How to Train Your Dog to Stop Barking in His Crate

Medium
1-6 Weeks
Behavior

Introduction

You are so pleased that your dog enjoys being in his crate. However, he's recently started barking for attention while crated. It doesn't make sense. He has an empty bladder and full stomach, and has a super-comfy bed, so what could he want? 

He barks so much you feel duty-bound to check he's okay. But every time you go back in the room, there he is, sitting up wagging his tail looking happy to see you. Indeed, you began to suspect he was barking for attention and out of frustration, you start shouting at him to be quiet. This doesn't seem to work either as he still barks...louder and longer than ever before. 

Unfortunately, what you failed to realize is you've accidentally rewarded the dog's bad behavior with attention. Popping back in to check on him and shouting are wonderful rewards, to a dog's way of thinking. Just how do you break this bad habit? 

Defining Tasks

In an ideal world, in the first instance, your dog wouldn't start barking in the crate at all. This is achieved through correctly crate training your pooch so that he is happy in the crate and doesn't feel the need to bark. To do so, consistent training is needed along with providing a crate that is comfy and fun to be in. If your dog does get into the habit of vocalizing while in this happy place, there are tips to try.

The first move is to retrain your dog so that he discovers barking isn't rewarded. Know the dos and don'ts of a suitable crate and the experiences in it. And be aware of how to associate crate time as a good time. Apply the rules and methods in a kind but firm and unchanging way, because lapses send out mixed messages and can encourage your furry buddy to slide back into bad habits. 

Also, don't expect the problem to be sorted overnight. The more established your dog's barking habit while in the crate, the longer it's going to take to correct it. Remember, the noise may temporarily get worse but will eventually stop. It's a doable task that takes just a few steps.

Getting Started

A few key points about the crate should be covered first. How about the size of the crate? Your dog should be able to stand up and turn around with ease. That is the ideal size because any larger, and it will not feel cozy. As well, some dogs with a crate that is too large will decide to use a corner as a spot to relieve themselves. Then, you have a whole other problem to sort out.

Make sure the crate is a welcoming place with a cozy bed. Some pet parents will even place an old, worn sweatshirt inside. This often soothes the dog, due to the familiar scent. Sturdy toys and a crate cover round out the comfort of the space.

Have treats on hand and be ready to exercise your dog regularly and fully. Finally, to get started in calming a barking dog, you may need to take a few steps back and train your dog all over again.

The Positive Association Method

Most Recommended
10 Votes
Step
1
Make the crate the best
Really, you want your dog's crate to be a place they want to rest in. Try covering the crate on three sides so that it is more like a private den, and a place your dog can call their own.
Step
2
Treat time
When your dog is outside with another family member, hide a few treats in the crate. Place them under the blanket, inside a chew toy, and at the entrance to the crate. This is to entice your dog to go there on their own. Let them seek the treats on their own time.
Step
3
Crated mealtime
Once your pup has had a few days of finding fun treats on his own in the crate, feed him his meals there to continue a positive association with the space. On occasion, close the door when you feed him and leave him in the crate for 10 minutes afterward. Don't leave him any longer than that because he'll need a potty break after eating.
Step
4
Gradual stays
A dog should never be confined to a crate for hours on end when you are home. Dogs are social creatures and understandably want to be where you are. However, if you are working on a task such as using cleaners or painting, then the crate may be necessary. Other than when you are at work or not home, let your dog be part of the family.
Step
5
Nighttime necessities
If you are crating your dog at night, feel free to let them share your bedroom. Crating them away from you at night may set the stage for barking. If you eventually want them out of the room, crate them in the room and once they are over the barking phase, move the crate out of the room inches per night until they are in another space for sleeping.
Recommend training method?

The Dos and Don'ts Method

Effective
7 Votes
Step
1
Do: consider your schedule
Before you begin working with your dog to break the habit of barking while in the crate, give thought to your schedule and work or home life requirements and work out a plan.
Step
2
Do: consider your dog's schedule
Think about your pup's requirements. Take into account his age, potty training stage, best mealtimes, and so on. You want to pinpoint the most appropriate times for crate training and barking avoidance.
Step
3
Don't: put him in hungry
Make sure that your dog is not hungry when you put him in the crate. The eating window shouldn't be any longer than 90 minutes before you put your pooch in the crate.
Step
4
Don't: forget the pee break
Once you've fed your four-legger, take him out for a pee break before crate time. Remember, dogs often have a need to have a bowel movement in the morning after eating. Be sure to allow for plenty of time.
Step
5
Do: provide toys and outlets for play
You can't blame a dog for being bored in the crate. Give your companion stimulating outlets like a Kong-type toy to lick and chew on when confined. Take the sturdy toy and fill it with moistened kibble and dog-safe peanut butter. Freeze it, and give it to your dog only on the occasions when he goes in the crate.
Step
6
Do: tire him out
Exercise is a key component to a dog's life. A happy and tired dog who has enjoyed a long walk and a rousing gamer of fetch or two will relax and rest in the crate. When you are working to stop the barking habit, make sure your dog has had plenty of exercise to tire him out.
Step
7
Don't: use the crate as punishment
Your dog's crate cannot be used as punishment. If you do that, your pooch will associate it as such. Make the crate a fun and relaxing place to be and the vibe will soon take over.
Recommend training method?

The Not Respond Method

Least Recommended
2 Votes
Step
1
Convincing your dog otherwise
Training your dog to not bark in their crate means convincing them that the action brings no rewards. This means no patting and no treats when they are vocalizing in a negative manner while in the crate.
Step
2
Don't call out
Along with not responding through petting or any other type of face to face contact is to not shout from the other room, either. Calling out an order sometimes seems as though you are joining in, encouraging your pup to bark louder.
Step
3
Music to the ears
If you have a pooch who is insisting on barking while in the crate, respond from afar by piping relaxing music into the room where they are crated. This may provide a distraction and will also drown out the sound for you so that you can be firmer in your resolve.
Step
4
White noise
Your dog may be barking at the sounds they hear in the street or outside the window. White noise is a solution used in many circumstances as a way to drown out unwelcome sound. Give your dog a quieter space by running a fan or humidifier in the room.
Step
5
DAP
Dog appeasing pheromones are a natural way that some pet parents calm a barking dog. After all, your pup is barking for a reason. Buy an infuser and plug it in near your pooch's crate. The DAP may provide a calming sensation for your dog.
Recommend training method?

Success Stories and Training Questions

Training Questions and Answers

Question
Bear
German Shepherd
9 Weeks
-1 found helpful
Question
-1 found helpful
Bear
German Shepherd
9 Weeks

We have had bear for almost 1 week. I don’t believe he was raised indoor. When we put him in his kennel at night he goes crazy! Barking, howling, whining, anything to get out. We can’t sleep! Any suggestions on how to assure him we will be back and he is ok?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sheryl, First of all, give him another week to adjust. It is normal for puppies to protest for the first two weeks. To make it easier for him also check out this Wag article and follow all three methods with him during daytime crating also, to help him generally get comfortable with being inside the crate. Especially work on the "Surprise" method. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

I swear to god my dog sounds like he is dying!!! OR GETTING STABBED

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Goofy
Yorkipoo
1 Year
2 found helpful
Question
2 found helpful
Goofy
Yorkipoo
1 Year

Hi! We have recently trained my family dog to be in his cage at night. It was completely fine, he would sleep in his cage for the past couple of months. Suddenly he has been barking like crazy in his cage at night. We always make sure he is fed and does not need to pee. Nothing about our routine has changed, he just suddenly started barking.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Jennifer, To help with the barking try improving his desire to be in the crate during the day. To do this, practice leaving the door open to the crate and when he is not looking sprinkling treats in front of the crate and inside for him to find. This way he will begin to go into the crate on his own. Also practice feeding him his dinner in a stuffed Kong or similar chew toy inside the crate. The best way to stuff the Kong is to place his dinner in a bowl with water ahead of time. Let the food soak up all the water so that it is soft, then loosely stuff the Kong with the wet food. When the Kong is stuffed then place the Kong into a Ziplock bag, and then place the entire thing into the freezer to freeze. If Goofy needs extra incentive, then you can mix a little peanut butter or cheese into the food mush also. Avoid any Peanut Butter that contains Xylitol though. As Xylitol is extremely toxic to dogs and added to some sweet human foods. It is best to have two or more Kong type toys and stuff them all at the same time so that you can just grab one out of the freezer whenever you need it. When he is quietly eating his stuffed Kong, then walk over to him and tell him "Quiet" while you drop treats such as more kibble into his crate. This is to teach him the word "Quiet" and to teach him that being quiet and calm earns him rewards, so that he will begin to form a habit of being quiet. Make sure that when he barks that you do not let him out until he is quiet. If you believe that he needs to go to the bathroom when he is barking, then distract him so that he becomes quiet, then when he is quiet take him outside to go potty on the leash. Make the entire trip very boring and calmly bring him right back inside after he goes potty and place him back into his crate, so that he does not think asking to go potty means that he gets to play or get attention. Make sure that he has received enough exercise during the day as well. Lastly, place something inside of his crate to occupy him at night. He might be barking out of boredom. Something like a chew toy or other safe toy to give him something to do when he wakes it important. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Dixie
Yorkie
10 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Dixie
Yorkie
10 Months

So I have a yorkie and she is super quiet in her crate when I am in the room as soon as I leave she freaks out I have done the quiet command that is why when I am in there she is quiet. She will not listen to anyone but me. She is very attached to me. I am also having problems with her not wanting to lay down when I tell her down I feel like she is trying to be alpha all of a sudden.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello April, It sounds like Dixie needs to learn how to be alone, be more independent from you, and probably respect and trust you more. There are several things you can do to help that overall. I would recommend utilizing at least two of the methods from this Wag! article to work on the respect. The article addresses listening problems but those same methods are also useful for addressing respect issues, without being overly confrontational and physical. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you I would also recommend working on some independence with her. I would recommend specifically practicing commands that require her to stay away from you, such as a distance "Down" "Stay", distance "Sit" "Stay", "Out", "Place" or "Bed", and teach her not to rush the crate door when you open it, but it stay inside until you have told her "OK". After you have taught her to not to leave the crate until given permission, even when the door is open, and have taught her the "Place" command, then I would work on enforcing her staying in those locations while you get things done in the next room, or sit on the couch ten or twenty feet away. To enforce this, attach a long leash to her, hold the end of the leash, and anytime she gets up firmly and quietly lead her back to the Place or crate and block her way until she stops trying to get off the "Place". This will help her learn to be more respectful of you and to be more independent and thus less anxious in the crate. When you first introduce the new rules and consistency she may appear even more anxious for a couple of weeks while she is learning how to handle the new rules, but this is normal and should help her to develop self-control and better copping skills. Also, do not let her out of the crate and do not return to the room until she is quiet for at least two seconds. When you put her in the crate give her a Kong or other hollow chew toy, stuffed with food to give her something to do other than bark in the crate, and to make the crate more pleasant. The Kong will have the added bonus of automatically rewarding her while she is quiet because she will not be able to bark well while chewing on the Kong. To deal with her resisting the Down command check out this Wag! article. Specifically read "The Leash Pressure Method". https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-to-lay-down Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Maya
Labrador Retriever
8 Months
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Maya
Labrador Retriever
8 Months

