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Old November 26th, 2009, 11:28 AM
prairiemystic's Avatar
prairiemystic prairiemystic is offline
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crate training

HI
I was wondering whether it is too late to crate train my 13 week old pup. I've had him for a little over 2 weeks. I don't know too much about his history because we found him, lost in a parking lot.

Does anyone have any tips or tricks to start with this?
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Old November 26th, 2009, 12:18 PM
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Never too late. It might be more difficult with an older dog, but your pup is still pretty young.

I'm sure there will be more people chiming in with advice later--I haven't crate-trained a pup for a long time so I'm a bit rusty. But you can start by making his crate a happy place. Toss a treat in it and when he goes in, praise him and reward with play. Leave the door open during the day and put in a comfy blanket and use it as a nap time place (we used to just wait till they fell asleep, then moved them to the blanket in the crate for them to finish).

We usually moved the crate into the bedroom for the night. That way, puppy doesn't feel isolated in a different part of the house.

A rule of thumb for how long a puppy can hold its bladder in a crate is the age in months plus one. So a 3-month-old may be able to go 4 hours, a 4-month-old might go 5 hours before having an accident. However, keep in mind that puppy bladders can mature at different rates, so you may have to adjust.

Let puppy outside to do it's job immediately after he gets up from a nap or is let out of the crate. When he goes outside, praise him and get happy. (This can be entertaining for the neighbors, too ) Let him out before he eats and immediately after he eats. Also immediately before you play inside and immediately after... You get the drift. Praise him when he goes outside.

If you catch him in the act of eliminating indoors, use a verbal reprimand (an emphatic no or a gutteral uh-uh should be enough), pick him up and take him outside to finish. Don't scold or punish--he's a baby and needs to learn what's proper. If he has an accident when you're not watching, just clean it up without the verbal reprimand--unless you catch him in the act, he won't know what you're upset about.

Get some enzymatic cleaner to clean up accidents--even if you can't smell urine after cleanup, unless you use a cleaner that is made specifically to deodorize urine, your puppy will still be able to smell it. He'll be more inclined to pee inside on that same spot if he can smell it.

And finally, patience, patience, patience and as much consistency as humanly possible will be your best aids in getting your little sweetie properly crate trained and housebroken.
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  #3  
Old November 26th, 2009, 12:21 PM
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of course not its never too late! And your pup is still very young. Crate training is awesome!

some tips from our rescue file:

1. A crate should never be used as punishment.
2. A puppy should never be confined to a crate for longer than 1 hour for each
month of age plus one (a 2 month old dog should never be in it’s crate for more
than 3 hours, a 3 month old dog never more than 4 hours) when you are not home.
3. The crate should only be big enough for the dog to stand up, turn around
and lie down – any bigger and the dog will use it for a rest room. If you
purchase a large crate that will fit your puppy when it is full grown, then you
should partition off part of it so that puppy doesn't have too much room
4. Move the crate from room to room with you and allow your new dog to sleep in the crate in your bedroom at night. This gives them a sense of security and they will settle down much more quickly knowing you are right there.

Furnishing Your Puppy's Crate
Toys and Treats: Place your puppy's favorite toys and dog treats at the far end opposite the door opening. These toys may include the "Kong" or a ball. Toys and balls should always be inedible and large enough to prevent their being swallowed. Any fragmented toys should be removed to prevent choking and internal obstruction. You may also place a sterilized marrowbone filled with cheese or dog treats in the crate.


Water: A small hamster-type water dispenser with ice water should be attached to the crate if your puppy is to be confined for more than two hours in the crate.

Bedding: Place a towel or blanket inside the crate to create a soft, comfortable bed for the puppy. If the puppy chews the towel, remove it to prevent the pup from swallowing or choking on the pieces. Although most puppies prefer lying on soft bedding, some may prefer to rest on a hard, flat surface, and may push the towel to one end of the crate to avoid it. If the puppy urinates on the towel, remove bedding until the pup no longer eliminates in the crate.

Location of Crate
Whenever possible, place the crate near or next to you when you are home. This will encourage the pup to go inside it without his feeling lonely or isolated when you go out. When you are not home, the crate should be placed in whatever room your family spends the most time in (living room).

