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How do I 'uncrate' my dogs?

This is a place to gain some understanding of dog behavior and to assist people in training their dogs and dealing with common behavior problems, regardless of the method(s) used. This can cover the spectrum from non-aversive to traditional methods of dog training. There are many ways to train a dog. Please avoid aggressive responses, and counter ideas and opinions with which you don't agree with friendly and helpful advice. Please refrain from submitting posts that promote off-topic discussions. Keep in mind that you may be receiving advice from other dog owners and lovers... not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a trainer or behaviorist!

  
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Stella D.- Smith

I see- dog people!-
 
 
Barked: Sun Sep 27, '09 10:50pm PST 
So - I have 3. Stella, Roo and Dexter. Stella pretty much has the run of the house, we just leave her crate open so she can use it whenever she wants - because she does love her crate.

As Dexter and Roo mature - I don't feel the need to keep their crates closed anymore. I can trust them now. My problem is - if I leave them open and I leave the house - they freak out! Cry, bark, howl and constantly scratch at the door. I am assuming it's a security/separation anxiety issue - but they don't do this if their crates are closed.

We live in a small place - I'd eventually like to get the crates out of the picture as they take up a lot of room on my living room floor. How can I help them with this?

I should note that when I am ready to leave - Dex and Roo both sense it immediately and go right into their crates. I give them a KONG every time I leave, too. When I have tried just leaving the crates open like I do Stella - they just run right for the door and start crying and scratching away at the door.

Thoughts? Advice? Thanks in advance!

shrug
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Stella D.- Smith

I see- dog people!-
 
 
Barked: Mon Sep 28, '09 7:13am PST 
*nose bump*
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Manny

Hi There, Will- you be my New- Bestfriend?
 
 
Barked: Mon Sep 28, '09 8:00am PST 
To be honest, I would just let them use crates for the rest of their lives. I know it sounds horrible, but we probably will. The boys dont have to go their crates during the day, but at night while we're asleep they do. Manny has been having seizures that were triggered by his dreams and he would wake up and scream and run to get water and knock his water bowl over all the while the siezures were getting worse. We decided that he will always just sleep in his crate, and he hasnt had a seizure in the night since.

I know it doesnt sound nice, but it sounds like your pack is used to their crates and they love them, so they probably dont mind being their crates. I know what you mean about the space thing though, but our crates have become a permanent piece of furniture in the house, haha! We use the top of them to house all of the doggie things they need to like leashes, collars, and bowls. Good Luck!

Edited by author Mon Sep 28, '09 8:00am PST

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Stella D.- Smith

I see- dog people!-
 
 
Barked: Mon Sep 28, '09 8:18am PST 
Thanks, Manny. The behavior thing is more of an issue for me, tho'. The space thing is a pain in the butt, but i can deal with it. I would just like to be able to give them the option of using them if they want to - and leaving the crate doors open like i do with Stella.
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Addy, CGC

Let's go for a- walk!
 
 
Barked: Mon Sep 28, '09 8:31am PST 
Addy is almost three and a half now, and just reaching the point where she doesn't get upset if she's uncrated when I'm not home. It might just take time and patience, letting them mature.
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Kato

Birds!
 
 
Barked: Mon Sep 28, '09 10:30am PST 
If someone else is in the room with them (uncrated) and you leave, will they still bark?

Do you know how long they bark?

As in, have you ever faked leaving? You walk outside, close the door, and wait. If they stay quiet, you come back in and give them a treat. If they bark, you'd wait until they calm down and then come in and give them a treat.

I also saw a ball that was designed for dogs with seperation anxiety. You record your voice to it and whenever the ball rolls, your voice plays. Maybe that might help.shrug
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Fritz

Fritz, cats are- fun when they- run
 
 
Barked: Mon Sep 28, '09 10:46am PST 
I don’t use crates at all. My dogs all have spots they like and feel safe. Auda has a bed under the computer table, Pip likes to lay across the bathroom door, and Fritz has a special couch he considers his own. Briz has a hiding place where she feels safe too.

Maybe you could help your dogs pick out safe places to stay outside of the crates?
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Harpo

...did you- say...........FO- OD!!!!!
 
 
Barked: Mon Sep 28, '09 1:57pm PST 
Maybe you should just leave them in the crates. It seems they are very insecure without you being there and them having the whole house. I would just lock them up before you leave so that they don't have a massive freak out.
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Danka-Julius

1034357
 
 
Barked: Mon Sep 28, '09 3:59pm PST 
These are just ideas I would try as I will soon be facing the same fate! I think it is much more difficult to achieve with more than one dog too. When you have some time on your hand, you might want to try to let them out and get out for a few minutes (taking garbage out) and come back several times and treat them, and gradually increase your time out (going to the corner store), and so on... You might also want to try with one out, then rotate and find out which ones can deal with it better... Let us know what worked once it does!
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Stella D.- Smith

I see- dog people!-
 
 
Barked: Fri Oct 2, '09 12:53am PST 
Thanks for the input everyone!
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