She willingly goes in her crate. She barks all night in the crate.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Germain, Have you recently started to crate train her or has this issue been going on for a while? If this is recent, then ignore the barking, and do not let her out of the crate until she is quiet any time that you use the crate. That way she will learn that barking does not equal freedom. If the problem is recent then time and consistency alone might solve your problem, as long as you are patient and do not give in to her barking. Whether the barking is recent or not, only let her out of her crate when she is being quiet. If she is fully potty trained then you can give her a frozen stuffed Kong while she is quiet, when you place her inside of the crate at night. The barking is likely attention seeking or boredom barking. To prepare the Kong, place her dog food into a bowl and cover the food with just enough water to cover the top of the food. Let the food and water sit in the bowl until all of the water absorbs into the food and makes the food mushy. Loosely stuff the food into the Kong toy, and place the stuffed Kong into a Zip-Lock bag. Place the bag with the stuffed Kong inside into the freezer to freeze. It is easiest to buy multiple Kongs and stuff them all at the same time, then you can just grab one out of the freezer when you need it at night. Only give her a Kong at night if she is completely potty trained, otherwise eating the food might make her need to go to the bathroom and cause an accident. By eight months many dogs will be alright with the food, since it is time released being frozen, but you will have to try it to see if it equals a late night potty break or not. By giving her the Kong you are automatically rewarding her for being quiet, since she cannot bark and chew very well at the same time. It will also give her something to do when she wakes up at night bored. Furthermore, it will make the experience of being inside of the crate more pleasant so that she is more likely to enjoy the crate and relax. It is very important to make sure that she is receiving enough mental and physical exercise during the day. If she is crated all day without periods of exercise and mental stimulation, then that can very easily lead to problems sleeping at night and feeling restless and bored. Both of which lead to barking. It is just as important to stimulate her mentally as it is to stimulate her physically, so do not neglect that one. An easy way to do this is to spend thirty minutes every day teaching her new tricks or commands. The best ones are the ones that are new, challenging, or require a lot of focus. These will wear her out the most. To both mentally and physically stimulate her you can also take her on a walk and make her perform commands throughout the entire walk. For example, have her Heel attentively while you move, Sit when you stop, do a Down Stay at a stop sign, Watch you with eye contact randomly, and anything else that you wish to teach her. Also work on teaching her a "Quiet" command, so that you can communicate to her what she should be doing instead of barking. For how to train "Quiet" read this Wag! article: https://wagwalking.com/training/be-quiet https://wagwalking.com/training/bark-softly-1 Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Louie
Bichon chihuahua fox terrier
14 Weeks
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Louie
Bichon chihuahua fox terrier
14 Weeks

Louie has a crate that he is happy to go in any time of the day or evening but as soon as we cover it over,turn the lights off and put him in our laundry room to go to sleep he barks for around 2 hrs non stop. We initially tried just leaving him in the laundry with the door closed and his cage open but he also barked. We don’t go into him or speak to him, we just ignore him but after 2 weeks I’m getting stuck what to do next to stop the barking.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Denise, Purchase a baby gate and install it at the entrance of the laundry room, so that you can leave the door open. Crate him in that room during the day without covering the crate, but do turn off the light in that room. If he starts barking immediately, then as soon as he becomes quiet return to the laundry room and drop treats into his crate, and then leave again. Repeat this whenever he becomes quiet. If he does not bark, then every ten minutes that he stays quiet return to the laundry room also and drop treats into his crate while he is quiet, then leave again. Repeat this often during the day, until he can be crated in the laundry room, with the light turned off for up to two hours without barking. During the day and at night you can also try giving him a Kong or other hollow, durable chew toy, stuffed with dog food when you first place him inside the crate. This should give him something to focus on other than barking, will reward him for being quiet, and should decrease the anxiety. The goal is to get him used to being in that specific room in the dark while crated, and to reward him for being quiet in there. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Rico
Spanish Water Dog
8 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Rico
Spanish Water Dog
8 Weeks

My puppy is quiet in his crate at night until he has to use the bathroom then he whines. But during the day he barks the entire time I’m at work. I come home every three hours to let him out and he is barking when I leave and barking when I come home. I have tried chew toys in his crate and wearing him out before I put him in there. But he continues to bark and whine.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Colton, Rico probably needs more time to learn. Eight weeks is a very young age for a puppy to be home alone all day. It is wonderful that you come home to take him potty every three hours but he is probably lonely and bored, and is barking for attention. What type of chew toys have you tried? What I would suggest is to give him something to do during the day. There are a couple of ways that you can do that. The first way is to purchase hollow chew toys, if you have not already done so, and then to place part of Rico's dog food for the day into a bowl with water, let the food and water sit out for about three hours, until the food has absorbed the water and the pieces have grown about three sizes, then mix a little bit of liver paste or peanut butter in with the food mush, and drop globs of food into the hollow chew toy, and freeze the entire thing. Do not stuff the food too tightly though or your young puppy will not be able to get it out, and do not fill the toy completely to the brim, leave just a little space so that the food can move around inside the toy when it thaws. Give him one of these Kongs when you leave and you place him into the crate. Because it is frozen and smells like peanut butter or liver it should keep him occupied for longer that just a plain chew toy. If you are using a Kong for this, although your pup might be using the puppy sized Kongs in general, choose the Kong that is one size larger than the puppy ones for this, so that the food fits better. Let your puppy eat his meals out of the toys, so that he is entertained. Also, if you are able to, when you come home to let him out, if you have ten or fifteen minutes, then in addition to taking him potty, spend just a few minutes teaching him something new. A little bit of training, where he is focusing on something learning something challenging or new, will wear him out faster than even exercise can. Third, if he will not have an accident, then place his crate into an exercise pen and place a food dispensing training device in the exercise pen with him. The device will reward him with his own dog food, such as his breakfast kibble added to it, every time that he is quiet and calm, and will in essence train him to be quiet for you. There are a couple of these devices on the market right now. One is called "PetTutor", the other "AutoTrainer". That approach will only work if he does not eliminate in the exercise pen though. He is still very young so you may want to remember those devices for later, when he is a bit older. Last, if you happen to have a friend that will keep him for you during the day on certain days, you could have that friend crate him for part of the day at her house and work on teaching him to be quiet in the crate during the day. To teach that, have her give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate, like I mentioned before, and also go over to his crate every few minutes that he has been quiet, and drop treats into the crate without letting him out. Doing this will encourage him to be quiet, and overtime she can increase the amount of time that passes between treat drops, until he can go long periods of time in the crate without crying. When she is not crating him, she can give him the attention that he needs by playing with him, training him, or exercising him, but it is still extremely important that if someone else keeps him he or she practice crating him during the day, so that he will learn to be quiet in the crate. View it just like any other skill that he has to learn in training. He needs someone to teach him and time to practice it, without making it so hard at first that he cannot succeed. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Sadie
Labrador Retriever
1 Year
0 found helpful
Question
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Sadie
Labrador Retriever
1 Year

My dog will go to her crate when I give the command “crate” but we have tried getting her used to being alone in it and it has not worked yet. She will go in but is sooooo loud no matter what every time she is left. It is to the point where my neighbors in my apartment complex are wanting to complain on me. I take her to day care most of the time, but that is expensive and it’s hard to find a sitter literally every day. Please help!

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Sadie
Labrador Retriever
1 Year
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Sadie
Labrador Retriever
1 Year

My dog will go to her crate when I give the command “crate” but we have tried getting her used to being alone in it and it has not worked yet. She will go in but is sooooo loud no matter what every time she is left. It is to the point where my neighbors in my apartment complex are wanting to complain on me. I take her to day care most of the time, but that is expensive and it’s hard to find a sitter literally every day. Please help!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Emily, Sadie is probably working herself up in the crate due to anxiety and boredom. Barking is a self-rewarding behavior and once a dog begins, it can be hard for some dogs to stop. Sadie needs something to interrupt her barking, something besides barking to occupy her time, and rewards for being quiet. There are a couple of options you can try for this. How positive or how corrective the method is will depend on what she responds to. First provide her with something to do other than barking. You can purchase a hollow chew toy, such as a Kong, and fill it with moistened dog food, that has been soaked in water until it turns to mush and then mixed with soft cheese or peanut butter, and frozen. If she will be alright with a bit more freedom then you can contain her in a small, dog proofed room, such as a bathroom, or a sturdy exercise pen, with her crate inside, and then purchase a treat dispensing device that will periodically reward her for quietness and place that inside the room or pen. Pet Tutor is one such devise and Auto Trainer is another one. Whenever you are at home, practice crating her for an hour or two, and whenever she is quiet go over to the crate and drop treats into the crate. Do not let her out until she is quiet. If she only barks in the crate when you are gone and the treat dispenser or stuffed Kong do not work, then you can set up a camera, use a high quality electronic remote collar with it's controller and interrupt her barks with stems and vibration. Then when she is quiet return to her and reward her with treats and freedom from the crate. I would recommend only using this method under the supervision of an experienced trainer, who is knowledgeable in the proper use of electronic collars, and uses positive reinforcement as much as possible in the training, even though there will be a need for correction too. The correction should serve as a way to interrupt her escalating mental state, so that you can then have enough opportunities to reward the correct, quiet behavior. If you go this route then be sure to purchase only a high quality electronic remote collar, such as Garmen, E-collar Technologies, Dogtra, or Sportdog brands. Less expensive, poorer quality collars can be dangerous. A good collar should have at least fifty different stem levels, so that you can use the lowest possible setting that your dog responds to. A qualified trainer can also help you to find what is called your dog's working level, the lowest level that your dog will properly respond to. This level should only be mildly uncomfortable for almost all of the training, and never dangerously high or scary. These are just a couple of the reasons why I recommend only using an electronic collar under the supervision of an experienced expert. Electronic collars are very effective and less harsh than many tools when used properly but they can be damaging if misused. One of the benefits of a remote collar over the more popular bark collars, is that you can control the level of stem and ensure that you are teaching your dog what he needs to know, and rewarding him for the correct behavior at the same time. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Truffles
LLhasa Apso
9 Years
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Truffles
LLhasa Apso
9 Years

Hi my dog is 9 years old she has been sleeping in her crate since she was a puppy never had a problem only when it thunders. I di take her out and she will sleep in my room she does ok. About a month ago she started barking at night. I don’t understand why. How can I stop her from barking?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Vicky, Has Truffles been peeing more during the day? If so she might be barking because she needs to go potty. As dogs age their bladder capacities typically decrease and they have to be taken outside more frequently again. She also might have a urinary tract infection if she has been peeing more during the day also. If either of those things seem to be the cause, then I would recommend visiting your vet, and if the issue is incontinence because of age, you will need to either take her out during the night or create an indoor toilet area using a litter box, a pee pad, or a dog toilet made of out a litter box and a piece of grass sod. You can then place her crate with the door open and the toilet area inside an exercise pen at night. Many people find that they have more success teaching their pup to use a litter box than a pee pad because pee pads resemble rugs and floor mats, and some dogs confuse the household items with the pee pad, others are fine however. If she can still hold her bladder for long periods during the day without needing to go outside and without having an accident then the problem is probably fear related, since she has been sleeping in the crate for so long without an issue before. She might have been in the crate when something scary happened and now associates the crate with the fearful experience. If this seems to be the problem, then you can help her to like the crate again by hiding treats in the crate for her to randomly find during the day, giving her a Kong or other hollow chew-toy, stuffed with dog safe food such as kibble mixed with peanut butter or a bit of cheese, while she is in the crate, and drop treats into the crate when she is inside and being quiet, and play with her near the crate by tossing a ball into the crate and letting her retrieve it out of it. She also might be experiencing fear or paranoia because of a medical issue. If her hearing or vision is impaired or she is declining mentally due to an illness related to age, then that can cause new behaviors like barking to begin. You will need to get her evaluated by your vet if you believe that to be the cause. Pay attention to her daytime behavior and watch for any signs of deteriorating mental health, hearing issues, or vision issues. If the issues are medical, then you can try making the crate a fun and pleasant place again by doing what I described above with the treats and toys, but you might also need to address the underlying medical issue however your vet recommends in order to see results. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Rudy
Irish Doodle
1 Year
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Rudy
Irish Doodle
1 Year

