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Discussion Starter #1
I never did this with Aspen, and he turned out fine. Not to brag *hehe* but when I got him at 8 weeks old, he never had an accident in the house nor was he ever a destructive chewer. If I wanted to, but I never did, I could leave him in the house by himself for about 30 minutes and I would come back and find everything in one piece. When he wanted to pee or poo he went out to the grass area by himself. I never had to potty train him. I did buy a crate for him when he was a puppy, but I never used it because I didn't need it. I guess my question is, what is the crate actually for?
 

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You were lucky. The only reason I ever crate trained was because Bailey ate my couch at nine months old. We don't use a crate any longer since they are fine on free roam. Other than to prevent destructive behavior I see crate training as a good way to ensure that your dog will be ok if there is the chance that you *have* to board/crate them for any reason. If dogs aren't at least introduced to the idea of being crated at any point there's a chance they will flip out in those situations.
 

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You were lucky. The only reason I ever crate trained was because Bailey ate my couch at nine months old. We don't use a crate any longer since they are fine on free roam. Other than to prevent destructive behavior I see crate training as a good way to ensure that your dog will be ok if there is the chance that you *have* to board/crate them for any reason. If dogs aren't at least introduced to the idea of being crated at any point there's a chance they will flip out in those situations.
One time I was at Petsmart with Aspen, and they had a big sized crate just lying on the floor, all set up. I told Aspen to get in and lie down and he did!! So, I guess I'm all set then!! Are there some breeds of dogs that don't need to be crate trained?
 

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From a personal, recent experience, I can honestly say that I believe a dog should be crate trained just in case of injury or illness.
If a dog has to be boarded, or stay overnight at the vets, or needs to be on crate rest. It will be much less stressful on both the dog, and the owner if the dog has been crate trained. Stress on a dog who is supposed to be healing usually doesn't help!

My roommates dog, Tucker, woke up one morning a couple months ago paralyzed from the mid-back down. No previous symptoms, no injury or accident that caused it. After rushing to the vet, LOTS of $$$, and tests it was determined that Tucker has IVDD and had a flair up. He had to stay at the vet overnight for IV meds and observation, and then 6weeks of crate rest with more meds. Tucker hadn't been previously crate trained in his previous home, and Kayla had just started introducing him to the crate a week or so before this happened. In short, it was AWFUL, for him, and us.

I recommend crate training for that reason alone, but I do honestly believe there is a time and place for a crate for different reasons. Some owners have to crate & rotate animals, Some owners use it to aid with teaching house training, for separate feeding, etc.
I have a soft sided crate in the living room, the door stays open, and the dogs use it as a dog bed lol
 

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The crate has a lot of "reasons" the most prevalent would be the potty training. Dogs will (usually) not go potty where they sleep. So getting them into a routine at bedtime is again "usually" accomplished a little faster since the crate is smaller than any "room" ie. laundry, or bath area you deem as the "dogs room" It also keeps them from chewing your couch as Natalie pointed out, but more importantly it keeps them safe while alone. They have no chance of getting into something that could harm or worse kill them if they were to ingest something. A little different than if you came home to find your couch eaten, since it might be YOU wanting to kill them!! LOL! :eek:
It is also a quiet place that gives them a sense of comfort. They can retreat into their crate if the house gets busy, and they don't feel anxious in their "den"
Again, as Natalie said, if you were to ever have to board/crate them, it is no biggie.
I think we associate the dog being in a crate as a bad thing, and like anything, if you don't use it correctly then sure that's exactly what it is in the dogs mind also. However, if you use the crate with the mindset of "protecting" the dog from itself or other things, then it becomes a very positive natural part of their lives.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
It is also a quiet place that gives them a sense of comfort. They can retreat into their crate if the house gets busy, and they don't feel anxious in their "den"
His dog house is his comfort zone...
 

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One time I was at Petsmart with Aspen, and they had a big sized crate just lying on the floor, all set up. I told Aspen to get in and lie down and he did!! So, I guess I'm all set then!! Are there some breeds of dogs that don't need to be crate trained?
It more depends on individual dogs and of they need to be crated or not, not their breed per se. There are definitely dogs that tend to crate train easier than others. I wouldn't assume that Aspen is ok with being crated just because he went in on command. Being crated for long periods of time is completely different. He might be like our Shiloh and try and hurt himself trying to get out. Shiloh is not crated at all for this reason.
 

