keep an eagle eye on him, but, he had peed several times on the floor and the crate already.
 

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Walk him hourly. Get up in the middle of the night when you have to. This will keep him from messing in the house. A 10 week old puppy doesn't have bowel control yet.

Move the crate into your bedroom near your bed so that he can see you/hear you when he sleeps.

Try covering the crate with a towel to make the crate seem more den-like.
 

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We covered our Aidan's crate with a towel, put a flat bed pillow and a big stuffed toy (bone shaped) inside, and put a few puppy Milk Bones on the pillow every night. I sent all my teenagers to their rooms so that no light would reach him. I slept on the couch next to the crate every night. I verbally soothed him, and stuck my hand up to the crate so he could sniff it and be reassured.

I also did what lisaj1354 suggested -- I took him out every hour or two through the night. Aidan would wake me up; no need to set an alarm. :) It like to have killed me, but that lasted only about a month (until Aidan was 12 or 13 weeks old). After that, he was able to hold it for 4 hours.

After he was 3 months old, the whining at bedtime wound down a lot more quickly. Having all light extinguished is still very important, as is no human activity where he can hear it or see it. If anyone is awake and he knows it, no matter how tired he is, he wants out.
 

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It also helps to have fun things to do inside the crate. I got my dog used to the crate by throwing treats in there so he could go in to get them. Then I put his food bowl in there at mealtimes. At first, he would go in, take one bite, and come back out again. Rinse, repeat. Then, after awhile he would stay in long enough to eat his whole bowl. I believe it's Ian Dunbar who suggests that you get something extremely yummy and put it in the crate (so the puppy can see it) and then CLOSE THE DOOR with puppy outside. If the puppy starts whining to go in, then you wait for him to look at you (as though he's saying "please) then you let him in to get the tasty treat. My problem with this method is that my dog never would actually beg to go in no matter how delicious the treat inside was! Nevertheless, he got used to it and now goes in and stays all night with no problems. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
We take our pup out when he wakes up, when he drinks, and after he plays. I thought we were supposed to bring him out every 2 hours at night. But, our breeder is adamant that we DO NOT take him out at night. We are to leave him in his exercise pen with the potty patch...unfortunately, he likes to poo away from his patch.

Anyway, we tried Ian Dunbar's "stuff Kongs and make the pup beg to go into the crate" method. Unfortunately, my pup is not food motivated. He will walk away from the crate than beg to get in (Kong has liver in the small hole and kibbles in the Kong). If the crate door is opened, he will go in and eat from the Kong. But, once done, he will start his whining, barking, and scratching. I don't want him to associate bad feelings towards the crate. I also think he is not keen about his food. Sometimes, he eats only once or twice a day. We do give a treat (his kibble or tiny piece of liver) most of the time when he pees/poos. He will eat if I hand feed him (which I tried not to but feel guilty he is not eating). I am afraid to switch food on him since that is what the breeder uses.
 

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How long have you had him?

Most puppies will hate the crate at first. They are away from their littermates and mom and they are most likely alone for the first time in their lives. You need to crate train slowly.

Throw a treat in (I know you said he was not food motivated, but make it something REALLY good). Let him go in and get it. Do not close the door. He will come out. Repeat. Do this for a bit and then throw the treat in. When he goes in, shut the door for a second and let him out. Don't say anything when he comes out...and don't give him a treat when he comes out (remember...crate=yummy stuff).

In terms of him peeing in his crate/area, if you have puppy pads in there, you are sending mixed messages (IMO). If you don't want him to pee in there, don't have pee pads. I always thought pee pads confused the dog. If you want him to potty outside, make sure you throw a PARTY when he does. As in lots and lots of praise and high value treats (kibble is not a high value treat).

And the breeder isn't raising this dog--you are. A 10 week old puppy simply cannot hold it that long. Period.

And in terms of the eating. Stop hand feeding. I know it is hard, but he needs to learn that bowl down=time to eat. If he doesn't eat the food in 20 minutes, pick it up and don't feed again until next feeding time. He will not starve himself.

What are you feeding him, anyway?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
How long have you had him?
We got him at a day shy of 9 weeks old.

Throw a treat in (I know you said he was not food motivated, but make it something REALLY good).
He is currently on Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets - Sweet Potato & Chicken. (I don't blame him for not liking it. I am not fond of the smell myself.) I know it is BAD to hand feed him. But, I am worried that he will starve. He runs (fast) and walks with us. I don't see how he is getting enough food for the energy he expends.

Since he is so young, I want to introduce new food slowly. That is why I only have liver and Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Treats - Sweet Potato & Fish treats. Since liver is a filtering organ, I don't want to give too much to him...who knows what junk is still in the liver. What is considered a really good treat for a puppy?

