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Help with crate!(16 Posts)
Sorry I seem to be full of questions!
Pup has been sleeping at night really well in his crate (he wakes once or twice to toilet). He likes to sleep on the kitchen floor in the day - we are always with him when he is awake - he crashes out and we lift him in to his crate while sleepy and he settles in there.
But I thought this might create an issue as he is not falling to sleep in the crate generally. And it has. Last night he had his first night time toilet and then crashed out in a corner of the kitchen. DH tried to lift him back to the crate but he ran straight back out. Once in the crate, he is awake and if the door is open, he runs out, if it is not, he whines.
Today, we have been trying to encourage him to settle in the crate - lots of encoruagement, treats and praise - and sleep there but he comes straight back out and takes up his corner of the kitchen,. If we try and move him back to the crate, he wakes and does the same thing.
I don't want to create negative associations with the crate or to get him wound up by us confusing him s
Being in the crate at night is a safety thing more than anything for him.
Could you move his crate to his preferred corner of the kitchen - even just temporarily? You can then slowly move it back once he starts using it again.
Once inside, can you sit outside the crate door and speak soothingly to him until he drops off again? Again, this is just to settle him in there so won't need to happen forever?
fwiw mine never did use a crate during the day. He would happily go in there last thing at night and sleep all through but never once used it during the day and slept on the kitchen floor instead - something he still prefers to a comfy bed.
Have you tried feeding him his meals in the crate to make it a little more enticing.
Obviously that won't make him go in there before bed, but it might make him like it a bit more. It sounds as if you're doing everything else you can to get him in there.
Don't know if it might help to try and get a more strict bedtime routine for him so he does his last wee before you all settle for the night and then you put him in his crate so he doesn't have a chance to fall asleep on the floor and you're controlling where he sleeps.
Is his crate covered? I always covered the top, back and sides of the crate when my dog was a puppy so she had a sort of cave to snuggle down in.
Agree you could try putting it in the corner he likes? You could also try having it in your bedroom, unless that's something you don't want to do.
Can't think of anything else to try.
Thanks alot guys this is really helpful. Moving it might help - it's right in front of the sink though!
We do cover it and he has his meals in it.
He tends to come back from his last wee and go straight to the corner and sleep. I know he will whine if he is picked up and put straight into his crate. Do you think we should just do that and see if he whines? How long would you allow him to whine for?
I just think 'baby strategies' in my head - I was never one for letting my kids cry - but perhaps I need to get out of that mode!
Have you tried putting something with your scent in the crate for him to sleep on - e.g. worn t-shirt?
No. I haven't tried that. He would be probably chew it to bits!
He was fine in his crate to start with. I suppose what worries me is that he needs the crate to be safe at night but he prefers to sleep on the floor so it means moving him and this is not sustainable over time as he is already a big lad (6.7 kg)!
We go to sleep about 11 and he wakes up at 2/3 times a night for toileting so it is a bit of a hassle in the night.
Could you use a puppy pen instead of a crate? That way he is contained but gets to lie on the floor he loves so much...
Could the crate be too warm for him now the weather is heating up? I know my dog likes to lie on the coolest available surface when the weather is warm.
That is an interesting point and the breeder suggested that too so I moved out his vet bed.
What would you do tonight then? Try and put him straight in the crate and close the door? He will definitely whine.
Or would you let him sleep on the floor and move him?
Or something else?
And is getting up two/three times in the night the norm? He is then awake at about 5 so it is knackering.
He does toilet eery time he wakes, whines and we take him out.
I would try moving the crate (temporarily) as missbattenberg suggested. If that doesn't stop him whining, at least it will help diagnose the problem as you will rule out the issue being the location, rather than the crate itself
2 - 3 times is normal for a puppy, yes - that phase shouldn't last too long.
We shut our puppy inside the crate, at night, for periods of sleep during the day and if we went out. That way, she didn't have a choice.
Thanks. We have just moved the crate and left it there for half an hour and he would not go in at all - went to the other side of the room!
So we have moved it back and he originally went to try and sleep in his old space.... aargh. He then starts to fall asleep.
So when he went into the crate again, I closed the gate and he is now whining (just through the space of this message!)
He was really screaming. I let him out and he wanted to go outside. He plonked himself on the grass and growled. He then came back in and went straight to his space on the floor where he is now.
What do you do? Am I being silly for not letting him squeal? It just doesn't seem right.
I would add that I've popped out of the room to type this and I can see him but he can't see me. So it's not separation anxiety. He doesn't know where I am. He just doesn't want to be in the crate.
I'll have to lift him in when he's really asleep to get him there.
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