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anyone not use a crate for a puppy and all was ok?

(25 Posts)
miserablemoo Sat 22-Mar-14 03:02:23


I started a thread by accident in pets basically saying my puppy (10 weeks old) is going mental in his crate and is hating it crying and howling and ripping up his bed.

I wanted to ask if anyone didn't crate their puppy and all was ok. All advise is to crate train and I do worry about him having free rein when we are out or in bed and chewing stuff and being disruptive plus crate training is supposed to help with toilet training.

He can't come into our room. It's not an option. Plus sometimes with two kids I cant watch them 100% of the time and wanted somewhere safe for him when I am busy.

I have opened his crate door now and after a lot of perseverance he has stayed in the crate with the door open but if I move or go see to my sick dd he is out.

I know he is little and scared. Everywhere I have read just says to ignore him till he gets the message but he is keeping all of us and next door awake.

I don't want to get this wrong now and have bigger problems in the futute that are harder to fix.

Any help or advise or words of wisdom is much appreciated. Whilst it's ok having the crate door open tonight whilst I am downstairs I don't think it's a long term solution.

Thanks for reading.

tabulahrasa Sat 22-Mar-14 09:28:04

If he's doing that in his crate then he's not crate trained.

Yes plenty of puppies have managed fine without crates, but, they are good for exactly the things you've mentioned, especially keeping them safe while you can't watch them.

Floralnomad Sat 22-Mar-14 09:35:17

Hi ,I've just realised that you have only had this puppy a couple of days ,what sort of dog is it and where did you get it from ? We only used a crate for a couple of weeks as my older pup(15 weeks) from Battersea never liked it and it was too big for my lounge . We ended up making him a smallish space in the hall ,blocked off by a stair gate but bigger than the crate IYSWIM. Once he was house trained we moved the gate and he now sleeps in the hall on his bed at night or if we go out .

needastrongone Sat 22-Mar-14 09:53:42

As Tab says, you need to crate train the puppy to enjoy his crate. And please don't ignore him, he's a 10 week old puppy that needs his new family to understand he needs them, he's just left his littermates and wondering whats happened to his humans at night! As you say, you will have bigger problems in the future. The puppy needs to see the crate as a safe haven from the busy household.

Make the crate a fun place to be, feed him there, throw treats in, chew toys, his bed, leave the door open so he can come in and out as he pleases. One of my dogs liked the crate covered at night so it was like a den. Have you a blanket from his mother, or alternatively, a piece of your clothing can help.

Kikopup on Youtube has a brilliant video about crate training which is very clearly explained. A quick Google will find it.

If you can't have him with you at night, then one of you might consider sleeping downstairs with the puppy, so he knows you are there and taking him out to the toilet if needed. Gradually, sleep a bit further away until you withdraw completely. We did this with both our dogs and it took 2/3 night maximum. If he whines, you can gently ssshhh him.

Not all dogs need a crate, but I think both dog and family need somewhere where he is safe if you need to go out or a busy, and he is undisturbed. And the same training may apply.

thedrunkenduck Sat 22-Mar-14 19:32:15

I wouldn't be without our crate. For starters- I'm the one who takes him anywhere and couldn't leave him running loose in the back of the car. Secondly- it gives us a place to put him when we need time out, especially important for me at the moment as I'm 37 weeks pregnant and exhausted- funnily enough I don't fancy throwing a ball to him 24/7 and he just doesn't get that.

We ignore him if he whines. He soon does settle down and will fall asleep and will stay in there even if you open the gate.

Saying that he is older (11 months now) and would probably do it differently with a younger puppy.

Lots of his good behaviour had been learnt through putting him in there when he is being naughty though!

haggisaggis Tue 25-Mar-14 15:13:05

We don't use a crate but did have a puppy pen - pup went in that when we went out or when we needed to contain him. He had a bed in it but at night times he has always slept in our room.

musicposy Tue 25-Mar-14 16:23:19

We didn't crate train Ddog2 but then she slept on our bed (and still does!). We crate trained Ddog1 and to be honest it was easier in the long run as you then have a safe place to put them.

monopoly123 Tue 25-Mar-14 17:53:58

We didn't crate train. What's meant to happen if you don't?

Spero Tue 25-Mar-14 17:57:47

I got a cage for my staffy but never locked her in it - I had to sign a paper at the dog rescue before they would let me take her saying I would never do that.

She slept in the kitchen, in her bed, in the cage with the door open. If we went out we left her in the kitchen.

Now she sleeps anywhere she likes but still has her cage in the kitchen with her bed in it. So if we go anywhere, I take the bed bit out so she has something familiar to sleep on.

I am not quite sure what the whole point of locking dogs in a cage is.

EvenBetter Tue 25-Mar-14 17:59:44

I don't have a cage for my dog (now 7 months), and never will. Wouldn't even occur to me to consider one. We're fine.
I can kind of understand why some people choose to have a cage, but I manage grand without one.

