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How do you use your crate now that your doodle is older?

  • Nothing has changed since puppy crate training; my dog is in there at specific times of day or night

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  • Just when I leave the house; otherwise, my dog is always out.

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  • My dog is is gated in a room when I'm out, so there's no need for a crate.

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  • Only at night for sleeping.

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  • Only for gentle time-outs, to help discern good/bad behavior.

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  • I have a crate, but never use it.

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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have gotten way out of the habit of crating Dexter. He either has the run of the house (doors to bedrooms/bathrooms closed), or he's gated in the kitchen. He sleeps on the couch in the living room and is very well-behaved doing so.

But I wonder if I'm making some kind of mistake by all but abandoning the idea of crating him for at least SOME of the time. When he was a little pup, he took to crate training well, so I don't believe there will be any anxiety about spending some time in there if necessary.

So, for those of you who are not in the process of crate training - i.e. you have an older dog who accepts his crate - how much time is spent in the crate, "just because"?? I feel like I'm not qetting my point across - I don't HAVE to crate him when we leave the house, he stays gated in the kitchen. I don't HAVE to crate him at bedtime, he sleeps very nicely on the couch, with full run of the house. So should I still crate him from time to time just to keep him used to it?

What do you guys do?
 

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I will post my reply instead of voting :) Kirby/Dex are on a schedule (i.e. "crated" Mon-Fri when we're at work)...

Besides our normal schedule, Dexter is sent to his "area" and Kirby to his crate when 1) they needs a time out (really just for Dex - Kirby is rarely bad) or 2) if we are going out and they will be home alone for more than 4-5 hrs.

I understand your point though. If we are off work for longer than a weekend...we try to crate Kirby for at least a small bit of time. He's not thrilled with going to his crate everyday (Dex doesn't mind his "area" at all) so we like to keep him from getting totally out of practice.
 

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Tanner (19 months) is limited to the kitchen and family room when we are gone during the day via an xpen opened to form a gate. Sometimes we leave the "gate" up so he won't go to living-room window to bark.

At night he has run of the house.

I may start putting him in his xpen when visitors come for 10 minutes to settle him down. We are working on that behavior.

I think I will always keep the xpen handy :wink:
 

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We had started letting Lucas sleep outside of his crate, on the floor in our bedroom, but recently started him back in the crate at night to sleep and when we are gone. With the new addition coming in April, just thought it would be easier, if we went back to the crate routine... since that is what the puppy will have to do as well...
 

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We use the crate 100% of the time when we're out and all night, every night. Other than that it's an hour or two here or there when Sadie needs to be reminded that she's a dog :wink:
 

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I think that we will always use the crate to some extent to keep Gromit comfortable with it. We do plan on taking him with us on trips to visit family in CO during the summers and having the crate will make things more comfortable all the way around. Hotels that allow dogs often require them to be crated and at the realtive's houses I think he will like having his own familiar den to retreat to. At this point in time, he loves his crate and would lay in it all day if he we would sit still in the bedroom with him!! Actually today he has been in there all day since my husband is working from a computer in the bedroom so Gromit is getting to be with Daddy and be in his crate at the same time!

I actually used to do something similar with my kids!! For bed time they would be in their crib but for naps they would be in a pack-n-play in a different room. Then when we traveled or went somewhere all day, they would have a familiar "bed" to sleep in and would go right to sleep.
 

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kumo (2 years) is shut in his crate when we go out, and when we're doing training with ursus (4 months). he also sleeps in the crate at night voluntarily, with the door open.

last fall over a period of about a week we tried leaving him out of the crate when we went out. while he didn't make a mess or destroy anything, we tape recorded him in our absence and for some reason he barked and whined for quite a while each time -- something he never does in the crate. we decided that it must be more stressful or something for him to be out of the crate when we're not here, so we went back to using the crate.

-em
 

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Denver's crate is still set up as he likes to go there.
He has free run of the house, so it is his choice.
He will be two in May, and has had free run since about 11 months.
 

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Dakota's soft crate is set-up in the living room in case he WANTS to use it. He has had free run of the house since he was, gosh--about 5 or 6 months. But then again, my DH is retired and mostly home with Dakota. Sometimes Dakota will go in his crate to chew a bully or a bone when Sparky is there and he doesn't want to be challenged. Sparky never demands that Dakota give up a bone, he will just lie close and watch until Dakota gives it up on his own. Dakota is NOT an alpha. Soooo his crate is 'his' space that we protect for him--we don't let Sparky in Dakota's crate at any time.
 

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Nicky is 17 months old and he hasn't been crated since before Thanksgiving (he was about 13 or so months old then). He outgrew his crate! It said it was for a dog up to 90 lbs., but Nicky got too tall for it and couldn't stand up inside it.

He sleeps on a dog bed next to my bed and when I'm out he has the run of the house, except for the upstairs bonus room, which is my quilting studio. The crate is folded up in the garage.
 

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Marley is almost 11 months...man that time has gone by so fast!!! He sleeps in our room on a big "doggie" cushion. We keep a crate in the family room which he is in when we are out and he often enjoys relaxing in it when we are home. It's open and he comes and goes, throughout the day. Usually after fetching and catching or indoor romps.

We hope to give him the run of the house eventually when we are out, little by little, starting sometime soon, and going slowly.
 

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Tyke has slept on the foot of my bed since she was 4 months old (now almost 9 months old). The only time we crate her is if Mom and I both leave the house (she has a giant one that allows room for her food an toys). I also leave a crate in the backseat of my car for her to ride in, because I think she is safer that way than if she were just roaming around in the car.
 

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We crate Pixie through the night and when we go out. Partly because she's not fully housebroken, and partly because my son leaves little toys lying around sometimes, and I don't want to risk her chewing something I didn't see and getting into trouble.
 
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