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I'm thinking of keeping both of my dogs crated indoors. I'm not fond of this idea at all, because I'm gone for 8-9 hours a day for work and can't always come home at lunch to let them out. This has been the arrangement for Brutus the last week and a half (which thankfully is coming to a close) by necessity, but normally both dogs are outside.

I have a good sized yard. It's shaded. I have attached a lixit to the water spigot on the outside of the house and both dogs know how to use it. The lixit is shaded so it doesn't get too hot and has a water bowl underneath it to catch the cool water. The dogs can spend their time sleeping in the shade or sometimes Zero will play with the Vizla who lives on the other side of the southern fence. They run up and down the fence and bark at each other. I'm not sure what the appeal is, but it makes both of them happy. Brutus usually looks at them like they're nuts while they do this. I'd prefer to keep them outside. I have the luxury of working late if I have to and not coming home to surprises. Plus the dogs get to stretch out which they can't do in their crates. However, I'm kind of being forced to make a decision.

Everyone has a busybody on the block and I live next door to the one on my block. I very, very strongly suspect she is feeding Zero. He has been having diarrhea sporadically this last week or so while Brutus (who is never outside unattended now per doctor's orders) has been absolutely fine. What I am feeding them has not changed and their routine has not changed. I've caught the old lady to the east feeding my dog in the past and griped at her about it. She doesn't catch on apparently. She's called animal control on me in the past claiming that my dogs were neglected and animal control came over to find them doing just fine. Brutus complained that the officer failed to feed him when she came over. Yesterday I came home and the neighbor caught me in the front yard and asked me to return the bowl she tried to use to give Zero water. She said he, "looked really, really hot." Umm, if he was hot, he has an unlimited supply of cool water sitting in the shade lady. Anyway, he apparently tipped the bowl over and started dragging it around the yard playing with it so she wanted it back.

I can't get through to this lady to leave my freaking dogs alone. I've explained that they have water, but she doesn't get it. Yes, Brutus will tell you he's starving, but he's always starving. Yes Zero will eat what you try to feed him, because he thinks everyone is his friend. That doesn't mean they're neglected you busybody.

Anyway, any advice for keeping my guys crated all day long? I'm afraid they'll end up becoming nervous wrecks after a while. I don't think I would want to spend every day in a crate all day and it's not that fair to the dogs I don't think.
 

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What about X-Pens? This way, they can't get into anything, and aren't stuck inside a crate either.

You could build a kennel run, but I don't see any problem with leaving them indoors.. I definitely wouldn't leave them in the yard as it is now though, since someone's bothering them. Sounds like an accident waiting to happen.
 

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What about X-Pens? This way, they can't get into anything, and aren't stuck inside a crate either.

You could build a kennel run, but I don't see any problem with leaving them indoors.. I definitely wouldn't leave them in the yard as it is now though, since someone's bothering them. Sounds like an accident waiting to happen.
The X-pen isn't a bad idea. I might look into that. A kennel isn't a bad idea either though I'm afraid this stupid lady might come into my yard and feed the dogs through the kennel wire. I told my mom I was just going to electrify the fence. It's frustrating to have a big yard and you can't let the dogs enjoy it at all because stupid neighbors ruin things.
 

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I think I'd call some kind of authority (police?) and see if they could talk to the lady about leaving your dogs alone. That would be infuriating! I don't like the idea of crating your dogs, either, especially since they're not used to it.

I think I'd try one more time, nicely. Bring the lady into your yard and show her the water thing and everything. Try to convince her. But if she keeps it up, I'd really tear into her (not physically, of course) verbally. And if that didn't work, I'd call the police for harassment or something. I wouldn't make my dogs suffer because the old lady can't keep to herself.

Ugh. I'm sorry!
 

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Our dogs are indoor dogs. As puppies, they started out with crates at night in our bedroom and the laundry room for confinement during the day while we were at work. After housetraining, they got the run of the house in stages. Our last four dogs have been raised this way and we've only had one problem...a chewed wall....mice in the wall space.

