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So I have been reading on crate training...most recommend starting at 9 weeks of age, not before. What did you all do for the first week or so before beginning crate training?

our work schedule will be - DH is the last one to leave around 8:15 or so, i will be coming home from 12-1 for lunch, DH gets home between 4:30 and 5.

I don't want to do crate training if those time periods are too long (about 4 hours at a time) at first, especially if it means soiling her crate later.

Do I get an X-Pen at first and then do crating when she gets older? If so, and we use the pee pads, will she then always pee in the house?

I thought I had this all figured out and now I am second guessing the game plan. I don't want to train the wrong way, that's for sure!
 

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I think the thing to remember is most people don't get their puppies until they are at least 8 weeks, so that's when the crate training comes in. You don't want a puppy running the house then crate train, start right off the bat.

I only used a crate when one of us couldn't be home, other than that Cinnamon was tethered or watched like a hawk. She no longer needs to be crated, but she is 3 yrs old now!
 

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We had a similar situation as you do. I did not want to have Dex in a crate for so long when he was so young so we kept him in a small area in our kitchen when we were at work. We put an xpen around the area we wanted to keep him in. We put down pee pads for the first few months...I know these aren't the best for potty training, but with our work schedule we wanted to give him a designated spot to go.

The downside was that we never crate trained Dexter and now having Kirby I see the benefits of being able to use a crate.
 

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Hi Brooke,

I was in the same boat - never crate trained before. We got our puppy at 9 weeks (almost 10 weeks). He is 15 weeks old today. At first, I would put Bailey in the crate while I was home, for an hour or two at a time. I always put him in it when he was tired and I knew he would sleep (he slept at least 18 hours a day at first). I also fed him treats in the crate and gave him his chew toys in there ect. so that he really started to love his crate.

The most I've left him is for 4 hours and he has never soiled his crate (this was a big fear of mine).

One time, around 2 weeks ago (I guess 12-13 weeks old), I needed to go on an 8 hour field trip with my son's school. I didn't know what to do so I ended up putting his crate in the garage. I left the crate door open so he could go in as he pleased but hoped if he had to do his business it would be on the garage floor and not in his crate. Well, he kept his crate clean but peed and pooped everywhere in the garage. I think he was pretty stressed though, as he had never been in that situation before. The next day my vet said I should have just kept him in his locked crate for the 8 hours to see how he did and I might have been surprised. She felt he would have held it as best he could and maybe would have made it. If not, he would have been horrified to soil his crate but probably it wouldn't have been a problem if it was the one time. She says it's only a problem if they do it day after day. A one time thing where he just couldn't help himself wouldn't cause problems. Do I believe this? Not sure. I preferred the way I did it.

Not sure if this is helpful as I know I am home more then you will be so the situation is different...I tend to blab and I love to type. Good luck!
 

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as a breeder I introduce crate when they are 3 weeks old. There is no too early age. Its a safety factor and a comfort. :)
 

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I agree with Moviestar (sorry I don't know your name!). Our breeder started introducing the puppies to crates for just a few minutes at a time beginning when they were around 3-4 weeks old. As they got more independent from their mom, she would increase the time in the crate by a few minutes. By the time we picked Tyke up at 8 weeks, she was completely comfortable with her crate, and even went into it on her own when she was tired. She is 5 months old now, and although she doesn't sleep in the crate at night anymore (she has graduated to the foot of my bed) we still have a crate for her for whenever we have to leave her alone. She has never had an accident in the crate, and really doesn't seem to mind being in one. If she gets fussy and wants to get out, however, we wait until she is quiet - doodles learn pretty quickly if you let them get something by fussing!!!
 

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Denver was crate trained starting at 8 weeks.
One of us was home with him till 12 weeks so he was
not in the crate for more than 4 hours at a time then.
At 12 weeks when we had to return to work he was crated
from 8 am to 12 and then hubby was home for 2 hours and
then he was crated again for two more hours til I got home
Total of 6 hours with a 2 hour break. He never soiled his crate.
Now at 18 months he has the run of the house and thinks he is
in charge of taking care of the cats........................
Your puppy can be crated in the morning until you return for
lunch and then crated again until you come back. Tire him out at lunch
as much as you can and he will be fine. They do sleep a lot.
Good luck
 

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Okay so, Bogie is crate trained but yelps and howls if I don't stay in the room with him..........I'm a total believer in early crate training and did so with every dog I've owned.
How long can I let him go ballistic?
Dreamer......does your pup do this? I have to get mine where I can leave him....... :?
Have you even started her yet?
 

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I would start crate training from day one. It sounds like you have worked out a schedule so that she won't be along too long. Remember puppies need alot of sleep. I wouldn't hesitate leaving her in a crate during the hours you are gone. What is the alternative? Giving her more room so that he can have "accidents"? They learn control by being confined. Others may have different opinions, but I don't think 4 hours is too long for a puppy to be expected to hold it.

