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Old May 22nd, 2014, 04:21 PM
ohsusieq ohsusieq is offline
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Crate Training Questions

Ok so we've been trying to crate train our beagle puppy, but we're both brand new to the process. After introducing him to the crate, we've mainly just been crating him while we're both at work (with breaks throughout the day) and then letting him be free/supervised in the apartment in the evening, and then crating at night. I feel like this is already SO MUCH time in the crate, but I have been given the advice that to help him warm up to the crate (he hates it) to crate him some while we're at home also, so that it doesn't just mean that mommy and daddy are "abandoning" him. Thoughts?

I came up with this schedule, but it adds up to almost 18 hours of crate time a day!

5:30 am Wake up and go out
5:45 am Free time (must watch at all times)
6:00 am Breakfast (pick up food when finished)
6:10 am Go out: Morning Walk
7:00 am Crate
10:10 am - Go out
10:20 am - Crate
12:00 pm Go out
12:05 pm Lunch (pick up food when finished)
12:15 pm Crate
3:30 pm Go out/playtime
4:00 pm Crate while Rob showers, etc.
4:20 pm Go out
4:30 pm Free time (must watch at all times)
5:15 pm Go out: Evening walk
6:00 pm Dinner (pick up food when finished)
6:15 pm Go out
6:20 pm Crate while we make/eat dinner
7:20 pm Free time (must watch at all times)
9:30 pm Go out and crate for bedtime
1:30 am Potty break
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Old May 22nd, 2014, 06:09 PM
Barkingdog Barkingdog is offline
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When your puppy is in the crate is that b/c no one is home ?
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Old May 22nd, 2014, 06:38 PM
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Loki Love Loki Love is offline
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He is spending an awful lot of time in the crate. Can you have someone pop over during the day to spend an hour or two with him? I know you're letting him out for little breaks during the day, but maybe it's just not enough.

What kind of stimulation does he have in his crate? Maybe feed his breakfast and lunch with a kong in his crate so he has something to do?

Where is the crate located? If it's in your bedroom, maybe you can forgo the crating at night and just have him in the room with you (and still potty breaks, of course)
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Old May 22nd, 2014, 06:59 PM
ohsusieq ohsusieq is offline
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I haven't actually adopted this schedule yet, I feel this is way too much crate time and I would like to completely move away from him sleeping in his crate and just have him crated when we're gone at work, until he learns not to chew up all the furniture. But yes from 8-4, with the exception of lunch, there is no one home.

This schedule I posted was in reaction to what people have told me about how he should be crated ("he should only sleep in his crate, he should be crated when you're gone, and he should spend some time in the crate when you're home too"). All the advice I've gotten has either been that, or "Why did you get a puppy when you work! You need to be able to tend to their needs 24/7!" with these elaborate crate/outside/inside schedules.

Just wanted to get some feedback from this forum. Personally the crate hurts my heart and I've never crated a dog before, but it's what everyone's been saying I just MUST do like there's never been another way to raise a puppy.
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Old May 22nd, 2014, 07:02 PM
ohsusieq ohsusieq is offline
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oh his crate situation - I give him bedding, a chew toy, a kong w/a treat inside, and my jammy shirt.
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Old May 22nd, 2014, 07:26 PM
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Loki Love Loki Love is offline
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I do believe in crate training - but too much is going to have the opposite affect that you're looking for

If you can keep him out of the crate at bedtime (some people have their puppies sleep with them, or just on their bed in their room with the door closed) that would free up some of that crate time.

What about a dog walker or doggy daycare? Even if it's just a couple times a week to break up some of the days for him?
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Old May 22nd, 2014, 07:52 PM
Barkingdog Barkingdog is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ohsusieq View Post
I haven't actually adopted this schedule yet, I feel this is way too much crate time and I would like to completely move away from him sleeping in his crate and just have him crated when we're gone at work, until he learns not to chew up all the furniture. But yes from 8-4, with the exception of lunch, there is no one home.