Introducing the Crate to Your Dog
DO NOT SHOVE THE DOG IN THE CRATE YOU JUST BOUGHT AND WALK
OUT THE DOOR! In order that your puppy associate his/her kennel crate with comfort, security and enjoyment, please follow these guidelines:

1. Introduce the dog to the crate GRADUALLY! Start on a Friday night and finish
by Monday morning before you leave for work.
2. Occasionally throughout the day, drop small pieces of kibble or dog biscuits in the crate. While investigating his new crate, the pup will discover edible treasures, thereby reinforcing his positive associations with the crate. You will also feed him in the crate to create the same effect. If the dog hesitates, it often works to feed him in front of the crate, then right inside the doorway and then, finally, in the back of the crate.



3. In the beginning, praise and pet your pup when he enters the crate. Do not try to push, pull or force the puppy into the crate. At this early stage of introduction
only inducive methods are suggested. Use as treat to lure him into the crate, give
him another treat once he is in the crate. Do not close the door. Do this several
times throughout the day. If you try to do it only when you’re going to lock the
door, the puppy will get wise and not enter at all. Overnight exception: You may
need to place your pup in his crate and shut the door upon retiring. (In most cases, the crate should be placed next to your bed overnight.)

4. You may also play this enjoyable and educational game with your pup or dog:
without alerting your puppy, drop a small dog biscuit into the crate. Then call
your puppy and say to him, "Where's the biscuit? It's in your room." Using only a
friendly, encouraging voice, direct your pup toward his crate. When the puppy
discovers the treat, give enthusiastic praise. The biscuit will automatically serve
as a primary reward. Your pup should be free to leave its crate at all times during
this game. Later on, your puppy's toy or ball can be substituted for the treat.

5. It is advisable first to crate your pup for short periods of time while you are home with him. In fact, crate training is best accomplished while you are in the room with your dog. Getting him used to your absence from the room in which he is crated is a good first step. This prevents an association being made with the crate and you’re leaving him/her alone.

Important Reminders
1. Warm Weather: Do not crate a puppy or dog when temperatures reach an
uncomfortable level. This is especially true for the short-muzzled (Pugs, Pekes,
Boxers, Bulldogs, etc.) and the Arctic or thick- coated breeds (Malamutes,
Huskies, Akitas, Newfoundlands, etc.). Cold water should always be available to
puppies, especially during warm weather. [Never leave an unsupervised dog on a terrace, roof or inside a car during warm weather. Also, keep outdoor exercise
periods brief until the hot weather subsides.]

2. Be certain that your puppy has fully eliminated shortly before being crated. Be
sure that the crate you are using is not too large to discourage your pup from
eliminating in it. Rarely does a pup or dog eliminate in the crate if it is properly
sized and the dog is an appropriate age to be crated a given amount of time. If
your pup/dog continues to eliminate in the crate, the following may be the causes:
a. The pup is too young to have much control.
b. The pup has a poor or rich diet, or very large meals.
c. The pup did not eliminate prior to being confined.
d. The pup has worms.
e. The pup has gaseous or loose stools.
f. The pup drank large amounts of water prior to being crated.
g. The pup has been forced to eliminate in small confined areas prior to crate
training.
h. The pup/dog is suffering from a health condition or illness (i.e., bladder
infection, prostate problem, etc.)
i. The puppy or dog is experiencing severe separation anxiety when left
alone.



Accidents In The Crate
If your puppy messes in his crate while you are out, do not punish him upon your return. Wash out the crate using a pet odor neutralizer (such as Nature's Miracle). Do not use ammonia-based products, as their odor resembles urine and may draw your dog back to urinate in the same spot again.
Crating Duration Guidelines
Age of dog Time in crate
9-10 Weeks Approx. 30-60 minutes
11-14 Weeks Approx. 1-4hours
15-16 Weeks Approx. 4-6ours
17 + Weeks Approx. 6+ (8 hours maximum)

*NOTE: Except for overnight, neither puppies nor dogs should be crated for more than 8
hours at a time. (8 hours maximum!)

