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Do you still use a crate?

(8 Posts)
needshoes Thu 22-Sep-11 20:09:07

I have a 13 month old choc Labrador and she has been in a crate since she was 11 weeks old. We have bought her a bigger one now that she has lots and lots of room to move about in and i think she is almost fully grown so you can imagine how big it is!
She only sleeps in the crate at night time and will bark in a morning to let us know she is awake, usually between 6-7am which is fine as we are normally getting up towards 7am anyway.

I am really just wanting to know if we can get rid of the crate tbh. She goes happily enough in it, although doesnt go in it until told and usually when we ourselves are turning the lights out to go to bed, although she has been asleep prior to us going upstairs anyway.
Its just so damn big and takes up so much space, it would be nice to have rid of it, but im worried that i may be making trouble for her. Shes housetrained in that she doesnt ever wee/poo in the house when left alone (anymore!) and never has in her crate. She only chews shoes when we forget to put them out of the way.

Do i need to just accept the crate is her to stay or can we move forward?

What do you think?

musicposy Thu 22-Sep-11 22:21:04

Well, I think they are useful things to have for any age dog, and if yours has been used to one you may find she's a bit unsettled at the loss of it. We have one for our 9 year old sheltie. It's definitely his security and, especially as he's got older, he goes in there of his own accord if things are scary (like fireworks).

We haven't bought one for our younger dog and initially we thought we wouldn't need one, but she likes the crate too. They go in there at different times and sometimes together!

We got him when he was out of young puppyhood and he'd been stuck in kennels, with the result he can be nervous and stressy with strangers, so it's very useful if I want him confined (not in a bad or punishment way, of course). Say for example the plumber comes and is taking the gas fire apart. He would get terribly stressed and bark etc, upsetting himself and making the plumber nervous. If I put him in the crate he is immediately so much calmer and happier. It's like he doesn't have to have any responsibility for the world when he is in there. I am probably completely wrong on this analysis, but he obviously views it as a safe space that is not for humans and that gives him security.

Yes, they're a pain in that if you don't have a huge house they take up half of it. But I still wouldn't be without one.

BeerTricksPotter Thu 22-Sep-11 22:30:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

needshoes Fri 23-Sep-11 07:35:40

She doesnt really see it as anything other than where she sleeps, she never goes in it other than when we go to bed, she is usually already asleep on the sofa or on her cushion by the time we go to bed anyway. It is at the bottom of the steps in the hallway anyway, when she had a smaller one it was in the kitchen she would sometimes go it at her own leisure but never now.
i may just try her a few nights and see how she goes.

noteventhebestdrummer Fri 23-Sep-11 07:41:01

We were away for a long holiday and left the dog with (adult) DS at home who let her sleep on his bed (because she looked at him with those big sad eyes and also I think, he was a bit lonely!) So when we got home we couldn't make her go in her crate at night and it has been fine without it - if we need to we can isolate her in another room if she is stressed by anything. Or woofing madly at an innocent delivery person.

tibni Fri 23-Sep-11 17:08:54

Our lab had a large crate. When he was a pup we put him in at night and when we went out but as he got older we started leaving the crate door open when we went out but shut off sitting room and upstairs.

We took him and his crate on holiday when he was 1 but the crate wouldn't fit so he ended up just with his bed - we didn't bother with his crate when we got home. We have now bought him a zippy bed which he loves.

His crate was great while he was a young pup but was huge and I was glad to get the space back.

WynkenBlynkenandNod Fri 23-Sep-11 17:14:31

Yes, she's 2 now and won't sleep without it so am resigned to it staying. She takes herself off when worried about things eg the cat. Would love to have a nice looking one seeing as it is going to be here longterm but haven't found one yet.

megapixie Sat 24-Sep-11 09:10:12

We used a crate for about 2 days.

We put her in once, usual time, blanket over etc and ignored her crying. Next thing she is YELPING in pain because she was trying to bite through and got her jaw/nose stuck through the bars. If I had been on my own I wouldn't have known wtf to do, I was terrified screaming "my baby!". DP got her out though and no damage done. Never bothered with it again.

It was a recycled crate - had it before for larger terrier but she is a very tiny jack russell.

It would've been a lot easier to train her though if we'd kept it. She now sleeps on our bed.

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