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 Re-assurance with crate training

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katski13
Newborn
Newborn
katski13

Female Join date : 2013-05-08
Location : Australia

Re-assurance with crate training Empty
PostSubject: Re-assurance with crate training   Re-assurance with crate training EmptyMon May 20, 2013 7:38 pm

Hi Guys,

Shadow is our first husky, but not our first dog. He is 10 weeks old and in general is doing really well.

Unfortunately I dont have the luxury of being at home all day with him so we are crate training him. He sleeps really well at night time in our bedroom next to the bed in a reasonably small crate. During the day he is in the lounge room, with the TV going in a bigger crate (107(L) x71(W) x76(H) cm) that gives him a bit more room to stretch out, have a water bowl and toys.
I have friends that come and let him out every 2-2.5 hrs for a run and a toilet break. Each time he goes in the crate he either gets a kong, a dried bone to gnaw on or at lunch time he gets him kibble in a treat ball. The first week it took him on average around 20 mins to settle and its now down till around 5-10 minutes (I know this because I have a web cam on him so I can watch see how he is going when I am at work)
he generally sleeps for an hour or 1.5hrs and then wakes up and generally from what I can tell plays for a bit and then goes back to sleep.
He still howls... scratches and carries on when he gets fed up with being in there... ( I really should provide my other animas with ear plugs the poor things)

In the last week I believe he has had some accidents in there.... even though he is being let out regulary. Should I be making the crate smaller with the puppy divider?

One of my friends that lets him out keeps saying he really doesnt like the crate, you should just put him outside he would be alot happier. She doesnt think its fair to a husky to crate him as they are energetic dogs that need to be able to run around. I believe I am doing the right thing.. for him and our house! But I am beginning to doubt myself... I need some assurance that I am not being cruel to him? If he hated it would he be sleeping at all in there would he? He would howl constantly wouldnt he? He howls when he hears the front door open.... but I think that would be normal as he is excited someone is home. My friend is a breeder of another breed and has always used crates but for some reason she believes Shadow isnt happy in his....

When he gets older what should I do? He cant stay in that size crate while I am at work can he? He would need more room wouldnt he? We are thinking about building a run for him in the backyard that he cant get out of.. that would have a concrete floor.... put in a sandpit and perhaps a small shell with water in it etc to keep him occupied, although I am worried if he howls he will upset the neighbours (at the moment as he is in the middle of the house you cant really hear him outside) Is crate training him now going to help with him being in a run when he gets older? Or do we start from scratch when he does get moved out there during the day. Id love to let him roam with the others but I dont think its safe for him, the house and even the other dogs/cat.

What do you all do during work hours with your huskies?

Thanks and sorry for the short novel!!



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ChillyBeach
Teenager
Teenager
ChillyBeach

Male Join date : 2013-04-28

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PostSubject: Re: Re-assurance with crate training   Re-assurance with crate training EmptyMon May 20, 2013 8:51 pm

Harry gets crated all day in the biggest crate they make. He can't be trusted to not destroy the house. Our older dog has free reign and pretty much sleeps on the couch all day. In general dogs are active in the morning and evening. Without outside stimulation, most will sleep or nap away the mid day (provided they are adequately exercised). This will be more the case as he gets older. I would avoid leaving him outside during the day. It's important to get him crate/potty trained and if you leave him outside, he will never learn to how "hold it". Essentially, if you want a good house dog, he needs to learn good house behaviors and the best way is for him to be in the house.

A few questions I have in regards to the soiling are:
1) Are they making sure he is peeing when he goes outside or are they just letting him out and assuming he did?
2) Instead of giving him free access to water all day, would they be able to give him some water after they let him out?
3) Is the crate cleaned and deodorized after it is soiled?
If yes, I would stick to stick to the same size crate and see if the frequency improves by not leaving water out all day.