This schedule I posted was in reaction to what people have told me about how he should be crated ("he should only sleep in his crate, he should be crated when you're gone, and he should spend some time in the crate when you're home too"). All the advice I've gotten has either been that, or "Why did you get a puppy when you work! You need to be able to tend to their needs 24/7!" with these elaborate crate/outside/inside schedules.

Just wanted to get some feedback from this forum. Personally the crate hurts my heart and I've never crated a dog before, but it's what everyone's been saying I just MUST do like there's never been another way to raise a puppy.
I see no reason to have in him the crate when you're home unless you are taking a shower . When I had a puppy I never had her in a crate and she was fine . I made sure there was nothing around that she could chew
that could harm her like cords that where plugged in. A puppy need to be able to explore it environment so he can learn what it OK to get into and what not is OK to touch. . He'll never learn if he kept in a crate all day.
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Old May 22nd, 2014, 10:29 PM
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Dee-O-Gee Dee-O-Gee is offline
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Barkingdog has a good question and am curious too. We've crate trained all of our pups to adult hood and recently tucked the crate away as they're adult/seniors now.

Between work & school schedules, crating as a pup was the way to go. Everyone was busy during the days but at night, we never confined our pups to the crate. It was just a matter of keeping a close eye, improvising barricades, tag team puppy watching and free roam with an open door crate policy at night.

Is Dax's crate a metal cage type? If so, we draped old dark colored sheet over the top and covered the sides. They had a blanket/crate pillow and tons of toys while we were out but the dark sheet really helped make it their own little cave.

We used a baby gate a fair bit too. When I would be cooking dinner, our pup would come into the kitchen with the family either in the kitchen or hopping over the gate to get in and out.

Just a few tips and hope everything works out with your scheduling.
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Old May 23rd, 2014, 07:19 AM
ohsusieq ohsusieq is offline
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Originally Posted by Barkingdog View Post
I see no reason to have in him the crate when you're home unless you are taking a shower . When I had a puppy I never had her in a crate and she was fine . I made sure there was nothing around that she could chew
that could harm her like cords that where plugged in. A puppy need to be able to explore it environment so he can learn what it OK to get into and what not is OK to touch. . He'll never learn if he kept in a crate all day.
You know that's how I really feel too - how is he supposed to learn how to behave if he's tucked away? I should have known to just go with my gut (he's my "baby" after all) and not let all these Pro Craters confuse me.

As an update - last night after I got home, Dax and I had a ton of play time/outdoor exercise, and then he slept with me on the bed all night (with 2 potty breaks) and then I didn't put him back into the crate again until I left this morning and he went in MUCH easier - still a little whimper, but that was all. I think he will do much better with the crate if he's in there less.

Thank you all for your responses!
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Old May 23rd, 2014, 07:45 AM
Longblades Longblades is offline
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Sounds like you have your answer but I agree with the others who say, why is he crated while you are home? It is more work for you to watch him but people trained puppies for years before crates became popular.

Personally I am not a fan of crates. I will never again follow the adage that says to make it so small puppy can do no more than stand up, turn around and lie down. In the odd event pup has an accident or you are detained pup is stuck in her own pee, poop or puke. If a crate is needed then it's going to be as big as possible for me.

My Vet supposes that too long crate time in too small a crate might be responsible for the increase he sees in UTI, behavioural issues from being bored and joint issues from not enough movement whilst growing. I don't know of any research to confirm this but it seems reasonable.

We did use a crate but the door was open and it was in a pen for our first pup and our gated kitchen for the second. The odd time they had to bathroom they chose a spot as far from the crate as they could. Mostly we got them out in time to learn outside was the preferred place.

Some tips on potty training. Puppies do not develop complete control till they are about 6 months old. They will try to hold on, something every woman's Doctor has advised her not to do, that's what leads to UTI and loss of control in later life, same for dogs.

