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Panic - how will I stop our new puppy escaping through the cat flap??

(17 Posts)
amazonianwoman Sat 10-Oct-09 17:02:39

We're getting our puppy this week. I thought I was all prepared til I realised he could escape through the cat flap shock

Our cats will not tolerate being locked indoors AT ALL - tried recently after one of them had an operation. In fact they can get through the flap even if it is locked.

Obviously I'll be watching our pup like a hawk but I guess he could get out in a split second?

So do I

a) lock the cat flap and cross fingers that he isn't strong enough to force it open? And make the cats struggle through it every time they go out?

b) construct some sort of fence/pen immediately outside the back door to contain the puppy escapee? And if he gets out I think the flap is too high up from the outside for him to climb back in!

c) er, can't think of any other options??

Help please!

whomovedmychocolate Sat 10-Oct-09 19:28:03

Dog on bungee cord wink

No idea - sorry - except may I suggest you put a stairgate across the room before the catflap (ie if it's in the kitchen, put it across the kitchen doorway) - that way the cats can jump over and the puppy can't.

Lilyloooohhhh Sat 10-Oct-09 19:32:13

My sis dog no longer a puppy sits with his head out of the cat flap as he can no longer fit through grin
Sorry that isn't helpful , think my sis just had to watch him when he was small!
The fence outside sounds a good idea

moosemama Sat 10-Oct-09 19:53:44

Could you replace your cat flap with one that only allows your own cat in and out?

I'm sorry, I'm a dog person so I don't know which type would be the best buy, but there are quite a few out there at varying prices if you google 'electronic cat flap'.

We had a whippet/sheltie mix years ago and she could still get through my PILs cat flap when she was fully grown!

What breed of dog are you getting? If its not a small/tiny breed could you perhaps just put something in front of the catflap while you are in that room and keep him out of the room when you are not with him?

Its so exciting bringing a new pup home, you lucky thing, I am very jealous, but with 3 dcs and 3 dogs already, I fear it will be a looong time before I ever have another pup. smile

spugs Sun 11-Oct-09 10:15:18

My pups use the cat flap to go in and out to the toilet, it means we've had less accidents then we would have had over night. If your garden is not puppy proof then the pen outside is a good idea. As long as the cats can jump over it and the pup cant you'll be fine.

amazonianwoman Sun 11-Oct-09 12:55:31

Cheers all. He's here!!! It feels like bringing a new baby home then just sitting watching thinking "right, now what do we do?!"

Our catflap is already a magnetic one so only our cats can get back in, but anything can get out. I can't find any that restrict exit?

He's so diddy I'm worried about losing him inside never mind outside!

BrigitBigKnickers Sun 11-Oct-09 12:58:59

I think you can get a cat flap that is activated by something on the cats collar so only the cat can use it.

moosemama Sun 11-Oct-09 13:00:20

Oooh a diddy one. What breed? What are you goig to call him etc etc?

4 way magnetic cat flap here can be locked to 'in only' or 'out only'. smile

moosemama Sun 11-Oct-09 13:08:50

going not goig blush

amazonianwoman Sun 11-Oct-09 14:06:53

Max the miniature schnauzer smile

If I switch the catflap to "in only" then the cats can't get out. At least not without seriously forcing it. They're quite keen to escape an excited puppy atm!

fruitspooksbatsintheeaves Sun 11-Oct-09 14:17:24

I'm afraid whatever you do whether you lock it or not it won't work. Once they realise they can get out of it they just do. Our springer broke about 5 before he got too big to get out anymore.
The only way to stop them is not to let them get to it anymore. Put up a barrier so only the cats can get to it. As long as they aren't really elderly and can still jump! Or a piece of board with a cat sized hole in it. That has worked well for us to stop the dogs getting into the cat litter.
have fun!

moosemama Sun 11-Oct-09 15:04:16

Aw! Miniature Schnauzers are lovely. I am a sucker for a beardy dog, got two beardy weirdys myself.

Good luck with him and have lots of fun! smile

spugs Sun 11-Oct-09 18:50:38

Get some pics on your profile so we can awwww over him grin

amazonianwoman Sun 11-Oct-09 19:48:24

Will do tomorrow, just need to find the battery charger for the camera hmm

I'm taking him outside every hour and about 5-10 mins after he eats/drinks, but he wees when he gets back inside hmm I'm doing the right thing aren't I?? He hasn't pooed yet all day - is that normal?

He's been in his crate for about 20 mins (horrendous crying for the first 5-10 mins sad) I don't put any paper inside the crate do I?

This is harder than bringing home 1st baby. I haven't got a clue!!!

Blondeshavemorefun Mon 12-Oct-09 13:12:46

oh to have a small puppy - ours was the size of a horse at a few months old grin

either use a stairgate or try a cat flad that only allows cats with collars in or out

moosemama Mon 12-Oct-09 16:29:44

Sorry, didn't see your last post yesterday.

I would take him out every 15-20 mins to start with as you are more likely to catch him weeing and be able to reward him that way. I know its a pain, but its worth it and if you put the work in now it makes everything so much easier later on.

Once he has done a couple of wees in the garden and been rewarded for them he will start to understand what you want him to do and you can extend the amount of time between garden visits gradually.

Its very normal for dogs not to poo when they are in a new enviroment, even some adult dogs with 'withhold' when they aren't sure of somewhere. My old dog went 4 days without pooing when we took him on holiday at 6 months old! He'll go when he starts to relax.

Personally, I wouldn't put paper in the crate as he might see it as a signal that its ok to mess there, especially if the breeder used paper. I know some people will tell you that dogs won't mess their own beds, but I have had two bitches that were quite happy to do just that (one of whom still does it at the age of 11).

If he struggles to get the idea of where to wee, you can buy impregnated puppy pads from most pet shops. You just put them where he keeps having little accidents, the move them gradually closer and closer to the door and then outside to help him get the idea. This is the type of thing.

Remember to clean up any accidents using either a specific product for cleaning up after dogs (or if you don't have any, use a biological washing product) to make sure all traces are removed, other wise he will still be able to smell it even when you can't and will be more likely to go in the same place again.

I usually recommend Gwen Bailey's The Perfect Puppy as a good book for people with new puppies. I would have been happy to send you my copy, but I lent it to my old boss and never got it back. hmm

amazonianwoman Mon 12-Oct-09 20:36:54

Cheers moose. I've spent most of the day in the back garden hmm Managed 2 wees outside but probably 3-4 inside. 2 poos outside, 1 little one inside when DH was a bit busy at breakfast time (it was his turn on the rota grin)

I didn't put any paper in the crate and he slept all night last night from about 11pm til 6am without a peep - woo hoo!! I was awake most of the night listening hmm smile

I was sort of hoping I wouldn't have to do the puppy pad thing and just keep taking him outside, but he still thinks it's more fun to chase leaves outside while I'm hopping around in the cold, then come back inside to wee on the kitchen floor! Might give it a couple more days. I'm getting NO work done.

I have that book, quite an old version I think. Must do more than just skim read it!

Have given up looking for catflaps that restrict exit as well as entrance, so have ordered a pen thingy off ebay to enclose some of the patio outside the door.

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