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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I just got a new puppy 8 days ago, on February 7th, 2009. I picked him up at our local Animal Services. His previous owner got him when she was with her boyfriend, when they broke up she moved back home with her mother. Her mother already had two dogs, and did not want a third. So they called Animal Services on this lovable guy. The card at animal services said he was Lab/Corgie, and 6-8 months old. After we had played with him and talked to the handlers there for an hour, we decided he was the one. While filling out paper work we found out that the lady at the front desk heard he was Bull Mastiff/Husky and about 4-5 months old. He was at the shelter for about a month and already neutered, chipped and with his first set of shots when we got him. After having him for a week and having taken him to the vet for his checkup, we think he is a Yellow Lab/Shepherd mix. :rolleyes: and about 4 and a half months old. As of wednesday he was 42.4lbs. The first day we had him, he had 3 eliminations in the house, which we promptly corrected and dragged him outside. The next morning he went out for his elimination, then came back in and crapped on the floor. This was my fault, should have turned him around outside, kept him out there longer.

After those four incidents, his house training has been great, goes to the back door about 75% of the time when he has to go, and as long as we watch him closely we can see when he has to go and bring him out. So that is going well.

The problems begin with crate training. His crate is a metal wire crate... 42x28x30. When we first brought him home and setup his crate with a blanket he went in it right away and laid down, no treats, nothing. When nighttime finally came, he went in with his kong (filled with treats and peanut butter) and we closed the door behind. We stayed downstairs for about 30 min to make sure he was calm, then went upstairs. He whimpered for about 5 min, and then was quiet the whole night. We thought great.. this dog is perfect, crate and housetrained in one day. We left his crate open all day the next day, and he didn't really go in on his own, and we didnt take the time to work with him on it, by putting treats in or anything. Reason we didn't do anything is cause of how great he was the night before. The second night, he again got his kong, and we went right upstairs. He barked and whined for 30 min or so then was quiet the rest of the night. The third night things took a turn, got his kong and he barked and whined for an hour or more, then woke us up at 4am barking and whining again. This time his crate was a mess, his blanket was all chewed up, etc.. so the vet said we should take it away if he's going to chew it and we did.


*EDIT: I forgot to add, after the third night, we've also put a radio beside the crate set fairly low, to hopefully help... ?

Since this night we've gotten him a Rollover bone to occupy his time in the crate at night as well as the special kong. But he's not getting any better, if anything he's getting worse. Today we came back after 3 hours and he had dragged the sheet that was on top of the cage in as well as my laptop's power cord, and part of a magazine that was on top of the sheet on top of the crate. He paws and chews at the cage whimpering and whining for 30-40 min at night when we put him in. Even if we're in sight. But there are glimmers of hope, if I sit next to the crate on my laptop during the day he'll whimper for a min or so then go to sleep.

I'm waiting for an obedience class to start, soon so I can take him, but I know that won't answer my crate woes. I'm willing to try anything, as I am very fearful that his separation anxiety with worsen. Please help with any advice that you can. I'm sure I've left out some detail, and I appologize, but I've tried not to.

Below is a picture of my new boy... Oakley.

 

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He's a beautiful puppy!! Wish I had more info about the crate. They do have good about them but...frankly in my opinion they are over rated and over used. I used the crate for over a month and all my pup ever did was bark and whine every night, leaving her in the kitchen with the room blocked off did wonders for her, no more whining or any fussing. Some dogs do like it as their den but I never heard of a den with metal bars and such a small space. i would go flippin crazy in crate:p
 

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He IS a beautiful puppy! Congratulations!

Today we came back after 3 hours and he had dragged the sheet that was on top of the cage in as well as my laptop's power cord, and part of a magazine that was on top of the sheet on top of the crate. He paws and chews at the cage whimpering and whining for 30-40 min at night when we put him in. Even if we're in sight. But there are glimmers of hope, if I sit next to the crate on my laptop during the day he'll whimper for a min or so then go to sleep.

Oops! I've learned not to keep things on top of the crate the hard way, too! Just ignore him, and keep your comings and goings very low key. He'll get used to the routine, and will learn to like his crate. Dogs, just like children, thrive on structure and routine.

I wouldn't feed him (even via the Kong) at night; that's the time for sleeping. Do you have the crate in your room next to your bed? If not, try placing it there, as puppies feel more secure when they're close to you. Soft music works for some dogs (mine like the smooth jazz station), some dogs may feel agitated, you'll just have to see how it goes. Sometimes it also helps to have a fan going.
 

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I would also suggest putting the crate in your bedroom next to your bed. This worked GREAT with my puppy, as I wouldn't be able to leave the room when I tried putting him to bed in a crate in a different room.

I had to give him my fingers to lick a few times before he realized I was right next to him the whole night.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Thanks for all the quick replys and compliments for my new boy... I have thought about putting the crate by our bed as he is definitely calmer about it when we're near by. (I.E. I've slept downstairs twice and both nights he was a lot better about it.)

I wouldn't feed him (even via the Kong) at night; that's the time for sleeping.
the way I dress up the kong it takes him maybe 5 or 10 min to finish it off... still a bad idea when going to bed?