In terms of him peeing in his crate/area, if you have puppy pads in there, you are sending mixed messages (IMO).
The potty patch is outside of the crate but in the exercise pen area. We are giving him his dinner early in hopes that he eliminates everything before bed time...success rate is 50/50. I have to say the first few days were pretty bad. He got his mess all over the place. We would spend 2+ hours each early morning sanitizing. He is much better now. He stopped crying at night only after 2 days. I think this is pretty remarkable. I think walking him helps.

a7dk, RoughCollie - when we had bedding in the crate, he pee'd in it when we crate him and at night. Once we took away the bedding, he stopped peeing in it even though he was pawing to get out of the crate.
 

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Ditch the crate. Use the exercise pen. You can potty train without it by timing the times he is let out and watching how much and what time water is given. Give just ice cubes when it is a couple hours before bed or when you know you will be gone a couple of hours and need him to hold it. Crates are not for every dog. For some it is a feeling of security and for others it is prison!
 

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Ditch the crate. Use the exercise pen. You can potty train without it by timing the times he is let out and watching how much and what time water is given. Give just ice cubes when it is a couple hours before bed or when you know you will be gone a couple of hours and need him to hold it. Crates are not for every dog. For some it is a feeling of security and for others it is prison!
A little early for this considering they have had the dog a week or so. Give it time.

You puppy will not starve himself. A healthy dog will not. Gracie was a picky puppy and she would often refuse food. A few rounds of putting it down, leaving it for 20 minutes and picking it back up again worked wonders. No ill effects. I know it goes againts your natural instinct of wanting to provide for the pup, but, in the long run, he needs to learn when food goes down, he eats.

Is there a reason he is on the LID? If it is a medical reason, finding treats is hard. If it isn't a medical reason, finding treats becomes easier.

In terms of treats, you can boils some chicken and use tiny pieces as a special treat. You can also use tiny cubes of cheese.

Wellness has good puppy treats as well. I also like Zukes moist training treats (they are small).

It is very important that you make sure he goes to the potty before bed (especially if you aren't letting him out at night). He is physically not able to hold it through the night. I know when Gracie was a puppy, I would get up every 4 hours to let her out...especially if she didn't poop the night before.

It is also important to pick up water a few hours before bed. Getting the puppy to go outside and then he drinks a ton of water before bed defeats the purpose. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Is there a reason he is on the LID? If it is a medical reason, finding treats is hard. If it isn't a medical reason, finding treats becomes easier.
The breeder initially had the litter on the Natural Balance Original Recipe. But, she felt the stool was too loose and switched over to LID. Also, Wheatens tend to have allergy issues.

It is very important that you make sure he goes to the potty before bed (especially if you aren't letting him out at night). He is physically not able to hold it through the night.
We haven't tried crating at night yet. We want to make sure he is OK staying in the crate before trying it for the night. Therefore, he has been lying down outside of the crate (within the exercise pen) to sleep. He has access to the potty patch...aiming is another matter.
 

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Regardless of whether you are crating him at night or not, you need to make sure he goes before bed.

I am still not a fan of potty patches/pads. If you want him to got outside, he needs to learn that now. I just think he will be confused. When is it okay to go inside/when should I go outside?

Since you don't have him on th ediet for a medical reason, you can try other treats. Kibble and treats that are the same flavor as kibble aren't always goingt o be great motivators.
 

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I am still not a fan of potty patches/pads. If you want him to got outside, he needs to learn that now. I just think he will be confused. When is it okay to go inside/when should I go outside?
We have been debating at home about this. I think it is confusing too. I want to take him out every few hours at night vs just enclosing him in the exercise pen. We'll try it out in the weekend and report back.
 

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We have been debating at home about this. I think it is confusing too. I want to take him out every few hours at night vs just enclosing him in the exercise pen. We'll try it out in the weekend and report back.
Some people have great success with them, others do not.

I do think taking him out every few hours and having a potty party when he goes will help. If you have to use the potty patches, just know that housetraining could take longer (not saying it will for sure, but it could.)

Have you posted pictures of this puppy yet? PIctures are a must around here...:)
 

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Having gone through the potty training phase with a Wheaten before, it can be frustrating. TheYogaChick is giving you great advice. Here is some successful advice I got when I was reaching out for help ~ 1. no food or treats after 4:30 pm. 2. no water after 5:30 pm. This worked very well for Samantha & me. :) She'd wake me up in the middle of the night, but just to let me know she messed in her crate. I spent many nights cleaning out her crate and giving her a bath until someone told me about the food & water timing. I will also stress the "throwing a party" reaction when your dog goes potty. Wheatens thrive on the attention and making you happy, so praise away! I found it helpful to use the same short phrase of "go potty" when I took her out. She remembered this phrase even when she got a little older and knew it meant get going and do her business...which she did. :) Hope this helps.
 