InpraiseofPolly Tue 25-Mar-14 19:06:13

I know it's terribly fashionable to crate your dog now, but it's simply something I would not do myself. I have had dogs all my life and managed perfectly well without using one. Our puppies always sleep with us, or us with themwink until they are settled in the night. I think a puppy pen is a good idea, as a safe place to put a pup for a short time. Not judging anyone for using one its just I never have grin

minxthemanx Tue 25-Mar-14 19:09:47

We adopted a beagle two months ago. Came with crate. Wouldn't sleep in the crate from day one, and I don't blame him. Small, cramped and basically a cage. He has been perfectly happy in a comfy dog bed on the landing at night, not shut away in a crate in the kitchen.

I know people swear by crates, but we never used them for dogs when I was a kid and I can't bear them.

His crate is now in the garden and about to go on ebay....

ThatBloodyWoman Tue 25-Mar-14 19:12:12

I didn't crate train.

I will get jumped on, but I am completely against it.

Our lovely dog is clean in the house and non destructive.

So, yes, all turned out well.

NurseyWursey Tue 25-Mar-14 19:17:51

Yep I have 3 great big boxers and never used crates, I hate them.

Just go with what feels right. Perhaps one of you can sleep downstairs

minxthemanx Tue 25-Mar-14 19:20:31

Thatbloodywoman, I'll be jumped on with you. wink Our just 2 yr old beagle is left a lot during the day on his own (with the cat) as I'm working longer hours for a couple of weeks - he has been as happy as Larry with his bed on the landing, a blanket on the sofa, and his Kong full of frozen breakfast. He gets walked at 6 am and as soon as I get in. Not destructive, and happy - he would bark and howl non stop in the crate.

catwithflowers Tue 25-Mar-14 19:26:42

I didn't with our golden retriever. She has always been fine and didn't chew or mess in the house. She is now four and is very well adjusted smile

babybythesea Tue 25-Mar-14 19:29:57

I grew up with dogs, my parents have had three since I left home, I have one and my sister has two. And there's never been a crate in the family. If we've needed to contain them, we've puppy proofed the kitchen. Once they're house trained, we haven't even bothered doing that. We've not had issues with any of them.

kippersmum Fri 28-Mar-14 14:08:47

I have a 6 month old collie & never used a crate, I don't like them, they are basically puppy cages. However we do have a stair gate across the bottom of the stairs to stop him going upstairs. We have had no problems (apart from he is hopeless at walking to heel!!! ggrrrrr but that's another thread....) smile

mistlethrush Fri 28-Mar-14 14:16:17

They are not cages or things to shut dogs into and shouldn't be used as 'time out' locations - if you need a 'time out' you need to put them in a kitchen or bathroom or similar. Crates need to be their safe place that they know they can go without getting disturbed.

I know quite a few people with crates for their adult dogs and they use them on a daily basis - rarely with the dogs shut though.

Having said that, we've never had one and, as long as the dog is happy without one, prefer not to have one. In the car the dog has a car seat harness on and sits on the back seat. At home she sleeps where she fancies (she has 4 beds to choose from - talk about spoilt!)

Yemenite Fri 28-Mar-14 14:23:37

My god woman a crate????? I have brought up and trained three dogs and have never WOULD NEVER dream of them in a crate. It's beyond cruel.

mistlethrush Fri 28-Mar-14 14:34:49

Yemen - it really isn't, as long as it is used the right way - and not as a cage. I am very much against them being used as a cage, but properly used, for some dogs, they are great (I'm not saying every dog and my dog certainly hasn't got one)

HavantGuard Fri 28-Mar-14 14:52:13

I don't use crates but do use a pen. Ever since one of the dogs ate the wall. Then threw up flakes of Farrow & Ball all over the kitchen.

ThatBloodyWoman Fri 28-Mar-14 15:06:49

Unfortunately some people do use crates as cages.

I can't bear the thought of a tiny puppy shut in a cage needing to go to the toilet but not wanting to mess their sleeping area.And then having to.

It's one thing using a crate as an open sleeping area to be shut only if necessary, and a completely different thing to use them as a 'training aid' imo.

Wordsmith Wed 02-Apr-14 12:23:27

We use a crate but only lock it at night. For the first couple of nights our puppy cried but after that she was fine. The idea is that the dog sees their crate as a 'den' where they can be safe. The crate is in my home office and when I go out i just confine her to the office. She'll go and sleep in the crate with the door open. It's not cruel as long as it isn't used as a punishment.

clam Sat 05-Apr-14 17:47:40

Ours hated the crate, so we didn't force it. We put a stair gate across the kitchen door instead, so he had the run of the kitchen if we were out. This was fine until he got big enough to jump over it, so now we give him the run of the house, closing doors to the rooms we don't want him in.
Works for us.

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