The only fear I have of moving his crate up by our bed is... will I make his separation anxiety worse? and, when will I be able to move his crate back down to our living room area? I know every dog is different, just wanted some more views and experiences on this.
 

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How much time are you crating him ? He's in there all night and how many hours during the day? I agree with dakotajo, there aren't any dens with bars on them.
I have one though , its right next to my bed BUT I have never closed the door on him and it took a few days on his own but now when the lights go off he goes in there and goes to sleep on his own. You have been shutting the door on him since day 1 , how much time did you let him use it before you introduced the door ? If I go out during the day he either comes along ( which he just LOVES riding in the truck ) or he also likes to hang out in the garage ( which I doggy proofed). Once you close the crate door he doesn't like it which is ok , I wouldn't want to be stuck in one so I don't expect him to either. By stuck I mean the door shut . Take the door off and see if he relaxes better . Like Cesar says , individual results may vary :D
By the way , I love those ears !!
 

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IMO crates are wonderful tools and can help immensely when used correctly.

My issue with leaving my dogs gated in the kitchen is
1. I have more then one dog
2. they would destroy anything the could reach
3. House tanning would be a nightmare.

Things that made house training easier for me are.....putting the pup on an eating schedule and a potty schedule

Making sure the pup gets a good amount of exercise

if the pup is chewing things besides food in the crate then they come out....if the pup is dragging things in from around the crate..ether move the crate or move everything else

make sure the pup associates the crate w/good things...

Just realize that crate and house training may take some time (8 days is just a drop in the bucket)....also the puppy needs time to get used to your home as well....:)

good luck...I think you are doing well....and I think that obedience class will help tons:)
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
How much time are you crating him ? He's in there all night and how many hours during the day? I agree with dakotajo, there aren't any dens with bars on them.
I have one though , its right next to my bed BUT I have never closed the door on him and it took a few days on his own but now when the lights go off he goes in there and goes to sleep on his own. You have been shutting the door on him since day 1 , how much time did you let him use it before you introduced the door ? If I go out during the day he either comes along ( which he just LOVES riding in the truck ) or he also likes to hang out in the garage ( which I doggy proofed). Once you close the crate door he doesn't like it which is ok , I wouldn't want to be stuck in one so I don't expect him to either. By stuck I mean the door shut . Take the door off and see if he relaxes better . Like Cesar says , individual results may vary :D
By the way , I love those ears !!
He is usually only in there for the night... usually 11pm until 7am. I know a wire cage isn's a den, it's why we tried putting a sheet over it, but he ended that. We have tried showing him throughout the day that it is ok. 30-45 min at a time, while doing housework or whatever. He was able to go in and look and see for at least 8 hours before using the door. We introduced the door the first day as he had 3 accidents and we did not want more while sleeping, thought it would back track on house training. My girlfriend is home during the day while I am at work, that is why he is not crated. I don't want to have to use the crate forever, I just can't afford to have stuff destroyed, or a cat maimed. (My GF has 3 cats) They are still adjusting to eachother, the dog is fine with them, just gets a little too excited wanting to play.

It seems like you are with your dog nearly 24/7, and I just don't have that ability... 9 to 5er. However with the exception of one or two outings I am home the rest of the time. I usually walk him to the pet stores if I need anything and bring him in the car whenever he's allowed to be in wherever I'm going. He still has his baby teeth, so I am really trying to avoid my house being chewed to death.

As far as I can tell, the door isn't removable from this crate. However, it is always left wide open. (Except at night or when trying to get him used to it being closed)
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
IMO crates are wonderful tools and can help immensely when used correctly.

My issue with leaving my dogs gated in the kitchen is
1. I have more then one dog
2. they would destroy anything the could reach
3. House tanning would be a nightmare.

Things that made house training easier for me are.....putting the pup on an eating schedule and a potty schedule

Making sure the pup gets a good amount of exercise

if the pup is chewing things besides food in the crate then they come out....if the pup is dragging things in from around the crate..ether move the crate or move everything else

make sure the pup associates the crate w/good things...

Just realize that crate and house training may take some time (8 days is just a drop in the bucket)....also the puppy needs time to get used to your home as well....:)

good luck...I think you are doing well....and I think that obedience class will help tons:)
Thanks for the reassurance on the obedience class. We have him on a feeding schedule of twice a day around 7am and 7 pm. With full access to the water throughout the day when not in a crate. We are also recording every time he successfully eliminates outside, so we can work to ween him down to 7am, noon, and then a couple times once I'm home for the night. So that we don't get surprises while at work. As my gf won't be able to stay home with him forever.

For exercise we play with him as much as we have the energy for, as well as 2-3 walks a day of at least 20 min. We would make them longer, but it has decided to get cold again, was -30C with the windchill yesterday.

I was thinking that 8 days is not that long, but it feels like he's getting worse, and not better... unless he will continue to get worse and worse until finally something clicks in his brain and everything gets better? I hope? heh...