IMO, the really important part of the whole process is ensuring that they can/will sleep while you're gone. If they're zonked out for 8 hours straight it really doesn't matter if they're crated or confined to a single room.
 

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Anyway, any advice for keeping my guys crated all day long? I'm afraid they'll end up becoming nervous wrecks after a while. I don't think I would want to spend every day in a crate all day and it's not that fair to the dogs I don't think.
Dogs wont become nervous wrecks from being in a crate while you're at work. To people this seems mean but it really is not. Have to remember they are dogs and think like dogs not people. It will be tough to train them at first but after a while they will get used to it and enjoy their crates. They will also learn to control their energy, when to use it and when to relax.

They will need to be taken out every day. Soon as you get home they need access to the backyard to take care of business. Then a walk or play time. Lots of attention will be required when you get home.
A walk in the morning before they go into the crate would be good as well.
 

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I'm not against crates but (as I understand it) the choice is 2 dogs outside together all day where they can move around socialize play whatever or both inside stuck in a box alone? Its really no comparison is it?

Don't let the lady ruin it for your dogs. If she gives them the odd treat its annoying but not the end of the world; lots of people have neighbors who they worry about poisoning the dogs or who phone in with noise complaints etc. Tell her the dogs are diabetic or something and on a special diet and give her a box of treats that you approve of. Try to keep her onside ...... even busybodies can be of use sometimes.

And you're the computer guy right? Couldn't you hook up a video cam aimed at your common fence, for your peace of mind?
 

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I'm surprised at the lack of nay-sayers on the crating for 8 hours question. I've been toying with the idea of working up to an 8 hour stretch in the crate, but haven't found the courage yet. I guess I still have the nagging feeling that crating for that long is cruel, even though I've been told it's not a thousand times. We already do everything chrisn6104 suggests (walk before, business immediately after coming home, then play/exercise, and lots of attention), so maybe we'll start working on the 8 hour thing - slowly.
 

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Hershey's crated during the day while I'm at work (I'm not working now, but that's a whole 'nother thread :rolleyes:). She's also crated at night. I tried the x-pen route but she climbed out of the 3-foot tall x-pen at 8w1d. :eek:

Her "crate" is what I call a two-room condo. She's a 10# pooXschnauzer in a crate built for a newfie. She's got her bed, food dishes, toys on one side and her litter box on the other, separated by a canvas shower curtain.

One work days, our schedule was 90 minutes at dog beach in the AM, some training/desensitization before work, breakfast kong and crate during the day, 30-60 minute walk after work, 15-30 minutes of training, crated for bed.

No neuroses here. Sure, she's fidgety and happy to see me when I get home but otherwise is a well-adjusted, on-her-way-to-being-well-trained pup. She was even asked to repeat puppy class free of charge as an example of what consistent training can produce.

Now that I've spent a few weeks with her 24/7 I clearly see that as long as she gets a good workout in the morning, she does pass out for the better part of the day. As Tooney said, if she's passed out, crate or carpet, it's all the same to her.
 

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I'm surprised at the lack of nay-sayers on the crating for 8 hours question.
I just think it 'is what it is'. Its not great, but it is reality for a lot of people. As long as the dog gets a lot of exercise and stimulation at other times, then it is OK. At the same time, its clearly not great either, and those who claim that the dog is just as happy in the crate as if he was alone outside (where he may sleep most of the day but is still free to move around a bit, smell this and that, etc) I think are stretching things a bit to make themselves feel better.

But for those who don't have an appropriate yard, that's life, you do the best you can for your dog. Definitely not "cruel".
 

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Is there anway you can maybe overlook that she is a busybody and talk to her. It seems she is just elderly with time on her hands and wants to have something to nurture... So, just ask her if she wouldn't mind keeping an eye on them and make sure they are ok during the day. Though this would probably mean you'd have to have endless conversations with her :eek: at least it would be win - win. I'm sure she'd never call animal control on you again, she'd have something to occupy her time (she sounds like an animal lover) and the dogs would be happy outside.
 