My dog is about a yr old and was doing great with his crate until about 2 months ago... he had a surgery for a bowel obstruction caused by eating a piece of rubber. During this time he was sick/recovering we allowed him to sleep in our bedroom to keep and eye on him/ make sure he wasn’t sick or bothering his incision. I then had a baby and because was up for feedings allowed him in our room ( yes bad idea). Now the baby is sleeping through the night and we tried to return him to sleeping in his crate at night in the kitchen but he barks and whines all night. He wants to sleep in our bed. How do we retrain him... it’s hard to ignore because he’s been waking the baby and throwing her schedule off as well.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Megan, Congratulations on the baby! To get Rudy used to the crate again and to wake the baby up as little as possible while doing the training, start by crate training him during the day time. When the baby is awake, between naps, place Rudy into his crate in the room where you would like for him to sleep at night. Give him a chew toy such as a stuffed Kong or something else that is safe and he enjoys. When he barks ignore him. As soon as he becomes quiet, very calmly go over to his crate and drop a few treats inside, and then leave again. If he remains quiet then go to his crate again every ten to fifteen minutes and drop treats into it again. As he improves you can space the treats out to every thirty minutes. Repeat all of this for one hour every day until he no longer barks in the crate during the day. Only let him out of the crate at the end of the hour when he is being quiet. When he no longer barks during the day while in the crate for the hour, then gradually work him up to four hours staying in the crate every other day. When he can do that, then put him into the crate at night, up to an hour before you put the baby to bed in case he barks, and if he barks ignore his barking. This hour will hopefully give him enough time to get his protesting out and then be quiet since you have already reinforced during the day that barking will not get him out of the crate. When he is quiet and the baby is in bed then let him out again about an hour before you plan to go to bed to have a bit of relax time and go potty one last time, but do not do pay attention to him or do anything fun with him during that time. You do not want him to look forward to getting out of the crate in the evening. If he barked when you first put him in, then leave him out of the crate for the rest of that night but ignore him and do not snuggle with him or give him affection or space on the bed or anything special. The first night that you place him into the crate and he does not bark earlier in the evening, then return him to the crate after the potty break and relax time, to sleep there for the rest of the night. When he will go back into the crate quietly for the rest of the night, then you can simply begin to crate him at bedtime again. If he regresses at any point, then go back to daytime and evening crate training sessions again until he is quiet again. Any refreshers he needs in the future should be easier though since he already knows the rules and simply needs reminding. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Oswald
Dachshund
9 Weeks
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Oswald
Dachshund
9 Weeks

When we put our dog in the crate he barks and whines a lot. The only way to get it to stop is to sit by his crate until he goes to sleep. This process repeats every time he has to go into his crate whether it's at night or during the day.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Lauren, To help Oswald learn to like his crate and learn to be quiet while he is inside, purchase a Kong chew toy or other safe, hollow chew toy, and stuff the chew toy with food and place the Kong into the crate with your pup when you first put him inside. To stuff the chew toy you can either place your pup's own food, mixed with small treats, into it, and then cover the opening part of the way with a larger treat, so that only a couple of pieces of food can come out at a time. You can also place your puppy's hard food into a bowl and cover it with water and let it sit out until the food turns into mush. When the food is mushy then you can mix a bit of peanut butter or soft cheese into it and loosely stuff the Kong with the mixture, and then freeze the Kong, so that the reward will last longer. To save time, you can purchase multiple Kongs or other hollow chew toys and stuff several at a time, and then simply give your pup one from your freezer whenever you need to crate him. Make sure that you DO NOT use Peanut Butter with Xylitol because Xyliol is extremely TOXIC to dogs. Giving your pup a Kong stuffed with food with automatically reward him for being quiet because he cannot effectively bark and get the food out of the Kong at the same time, it will also help any boredom, and it will decrease anxiety because the Kong is rewarding and will help him to look forward to the crate. When Oswald is out of the crate, then leave the door to the crate open and sprinkle treats inside for him to find. Do this very often, so that he will begin to go into the crate on his own in hopes of finding treats. When you place him into the crate, every time that he gets quiet for even a second, go over to him and drop a couple of treats into the crate and then leave again. At first you are only looking for a second of quiet behavior, so that you can teach him to be quiet by rewarding him when he is quiet for even a second. As he improves, then wait until he remains quiet for a bit longer and longer before you reward him. Reward frequently at first though, and go slowly. When he does cry, ignore the barking until he becomes quiet. Do not let him out when he is barking and do not pay attention to him. You want him to learn to settle down and chew his Kong, and to be quiet in order to receive treats and be let out. Nine weeks is also very young. Be patient with Oswald. If you do all of the above, then the barking should gradually get better, but it should also improve with age. Crate training typically takes about two weeks begin to see a bit of improvement. It will take much longer than that to see complete improvement though, so be patient. Crate training now can prevent a life of problem behaviors such as peeing in the house, destructive chewing, separation anxiety when used correctly, and barking if she is given something else to do like chew on a Kong. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Blanket
Italian Greyhound
1 Year
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Blanket
Italian Greyhound
1 Year

We have had Blanket for nearly a year and he has been crated at night the whole time. He has had difficulty sleeping through the night and has often cried during this time. He struggles to sleep past 4.40am and cries/howls for attention. He does this solely out of wanting attention. Unfortunately we live in a block of flats and have been concerned about disturbing the neighbours and getting complaints. My partner has been getting up with him and staying up which I know is causing the problem to escalate. We have tried going cold turkey with going to him whilst he is crying. We have done this for the past 5 days but we are unsure if we are progressing. The neighbours upstairs have already complained and have no understanding of the situation. Are we doing the right thing and how long does this behaviour take to show improvement? Are there any tips or advice you could give that would help. The issue is mainly concentrated in the early mornings which we have tried to assist with by putting him to bed later but to no success. He takes himself to his bed at 10 every night if we don't! Please help as we are at our wits end.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Anna, Ideally you would simply ignore the barking and after about a month or two, hopefully less time, he would learn through consistency that barking is pointless and he should go back to sleep. Because of your situation with the neighbors and because this has been going on for a year, I recommend a form of correction at this point. To do this, first, make sure that he is receiving enough stimulation during the day both mentally and physically. Also ensuring that he is seeing sunlight for at least fifteen minutes during the day might help. A great way to accomplish all of that is to teach him to "Heel" and take him on a couple of fifteen-forty-five minute walks each day where he has to perform obedience exercises during the walk. That might look like having him walk right beside you and pay attention to you, then having him sit or lay down whenever you stop, and having him stay for a a couple of minutes every once in a while throughout the walk. It is very important that the walk be focused and structured so that he is having to pay a lot of attention to you, which will stimulate him mentally and wear him out more. This is also great for his obedience and manners training. You can also provide him with stuffed chew-toys, such as Kongs stuffed with dog food, during the day during quiet times, to stimulate him and to make sure that he is not sleeping too much during the day out of boredom. Once those things are taken care of and you know he is actually tired during the morning, then when he wakes up and barks, you can try ignoring it for a couple more days or you can move onto correction. If he still barks while you ignore him even after ensuring that he is getting enough stimulation during the day, then purchase an air spray collar or a high quality electric remote training collar with both stem and vibration options. If you try the air spray collar then make sure that it does not contain a scent such as citronella, but is simply air. Allow the collar to spray him whenever he barks to interrupt the behavior. When he becomes quiet and stays quiet for fifteen minutes, then quietly go over to him and drop a treat inside the crate, then leave again. Do this until it is time to let him out of the crate at a reasonable hour. Do not let him out when he is barking! If he is very sensitive, then the air collar might be all that you will need. If not, then you will need to move onto an electric remote collar with both a stimulation and a vibration setting. You can either try the air collar first or simply go straight to the remote collar. To use an electric collar properly, you will need to first teach him the "Quiet" command. To teach this, check out this Wag! article: https://wagwalking.com/training/stop-nuisance-barking While you are in the process of teaching him the "Quiet" command, place the collar on him while you are at home every day while the collar is turned off. This is to simply get him used to wearing it in preparation for training with it. Once you have taught him the "Quiet" command, then place the collar on him, high on his neck, right behind his ears, and tight enough for both metal pieces to make contact with his neck. It is important that the collar be fitted correctly, or the corrections might be inconsistent and less fair to him. Set the collar to the lowest setting while it is on him and carefully watch him while he is just hanging out and relaxed. Press the stimulation button once, and if you see him respond at all by scratching at it, tilting his head, making noise, looking around, moving his ears around, or indicating in any other way that he felt a little bit of something, then go no higher. You are looking for a very subtle response most of the time, so that you can use the collar on the lowest possible setting that he will respond to. If he does not respond noticeably to that level, then increase the stimulation level by one level, and then press the button while on the new level. Test each level two times, watching him carefully between each test, before moving onto the next level. Repeat this by going up one level at a time and then testing that level, until he indicates that he can feel a level. When he can feel a level, then that level is his "Working Level" and will be the setting that you will use to address the barking. Make sure that whatever collar you buy has at least sixty levels so that you can use the lowest level that he will respond to. Good brands to look for are: Dogtra, Garmin, E-Collar Technologies, and Sport Dog. Do not buy a cheap collar from China. These can be very dangerous and are what you hear horror stories about. A good collar should be uncomfortable and annoying at the proper level but not very painful. After you have found what level he responds to, then put him in situations where he will bark just a bit, and then when he barks tell him "Quiet". If he becomes quiet, then reward him with a treat. If he does not, then tell him "Aha" or "No", and press the stimulation button once to correct him with the collar. If he stops barking, then do not press the button again, if he continues barking, then repeat your "Aha" or "No" and press the button again right when he barks. Repeat this up to three times, and if he still is not responding, then go up one level on the collar. You can go up to two levels total on the collar, but if he still is not responding after that, make sure that the collar is on, working, and fitted correctly and making contact with his skin. Also expect this to take practice before he connects it so do not be too quick to increase the level. He may not understand just yet what he is being corrected for so it would be unfair to increase the level yet. Practice this until he connects the collar with his disobedience to your "Quiet" command. When he connects his disobedience to the collar by responding to your command better, then place the collar on him while he is in the crate at night. When he barks in the morning, calmly tell him "Quiet" one time and if he barks still, then press the button on the remote to stimulate the collar and correct him. Repeat this whenever he barks. If you believe that he really does need to use the bathroom because he is awake, then when he wakes up, take him to go potty on a leash without saying anything to him, and keep the trip as boring as possible. When he goes, then bring him back inside and put him straight back into the crate. Tell him "Quiet", and then correct any barking with the collar. While you are correcting him with the collar, go into the other room, so that he is not receiving any attention from you. Also do not repeat your "Quiet" command unless it has been thirty minutes and he is still barking. Even with the potty breaks, he should learn that waking up in the morning for attention is just not worth it and should eventually sleep through those early morning times if he is not being fed or given attention and is being corrected for barking. If that does not work within a month or less, then something else might be going on, and you will need to get in person professional help with his training, so that someone in person can assess his environment and his responses. Expect this training two take two weeks, once he clearly understands the meaning of the "Quiet" command. You might see results right away or it might take repetition, depending on his personality and your timing. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Buddy
Lab mix
5 Months
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Buddy
Lab mix
5 Months