What's a rollover bone?
It's just a smoked bone from a pet company called Rollover (I believe they are only in Canada). It is a chunk of a cow's thigh bone, about 12" long, filled with 'marrow'. The marrow is a dog food treat mix that the company stuffed in there.
 

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Some times w/rescue dogs they don't show their "true colors" for a few days after they come home with you....it may not be that he is getting worse..but that his is just getting comfortable with you and your GF

I think consistency is key....just keep him on the schedule...give it some time

how often are you taking him out to go potty during the day?
 

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Your dog is a cutie. My suggestion is just to be patient and I think he may learn to love his crate. Also maybe during the day you can feed him n there. One of my previous dogs would let herself in her crate at night and when we were all getting coats on to go out. She would also go into her cage on her own if we had a lot of company and things got too loud or crazy for her. When we got the dog we have now, she took to the crate right away, really no training involved at all. I think her breeder used a crate previous to us getting her. She does however chew her blankets in there. So I only use very old ones or buy very cheap ones. Once she outgrows that chewing, I'll get her a really comfy dog bed for in there. Good luck with everything
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Some times w/rescue dogs they don't show their "true colors" for a few days after they come home with you....it may not be that he is getting worse..but that his is just getting comfortable with you and your GF

I think consistency is key....just keep him on the schedule...give it some time

how often are you taking him out to go potty during the day?
about 8-10 times... would be less is if he learned to do #1 and #2 on the same outing, instead of 15 min apart. lol
 

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I also have a rescue dog, and the OP said it takes time for them to show their true colors -- she is 100% correct. I was about to return mine after the first few days, it was an absolutel horror show!

BUT he came around, and now a little more than 2 weeks in, he is about 90% potty-trained (which is good for a 4-month old Dachshund I understand)!
 

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I also have a rescue dog, and the OP said it takes time for them to show their true colors -- she is 100% correct. I was about to return mine after the first few days, it was an absolutel horror show!

BUT he came around, and now a little more than 2 weeks in, he is about 90% potty-trained (which is good for a 4-month old Dachshund I understand)!
how is the crate training going though? still in your bedroom?
 

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Just a quick addition -- from what you describe, your dog does not have any separation anxiety, so don't worry about that. Sleeping in your room with you does not make your leaving during the day any harder than if he sleeps in a crate far away.

Point is, you are worrying about nothing. Put the crate in your room and see how it works.

SA is a very serious condition. If your dog is just sleeping when you are gone during the day, not eliminating all over the place when left alone, and you have no complaints from the neighbors, for now I would not assume SA.
 

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LOL ! I know that feeling . I have read all your posts since I replied this morning , you certainly seem to be trying hard to make this work, you come across as a very caring puppy owner and thats great . Your comment about about me and 24/7 is correct , for now. I'm a winters off worker. I have a very large garage that is fully puppy proofed for him to hang in when I work during the day and even though its cool right now sometimes he prefers it over inside a lot. Your comment below reminded me of the about the 1st 35 days I had with my dog , this is the honest truth too, I got up every hour to take him outside to make sure he knew where to pee/poop . It was the most tiring month I've ever had :D
It was awful too , -30 out there and he would go on his sniffing expeditions after and I waited out there patiently :rolleyes:
Point is , everything takes time but the payoff is good. My pups 4 months old and hasnt had a accident in the house in well over a month now . Persistence and patience .




about 8-10 times... would be less is if he learned to do #1 and #2 on the same outing, instead of 15 min apart. lol
 

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Just a quick addition -- from what you describe, your dog does not have any separation anxiety, so don't worry about that. Sleeping in your room with you does not make your leaving during the day any harder than if he sleeps in a crate far away.

Point is, you are worrying about nothing. Put the crate in your room and see how it works.

SA is a very serious condition. If your dog is just sleeping when you are gone during the day, not eliminating all over the place when left alone, and you have no complaints from the neighbors, for now I would not assume SA.
Whenever he is left alone, he is crated, but no, he does not eliminate in his crate. When we leave for the day or for a couple hours he barks and whines as we leave, when we get home or whenever he hears us he usually quiets down. Even at night. I'll try the crate in the bedroom tonight and see what happens. I'll post tomorrow morning how tonight goes. Until then, thanks everyone for their compliments, concerns and suggestions.
 

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the way I dress up the kong it takes him maybe 5 or 10 min to finish it off... still a bad idea when going to bed?
It's not bad or good, but simply a choice; not one I'd choose with a puppy, because what goes in must go out! LOL
 

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It's not bad or good, but simply a choice; not one I'd choose with a puppy, because what goes in must go out! LOL
I like the plastic type crates as it is more like a cave/den environment. I prefer crate not in bedroom as if traveling and I have to use crate I want puppy to tough it out in a seperate room rather than have the bedroom as a crutch. I want my pups to learn/tough it out when younger. I want the pup to be fixated on the crate not the placement of crate. Suppose I travel and stay at a motel and crate dog in a strange place, what's outside crate if done right is not that important to the older dog then. I also agree with poodleholic about puppy feeding in crate, I don't mind some enticement rewards when starting pups but not at night when in for longer time. None of this is written in stone, I just like to confuse the issue a bit.
 
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