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Can you hire a dog walker for those days you can't come home? Crating all day is ok, but at the upper limit of how long you can leave them; having a dog walker builds in some leeway if and when you get hit with an emergency at work.

Building on Junior's idea, what if you gave the busybody a bag of acceptable treats, and tell her it's ok to give X amount of treats at certain times during the day? On the one hand, it legitimizes her, but it also mitigates some of the harm she's causing without causing trouble. That assumes, of course, that she can be trusted to follow orders, so to speak.

Of course, there's an additional risk that needs to be considered; from what you're describing, she sounds like she might be on her way to becoming a hoarder. The question is whether you think she might walk away with Zero one of these days.
 

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Soooooo....

Your saying you have neighbors who have nothing better to do than WORRY about your dogs...and your bothered by it??? Sounds like maybe your pride is getting in the way of logic.

I don't get it....why don't you just take advantage of these people to help your poor dogs get some human interaction? Why not just ask them to stop over to visit with your dog for an hour or two during the day? If your dogs getting diarrhea, supposedly from your neighbors, then let them know what's okay to feed your dog. Heck, ask them to feed your dog for you in the middle of the day..and to check for water and shade? Maybe you could rethink your approach with these thoughtful people, rather than see them as some kind of intruder in your life.

If you have a dog has a huge issue with always being hungry, a sure cure for that problem in a dog, is to burn up some energy. Why not ask them to play fetch with your dog on a certain day or time? Of course, you could start by having them over for some Iced Tea in the afternoon and ask them about something in your yard for advice..say a fence or a shrub..ect.

RANT::mad:
Honestly, if someone doesn't have time for a dog, they simply shouldn't own one. There are so many things wrong with crating your dog all day I don't even know where to begin, and if I have to explain all the obvious reasons, I sincerely don't think they would get it. If the 'correct' answer is to crate a dog all day....something is definitely wrong.

Don't let your conscience be salved by people telling you that they do it. You wouldn't have made this post with the long explanation if you weren't getting 'that feeling' that the idea wasn't quite right.

Dogs are social creatures, they need interaction during the waking hours, they need to MOVE their bodies the same as humans, in order to digest their food for one thing! I'm sorry, but my GUINEA PIGS live in larger habitats than people are now keeping their dogs in. I'm apalled that there are people who somehow think it's a harmless practice. Personally, I think it's the attitude that has led to puppy mill operations by backyard breeders. There was a day when a dog kennel was a REAL kennel, not a box.
 

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Dogs can get diarrhea for a variety of reasons...it's not necessarily your neighbor. If you think it's her, why not tell her that your dogs have developed severe allergies and absolutely can NOT have any treats or food other than the ones you are buying for them. Tell her that you know she likes to give treats, so here's a box of the 'vet approved' treats for your dogs if she'd like to give them one a day or per week or whatever. Yes, I know your neighbor should stay away from your dogs, but if you have a good set up for them outside why should that change for them?

Or....maybe you could install some hotwire along the top of the fence so the next time the busy body reaches over....ZAP!! LOL

Crating is OK and for some dogs, it's a good solution that works for them and their owners. However, I would prefer not to crate if at all possible. I also don't leave my dogs outside unattended b/c there is soooooo many things that can go wrong (people messing with the dogs, like in this situation). But, everyone has to figure out what works best for their life. There's not "one best/only" way to keep dogs and have them live long, happy lives.
 

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Is there anway you can maybe overlook that she is a busybody and talk to her. It seems she is just elderly with time on her hands and wants to have something to nurture... So, just ask her if she wouldn't mind keeping an eye on them and make sure they are ok during the day. Though this would probably mean you'd have to have endless conversations with her :eek: at least it would be win - win. I'm sure she'd never call animal control on you again, she'd have something to occupy her time (she sounds like an animal lover) and the dogs would be happy outside.
This sounds like a better plan than having a feud with her. Having a neighbor next door that you are fighting with constantly will make you and your dogs very unhappy. And she will without a doubt keep turning you in to animal control because she just doesn't understand. There are a lot of lonely people out there. That's jmo. Good luck.
 