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I wouldn't assume that Aspen is ok with being crated just because he went in on command. Being crated for long periods of time is completely different.
He has been crated before, there were a few times when I decided to do it just to see what he would do. And he slept through the night without complaining about being in there. The crate was in the living room and I was in the bedroom. I kept checking on him. He was fine. He has been boarded before, for 3 nights. And I could see through their doggie cam, he was fine. :smile:
 

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Yes hopefully you will be as lucky with your next dog!!! One can hope for the best but prepare for the worst!
 

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I crate train mostly for the protection of my dogs, and my carpet!

Having four dogs, my house is pretty dog proofed, so them getting into something they shouldn't is unlikely, but rather safe than sorry. I also potty train when I'm gone until I really trust them fully. When I'm home, I leave the doggy door open, but I can't when I'm not home, because Champ, big sexy beast that he is, can get out the doggy door, but can not get back in. (we have a small doggy door, because I didn't want him to be able to use it. Well, somehow he's managed to get out of it, though we haven't been able to witness how he does it, but can not get back in, we're assuming because the tile inside is slippery, so he probably can't get traction enough to pull himself in) And, if he's locked out, he barks.

How long I use the crates depends on the individual dog. Grissom is a year and a half old, but I still don't trust him for long periods of time (a few hours) without outside access, because if he can't get outside, he'll poop by the door. He's a jerk like that. I honestly at this rate will always crate him overnight and when we're gone.

Annie is nine months, and we started giving her freedom for short periods of time (running out to dinner, quick trip to the grocery store) and she's doing very well. We also don't crate her at night anymore, but leave the door open, and often times that's where we find her in the morning.

Champ hated his crate, and I have complete trust in him, so I don't even keep his around anymore.

It all just depends on the dog. I can't, however, always trust all of mine to be out together for long periods of time. THAT's when they get into trouble. lol.
 

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Seamus is 3 yrs old. He *loves* his crate. I just got a puppy, Teaghan, she's 3 months old now. She's learning to love her crate also.
I do dog agility photography, so I take my dogs to trials. They have to be in a crate there.

Last summer Seamus had surgery, I had to run an IV for several days at home. He of course wasn't in his crate then, not with the IV tube. But the day when he was able to sleep w/out a tube, I told him to go to bed, and pointed to the pile of blankets he'd been sleeping on. He *would not* lie down until I put his crate there.

I guess, bottom line, I like him being in his crate for my peace of mind. He likes being in his crate so he doesn't have to guard the entire house.:)

I guess my question is, what is the crate actually for?
 

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I crate trained my boys because Owen was a chewer when he was younger. When I first got Owen, he would cry for hours on end... especially if he knew that you were home and just not letting him out (ie, bed time). I did not let him out of the crate when he was cry, rather I would wait for a pause in his crying (longer then 15 seconds, or the time it took me to get to him) to let him out and praise him. If he started back up by the time I got there, I would walk away and wait again. It was hard on my for a little bit, but now he will run to his crate for his food, to hide, or just to nap... also when he knows that I have to leave, he will walk right in and lay down. A lot of times Owen would dissapear for a little while and get 'quiet'... That always worries me cause you usually know that they are getting into somethig that they aren't supposed to! :rolleyes: But no, he would be in his crate taking a nap with the door open! :biggrin:
Titus, well he is just 'special'. He pees everywhere and he chews everything. Just for the fun of it!! :eek: He still doesn't like his crate unless its for meal time. :)
Most of the other dogs I have had before these two never went into a crate... but then we had the time in the day to watch the dogs from sun up to sun down! :biggrin:

I like to use the crates wether my dogs get along or not at the very least for meal time. That way you know that, wether you have a FA dog or not, there is no chance in them fighting for what the other one has.
 

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I think crate training is very important. It gives the dog space. I crate at night only, The girls are taught if they are in their crates resting, that is their space and to leave them be.

They aren't in their crates for long during night time. It helps us all get a good night sleep. Ted and Riley have LOUD barks, and I do wear my hearing aid when I sleep just to make sure I hear the girls.

So when they bark ofcourse I get woken up. So when they are crated, the house is dead quiet!
 

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Crate training helps in so many ways. I have two puppies, brother and sister and without crate training, we would not be as far as we are.

