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Hi Everyone,

I am new to the site and recently adopted Lucy, a cocker spaniel / poodle mix. She is 4 & 1-2 months old and we've been getting to know each other for about 6 weeks now. She's absolutely lovable and I couldn't be happier. We're still working out housetraining and biting kinks, but she now has all of her vaccines and I'm looking into training schools. I've also been cage training her and she's been perfectly fine up until about a week ago. I was really sick one night and she was fussy, so I made the mistake of letting her sleep on my bed and now she wants nothing to do with her cage at night.

She incessantly barks and cries...and I know it's completely my fault. I've been patient and try to let her tire herself out, however she really won't stop and I live in a condo building and I'm concerned about disturbing neighors so eventually I give in (again I know that's a mistake).

Can you please provide advise as to how I can fix this? Do I just continue to be patient and let her bark/cry or should I reprimand her (and if yes, how?), comfort her (and if yes, how?)?

Please help, I don't want her to get in the habit of sleeping in my bed and would like to stop this ASAP.

Here's a pic of her taking a nap after a long walk :)

Thanks!
 

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Try putting a shirt that smells like you in her crate, maybe a warm hot water bottle thing in there. Unfortunately the only way to get her to stop sleeping in your bed and crying is to wait her out. You have to let her cry it out until she gives up. You cannot give in or else she will not stop crying. She only does it because it works, and when she realizes you're not going to let her out, she will stop. It should stop in a couple of days if you don't give in. If you're concerned about your neighbors just explain to them you're trying to train your new puppy and you apologize for the noise. If you explain your situation, neighbors tend to be more forgiving. She so cute, it's hard not to give in, lol :)
 

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Usually, it take about 3 days for the barking/whining to stop when crating. You could give her a stuffed frozen Kong to chew on in the crate. You might also cover the crate with a blanket to make it dark, but you have to watch to make sure the dog doesn't try to chew up the cover.
 

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First of all, where is the crate located at night? Is it in the room with you, or is it elsewhere? Dogs crave the warmth and feeling of sleeping with other 'pack members'. If the crate is in another room, but she enjoyed sleeping with you in your bed, she's not going to be happy with being so far away from you. If the crate isn't already in your room, I would move it into your room, close to your bed. Wicket mentioned putting a shirt with your scent on it in the crate as well, which is a great idea. If you have a ticking clock, you can wrap it in a blanket and stick it in the crate as well; it sometimes gives the illusion of a heart-beat, and can calm dogs down.

The biggest thing is not to give in to the whining. (Which I know you already know.) Dogs base almost all of their actions on 'what works' and 'what doesn't work'. If barking always makes the neighbors yell at them, the dog will keep barking, to get that reaction. Just like whining in the crate. You can also try slipping treats to your dog when she's being good and quiet in the crate, to teach her that the silence gets her rewards, but the whining only gets her ignored. :3

On looking for a trainer, make absolutely sure you are able to speak to the trainer before your classes begin. Unfortunately, most trainers you find at common places like Petco, Petsmart and the Humane Society are barely trainers, only trained for [maybe] a week or two, and then called 'certified'. Sometimes, they just read a book. There are some very, very good trainers out there, however, but you need to make sure they know what they're doing before you take their class. (For example, I know a trainer who works at a Petsmart in Nebraska who has been training for over 30 years.) Speak with them before class, bring in Lucy, and see what they have to offer you. :3 Good luck!
 
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