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Wow. That certainly was quite the rant Lorethiel and it had some good points BUT, as Peppy has stated, there are cases where you do what you can with what you have to work with. I think maybe as well we are all feeling a bit protective of our friend, Hulk, he and Brutus have had a tough week.


Crating or at least restricting your dog's freedom in the house can be a lifesaver in case of emergency, is necessary in cases of severe separation anxiety etc. Many dogs I know that have anxiety or fear issues actually PREFER their crates when they are feeling overwhelmed. Like any tool, they can be abused, but it is likely the regulars on a dog forum such as this do not crate their dogs for 12 hours a day, not walk them or give them any attention.

Hulk. I honestly agree with buttering up the busybody, using her natural nosiness to your advantage rather than it becoming confrontational. Yes, these people are total PITAs but believe me, keeping them on your good side can be important in the long run. I wouldn't be inviting her over as Junior suggested, busybodies in long chats are dangerous..lol. But the special cookie idea and THANKING her for caring about the dog's welfare will go a long way to getting HER trained..lol. Positive Reinforcement works on people too, win win.
 

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I have tried telling her in the past to simply leave the dogs alone and let them be. I may try the carrot again instead of the stick. Can't hurt. If only it was as easy to train humans.
 

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If only it was as easy to train humans.
I have been saying this for years....lol.

I feel for you in this situation. I think it might be better to try to resolve this with the "carrot", but I understand where you are coming from. You just want to be left alone in peace with your dogs and you have found a system that works for you and your dogs, and she is interfering. We used to have a neighbor who used to come over and work on our landscaping, pull weeds, plant things, etc. While it was very nice of her, it was very annoying at the same time. It's my yard and I liked it the way it was, and enjoyed working out there. Good luck!

Chris
 

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Soooooo....

Your saying you have neighbors who have nothing better to do than WORRY about your dogs...and your bothered by it??? Sounds like maybe your pride is getting in the way of logic.

I don't get it....why don't you just take advantage of these people to help your poor dogs get some human interaction? Why not just ask them to stop over to visit with your dog for an hour or two during the day? If your dogs getting diarrhea, supposedly from your neighbors, then let them know what's okay to feed your dog. Heck, ask them to feed your dog for you in the middle of the day..and to check for water and shade? Maybe you could rethink your approach with these thoughtful people, rather than see them as some kind of intruder in your life.

If you have a dog has a huge issue with always being hungry, a sure cure for that problem in a dog, is to burn up some energy. Why not ask them to play fetch with your dog on a certain day or time? Of course, you could start by having them over for some Iced Tea in the afternoon and ask them about something in your yard for advice..say a fence or a shrub..ect.

RANT::mad:
Honestly, if someone doesn't have time for a dog, they simply shouldn't own one. There are so many things wrong with crating your dog all day I don't even know where to begin, and if I have to explain all the obvious reasons, I sincerely don't think they would get it. If the 'correct' answer is to crate a dog all day....something is definitely wrong.

Don't let your conscience be salved by people telling you that they do it. You wouldn't have made this post with the long explanation if you weren't getting 'that feeling' that the idea wasn't quite right.

Dogs are social creatures, they need interaction during the waking hours, they need to MOVE their bodies the same as humans, in order to digest their food for one thing! I'm sorry, but my GUINEA PIGS live in larger habitats than people are now keeping their dogs in. I'm apalled that there are people who somehow think it's a harmless practice. Personally, I think it's the attitude that has led to puppy mill operations by backyard breeders. There was a day when a dog kennel was a REAL kennel, not a box.
Wow! thats a whole lot of judgment and assumption wrapped up into one post..:rolleyes:
 

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You may have said this already, but are your dogs reliable in the house, say, if you left them in the bedroom or some other room that has been dog proofed? Normally I would say since these are adult dogs, baby gating them in the kitchen would work, but I know there is the trash/counter thing....I'm a big fan of baby gates though.
 
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