First, of course for the house training. Crates make this a lot easier for us and the dogs.

Second, they need their own "identity". It took me a few weeks to get crates for them and they were like two dogs using one mind. As soon as I got the crates, overnight it was a staggering difference in their attitudes and how well they listened to me. (I also walk them separately and train separately.)

Third, it's their place. (Each one has their own crate.) They are the only ones allowed in their crates, that's their den.

When I first put them in and had them separated, mein Gott! The screaming! OY! It went on and on and on and on....it wasn't just whining, it was full on tantrum. Sakari flung herself against the sides, scraped at the tray, screamed for an hour straight. I wondered if my neighbors were going to a) kill me or b) call the cops on me because you would think this dog was getting a leg severed the way she was screaming.

I ignored her and she eventually got the picture...screaming and throwing a fit isn't going to get you a thing. Wow, this is waste of energy.

Now I can put them in their crates, go to work and come home around lunchtime to let them out, back in the crates, back to work, come home, let them out to conduct their business transactions at the Green Lawn Bank, give them some play time together and then....

Fourth, I feed them in their crates. This way they don't gulp, they chew. They don't rush, they take their time. There is no food aggression like there was before the crates. (Plus it's easier to keep clean than mopping the kitchen floor every night.)

When they are done, I take one out, disinfect the tray, take him/her out on a walk, play a bit of chase and tag, tire him/her out and come back.

I then put that dog back in to the crate and take the other one out. Lather, rinse, repeat.

When they have both been fed and had their walk/play time/training time, they are allowed to be in the house out of the crate but even then one of them is next to me at all times and the other is in a doggie bed a little bit away. They are still in the same room but not together and therefore, controlled.

They will also sleep in their crates at night time. It is a lot of crate time but it's for training many different things and it won't be forever. They'll always have them but eventually they won't have that much crate time unless they want it.

As it stands, sometimes the boy will go in the crate on his own if it's his turn not to be the one next to me. He chooses to go in there even though he's been in there most of the day. I guess it's not so bad for him. The girl, she still doesn't really like it but she doesn't scream and throw a fit anymore. She accepts it...but she'd rather be out.

Edit, I forgot to add the Fifth: Because we are still learning how to act and behave around the cats. At this point, I am not going to leave them with my cats, unsupervised. They aren't mean, they are rambunctious and play rough. Sure, the cats swipe their noses but they still need to learn and the crate helps keep the cats protected and gives them a bit of peace throughout the day.
 

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I crate because I have multiple bully breeds and cats. I am protecting the dogs from each other and the cats from the dogs. I've heard too many horror stories to chance that everybody will be in one piece when I get home from work.
 

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I have what I believe to be an American Labrador who has more energy then a case of Redbulls. I got him at 6 months old and when we walked into the house he went right into his new crate. Now at 9 months old he still gets crated to eat, sleep, and while I'm at work. I couldn't imagine raising a High Energy Puppy like a him with out a crate. Besides the crate being necessary for dinner time and while I'm away, He loves it. During the weekends when I'm home all time the crate remains open. He will go in there and drink from his water bowl and on the rare occasion that he actually sleeps, he will do it in there. Another great reason to crate train is for vacations. Jethro will be going to My girlfriends parents house with us in a week and will be around a bunch of new people and a new baby. We are bring his crate because it will be a nice comforting and familiar place for him to hang out during all the excitement.

Jethro is one of those dogs who needs a job to do, With out one he would probably become self employed as a "Flooring Removal Specialist" or maybe a "Furniture Disassembler" who knows. The crate prevents him from misbehaving while I'm away. LOL.
 

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I crate because I have multiple bully breeds and cats. I am protecting the dogs from each other and the cats from the dogs. I've heard too many horror stories to chance that everybody will be in one piece when I get home from work.
I know the feeling! I've got Siberian Huskies, and their prey drive is really high. Mine have only ever played with the kitties, but I worry if I leave them alone with kitties...haha.
 

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I start crate training my litters at 6 weeks. I think it is a wonderful option to have. I am going to experiment with training them in X pens with my next litter. I think if you start early, the pups will learn their boundaries.
 

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I have heard of people training for a crate and/or ex pens. they say if you teach small puppies the boundaries of the ex pen then they usually stay in there well after they reach adult hood.
 
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