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I just went through this with my new Crested puppy. She cried non stop. She is much smaller so I was able to keep her in a plastic bin type deal by my bed and keep my hand in it at bed time. This really helped. Obviously with a bigger dog that would be hard. Now she sleeps in her crate in another room near my other dogs crate. She doesn't cry about the crate but for over 2 maybe even 3 weeks I got NO sleep. She cried and cried and cried and CRIED some more. When I left during the day I put on some music which made her quite down quicker. Treats are always good incentive as well. The suggestions that others have made are good ones. Although I don't recommend ditching the crate so soon. Give it some more time.

Good luck. That's a cute puppy you have there. Adorable name :)
 

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Discussion Starter #18
We are still trying. I cooked chicken in chicken broth and he really loves that. Also, he loves ice cubes. So, we have been throwing tiny pieces of chicken or a whole ice cube in the crate and have him go in and close the door for a while. He seems OK as long as we let him out within a few minutes. We feed him only in the crate. But, he sticks half his body out while eating. If we close the door for more than a few minutes, he goes wild and pees in the crate. The strange thing is he has no issues if we put him in the crate when we are driving him somewhere. He just stands or lies down sedately.
 

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Honestly, I've never met a puppy who instantly took to a crate (maybe because all the people I know have very human-oriented dogs, as is my Papillon). Cadence barked and shrieked inside his crate for 3 solid weeks. The ONLY time he could sleep in it was when I decided I'll let him sleep in my room. What I did was place my piano bench beside my bed, and put his wire crate on there so it was RIGHT beside my bed. I'd leave my fingers in the crate for him to lick until he fell asleep (somehow he felt better when I had my hand in the crate and he could tell that he wasn't alone). I did this for a couple of weeks. By the third week, he didn't need me to stick my hand into the crate anymore--he would whine for a bit when I put him in the crate, but when I turned off the lights and got into bed, he would soon quiet down and go to sleep.

The first week I woke up in the middle of the night (just once; he was 11 weeks when I brought him home) to bring him out to pee. After that he didn't seem to need it and slept through the night. I was doing the same thing as you too, baby gated the kitchen and he had his crate, food, and water in the area. But he was only ever baby gated when I wasn't home. I never closed the crate door except for at night. I lined the entire corners of the kitchen with potty pads (I lived in a highrise apartment so it wasn't feasible to bring him down every 1 hour; sometimes he wouldn't be able to hold it till the elevator even arrived at my floor) and he never missed. If your puppy is missing the potty pads I think it's because it might be too small. I started out with a LARGE area covered with potty pads, and then slowly cut back until they were all just in one corner.

If you're living in a house with a yard and are home most of the time, I'd just skip the potty pads all together. You don't need them. The only reason why I used them was because I was away at work 6-7 hours a day and I knew Cadence wouldn't be able to hold it that long in his crate.

Btw, I didn't bother doing the slowly increase the amount of time spent in the crate thing. I just went straight to dumping him in there and it was fine. This depends on your dog. Cadence is pretty adaptable, so he quickly got over his crate phobia (3 weeks.... still pretty quick imo). I spent a couple of days throwing treats in there so he associated the crate with good things, but after that in he went at night (beside my bed).

After the first 3 weeks he was completely OK with sleeping in his crate alone outside my room. Now he goes into his crate voluntarily. He'd rather sleep in there than on my bed, really! So just keep with it. He'll get used to the crate soon--it's really a lifesaver, don't ditch the crate. You will have to use it for him in the future (travelling, vet visits, etc.), and IMO it's very important for a dog to be crate trained. They're going to have to be placed in a small confined space at SOME time in their lives (even for something simple like a neuter surgery), and it's best that they don't freak out while they're in there.

All my future dogs will definitely be crate trained. I'm so glad I decided to crate train Cadence because it made our 12,000km journey from Canada to Malaysia SO much easier. He didn't make ANY fuss at all about being placed in a plastic crate for 24 hours.
 

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We crate trained our wheatie from the day we got her. The first few nights she whined, but not to bad. She's 8 month's old now and she loves her crate, when we go out we tell her to get in and reward her with a treat when she goes in, actually, she's in there before we get the treat. At night she gets in with no problem, if she gets a little cranky, we'll throw a treat or an ice cube in there. She did pee/poo in there at times but she done with now.
 
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