We put our pup in crate before work ...he's fed ,walked ,given his favorite treat before I close door he has a comfy blanket in there ,water on door ,he barks the whole time from 6 am u till my daughter gets up and lets him outside to potty again and returns him before she leaves for school...she lets him out of crate at 2 ,I get home at 4 ...after hellos he immediately goes back into crate to retrieve the treats I gave him at 6 am ...he destroyed the metal crate we first used ...he tore my room to pieces so we got a heavy plastic one ...I have tried everything

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Alicia, I would recommend you look into Jeff Gellman from Solid K-9 Training's Separation Anxiety protocol. He has several great videos on Youtube and can be hired for phone consultations and Skype sessions. His protocol is very comprehensive and involves more than I can help you with without being there in person, but he essentially works on structure, respect, addressing the root anxiety, and teaching alternative behaviors and emotions regarding the crate. Before you go that route I would also recommend that you try giving Buddy a Kong chew toy stuffed with food and frozen, so that he has something to do while he is in the crate. I would also recommend practicing crate training while you are at home, and as soon as he becomes quiet for even a second, go over to him and toss treats into the crate for him. When he is quiet, then you can let him out, but do not let him out while he is barking. If all of that fails, then look into Jeff Gellman's separation anxiety protocol and work on adding structure there to help Buddy's insecurities and ingrained habit of barking. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Malcolm
Pembroke Welsh Corgi
2 Years
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Malcolm
Pembroke Welsh Corgi
2 Years

My 1 and 1/2 year old Corgi has been completely crate trained for well over a year. Recently, however he has started barking, whining, and scratching at the walls when he is in his crate at night. We have made sure his bladder is empty and he has comfortable bedding inside his crate. We have not been able to find a solution.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Lydia, I would suggest moving his crate to another room at least temporarily to see if that solves the issue. You might also try adding a sound machine to the area. If either of those solutions work, then he is probably hearing something at night, such as another dog or coyote outside howling, a high pitched electrical noise, a siren, or something else that he finds disruptive or frightening. Something else to consider is whether or not he had a traumatic experience while in the crate recently. If there was a frightening noise or his crate fell with him in it, or something else happened in the area that he associates with the crate, then that could also create an issue. If that is the case, then you can try desensitizing him to the crate by leaving the door open and regularly placing treats inside the crate for him to find on his own, and by stuffing a Kong with dog food and treats and giving it to him whenever you place him into the crate. Work on getting him used to being in the crate during the daytime also. Gradually working up to an hour during the day as he improves, and when you place him inside, give him a food stuffed Kong to chew on, and go over to him periodically while he is acting calm and drop treats into the crate for him, and then leave again. Practice this until he will remain calm in the crate for one hour. Do not let him out of the crate until he is quiet and calm for at least one second. If he is needing to pee more often, then usual during the daytime, then get him checked out for a urinary tract infection. That can cause him to feel like he needs to pee even though he just went, but he will need to go more frequently during the daytime too if that is the issue. Finally, it is also possible that he has simply learned that pitching a fit will earn him freedom. If he was let out of the crate while barking or whining at any point around the time when this started, then he might be repeating those behaviors simply because he wants out of the crate and figured out that pitching a fit will get him out. If that is the case, then ignore the bad behavior and do not let him out until he is being calm and quiet. You can also practice crating him during the daytime and going over to the crate and dropping treats inside when he becomes calm or remains calm for a few minutes in a row. It is typically easier to work on crate training during the daytime first, so that nighttime training is easier when you are tired. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Kloe
White lab and and Queensl
4 Months
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Kloe
White lab and and Queensl
4 Months

I put her in wire crate when I leave for work. I hear her barking. How long will she bark and will she be ok? I put her toys and blanket in with her

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello, Most puppies bark a lot during the first three days. At this age she will not be able to hold her bladder for longer than 5 hours in the crate, so just be sure that you are taking her potty that often or sooner or having a dog walker come by to do it if you can't. I wouldn't worry too much about how long she barks during the first three days. It can be a lot, which can break your heart, but doesn't hurt them and staying consistent can help pup adjust sooner and prevent separation anxiety in the long run. After three days adjusting, the barking should be closer to thirty minutes right when you leave, then she should settle down better. Each passing day the barking should get to be less and less as she gets used to the crate more. Typically crate training takes about two weeks for most pups. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below. When you are home to practice, such as for thirty minutes in the evening or on the weekend, practice the Surprise method from the Article linked below. When you leave for the day, also give her a food-stuffed chew toy, such as a dog food stuffed Kong. To make the kong last longer if she tends to get the food out quickly, place her dog food into a bowl, cover it with water, let it sit out until the food turns to mush, then mix a little liver paste or peanut putter into the mush (Avoid xylitol sweetener in peanut butters - it's toxic to dogs). Place a straw through the kongs' holes, very loosely stuff the mush mixture around the straw, then freeze the entire toy in a ziplock bag in the freezer overnight. When you crate her, grab the frozen kong from the freezer, remove the straw (the hole it leaves prevents suction), and give her the frozen Kong to eat in the crate. You can purchase several Kongs and also make these ahead of time, grabbing one from the freezer as needed. You can feed pup part of her meals as dog food stuffed kongs too. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Be careful of soft things like blankets in a crate. As much as we want to give our pups comfort, some puppies will potty on soft things or chew and swallow them, so you have to be careful what you leave in there while pup is unattended. Some pups do fine, but be aware. A bed like www.primopads.com can work well for pups who have issues with soft beds, and durable chew toys like dog food stuffed kongs can provide comfort. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Ollie
Mini golden retriever
7 Months
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Ollie
Mini golden retriever
7 Months

When do you cover the dog crate and when do you allow the dog to see what’s going on around him? Should it always be covered when he is home alone (we also have cats), or only when there is activity going on in the same room? Do we let one aid open she he can see outside the window?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Michelle, I would recommend keeping the side closest to the window covered at all times so that she does not learn to bark at things that she can see outside the window. I would almost always leave the other side, that faces the rest of the room, uncovered though. Having the crate covered when there is activity that she can hear going on in the same room can bother her even more than having the crate uncovered because she will know something is there but will simply not be able to see it which is frustrating for her and can make her feel insecure. When there is a lot of activity going on in a room, then I would either keep her in the room while she is awake and alert and give her food stuffed Kong for her to chew while she watches everything going on, or when it is time for her to settle down and relax or if the activity is too stimulating, then remove her crate from the room entirely and crate her in a different area of the house where it is quiet. When the room is completely quiet and calm, then you can cover all but one side of the crate if you prefer to make it darker for her. That way she can see out so does not feel like something can sneak up on her but the crate is darker which might make it easier for her to sleep while it is calm. If the cats are agitation her, then crate her in a room where they cannot get to her during the day. If the crate is covered, then she will still be able to smell them and know that they are there. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Ollie
Mini golden retriever
7 Months
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Ollie
Mini golden retriever
7 Months

Everything was going great with training and walking. One night, while we were out for a walk, neighborhood kids set off fireworks. Now Ollie refuses to go outside, especially at night. During the day, I take him out, he does his business and then pulls me back inside the house right away. At night it’s near impossible. We actually have to go through the garage, put him on the car, drive down the street and then he will go outside, but only for a moment and then he runs back to the car. I’ve heard you should not carry a dog outside if they are scared. How can we help him get over his new fear of outside at night?

Thank you,

Thank you.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Michelle, At this point Ollie might need a bit of tough love to show him that the fireworks are not the norm. Work on teaching him a Place command on something portable such as a towel. Teach him to stay on that towel no matter what while he is in a location where he feels same. When he understands the concept of staying on the towel and has been rewarded for doing so, then take the towel to a comfortable location outside. At first go somewhere that is not in sight of where the fireworks happened but somewhere where he is still uncomfortable. Have him do a "Place" command on the towel and do not let him off even if he shakes a bit, whines, and tries to bolt off. When he stays on the place, then praise him in an upbeat tone of voice and reward him if he will take a reward from you. Make the reward something great like chicken. Have him stay there for fifteen to twenty minutes the first time while he works through his fear and sees that nothing scary will happen to him. Try to remain upbeat yourself and sound confident. Do not baby him or act sorry for him. The idea is to instill confidence in him and show him that the outside world is normally boring and safe and to let him face his fear and see that nothing bad will happen to him. When he calms down a bit after ten or fifteen minutes, then quietly tell him "Okay" and let him get off of the towel. Wait until he relaxes a bit, even if that takes longer. While he is doing this, sit or stand nearby him and do something relaxing and boring yourself, like reading. Practice the "Place" command outside every day. As he improves, then increase the amount of time, until he is in "Place" for one hour. When he is relaxed enough to enjoy a toy, then give him a food stuffed Kong to chew on while he is on the towel. Once he is doing better with the "Place" command and willing to play, then go to the location that he is afraid of with several people and play Tug of War, Come and chasing games, Fetch, and anything else that is very fun for him and gets his mind off of where he is. Do this regularly to help him relax the rest of the way while outside. Even though the "Place" command may sound a bit harsh because you are making him face his fears and he will look pitiful at first, he needs to be forced to remain in that environment while things are calm, pleasant, and relaxing so that he can see that scary things do not normally happen outside. Once he sees that things are actually boring, then he will be able to be calm enough to learn. When he is calm enough to learn, then you can reward him with food and fun and generally make the experience of being outside extremely pleasant for him to help him overcome his belief that the outside world is scary, and to convince him that being outside is actually fun. When you work on the "Place" command outside be sure that he cannot slip out of his collar or harness because he will probably try to escape at first. Use both the leash and your body language to block him from getting off of the "Place". When he stops trying to get off, stays on the "Place", and calms down at all, reward him if he will take a treat or toy from you. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Timmy
Shih Tzu
14 Weeks
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Timmy
Shih Tzu
14 Weeks

Whenever I walk away fron his crate he always whines and barks, but he's fine when I sit next to his crate. What should I do?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Crispy, Timmy needs to learn how to handle separation from you and to self-sooth and entertain. He won't learn those things if you are with him every time. Purchase a hollow chew toy such as a Kong. Place his dog food into a bowl and cover the food with water. Let it sit out until the food turns into mush, then mix a little Peanut Butter or soft cheese into it. Grab the Kong or toy and very loosely stuff the Kong with the mush. Don't pack it down though. Place the Kong into a zip-lock bag and into the freezer to freeze overnight. You can also purchase multiple Kongs and stuff several at a time so that you can simply grab one from the freezer when you need one. When you place Timmy into the crate, then place a Kong inside with him and sprinkle pieces of food or treats around in the crate for him to pick up. After you do that, leave. It is normal for him to protest when you first begin to Crate Train. He doesn't know how to entertain himself or sooth himself yet and he needs the opportunity to learn. When you give him the opportunity by placing him into the crate, make it easier for him by giving him a food stuffed chew toy to focus on and help him feel better about the situation. Practice Crate Training while you are at home with him so that you can reward him for calming down. To reward him, wait until he calms down and becomes quiet for at least two seconds. When he is quiet, then go over to the crate and calmly drop several treats inside, then leave again. Do this several times, whenever he gets quiet or stays quiet for at least five minutes. After several times, while he is being quiet, go over to the crate, start to open the door, and if he tries to rush out, close it again. Practice this until you can open the door, leave it open, and he will say inside. When he is waiting inside and not rushing out, then tell him "Okay!" or "Free" in an inviting tone of voice and allow him to come out. You want to make time in the crate relaxing and fun and getting out of the crate more structured. Expect it to take him at least a couple of weeks doing this before he will simply relax and not bark while in the crate. If he eats the food in the Kong's well and you are placing him into the crate around meal times, then you can measure out his food for the day or that meal and let him eat it in the stuffed Kong to avoid too many calories and to make the stuffed toy even more exciting. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Bo
Lab pit mix
1 Year
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Bo
Lab pit mix
1 Year

