How much crate time?
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Thread: How much crate time?

  1. #1
    3TailsWaggin's Avatar
    3TailsWaggin is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultHow much crate time?

    Just wondering what you think is too much time in a crate for a very active 4 month old puppy? My border collie puppy has been a handful for my elderly mother (she's at home with him when I work). She feels bad crating him, but I tell her just to do it. He has inadvertently hurt/injured my mother (her skin is very fragile and even a tiny scratch from him really rips her skin) and consequently she's afraid of him ( and I can understand her position).

    I get home from work at 1:30 a.m. and go to bed, so he gets potty break then and back in the crate until I get up in the morning around 7:30. Then he's out of the crate until about 5:00 p.m.

    I do give him a lot of exercise and training, free running in our field, working on obedience and agility, playing tuggy games, etc. It's not like I'm neglecting or ignoring the dog.

    I really don't like him in the crate so much, but for my mother's sake it just has to be.

    In hindsight, I probably should not have gotten a puppy right now (with my mother's declining health, etc.) but the fact is I have him and I'm keeping him

    Opinions, thoughts, etc., appreciated.

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    tammyhuffman is offline Senior Member
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    I am by no means an expert, breeder or anything of the like but in my personal opinion you are doing nothing wrong. Safety is the reason for a crate, I would do the same, jmho.

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    I dont see you doing anything wrong. My grandpa can get a small scratch and it looks like he just fell down a flight of stairs. When we first got Bentley when they would come over for the day he was crated till they left. Now he is trained enough to know when play time is and play is not allowed. Could you possibly have someone come and let him out of his crate and play with him for a while if you both feel bad about having him crated?
    ~It doesn't matter how smart the dog is,it matters how smart the owner is.

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    It would be ideal if I could have someone come in and play with him, but I live out in the country and it's just not very feasible to impose on my friends. And I don't want to pay someone to do it either.

    Thanks for your opinions. I think it's okay. I feel a little bad about it, but he is not ignored. He gets lots of attention and training. It's just going to take time for him to grow up enough to know what he can and can't do with mother, and he will learn. I hate it that she is afraid of him. She can't even correct him because she's afraid, so that makes matters worse as he has very little respect for her at this point. When I'm there, I correct him, but you all know it's not the same. Unless she corrects him, he'll continue to jump on her, etc.

    I do see light at the end of the tunnel.. when he's older and more settled I don't know how that works with BC's. They say labs mature at 5 years. I think BC's mature earlier, seems like they do as they are so darned smart anyway. We'll see.

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    My BC Dixie calmed down around the age of 3ish. She was hyper but knew when it was time to calm down. She lives on a farm now since when we got her, her first year was on a farm and she deserved to live on a farm but yet be a good inside dog as well.She loved us but I knew what her hearts desire was and after 2 yrs it was hard but she LOVES it! She is 7 now and is very calm but when you give her the chance to go herd the sheep she is moving like a rocket!

    Sorry for the story I miss her though and love telling her stories!
    Last edited by deidra; 11-27-2011 at 08:28 PM.
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    So he is really at home with your Mum at night from 5pm until 1.30am.

    I get home from work at 1:30 a.m. and go to bed, so he gets potty break then and back in the crate until I get up in the morning around 7:30. Then he's out of the crate until about 5:00 p.m.

    I would say there is nothing wrong with this as he would be crated a lot of this time anyway. When Gems was with one of her owners Laura she was crated long periods at a time.

    Each dog is different, but I was told Gems is a typical B.C. She is full on still at 5 and knows how to push the buttons, so if your Mum can get over her fear that would help. When Gems came back after a few days with Laura I would have to put my foot down as she got away with stuff at home. An hour here and she knew jumping on me wasn't acceptable. If I missed one afternoons hour excersise Gems would be running around barking, jumping and making a pest of her self. She does agility and good at it, but that isnt enough to keep her energy levels down.

    Gorgeous dogs, but way more energy than my Labs and I thought Erns had plenty.

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    debjen is offline Senior Member
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    my boys are crated all day from about 7:30 am til I get home usually a little after 5 pm..they get one break at noon when I come home for lunch which can be anywhere from 10 minutes to 40 minutes..depending on classes they can spend another 2 to 3 hours in their crate in the evening..usually once or twice a week...otherwise they are out with me until bedtime where 3 have bed priviliges but the puppy still sleeps in his crate (crazy poodle puppy so very active)..so I would say you are doing great with your puppy.

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    I crate (or outdoor kennel) all my pups unless they have direct supervision. They have to earn the right to be loose in the house, ie house trained and not chewing socks, shoes, etc. My 2 y/o Aussie only just earned the privilege of being out of his crate all day when I'm gone at school. ~7:30am to ~5pm some days, no lunch break. He's been allowed out at night and during the day when I'm here since last year, but it's only recently he can be allowed in the house when I'm not here. If your mother is afraid of him and he's not behaving --- he hasn't earned the right to be out. IMO as long as he gets plenty of exercise during the day and the crate is big enough for him to stand/turn/etc in it, I don't see anything wrong with leaving him crated.
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    Thanks all for the feedback. You've made me feel better about things and I appreciate it

    I think I'm going to try to get mom to work with him with the clicker, with me, and see if she can get some better response from him. I clicker train him and he will work for the clicker, so maybe that will help mom feel more confident with him.

    I'm also thinking of making sure she wears a pair of gloves when she gets him out of the crate for his potty. He really has ripped her hands, and I feel really bad about it. If she can remember to put on the gloves to get him out, I think that will give her more confidence with him as well.

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    tammyhuffman is offline Senior Member
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    I have a Border Collie/Lab mix and she just turned 5. She still herds all the animals and people in the house but she is finally settling down. It is a shame you don't have a dog walker for a mid work /break but sometimes we have to work with what we have. I think the puppy will be fine, it is us that do the worrying!!

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