The Crate As Punishment
NEVER use the crate as a form of punishment or reprimand for your puppy or dog. This simply causes the dog to fear and resent the crate. If correctly introduced to his crate, your puppy should be happy to go into his crate at any time. You may however use the crate as a brief time-out for your puppy as a way of discouraging nipping or excessive rowdiness.

[NOTE: Sufficient daily exercise is important for healthy puppies and dogs. Regular daily walks should be offered as soon as a puppy is fully immunized. Backyard exercise is not enough!]

Children And The Crate
Do not allow children to handle your dog while he/she is in the crate. The crate is your dog's private sanctuary. His/her rights to privacy should always be respected.


When Not To Use A Crate
Do not crate your puppy or dog if:
• s/he is too young to have sufficient bladder or sphincter control.
• s/he has diarrhea. Diarrhea can be caused by: worms, illness, intestinal upsets
such as colitis, too much and/or the wrong kinds of food, quick changes in the
dogs diet, or stress, fear or anxiety.
• s/he is vomiting.
• you must leave him/her crated for more than the Crating Duration Guidelines
suggest.
• s/he has not eliminated shortly before being placed inside the crate. (See
Housetraining Guidelines for exceptions.)
• the temperature is excessively high.
• s/he has not had sufficient exercise, companionship and socialization.

Good luck!
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Old November 26th, 2009, 02:28 PM
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prairiemystic prairiemystic is offline
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Wow totally hip

thank you for all this great information. I'm going to start him on his crate training today for about an hour at a time.

Would it be wise to only let him have his kong (which he really likes) when he is in his crate or outside in his kennel?
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Old November 26th, 2009, 10:13 PM
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Dee-O-Gee Dee-O-Gee is offline
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You should let him have the kong whenever he wants it.

The other thing you can do to kick start the training is to throw the kong inside the crate but close the door leaving your little guy out of the crate looking in at his toy. He will more than likely want to go in and get it.

Once you open the door, let him go in and get the kong but let him also decide whether or not he wants to stay in or retrieve the kong and come out. In any event, big praises must follow when he steps in and or out.
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  #6  
Old November 26th, 2009, 10:15 PM
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totallyhip totallyhip is offline
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Sorry if that was overwhelming.....we send this to our adoptive families.

If he likes his kong it wouldn't hurt to put it inside the crate for the beginning stages. Once he is comfortable and trained in his crate then let him bring it out. Chewie is funny.....whenever we pull out the kong he instantly runs to his crate! We don't even have to call him anymore. We always say "Chewie Crate" but now we don't even need to! I would start feeding him in his crate too. Don't close the door just let him get used to it.

Good luck and let us know how it goes
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The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated. - Mohandas Gandhi -

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Old November 27th, 2009, 10:16 AM
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prairiemystic prairiemystic is offline
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I started feeding him in his crate last night and at first he was in and out really quick.
This morning i put a cup of food in there and he stayed long enough to enjoy his breakfast.
Its so cute to see this doggie tail sticking out of the door LOL
But so far he will only go in there if there is food, and he will only stay there long enough to eat, and he's out.
How long does it usually take to get to a point where he will sleep the night in his crate? The one I have is the perfect size for him, but I expect him to outgrow it within the next 6-8 weeks and I really don't want to buy the big one unless he's going to use it.

I was also wondering, how much peanut butter mix do you put in the kong? He seems to get it cleaned out pretty fast LOL
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Old November 27th, 2009, 10:55 AM
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Well that about sums it up Totallyhip. I say to always use a crate, so go ahead and buy another one. It's really good when having procedures at the vet, it's also good for time out, let's say if young kids are bothering him. It's great for night sleeping with door open. My manchester uses his when I leave the house (I'm his leader) he dissappears till mommy gets home. There isn't even a door on it anymore, it's just his den. Make it comfy, he'll use it. With the big coat he may not want too many blankies as the metal will cool him off. He'll let you know. Good luck, you have a very nice breed to work with, very people oriented and definately will keep you in shape. Lot's of walking outside the yard will stimulate him and keep him happy. Socialize him right away with children and bikes and traffic and all sorts of noises outside the home. It will make a confident and happy dog. Do supervise the children very carefully as they can be unpredictable with an animal.
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