I recently got Bo from a college friend who kept him in a kennel for majority of the time and before that he was adopted from a shelter. I’ve spent the summer giving him much needed love and working on kennel training him which he has done surprisingly well with. He still whines on occasion at night in his kennel but after assuring him everything is okay he ends up falling asleep. However if he hears anything go bump in the night he barks which is an issue because I plan to take him back to college with me to live in the dorm which is completely allowed, but there are many noises in a dorm and I’m afraid he will bark up a storm with all these noises but he only barks at noises he can’t see otherwise he is not a barker at all. If you have any tips that could help I would very much appreciate it.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Veronica, I suggest modifying the desensitization training from the videos on barking linked below. You will need to recruit some help from others for this and set up scenarios that are similar to him being crated alone, or not being able to see what the noise is. Help him associate the noise with something good, and only reward him while he is quiet while practicing this, so quietness is what's being encouraged - even if that means catching him being quiet for just a second - praise and deliver the treat in that second before he barks again. Barking at strange sounds - practice with the specific types of sounds your pup barks at (the unseen ones at night and types of sounds he might hear in a door at night, like doors shutting, voices, furniture moving around, foot steps, ect...) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jp_l9C1yT1g Barking at door noises: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside If this doesn't work, you will need to work on correcting barking using fair corrections. I recommend trying desensitization first though because of why he is doing it. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Maddie
Chiweenie
8 Weeks
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Maddie
Chiweenie
8 Weeks

i have two other dogs so i cannot leave treats outside or inside her open kennel to get her to like it in there. i can't imagine trying to teach her the bark command by rewarding her when shes barking. Am i supposed to then ignore her at other times? wont that confuse her? any tips on getting getting her to stop biting and nipping my face, fingers and ankles? tried the "ouch" thing and just made it worse. replace whatever shes biting with a toy and she still goes back to the fingers etc... if i stop moving my hands so she'll get bored, she just bites harder. any advice?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kate, For introducing the crate you can move right onto confining her in the crate for shorter amounts of time and skip over the treats with the door open. While she is in the crate, wait until she becomes quiet, then sprinkle treats into the crate, and as she improves leave a food-stuffed chew toy in the crate with her. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below and skip right to the part where you start closing the door to the crate with puppy inside - doing it this way involves more crying at first but most puppies adjust within 3 days, and almost all puppies within 2 weeks. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate When she cries, ignore the crying until she falls asleep or calms down. The first few days be prepared for hours of crying. Many only cry for thirty minutes then fall asleep, but hours is not unusual - so stay consistent and calm, and wait until you get that quietness unless she needs to go potty. Do be aware of when they have to go potty. At 8 weeks a puppy will need to go potty every 2-3 hours, and every 1 hour when not in the crate. Every month you can add one hour to that number during the day. The amount is different overnight because they are asleep. With an older puppy you can discipline the barking at the same time to help train, but an 8 week old puppy simply needs time in the crate to realize that nothing bad happens to them while they are in there, that you always return, and that they can just sleep or rest and it will be okay. This involves letting them cry at first until they learn to sleep or chew a chew toy. I highly recommend feeding pup meals via a dog-food stuffed hollow Kong in the crate at this age - to help with crate training and keep them soothed and entertained. For the biting, be patient. Honestly, this takes weeks and sometimes a couple of months to teach. Biting is completely normal, nothing is going to work completely instantly; it will take consistency over a period of weeks. With that said, there may be a better method for your pup! Check out the article linked below and follow the Leave It method. Once pup clearly understands "Leave It", then you can gently use the Pressure method found in the same article linked below as a follow through if puppy disobeys Leave It once they understand that command. It's important to teach Leave It first though because when you use the Pressure method, puppy needs to understand that they were told to stop and disobeyed and the consequence is because of that...Without that understanding many puppies will just think you are roughhousing and will fight back. Puppies naturally bite other puppies to communicate, learn how to control the pressure of their bites, and learn...They have to be taught that people are different than dogs. Leave It method, then Pressure method for the biting: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Finally, I suggest joining a puppy play group or kindergarten class that has time for moderated off-leash play with other puppies under 6 months of age. Puppies play differently than older dogs and one of the best ways for a pup to learn how to control how hard they bite is through playing with other puppies. Such a class is also great for socialization with people and dogs. Check out this article about when to attend and what to look for - if you can't find all of these things than a group where puppies just play together is still beneficial - interrupt puppies whenever one starts to get too rough or overwhelmed and wait until they calm down a bit before releasing them again to play in the fenced area: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/puppy-classes-when-to-start/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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gertrude
Shih Tzu
1 Year
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gertrude
Shih Tzu
1 Year

hi. My dog was fully crate trained up until we went on holiday with her. she cried in the crate which is understandable as we were in a new environment and constantly barked. in the end I had to let her out to sleep with me on the bed so I did not disturb other people. Since we have come back she will go in her crate when we need to leave the house but if we all go upstairs she is constantly barking. She is doing it right now as we speak and this has been over an hour now. She does stop for a couple of minutes then starts again but has now started crying. is there anything I can do about this as nothing seems to be working. thanks

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Alicia, Try doing three things together. First, mix a couple of hollow chew toys with her dog food mixed with a little peanut butter, liver paste, or squeeze cheese. Make sure that the peanut butter does NOT contain xylitol. It is a sweetener that is very toxic to dogs. Giver her the chew toys when you place her into the crate to help with boredom, anxiety, and to distract her. Second, every time that she gets quiet return to her, drop several small treats into her crate, and then leave again. Do this every time that she gets quiet. Overtime she should start to realize that being quiet is what gets her rewards and brings your return. In combination with the rewards, you can also purchase a small canister of pressurized air, called a Pet Convincer. When she barks, go to her, tell her "Ah Ah", and blow a puff of air at her side by her ribs through the wire crate. Do not blow it in her face though. The puff of air is a mild correction, but mostly it will surprise her to interrupt the barking. Barking can be a self-rewarding behavior because of the chemicals released in a dog's brain when he or she barks. Sometimes it needs to be interrupted, to give the dog a chance to learn to do something different, which is be quiet and chew on a food stuffed chew toy in this case. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Henry
French Bulldog
4 Months
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Henry
French Bulldog
4 Months

Our 4 month old Frenchie was getting better about not peeing in his crate and would often make it through the night without going. Lately however he has been peeing in his crate after only an hour or so during the day and peeing in there overnight as well. The barking has also gotten a lot worse in the crate. He used to go in to get his treats and lay down pretty well without much fuss but now barks and whines so loudly when he goes in. When he does finally stop if he sees one of us walking around he starts all over again.
The crate is not too big and we wash all blankets with Natures Miracle to make sure he can’t smell it to mark again. Any suggestions you have would be great thank you!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Ashley, If he is peeing more during the day outside of the crate also, then he might have a urinary tract infection or another issue that your vet needs to check him out for. Has he been having more accidents in the house too? If so, take him to your vet. If he can still hold his bladder for three or four hours outside of the crate, and it is only in the crate that he is having issues, then start by cleaning the crate really well with an enzyme containing spray. Only enzymes will break down your dog's pee and poop enough to remove the smell for him not to be able to smell it still. If is smells like urine, then he will continue peeing in it. Once you have cleaned the crate, if he continues having accidents, then he probably either has separation anxiety or was forced to go potty in the crate because he was not taken out frequently enough, then overtime lost his natural desire to hold it in a confined space. He also might not be peeing outside when you take him if you are not taking him on a leash. If you are just letting him out into your yard without going with him, then take him out on a leash, tell him to "Go Potty", and reward him with three treats, one at a time, right after he goes potty. Puppies get extremely distracted and will forget to go potty without being supervised. Puppies typically need to be taken out on leash for a year. If the issue is that he is not going potty outside beforehand, then cleaning his crate, ensuring he goes potty outside, and possibly buying a crate that looks different if he has completely lost his desire to hold it in his current crate, should help. If he has lost his desire to hold it in the crate, is capable of holding it and does not have an underlying medical issue, then that is a bit trickier. You will likely need to purchase a new crate, one that looks different entirely, and do some detective work to find out why he lost his desire to hold it in the crate in the first place, to prevent the same thing from happening with the new crate also. You will also need to keep him on a strict bathroom schedule at first, taking him out every 45 minutes before the accidents happen, and rewarding him with treats for going outside, so that he will form a new habit of peeing outside because he wants to receive treats. If the issue is separation anxiety, then you will probably need the help of a professional dog trainer, who can come to your house and evaluate whether that is the issue and create a separation anxiety protocol for him. Some things that can help separation anxiety are working on sit and down stays from a distance, building respect for you through regular training times, teaching a "Place" or "Bed" command and having him stay in that spot for an hour every day with a food stuffed Kong to learn to entertain himself and be self-controlled. You can also teach a "Quiet": command, and add fair discipline for disobedience to known commands. That last part should be done very carefully. A trainer can help with that part without creating fear. Start by getting him check out by your vet possibly, cleaning his crate well, taking him potty on leash, taking him out more frequently, giving him treats when he pees and poops outside, and giving him a Kong stuffed with dog food while he is in the crate to help with the barking. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Woodstock
Chihuahua
13 Months
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Woodstock
Chihuahua
13 Months

I am stuck! My dog loves his crate. He will go in there willingly however when I put him in his crate to leave for the day, he barks like crazy. I have tried using toys like Kongs, putting a blanket over the crate, and using a radio, but nothing seems to help. Is there something I'm missing?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Emily, First, check if he is barking the whole time or stopping a few minutes after you leave. Set up a camera to spy on him by using a GoPro and phone app, Skype on two devices with your voice on mute, video security camera, video baby monitor, or other camera. Get in your car and leave like you normally, but stop a few houses down on your street and watch him to see how long it takes him to stop. You can also drive down the street, park, and then walk back up to your house quietly and listen. If he is stopping after a few minutes, then that is normal behavior for his age. Stay strong and do not give into the barking. You can give him a Kong or other hollow chew toy stuffed with his dog food and a bit of peanut butter when you leave, so that he can entertain himself. It will simply take time for him to stop barking and settle down sooner. If you determine that he continues barking and does not stop after a few minutes, then work on teaching him the quiet command and enforcing it. When you are at home, place him in the crate and tell him "Quiet". When he stops barking for even a second, then go over to the crate and quietly drop a few treats in and leave again. Repeat this every day for an hour a day when you are home. After an hour passes, when he is being quiet, then let him out. When you let him out, start to open the door and if he tries to rush out, close it again. Repeat this until you can open the door and he will wait inside. When he is waiting for permission, then tell him "Okay" in an excited tone of voice and let him out. Also give him a food stuffed Kong or other hollow chew toy when you place him in the crate, to teach him to entertain himself while inside. To stuff the Kong place his dog food into a bowl and cover it with water. Let it soak until the food turns into mush. When it is mushy mix in a little bit of peanut butter, then loosely stuff a medium or large sized Kong . Place the Kong in a bag and into the freezer. You can make several of these ahead of time and pull them out of the freezer as needed. Be sure to adjust the amount of food you feed him to even out the calories so that he does not eat too much. Also when you purchase peanut butter make sure it does NOT contain Xylitol because Xylitol is extremely toxic to dogs. If you cannot use peanut butter, then use a dog treat paste. Try all of this first. Most dogs will stop if after a few minutes and grow out of it if you are not rewarding it and are providing him with something else to do in the crate. If that does not work, then SolidK9Training has a protocol for barking that you can learn more about on YouTube on that training channel. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Luke
Miniture Aussie
14 Weeks
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Luke
Miniture Aussie
14 Weeks

We have had Luke for 3 weeks. We crate trained him and he likes his crate.