I think some of the howling may be he get's bored while in the crate. For his lunches, I would freeze the kibble and water inside the kong toys to provide much longer stimulation (maybe even mashed up kibble soup). Certainly a dog run would provide more room and various out door stimulation, but I dont think it would stop the howling (at least at first). Huskies are smart enough to get into trouble so if you do leave him out on a run, dont be surprised if he invents ways to escape or gets tangled up and panics.
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katski13
Newborn
Newborn
katski13

Female Join date : 2013-05-08
Location : Australia

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PostSubject: Re: Re-assurance with crate training   Re-assurance with crate training EmptyMon May 20, 2013 10:11 pm

Thanks Chillybeach you have been very helpful!

I know my friends are watching to make sure he does go to the toilet.
I certainly will try taking the water away and only giving him access to it when he gets let outside.
I have a foam mat with a cover in the bottom of the crate, I have been putting puppy pads inside the cover on top of the foam so if he does go it shouldnt go through to the foam, however I am not confident that its not. The foam takes a good 3 days to dry in this cold weather.
What does everyone put in the bottom on their crates??

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MayaDog
Newborn
Newborn
MayaDog

Male Join date : 2013-05-18
Location : Chapel Hill, NC

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PostSubject: Re: Re-assurance with crate training   Re-assurance with crate training EmptyMon May 20, 2013 11:53 pm

I agree with Chillybeach, if he is being let out every 2.5hrs I would leave the water out of the crate to lessen the chance of any accidents. Once he gets older and better knows to hold it and you let him be in for longer, you will want to put the water back in.

Now most dogs do not initially like their crate and this is what your friends are likely seeing. Over time they get used to it and it will not bother them as much, but they will likely always be a bit excited when someone comes to let them out, which can make it look even more like they hate being in the crate. If he isn't freaking out resulting in constant accidents or hurting himself trying to get out of the crate, then I think your fine using the crate.

I always used an old towel or blanket in the bottom which can absorb any accidents and easily be tossed in the washer (and I wouldn't mind tossing them out once my girl was older and would have a crate bed to use (but Maya never adjusted and was able to run free in the house without getting into trouble so we stopped using the crate)
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katski13
Newborn
Newborn
katski13

Female Join date : 2013-05-08
Location : Australia

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PostSubject: Re: Re-assurance with crate training   Re-assurance with crate training EmptyWed May 22, 2013 9:39 pm

@MayaDog wrote:
I agree with Chillybeach, if he is being let out every 2.5hrs I would leave the water out of the crate to lessen the chance of any accidents. Once he gets older and better knows to hold it and you let him be in for longer, you will want to put the water back in.

Now most dogs do not initially like their crate and this is what your friends are likely seeing. Over time they get used to it and it will not bother them as much, but they will likely always be a bit excited when someone comes to let them out, which can make it look even more like they hate being in the crate. If he isn't freaking out resulting in constant accidents or hurting himself trying to get out of the crate, then I think your fine using the crate.

I always used an old towel or blanket in the bottom which can absorb any accidents and easily be tossed in the washer (and I wouldn't mind tossing them out once my girl was older and would have a crate bed to use (but Maya never adjusted and was able to run free in the house without getting into trouble so we stopped using the crate)

Hi MayaDog, Thanks for the reply. Today I have taken the water out of the crate and told my friend to offer him water whens he lets him out so we will see how that goes.

When I connect up on and off during the day to see what he is doing he is generally asleep or playing quietly. The only time he carries on is when he is first put in there and then close to the time he gets let out (he seems to know!) I dont believe he is stressed in there.

Last night I took him to his 2nd puppy preschool class and the teacher asked me how his toilet training was going, I told him it was going really well apart from the couple of accidents in the crate, he agreed with taking the water out, but he did ask why he wasnt allowed to roam in the backyard when I was there- to which I answered because he will destroy the yard, The teacher told me that crateing him with actually make his destructive behaviour worse in the long run. Does anyone agree with this????
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MayaDog
Newborn
Newborn
MayaDog

Male Join date : 2013-05-18
Location : Chapel Hill, NC

Re-assurance with crate training Empty
PostSubject: Re: Re-assurance with crate training   Re-assurance with crate training EmptyWed May 22, 2013 10:13 pm

Hi Kate, So I am no expert on crate training but I have never herd anything about crating making destructive behavior worse (well beyond stupid things like toss your dog in a crate for 22hrs a day and expect him to be a calm puppy when you let him out).

