Murphy hates his crate
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Thread: Murphy hates his crate

  1. #1
    mylablucy is offline Member
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    DefaultMurphy hates his crate

    Brought Murphy home on Friday mid day. He's adorable (will post pics later). First night he slept in a laundry basket lined with a towel next to my bed. Some whimpering but for the most part he slept through from midnight to 5am.

    Second day, I left him at home in the crate while I ran out for some errands (about two hour mid day). I could hear him crying and barking as I left. I have no idea how long it lasted, by the time I got home he was quiet.

    Last night (second night) we decided to try the crate. And figured we'd let him just cry it out, then he'd get tired and fall asleep. Wrong. Crying for about 10 minutes, then quieted for 30. Then crying ensued at a higher pitch and frequency, so I thought "oh I should let him out to pee." Bad idea. We went outside, peed, came back in and I put him back in the crate. He then started crying and barking excessively and hurling himeself against the front of the crate. I waited 10 minutes and then took him back outside to see if he needed to #2. On my way back in the concierge told me I had noises complaints. So, when I got back up into my condo, I had him sleep in the laundry basket again, and he slept pretty well... some whimpering on/off... and lots of little potty breaks (but all outside). So now I feel like I've taught him he can cry and get his way to get out of the crate.

    What should I do? Should I practice letting him cry it out in the crate while I'm home during the day? (I'm actually trying that right now... hoping he will quiet down so I can go in and praise how good he's being but he's crying and barking incessently while I'm in the next room.) Should I give him treats while he goes in? Something in a kong that would last awhile? Is it too early to start the crate training?

    Would love any advice and insight. Being in a condo building I don't have a ton of leeway to let him scream it out all night, so am hoping we can practice mid day and work up to a full night.


    EDIT: So he just quieted down some, and I thought maybe I should wait until he's quiet for a decent length period and then praise him for being quiet. But, I've also read not to talk to your dogs in the crate. A little confused - do I praise the behavior I'm looking for? Or just ignore him altogether. But, just tried to count slowly to 10 before I started praising him and he started up the crying again.
    Last edited by mylablucy; 10-07-2012 at 11:42 AM. Reason: update

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  3. #2
    BigBrownDog is offline Senior Member
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    Are you crating him outdoors? I can't figure out what sort of arrangement you have there. The crate shouldbe inside preferably in your room. Wherever you have this laundry basket, put the crate.
    Last edited by BigBrownDog; 10-07-2012 at 11:46 AM.
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  4. #3
    mylablucy is offline Member
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    Nope crating him indoors, in my bedroom. I am in a condo building. Have a wrap around patio with pee pads on it for middle of the night potty breaks. We have to take an elevator downstairs and go by the front desk to get out to the grassy area for #2s. (Proud to say we've only had one #2 accident in the house!)

    OK, so I finally waited until he was quiet for about a minute and then I praised him for being quiet. He remained quiet so I let him out. I didn't make a big deal of it, just opened the crate door, and let him come out. Took a few minutes before I started playing with him, so he wouldn't think he could get out for crying and get to play right away.

    Thinking I should try to give him some yummy treats in his crate (with door open even?!) so he associates it with good things. I really want to get this right so any all all suggestions are welcome. Thanks!

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  6. #4
    Tanya is offline Senior Member
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    When you leave throw either his meal or reats or a stuffed kong in the crate.

    He shoudl be fed in the crate each meal.

    randomly throw high value treats in the crate for him to find.

    Put something that smells like you in the crate, when he cries just put your finder in the crate and ignore. set your allarm to take him out to pee before he wakes up.

    see this: Dr. Ian Dunbar dog training expert and crate training your dog - YouTube
    Charlie (foster) and Rocky

  7. #5
    mylablucy is offline Member
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    Thank you! Great suggestions. I've been putting toy/treats in there and praising when he goes in on his own to get them. He usually brings them back out to eat them. Thought I would start with that, and then work up to closing the door after he goes in and let him eat the treat in the crate. I will start feeding meals in the crate too.