As long as he can see us, from his crate, he is fine. If we leave the room, he will start barking shortly after, and bark non stop till we come back. Even if that is many hours.

I can't walk back into the room only when he is quiet, he never stops. Unless he hears us coming....

We bring the crate into our room for sleeping, our other dog (14 yr old Border collie) sleeps in our room also. He sleeps well through the night, at least from 11pm ish to 7-8am if not longer.

I can't carry the crate around to every room I am in.... Suggestions?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Brad, It sounds like Luke will need for you to set up something to interrupt his barking remotely while you are in the other room. When he stops because of the interrupter you can then re-enter the room and reward him while he is quiet. This is like telling him "No" and "Yes" when he does the incorrect behavior and the correct behavior. I would also suggest stuffing a medium or large Kong toy with food mush and giving him the Kong to chew on while in the crate, so that he will be less bored or anxious in the crate. The Kong will also serve as an automatic reward since he will typically be quiet while he is chewing on it. A remote controlled vibration collar is one way to interrupt him. You can also try a beeping noise, or a puff of air from a remote controlled spray training collar. A device called a pet convincer works very well for interrupting barking but it is handheld and you need to give the interruption right when he is doing the barking. To give the interruption remotely look up PetSafe Spray collars. Make sure that you buy the one that is controlled with a handheld remote. It also has tones so you can try to interrupt the barking with just the tones first, before giving a spray. IMPORTANT, make sure that you buy an unscented air refill canister and switch out the citronella one that it comes with for the unscented air. Only use the unscented air on your puppy. The citronella can be too strong, lingers for a long time, and the lingering smell will continue to correct your puppy long after he has been sprayed, which makes the entire crate and quiet training unpleasant and reduces your ability to reward him for being quiet, which is your end goal. When he barks, interrupt him. Once you have interrupted his barking with the beep, vibration, or air spray, then when he is quiet for a couple of seconds go to him and give him a couple of treats through the crate holes, and leave again. Repeat this until he can be in the crate calmly for at least an hour during the day. Giving him a food stuffed Kong will help him learn to entertain and self-soothe himself, which he needs based on his barking whenever you leave. Learning to self-soothe and entertain himself will also help prevent future separation anxiety. To stuff the Kong, place some of his dog food into a bowl and cover it with water. Let it sit out for a couple of hours until it gets mushy and puffy. When its completely mushy, mix a little peanut butter, soft cheese, or liver paste into it. Very loosely stuff the Kong with the mush and freeze the entire thing in a Ziplock bag. I recommend purchasing several Kongs and stuffing them all at the same time so that you can simply grab one from the freezer as needed. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Benji
havapoo
6 Months
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Benji
havapoo
6 Months

My dog Benji lives with me in my college dorm as an ESA. He is fine in the crate at night and as long as I'm with him however as soon as I leave for class he starts barking and won't stop. I leave a kong in his crate as well as other toys but nothing makes a difference. It's vital that he stops barking or else I'll have to take him back home.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Annaleise, While you are gone I would highly suggest following SolidK9 Training's advice from this video: https://youtu.be/zNP43SiVW9I The devices he mentions are: Garmin BarkLimiter E-collar technologies Look up both of those collars and get the one that can be used on a smaller dog. I know garmin can be used for an 8lb dog. Make sure you purchase the bark collars. Those brands also make collars that are manual with a remote control. You will want one that works without you having to use a remote or that has both options. Also make sure you are choosing the one with a level that you can set yourself, not just one that sets the level itself. The Garmin comes set to automatic level corrections. You will want to change it to manual mode so that you can choose the correction level like SolidK9Training mentions in the video above. During the day while you are home, work on the methods from this article I have linked below to reward your dog for correct behavior in the crate. The combination of correction and reward tends to work well. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Mika
Goldendoodle
6 Months
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Mika
Goldendoodle
6 Months

I put him in the crate and he never stops barking. One day we went on for 8 hours without a break. He won’t stop until he hears me coming downstairs. As soon as the crate door closes he freaks out. He moves his crate from one side of the room to the other just by jumping around so much. He tore up a $300 curtain and tore pieces from the carpet. My mom is about to throw us out if he doesn’t stop barking in the cage and tearing things up.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Caroline, First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating crate anxiety. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of Mika's life too. Second, purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator for this. If you are not comfortable with an e-collar then you can use a vibration collar or unscented air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. Because of your dog's strong reaction, it is unlikely that the vibration or spray collars will work though, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar at first. The Mini Educator has very low levels of stimulation, that can be tailored specifically to your dog. It also has vibration and beep tones that you can try using first, without having to buy additional tools. Next, set up a camera to spy on Mika. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with Mika's end on mute, so that you can see and hear him but he will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on Mika while he is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on him, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if he responds to the collar at all. Look for subtle signs such as turning his head, moving his ears, biting his fur, moving away from where he was, or changing his expression. If he does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when he is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level and then testing his reaction at that level until he indicates a little bit that he can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM Once you have found the right stimulation level for him and have it correctly fitted on him, have him wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours. Next, set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate. Put him into the crate while wearing the collar and leave the room. Spy on him from the other room or outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear him barking or see him start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time he barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate him again. If he does not decrease his barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level once. He may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than this right now though because he has not learned what he is supposed to be doing yet. The level you end up using on him on the mini educator collar should be low to medium, within the first forty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for him. If he continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog. Do not speak to him or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Have regular training sessions with your dog in the crate wearing the e-collar while you are at home but gone from his view. Once your dog is trained to stop trying to escape from the crate and stop barking and you are not correcting him very often anymore, then if he still barks in the crate at times, you can use a regular bark on him. You can also purchase Garmin's Delta Sport with BarkLimiter, which will let you manually correct him for the training and later when you are gone you can set the collar to the bark limiter setting to automatically correct him. Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it and that will help him to enjoy the crate more. First, he needs his anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate for him to relieve his boredom instead, since he will need something other than barking to do at that point. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Bella
Goldendoodle
9 Weeks
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Bella
Goldendoodle
9 Weeks

We just got our sweet Bella yesterday so i know her routine been completely messed up. At her house she was used to roaming a room at night and not sleeping in a crate. Last night we at attempted to put her in a crate to go to sleep and she BARKED and was trying everything she could to escape. I tried to put a blanket over the crate and played her soft music but nothing helped. I know this is going to take time but any other suggestions?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Norma, That is completely normal for her first night. It should get better with time, but I also suggest following as many of the methods as you can from the article that I have linked below to help her relax around her crate. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate I know it can be hard to crate train at first, but try not to get discouraged right now, the above methods will help but also expect it to take about two weeks. The benefits of crate training are huge. Crate training, when used with other training can help prevent destructive chewing, future separation anxiety, and reactive barking. As well as help with potty-train, keeping your dog safe while you are gone, allowing you to travel with your dog, giving your dog a secure place to go when he is older, injured, or somewhere new, help with other training later, provide a place for your puppy to rest for naps during the day, and help him feel safe during storms. These are just a handful of the many benefits of crate training. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Flash
Mini Australian Shepterrier
6 Months
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Flash
Mini Australian Shepterrier
6 Months

My boyfriend and my puppy is Flash - he is a mini Australian shepherd. He is 6, almost 7 months. We have been crate training him since we got him back in the end of May. I work from home full time, and have since we got him. He is EXCELLENT when going into his crate for naps during the day, and at night. He will even sometimes choose to nap with the door open in his crate. We use a crate cover with him, too. We are having significant problems with having Flash inside his crate, and leaving our apartment. We feel like we have tried everything. I will practice with him leaving for five minute intervals and then clicking and treating. We stuff frozen kongs and give them to him but he becomes disinterested quickly. Our biggest interval we leave him is MAX two hours at a time. His worst time of day is between 4pm to 8pm when we leave him during any of that time, he consistently whines, barks, and pulls his crate cover off into his crate. Any other time during the day, he is very inconsistent, sometimes good sometimes bad. We have tried to fluctuate his play schedule and take him for extra long walks to see if that helps, and it doesn't. He is not a super food-driven dog, as if something else is distracting him, he no longer wants the food in front of him. He has a Kong chewing bone we keep in his crate but he never seems to touch it. We video tape him each time we are testing him to know what he does. HELP!!!! We have been trying to train him for months with this, and it seems as though we take 0 steps forward.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Tee, It sounds like Flash needs to work on independence from you. I suggest correcting the barking to interrupt his state of mind. Practice this outside the apartment with a remote or automatic training device that will correct the barking effectively. When he gets quiet and stays quiet for at least ten seconds, then go back inside, and ignore him for ten minutes. When he is calm, then go over to him, open the door, and if he tries to rush out, close the door again. Repeat this until you can have the door open and he will wait inside. When he is waiting, then tell him "Okay". Keep your interactions very calm and boring while doing this. Ignoring him and making him wait inside the crate sets the mood for calmness when you leave and come home. To correct him, you can use a high quality bark collar, a remote training vibration collar, an unscented air spray collar, or a collar that does multiple things, such as remote controlled stimulation, automatic bark stimulation, and vibration. Do NOT use a scented citronella collar. Those collars are too harsh because dogs have very sensitive noses and the scent can linger for hours after a correction. Also, practice his distance and calm commands. Teach him a "Place" command and work on him being able to stay on "Place" while you walk into another room. Work on a Down-Stay on a long, thirty-foot line, until he can do it calmly. Work on a structured Heel, where he has to walk right beside you during walks and pay attention. Working on commands that will build independence, focus, and calmness will also help in general with his ability to be alone. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Edison
Bluetick Coonhound
7 Months
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Edison
Bluetick Coonhound
7 Months