From my understanding, the reason we crate train our dogs is to give a controlled area for them that is safe for them (i.e. not able to destroy things or hurt themselves by eating things they shouldnt when your not able to watch them or are not home). When a dog learns to chew shoes for example unless you are able to catch him in the act, he will never understand what he is being punished for and thus does not learn not to chew on shoes. This goes for anything, so if you leave him out and he destroys something, its too ate to punish when you come home and find it 4hrs later. Now with crating, he never got the change to chew that shoe and learn it is fun to chew so he does not get a shoe chewing habit (or is much less likely to). I guess i'm just trying to say crating limits there ability to learn a bad habit when you are not there to stop them from learning it. Now idealy the best thing to do is be home 24/7 for the first few months leaving him free to explore and shaping his behavior to exactly what you want, this is not ideal for just about anyone and this is why we crate or have doggy rooms.

Now of course in 3months if one day you just say ok no more crate; he is still likely to find something he shouldn't, and potentially destroy it. given enough time, a well adjusted dog who had found everything he can get into and been corrected may be able to be let out of the crate without any issues later in their life (when will depend on the dog, sometimes 3months old will be fine, some dogs its years or never) But I am still very confused why a trainer said crating will make destruction worse.


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katski13
Newborn
Newborn
katski13

Female Join date : 2013-05-08
Location : Australia

Re-assurance with crate training Empty
PostSubject: Re: Re-assurance with crate training   Re-assurance with crate training EmptyWed May 22, 2013 10:38 pm

Hi MayaDog,

I am curious to know why he thinks that too, apparently we will go over how to deal with destructive behaviour next week, so ill post in here his thoughts for you incase your interested.

I feel much more relaxed knowing he cant hurt himself in the crate and that he is secure and cant escape.

Although I know when I get home from work that he will run around like a mad dog as he has lots of energy and he does get quite cheeky, but I would assume thats to be expected.

As I have been typing this I have just be informed that he has chewed his mat in his crate (comfy foam mat in sleeve) so thats been removed! What do you have in the bottom of your crate?

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MayaDog
Newborn
Newborn
MayaDog

Male Join date : 2013-05-18
Location : Chapel Hill, NC

Re-assurance with crate training Empty
PostSubject: Re: Re-assurance with crate training   Re-assurance with crate training EmptyWed May 22, 2013 10:53 pm

I had tried a nice fluffy crate bed, but Maya was bad with anxiety and always messed in the crate so that didn't work too well. I just used an old towel that could absorb any messes (better than her laying in it) and Maya would actually fold the towel over any poop and slide it under the divider to the other side of the crate. There was a short time when she started to chew the towels/blankets in the crate and she got the plastic bottom for a few days and stopped once I put them back in.

I think this type of thing depends on the dog though. Some dogs hate the hard plastic bottom and need some type of bedding, some love the hard bottom, and others will shred any type of bedding in the crate even if they do not like the hard bottom. My Vet was mad that I gave Maya bedding when left alone since technically they can shred and eat it, and potentially hurt themselves if choke or get a blockage from what they ate, but I think this is something that the owner knows best on what there dog is likely to do. ( if we kept our dogs away from everything that could potentially hurt them they would have a very sad life) I found some home time in the crate when i was somewhat busy to correct chewing of bedding worked great with Maya before she stopped using the crate.
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katski13
Newborn
Newborn
katski13

Female Join date : 2013-05-08
Location : Australia

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PostSubject: Re: Re-assurance with crate training   Re-assurance with crate training EmptyThu May 23, 2013 12:07 am

Thanks, I will see how he goes with the thinner mat that I have, that shouldnt be as tempting to him. I also have a towel in the crate as well although I am not too sure what purpose that serves but he seems to settle better when its in there (security towel perhaps)

Will be nice when he matures and can be trusted to roam the house (but I am getting the idea thats going to be quite a while away!)
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