I need some help for friends with new adult rescue dog and crating. - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 03-11-2008, 12:10 PM - Thread Starter
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He's roughly a year old, and is a basset/spaniel or basset/golden mix.

They've had him for just over a week now and he HATES the crate. It seems to be getting worse.

The first night, he cried for about 20 minutes then fell asleep and slept through the night. Now he's crying for an hour plus, then waking up in the night and starting the crying all over again. They tried confining him to a bathroom with his crate in the bathroom, but left open and he tore up the door.

When they crate him during the day (for small naps and for when they both have to be gone) he cries and they came back once to find that his mouth covered in blood and figured he either cut his gums or bit his tongue.

They're very careful to never acknowledge his crying and he's only let out when he's quiet. He eats in his crate and gets snacks and has toys.

He actually does really well without the crate (they've started letting him sleep outside it at night), but this is their first dog together and they want to start off right (both of them had untrained "yard dogs" growing up). I recommended crating as we use it for our pups, and it's a great training tool, but they both started in the crate as puppies.

Is it ok for them to give up on crate training him, especially if he's proving trustworthy in dog proofed parts of the house?

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#2 of 5 Old 03-11-2008, 02:31 PM
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Well if he is fine without a crate then i would not worry about it.
If he destroys the house then they are better off looking for a solution.
I have one crated and one not. Depends on the dog.

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#3 of 5 Old 03-11-2008, 02:52 PM
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Yes, it's all in what works for the individual dog. For most, crating is wonderful. But it's OK to bend the "rules"--the point is to make everybody happy and functional, not to use a crate for its own sake.

However, I would make sure they're making the crate a great place to be. Does it have a big thick soft bed? Are they using filled Kongs or knuckle bones in it? If you make the crate Disneyland, most dogs don't have any issue. If they're being asked to sleep on plastic or do nothing while in the crate, then of course you're going to have objections.
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#4 of 5 Old 03-12-2008, 09:43 AM
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We got our pup just before he turned a year old and he'd never been crate trained. He's got a lot of separation anxiety so it was a trial to find a good combo for us.

We found that filling his Kong with a combo of food, treats, and a little peanut butter went a long way. Once he realized that if we asked him to go to his crate he got a treat, he was all over it. It's also his safe place when we have kids over or he sees his hairbrush.

I think it took us almost a month to find a good compromise with our guy and for him to adjust from being destructive alone to being happy in his crate with his treats.

This is the first dog I've had that used a crate. Not every dog needs a crate. If their dog is not destructive and doesn't use the house as a bathroom, everyone may sleep/feel better leaving the crate open but not forcing the dog to remain inside.

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#5 of 5 Old 03-12-2008, 11:18 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the thoughts. I know he has some sort of bed, not sure what kind though. He doesn't have any Kongs yet, so I'll recommend that to them.

I think they're just not crating him anymore. I'll suggest leaving it up a while longer with the door open. Now they need to train him to not run out the front door when they leave! Not sure how to help them with that.

I feel so bad that I suggested crating to them and their dog actually injured himself in it.

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