We have 2 Blue tick hounds that are 7 months old. We have raised them from 2 weeks old without mom to now. We crate them when at work and at night. They both cry, whine, bark all day our neighbors say and all night to where we are getting very little sleep. They cry so much they are losing their voices. They are crated by each other and close to us. Edison wants to go outside to potty to at least 3 times a night and we make sure they are fed and water cut off to ensure they shouldn't have to go through the night. We have toys in the crate and a blanket too. We are at a loss and ignoring them is not working either.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Misty, When you are home, go back to the basics with them and work on all three methods from the article that I have linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate This will help them like the crate itself better and it will provide them with things to occupy themselves with, opposed to barking. Barking is actually a self-rewarding behavior. There are chemicals released into your dog's brain when he barks, so barking can go on and on when it becomes habitual. Also, when they are crated and you are home, when one of them gets quiet for even two seconds, then go back into the room where they are and drop several treats into the quiet dog's crate without opening the door, then leave again. Ignore the barking dog when you do this at first. Repeat this whenever one of the dogs gets quiet. As they learn to get quiet for longer, then wait until he has been quiet for longer before you return and drop treats in, so that each dog will learn to stay quiet for longer and longer with practice. Practice this for a few days whenever you are at home. If you are not seeing progress by just following the crate methods from the article that I have linked above and giving the treat rewards for being quiet, then purchase a Pet Convincer, which is a small canister of pressurized air. When one of the dogs barks, then go to where he is, squirt a small puff of air at his side, by his ribs, while telling him "Ah Ah" in a calm but firm tone of voice, then leave again. If he stays quiet for a couple of minutes after you do that, then return to him and drop treats into his crate that time to reward his quiet behavior. Do not ever spray him in the face with the air though, and try to remain calm while training this, even though that can be hard with the barking noise. The air is to snap him out of his barking, to give him an opportunity to be quiet so that he can learn what to do instead. It is also to break the self-rewarding barking cycle. Therefore, it is important to both correct and reward. When you put them into their crate, give them a food stuffed hollow Kong toys like the article also mentions doing. You can make it even more exciting by using their breakfast to stuff it, mixing a little peanut butter or liver paste into it, or by using food that's been soaked for a long time in water and mixed with peanut butter or liver and then frozen overnight. Make sure that you do not stuff the Kongs too tightly though, or they will not be able to get the food out. You can stuff several at a time ahead of time for convenience later if you have multiple toys. If the dogs are potty trained well enough to not have an accident during the day when they are outside of the crate, then you can put them in an exercise pen rather than a crate, and purchase an automatic treat dispenser, such as a Pet Tutor or AutoTrainer. These computerized devices will detect when your dog stops barking, and reward him with a piece of his food every time that he gets quiet, potentially training your dog to stay quiet for longer and longer to earn food. I do suggest working through the crate issues too though, so that you can use a crate when you need to. If needed you can combine the treat dispenser with an automatic correction too, such as an unscented air spray collar. For the frequent potty trips, your pup should be able to hold his bladder for ten hours overnight, and even seven to eight hours when he is awake when needed. Therefore, he should at max need to go out only one time within ten hours. He likely will not need to go at all once his habit of waking up is broken though. Since he is waking up frequently, you make need to take him one during the night time at first. Whenever you take him outside at night and at bedtime, take him on a leash to keep the trip boring and to make sure that he actually pees and is not simply playing. First, address the daytime barking by following the methods I mentioned above. When your nighttime waker has learned to be more quiet in the crate during the day, then when he wakes up at night, if it has been less than seven hours since he last went potty, ignore his barking. If you cannot ignore it because of other people or he barks for over thirty-minutes without going back to sleep, then go to him and use the Pet convincer to correct his barking with the puff of air sprayed at his side and your "Ah Ah" command. You cannot make him go back to sleep, but you can address the barking and when he can no longer bark and his wakings do not equal a trip outside for him, then he should eventually get bored and go back to sleep on his own. The more times that he does that, the better his body should get at sleeping through the night, without initial wakings. If he wakes up when it has been at least seven hours since he last went potty outside, then take him outside to go on a leash without any rewards or play, then put him straight back into the crate afterwards. If he barks when you put him back into the crate, correct it with the Pet Convincer and don't let him out of the crate until it is time for you to get up for the day. Decide when you want this wake-up time to be normally and make that time your goal for letting them out of the crate, even if you do not get a lot of sleep the first three nights doing this. Don't give in early and let them out too soon, because you want their bodies to adjust to that new wake-up time. If your night waker cannot hold his bladder in the crate for more than four hours during the day or he has an accident when you ignore his barking at night when it has been six hours or less, then have him checked out by your veterinarian, to make sure that he does not have a medical issue that prevents him from holding his bladder for longer, like an infection, crystals, or an anatomical issue. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Winston
Cocker Spaniel
3 Years
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Winston
Cocker Spaniel
3 Years

I have a high anxiety dog and he is currently on trazadone to curb his anxiety. He suffered from separation anxiety and was quite fearful as a pup. He still continues to flinch at times but has made a lot of progress. He goes willingly into his crate now and can stay there up to 2-3 hours without stressing. We have very few people visit and I know this is part of the problem but my 90 year old mother resides with me so visitors have been kept to a minimum. The problem is that I am about to have hip surgery and people will be coming in. When I put him in the crate during visits from people he barks because he is nosy and needs to see and meet everyone. If I let him out, the barking ceases but the level of excitement takes over. I will need him in the crate so that I can get rehab at home. What can I do ahead of time ( 3 weeks is all I have) to curb his barking?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Elaine, In Winston's case I suggest using a positive reinforcement method to desensitize him to all of the things associated with people coming in. Make a list of the things that trigger his barking, like a stranger saying hello, the doorbell, a knock, the door opening, and the sound of people walking around. You know your dog best. Pay attention to everything that triggers him to bark while he is in the crate and anticipating people coming over or hearing people enter. Set up training sessions as often as you can and repeat those triggers, focusing on one at a time, over and over again. This might look like ringing the doorbell over and over and giving him a treat every time you do so, until he no longer barks at the doorbell. Wait until he gets quiet for just a second before you give the treat each time. You only need a brief pause in the barking. Be quick with your treat. When you praise him try to praise him right when he stops barking and praise him in a very soft, almost whispering voice, to help him calm down. The idea is to practice ringing the doorbell, knocking, having people enter your home, playing strange voices over skype or speaker phone as if people are walking around, when no one is there, and having actual people come over whenever you can, after you have practiced the individual steps first. When someone comes over during training sessions, have the person knock, ring the door bell, let themselves in, and start talking while walking around your home. Do this while you give a treat through the crate , which is in another room away from the guest, every time that the person does these something, like knock, talk, or walk around. Have the person go through this routine as many times as she will for you, until your dog does not bark at all when that person does that routine. Repeat this with another person next. The more often you practice pairing the barking triggers with treats when your dog is quiet, the less exciting the triggers will be and the more focused your dog will be on the treats for being quiet. This will also decrease any fear associated with people coming over. There are other methods for dealing with the barking, but since Winston sounds like a sensitive dog, this method will be the most gentle for him. To see an example of a dog being desensitized to guests entering, check out the video below. The dog in this video is not crated. You can start with your dog outside of the crate, but since your goal is quiet while in the crate, it may be quicker to start the training while he is in the crate and listening to the trigger noises, versus starting out of the crate and then moving to the crate later for practice. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bpzvqN9JNUA Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Harleigh
Great Dane
12 Weeks
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Harleigh
Great Dane
12 Weeks

We have only had our Harleigh girl for about a week, but she has a problem with her crate and I am so puzzled about it. Harleigh likes her crate. We introduced it to her in the living room with treats, she goes in it on her own/we don’t force her in it, and treats it like a safe place when the other dog is annoying her. I have been trying to feed her in there as well. However, if we go too far away, she begins crying. We have even slept on the floor next to the crate in order to get some sleep. But if I’m any further away, (even just on the couch to fold some laundry) she freaks out. We always let her outside to potty beforehand as well. I’ve also tried letting her “cry it out” but she literally never stops. Even as long as three hours. All of my previous dogs have been crate trained and have not had this problem! Please help.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Emily, Whenever Harleigh cried in the crate the past week did you typically end up letting her out of it eventually? Probably what's going on here is that she initially cried because the crate was new and she would rather be with you (of course! - your her person), but when she cried you eventually let her out. After this happened a few times, she learned that crying was the way to get out and she never had to learn how to cope with her feelings and learn how to sooth herself. A couple of things need to happen.: First, whenever she gets quiet for even a second, go to her and drop treats into the crate, then leave again without letting her out. Do this every time that she gets quiet. Second, when you put her in the crate, put a food-stuffed Kong into the crate with her so that she has something other than crying to do (once she learns). To stuff the Kong, I suggest using her meal kibble, putting the kibble into a bowl, covering it with water, letting it sit out until it turns into mush, then mixing it with a bit of peanut butter (No Xylitol - it's toxic) or liver paste or cheese. Loosely stuff the Kong or save-hollow-chew-toy with the mixture and give it to her. If she figures out how to get the food out quickly, then you can start putting the stuffed Kongs in the freezer overnight and making several ahead of time - for convenience. Third, unless it has been over four-hours, do not let her out of the crate when she cries. Try leaving the room when you first practice this, or crating her somewhere quiet with the Kong in there. Don't sit by the crate to comfort her - that probably makes it harder for her even though leaving is difficult I know. When she quiets down for even two seconds, return to her and drop treats in the crate. Let her out of the crate one of the times when she gets quiet, after at least thirty-minutes of being in there. Fourth, if she consistently will never get quiet after even four hours, then you will need to correct the barking. The reason you need to do this is so that her frantic mental and emotional state will be interrupted long enough for you to have an opportunity to reward her calmer state and teach her what to do instead of bark (which is be quiet to receive treats or chew the food stuffed Kong or sleep). It sounds harsh, but it does work for most dogs - including dogs with full blown separation anxiety in my experience - if done right. She does need to learn how to self-entertain in the crate and self-soothe. If she does not learn and instead always follows you around while home, you might be facing more severe separation anxiety later, so stay strong. When a dog barks repetitively, the dog's brain actually released certain chemicals that reinforces the dog's barking and encourages them to keep doing it. This makes it very hard for some dogs to stop once they get wound up barking or crying. This frantic state is also stressful for the dog. Interrupting it can provide a way to change all that so that the dog is less stressed in the long-run. To correct the barking if needed you can use a "bonker" or a "Pet Convincer. The bonker tends to be a bit gentler so I recommend that for younger puppies. A "bonker" is simply a stuffed object about the length of a sock that has something with a little weight in it, so that it can be tossed or wiggled. You can make your own with a large sock, tennis-ball, and something to stuff the sock with, like fabric or stuffing. Something like a stuffed retrieving bumper also works - but I only recommend those for dogs who never play with those. To correct with the bonker, first teach "Quiet" by following the "Quiet" method from the article below. After she understands that "Quiet" means stop barking (If you cannot trigger barking you will have to skip teaching quiet first and just correct with "Aha"), then when she barks, tell her "Quiet". If she stops barking, drop treats into the crate after a couple of seconds of quiet, then leave again. If she stays quiet for two-to-five-minutes after you leave, then return and drop more treats in, then leave again. If she remains quiet five times in a row (or close to five), then let her out of the crate while she is quiet. If she continues barking when you tell her "Quiet", then tell her "Aha!" in a calm but firm tone of voice, and bump the bonker against the side of the crate hard enough to surprise her, but not so hard that it terrifies her. You simply want to distract her from the barking long enough for her to get quiet for a couple of seconds. If she stays quiet for a couple of seconds, then sprinkle treats into the crate and leave again. If she stays quiet for a couple of minutes after you leave, then return to her and sprinkle more treats into the crate. Sprinkle treats into her crate whenever she stays quiet, and tell her "Aha" and bump the side of the crate with the bonker if she barks, then leave again after doing either. After five repetitions of her being quiet and rewarded for it, you can let her out of the crate, or after it has been more than forty-five minutes, while she is being quiet, you can let her out. "Quiet" method article: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite You want to gradually work up to crating her for up to three hours during the day at this age, but make sure that you always give her a safe and fun chew toy in there. I especially encourage food-stuffed toys because they can help with the barking habit. Work on what I have mentioned above, but also know that it is normal for her to still be barking in the crate after one week. Many puppies take a full two weeks to adjust, especially older puppies. Be sure to stay consistent and not let her out while she is barking or she will continue to bark in the crate to get out and will not have the opportunity to learn to self-sooth and self-entertain with a chew toy in the crate. To avoid letting her out of the crate either let her cry it out up to four hours, until she becomes quiet, or correct the barking with the bonker if she never stops the crying. It is not cruel, even though it may feel like it, because she will actually feel calmer and less stressed if she is shown how to calm down with an interruption, and rewarded for being calm so that she learns. It is important for her to learn because she might have a tendency toward separation anxiety and now is the best time to prevent that. It would also be good for her to learn a "Place" command while she is maturing (expect a bit less as far as self-control at this age though), and to practice "Place" while you move throughout the house without her. This is important for her, so that she learns independence and will be less anxious when you are not right there as she gets is older. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Pepper
Mix
6 Months
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Pepper
Mix
6 Months

Hi! Our dog keeps peeing in her crate. I take her out every 2 hours but as soon as I’m opening the door to her crate, she pees! (Out of excitement I assume). It’s becoming so frustrating! How do I get her to stop peeing inside her crate?