    Question - should I do this for the next few days and then retry the night time crate training? Or should I put some high value treats in the crate with him tonight and hope that distracts him from crying - (and if he starts to cry, then just let him cry it out?)

    I'm debating write a note and slipping it under my neighbors doors to let them know I have a new puppy and am aware that he's noisy (so they don't think its a dog left alone that is just barking w/o the owners awareness.)

    Thanks again!

  8. #6
    Tanya is offline Senior Member
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    see the video above. work on it many times today (and until he loves the crate). Do the same at night. If you keep letting him sleep out of the crate, it will only get harder.
    Charlie (foster) and Rocky

  9. #7
    Tanya is offline Senior Member
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    this may also be helpful: http://www.dogstardaily.com/files/do...Your_Puppy.pdf

    But browse this site, Dr Ian Dunbar is a great trainer and his stuff is great. Dog Star Daily
    Charlie (foster) and Rocky

  10. #8
    mylablucy is offline Member
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    Thank you! He just tried to fall asleep behind the toilet (one of his favorite hideaways). I took him to his crate and put him in. He tried to get out and I just laid next to the crate with him in it, petting him and telling him what a good boy he is. He eventually laid down and fell asleep in the crate. I'm leaving the door open for now and will work towards closing the door after some more positive experiences in the crate.

    Appreciate all the links. I'm determined to get this right b/c I know it will only make it easier for us in the long run.

  11. #9
    mylablucy is offline Member
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    So, first of all thank you for the suggestions thus far. I'm feeding Murph all his meals in the crate and putting high value treats in there for him to find as a surprise. I found him in his crate (without the door on) a couple of times, so he must be getting more comfortable with it.

    On the suggestion of a trainer, I put his crate ON the bed with me Sunday and Monday nights. He whimpered some, and I gently ssssh'd him to try and reassure him that it was OK. I also put my fingers in the grate so he could kiss them. When he was quiet, I praised and praised. (yes, I know they say not to talk to them in the crate but I thought praising the good behavior would be helpful at this point?)

    Tuesday night, when it was time for bed I put the crate on the floor next to the bed. He went to sleep fairly quickly so I thought I could sleep in my bed. He woke up crying around 11pm and needed to go out for a #1 and #2. When we got back inside, it was straight into the crate. At this point he started howling and yelping so loud and I was worried about getting another noise violation so I pulled out my thermarest and slept next to the crate. We slept most of the night (up for some whimpering and crying around 3am.) Again I reassured him and let him lick my fingers through the front of the crate.

    So my question now is, how many more nights should I plan to sleep on the floor? Should I play it by ear to see what he needs? Should I start on the floor or only go on it if he starts the howling again? Do I not talk to him and reassure him with some shhhin'g when he's crying, do I not put my fingers in the grate to help him know I'm right there?

    I don't want to be getting us into bad habits but I also can't get many noise violations.

    FWIW, this morning I fed him in his crate while I was in the shower. I closed the door (normally when he eats in his crate the door is open so he can come and go). When he was done eating he was crying/howling/putting on a dramatic show about his displeasure of being in the crate. So I know he's not super psyched with it yet. On a good note though, he was in the car with me for about 2 hours while I drove to the airport and then ran some errands on the way home and he was "mostly" quiet. I praised him like he invented sliced bread.

    Hope I'm doing this right. Any suggestions are appreciated. Thanks!!!!

  12. #10
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    kassabella is offline Senior Member
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    I think you are doing very well. Tess was older so different, but times I gave up.She would break out at the top. I started with treats and food in the crate. Then I would sit and read my book in it. I never closed the door. I am lucky as I have Erns to sit in it with her and barking isn't a problem. She would go to it by herself, , but as soon as I tried to close the door she paniced.Then we got to me sitting having a coffee beside the crate with the door closed for 10 mins. No more or she would become agitated.
    I hadn't got any further when she had ACL surgery and 8 weeks crate. I was surprised I could close the door, but 4 weeks on and she goes to the crate herself.

    Keep at it and he will get it.

    ETA. Kass and Ernie settled better with a blanket over their crate at night.
    Last edited by kassabella; 10-10-2012 at 07:47 PM.

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