When you are home, keep him close to you. Don't let her out of your sight! Good luck. :)

Deb
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Dreamer......does your pup do this? I have to get mine where I can leave him....... Confused
Have you even started her yet?
well we don't get her for 2 more weeks so i'm not sure yet! :D

i would say that you should put some kibble or treats in his crate with the door open and let him investigate on his own. then put him in there and close the door w/you in the room...

when he's ok with that start leaving him for a few minutes at a time - and praise when he is quiet. don't give attention when he is yelping and howling! that will just show him that yelping and howling gets him attention :D
 

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Discussion Starter #11
DebBrown said:
I wouldn't hesitate leaving her in a crate during the hours you are gone. What is the alternative? Giving her more room so that he can have "accidents"? They learn control by being confined. Others may have different opinions, but I don't think 4 hours is too long for a puppy to be expected to hold it.
You are probably right. I was reading an article on crate training - I think Jac posted it the other day - and it said that before 9 weeks it was not good to leave in the crate for more than a few minutes at a time.

I will be taking a few days off when we get her so that she can get used to us and the crate before she is left alone. I guess I can just see how she does and go from there.

I just want to do right by my Doodle! :)
 

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well we don't get her for 2 more weeks so i'm not sure yet!
OOOPS! Sorry.....I missed that part.............lol
 

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Now after 5 nights with Bogie, here's my opinion on the crate training. Start it as soon as possible and get her to stay in it for short periods of time during the day.
We had an awful night last night! It was worse then the first! Bogie has been around us and wandering the house supervised..........all day. He now HATES being in his crate at night!
I couldn't believe it! One of us had to be in there all night and he woke every time we moved or left the bedroom. He was REALLY yelping!
We talked to the breeder this morning and she said it is definitely because he's around us and free so much. So....now she recommends either moving the crate from the bedroom, or wrapping a towel and banging it on the cage when he acts up.
I feel that if you start this early and have the pup in there more often, you might avoid this.
 

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I definitely wouldn't bang on the cage with anything!! The crate is supposed to feel like a safe place, and banging on it would only hinder that feeling. I would say crate in the bedroom, or wind-up alarm clock or something to mimic a heart beat. It's the feeling of being separated from the pack.
 

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I think the EXPEN and large wire crate connection is the best way to train/confine a pup, it just isnt fair to put them in a crate for a long period, also someone should come home mid day to interact with the pup as well as clean pen so wont be walking in poop

pups are fun but lots of commitment ,they need human bonding time

just like a child ,if crying dont pick up, correct, say Atttttt real loud, turn your back, when quiet then you can pickup ,

dont use gates, i have had 2 people that gated a area, one got electrocuted the other inqested part of the floor and had to have emergency surgury ,both survived ,,but could have been avoided
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Doodlesville said:
I think the EXPEN and large wire crate connection is the best way to train/confine a pup, it just isnt fair to put them in a crate for a long period, also someone should come home mid day to interact with the pup as well as clean pen so wont be walking in poop

pups are fun but lots of commitment ,they need human bonding time
The plan is to come home for an hour mid day - every day. I only work 8 miles from home, so i'm not worried about that. We will also have time in the morning for a walk and play time before work, and lots of time when we both get home.

So are you saying that 7 weeks old is too young to start the crate for 4 hour spans? I will be happy to get an X-Pen if that is what is best. What height would I need - since I don't want her getting out unsupervised and hurting herself!

When would we transition from the xpen to the crate? Eventually depending on chewing behavior and housebreaking we would be happy to let her run free in the house but I do want her to be crate trained for at least the beginning.

Educate me! That is why I am here!

:)
 

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We did the x-pen. We bought online at amazon.com - found the prices lower there.

We never transitioned Dex to the crate because he did really well in the xpen and never was destructive...

Maybe you could crate for one 4 hr period and then not crate for the other? If you wanted to do this, I would crate for the morning period because I have found they are more sleepy early in the day.
 

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I just wondered if any of you have come across Snugglepuppies - I'm getting one for Jofi to hopefully help her settle down at night. A Snugglepup is a cute cuddly toy with a heater pack and simulation heart beat to mimic the pup's mother/litter mates - it's meant to be very good for adjusting puppies. Has anyone tried this?

I've got a pen with a crate set up - but was thinking in the short term whether it might be easier to train my pup to use a designated toilet area inside her pen (i.e. puppy pads) rather than having to take her repeatedly out into the cold - is this likely to make it very tricky later when we want her to adjust to toileting outside? Has anyone else done things this way? I suppose this is the downside of getting a puppy in the winter! Have any of you brought up your puppies without confining your pup to a crate but rather just using the pen for confinement?

Dreamer - I hope all goes well when you get Riley - Jofi will be coming home just a few days before on September 12th.

Libby
 

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The Expen and crate set should be used as soon as you get the pup and up until he feel comfortable in his crate area, you crate train gradual, while in crate with expen connected you close the door for a few minutes, then let out, continue that, this is in aide of housetraining (the expen and crate set up) height 30-36" snap at top and bottom of the crate sides

this is a safe place for pup, his bedroom so to speak

when he gets older and can hold it till you get home crate is fine, dont expet a pup to hold it for many months he has a small bladder

Also a 7week old pup can get stressed easy that is one reason i started keeping mine until 8weeks old so watch for coccidia signs, eating poop, diarreha, not hungry, lethargic
if you notice any of the above take in to vet
 

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When my doodle grizzles and cries when he's crated, do I just ignore him? It's so hard!!!!!! He's so loud!!!!
 
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