A little trick that might help is to place food and water dishes right on top of accident spots. After cleaning them with a biologic that removes the scent of pee or poop of course. They don't want to eat near their toilet. If you establish your whole kitchen floor as a possible eating spot pup will ususally not want to toilet there.

Please be very, very cautious of leaving bedding and toys in the crate when you are not there to supervise. Bored puppies chew and swallow, bingo, obstruction. They are fine with no bedding.

Can we see your puppy? Photo?
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Old May 23rd, 2014, 07:48 AM
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Marty11 Marty11 is offline
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If I could sleep at night with my dogs I would! But unfortunately I am not a good sleeper. One dog gets the futon in a room that she made her bed. The other is a newbie and is crated at night so I kept up her routine because although she is 5 she still gets into stuff..... In the past I used a doggie playpen and set the crate inside it with door open to use as a bed. And then fed them in there and left water and newspaper or puppy pads for accidents. Also left good quality toys such as the kong. I love and swear by the playpen, I have two because I needed a taller one cause although he was little he put his little toes in the holes and climbed out!!!! Crates builds security and confidence and in an emergency at the vet much easier for recovery. So definitely crate train, but less time as your pup gets older.

Your pup is adorable.
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Old May 23rd, 2014, 08:34 AM
ohsusieq ohsusieq is offline
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Here's a photo of little Dax, being a chew monster... he assembled several of his items into a "chew buffet" last night and then went to town.

I like the idea of the playpen instead of the crate for while we're at work, I think I'm going to pick one up this weekend. Then if he HAS to go potty he can, he can move around and play, but still be safe.

So what's the ideal playpen set up? Place his crate in there, some safe toys, water on one end (near his crate?) and then pee pads maybe on the other end?
And I'm guessing I should put it on our kitchen floor for easy clean up? The only thing is our kitchen isn't all that wide (typical apartment galley kitchen) and he doesn't spend much time in there.
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Old May 23rd, 2014, 09:47 AM
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Marty11 Marty11 is offline
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You can build the playpen square or rectangle or hexagon......whatever fits. They now apparently come with a top? I didn't use that but I did go from the plastic short one to the tall metal one because she could climb it. Crate inside with door open and comfy bedding. Good quality toys because cheap ones break apart and doggies can choke. Kong is great filled with peanut butter and frozen. Pee Pad or newspaper on one end, he will definitely use it. Water bowl and food dish on the other. Hope he isn't aggressive enough to rip up your floor......only seen this once with a boxer. Eventually you can just use the crate when he's around one or so. Peeing outside will still be first choice when you can and it will all come together. Done this with many dogs.
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Old May 23rd, 2014, 09:55 AM
Barkingdog Barkingdog is offline
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Originally Posted by ohsusieq View Post
You know that's how I really feel too - how is he supposed to learn how to behave if he's tucked away? I should have known to just go with my gut (he's my "baby" after all) and not let all these Pro Craters confuse me.

As an update - last night after I got home, Dax and I had a ton of play time/outdoor exercise, and then he slept with me on the bed all night (with 2 potty breaks) and then I didn't put him back into the crate again until I left this morning and he went in MUCH easier - still a little whimper, but that was all. I think he will do much better with the crate if he's in there less.

Thank you all for your responses!
Your puppy will sleep better when he is allowed to have more play time and he will too tried to get into trouble . And the exercise will help keep his bowel movements working better ..

Last edited by Barkingdog; May 23rd, 2014 at 10:41 AM.
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Old May 23rd, 2014, 10:11 AM
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Marty11 Marty11 is offline
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Puppy play dates are always awesome. Great way to use up energy.
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Old May 23rd, 2014, 10:17 AM
ohsusieq ohsusieq is offline
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Puppy play dates are always awesome. Great way to use up energy.
Luckily I do live in a very dog friendly apartment complex and almost every time we go out, there is opportunity for Dax to interact with other dogs and humans. Last night we spent about an hour playing with neighbor children and another little dog, it was so wonderful for him!
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