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Augie
Mini Poodle
5 Years
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Augie
Mini Poodle
5 Years

Recently Augie started barking in his crate at night. I wait until he is quiet and usually until around 6:00 before I give in to let him out. The barking starts anywhere between 3am and 5am. I let him out before bed, I washed his bedding thinking maybe that had something to do with it. So far nothing has helped, any other suggestions?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Lisa, First, I would rule out the possibility that he needs to use the bathroom because of a medical issue like a urinary tract infection. Pay attention to how often he needs to pee during the day. If it's more often than every four hours, I would get him tested for a urinary tract infection. Also, pay attention to whether anything else digestion-wise has changed. 1. Is he on any medication - certain ones can make a dog have to go potty more frequently. 2. Have you changed his feeding schedule - especially at night? 3. Have you switched his food - It might not agree with him. 4. Is he actually going potty when you take him out at night, or is something outside distracting him (such as a new cat that hangs around and leaves it's scent)? - Make sure that he goes potty right before bed by watching him go. 5. Is he pooping two times during the day, or getting too distracted when outside so ends up needing to go at night instead? Once you have ruled out any potential bathroom issues, then you can move onto other causes. If there is a bathroom issue, then dealing with that and ignoring the crying for about three nights will likely get him back on track if that is all that is going on. If there are no bathroom issues, look for other causes like another new dog he wants to play with, attention he has been getting in the middle of the night, a strange noise he hears - like another dog or coyotes outside, or not enough mental or physical stimulation during the day. If none of those seem to be to blame, I suggest correcting the barking (as long as you are confident that he does not have to go potty). If it has been long enough that once awake, he really might have to pee, take him outside on a leash, give him five minutes to go potty, then take him back inside and put him immediately into the crate without feeding him. Don't give treats for going potty at night. If he barks when you put him back into the crate or barks when it has not been long enough that he actually has to go potty, then use a Pet Convincer to correct him - A Pet Convincer is a small canister of pressurized unscented air. First, teach him what "Quiet" means by following the "Quiet" method from the article that I have linked below, during the day. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark When you put him back into the crate after taking him potty, or he wakes up and barks before he needs a potty break, tell him "Quiet". If he does not get quiet, spray a small puff of air from the Pet Convincer at his side through the crate holes (Do NOT spray him in the face). The puff of air will not hurt but it should surprise him enough to stop his barking. After you spray him, leave. Repeat this every time that he barks. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Nathan
Mutt
10 Months
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Nathan
Mutt
10 Months

Nathan knows not to bark at night but every time someone leaves the house he goes nuts and he barks early in the morning and no one in my house can sleep we are thinking about a shock collar if we can not find any thing to work please give some advice on what to do to help me my family and Nathan what do you think would work?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kaylila, At this age a bark collar might be the easiest option. There are ways to make the collar more effective and less stressful for the dog. It is also very important for you to do your homework with bark collar reviews and choose a high quality collar and not the cheapest one you come across. High quality collars have better bark detection capabilities to make them far safer. They are also more adjustable, allowing you to choose between automatic mode and a manual mode as far as how high a correction the collar gives. Stimulation (a higher quality type of electric collar) collars tend to be more effective than scent or vibration. Do NOT use a citronella collar. Because the citronella scent is so strong to a dog and lingers for a long time - those collars are actually harsher than stimulation and can be confusing since the scent doesn't immediately stop when the dog gets quiet. To make the collar more effective and the least stressful, follow the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Have Nathan wear the collar around for a couple of days while it is turned off. If your model doesn't have an off, then just put the collar on the day you start training. Once Nathan understand what "Quiet" means, put him in his crate with the bark collar on, tell him "Quiet", pretend like you are leaving and go outside where you can hear him if he barks - make sure he cannot see or hear you through a window where you hide. If you can't hear him, set up a video camera to spy on him with his end on mute. An easy way to do this is with two smart phones or tablets with FaceTime or Skype on mute on his end, or a video baby monitor or GoPro camera with the Live app. When you are outside, when he barks, the collar should automatically correct him. When he gets quiet for at least two minutes, go back inside, drop a few treats into his crate, tell him "Quiet" one time to remind him to be quiet when you leave, then leave again. Practice the training for up to thirty minutes the first time, going inside to reward whenever he is quiet, then leaving again. You can increase the 30 when he starts to show signs of understanding what he is supposed to do. After 30-60 minutes of practice, go back inside while he is quiet, reward him with the treats, then do things around the house for ten minutes while he stays in the crate. If he barks the collar should correct him. When he is calm, after ten minutes calmly let him out of the crate using the method from the video linked below: https://youtu.be/mn5HTiryZN8 Doing the training that way helps him understand what the correction is for (disobedience to your quiet command in this case), and the treats help him realize that being quiet equals good things (and is what he is supposed to be doing), which helps him avoid the correction and gives him a choice (you can be quiet and be corrected or be quiet and avoid the correction). Doing it this way means less corrections in the long run, and him not working himself up barking for long periods is also better for his mental and emotional state and teaches him to relax better. Also, be sure to give him interesting food stuffed chew toys in the crate to alleviate his boredom. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Conoli
Shih Tzu
2 Years
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Conoli
Shih Tzu
2 Years

He is barking in his crate and when he hears a noise he braks and he uses the wee wee pad wrong

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Adelina, First, teach him what "Quiet" means by following the "Quiet" method from the article that I have linked below, practice during the day. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark After he knows "Quiet" when you put him in his crate, put a food stuffed chew toy in there with him a tell him "Quiet" when you leave. If he barks, return and spray a small puff of air at his side while telling him "Ahah", then leave again. Use a Pet Convincer for this - which is a small canister of pressurized UNscented air (avoid citronella). Do NOT spray him in the face only his aide through the crate wire. When you leave, if he stays quiet for 3-5 minutes, return and sprinkle treats into the crate calmly, then leave again. Whenever he barks correct it calmly with the air. Whenever he stays quiet for at least 3-5 minutes, sprinkle treats (or his dog food pieces) into the crate. As he improves, space out the treats so that he has to stay longer before earning treats. For the barking at noises, check out the video linked below. The video addresses noises associated with guest coming over, but pay attention to what noises seem to trigger him and you can practice the same type of training with those types of noises too. Barking video: https://youtu.be/bpzvqN9JNUA Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Violet
Bernese Mountain Dog
9 Weeks
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Question
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Violet
Bernese Mountain Dog
9 Weeks

Hello! My husband and I are having some trouble crate training our Bernese Mountain Dog. When we put her in the crate, by luring her in with treats, she cries and howls when we shut the door. We only put her in the crate after she has used the bathroom and is fully fed. We ignore the crying, and it does eventually stop, but she does not willing go into the crate. We praise her when she goes in and have started feeding her meals in the crate. We do not open the crate unless she is quiet. How do we get the constant barking to stop and have her feel comfortable?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Madeleine, There are a couple of things that you can add to what you are already doing. The first is to purchase hollow chew-toys, like the original Kong toys that look like snowmen, then place some of your dog's food into a bowl and add water and let the water soak into it until it gets soft. When the food is soft, loosely stuff it into the Kong and place the Kong into a Ziplock bag in the freezer to freeze. You can add peanut butter or chicken or other flavoring to the kibble mush to make it more interested also. I would keep several of these in the freezer at a time and feed her her meals out of these in the crate. Doing this will give her something to look forward to and keep her from becoming bored. Plus a dog cannot bark easily while chewing on something, so it automatically rewards her for being quiet. It's important to always give her something to do while in the crate, even a normal chew-toy is better than nothing. If you use peanut butter, check the ingredients and make sure that it does NOT contain Xylitol. Some companies have been using it in low sugar products like peanut butter, and it is extremely toxic to dogs. I would also randomly scatter treats inside and in front of her crate for her to find on her own. That way she will want to visit the crate and go inside herself to look for more. Do this often when she is not looking so that it becomes a fun surprise. When she is inside of her crate and quiet, then you can also drop treats into the crate to reward her for being quiet. You can also reward her with a treat or the food stuffed Kong right after she goes into the crate, to help her to want to go inside herself, in addition to praising her. The crate can be scary and boring at first. When you make it positive enough, most dog learn that they can sleep and chew on toys while inside and they become less anxious. It can take a month for them to settle down though, so don't be discouraged if it takes her a bit at first. Not letting her out until she is quiet is a good practice, keep that up. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

I trained mine to like her crate by luring her in with a treat, making her sit in her kennel for a few seconds with the door open (me sitting infront of it) then letting her come out and praising her with treats. Rinse and repeat, then slowly shut the door, wait a few then let her out and treat again. After a bit mine willingly went into her kennel and would sit there and allow me to shut the door and walk away. :)

My dog is happy in cage but when I leave him he will bark for houres

my dog will bark for 30 minutes to and hour

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Violet
Bernese Mountain Dog
13 Weeks
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Question
1 found helpful
Violet
Bernese Mountain Dog
13 Weeks

Hello! I have a question regarding crate/potty training. Violet was doing very well with holding herself for a couple of weeks. She is typically able to hold it overnight, and that has been pretty consistent for the last two weeks. However, we have been noticing that she tends to pee in her crate during the day when we are not home. This has been more frequent lately, and I am wondering why since she was doing so well without any accidents! I don't know if she is upset she is in the crate? Or is scared? We feed her meals in the crate and reward/praise her when she willingly enters the crate by herself. She does go in and take naps without us asking. We do leave newspaper down in the crate, as well as a blanket and toys for her. We also leave the TV on so there is background noise. Do you have any suggestions or tips to help stop the accidents in the crate? It is always pee and never poop. Thanks so much!!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Madeleine, It sounds like your issue might be crate size and having absorbent material in the crate. Most dogs will naturally try to hold their bladders in a confined space if they cannot eliminate and then escape from it. If her crate is too large and there is absorbent material inside, then she does not have any incentive to hold her bladder. Start by removing the absorbent paper and bed from the crate, and then make the crate smaller if needed. The crate should be just large enough for her to stand up, turn around, and lay down. Any extra space will allow her to pee in one end and stand in the other end, away from it. You can either purchase a crate divider, if your crate did not already come with one and many do, so check, or you can purchase a smaller crate. To keep her from laying on the hard crate tray look up PrimoPads online, and purchase that or something similar. PrimoPads are nonabsorbent, easy to clean, and more durable, but still provide a firm foam pad to make her crate more comfortable. When she is completely potty trained, with zero accidents for at least two months and no longer chewing so much you can go back to a normal, plush bed if you wish. Continue to give her chew toys in the crate, and to feed her in the crate when the door is open, like you have been doing. During the day puppies are only able to hold their bladders for the number of hours that they are in months, plus one. She is about three months old, so that means that under ideal circumstances, the absolute maximum amount of time that she can hold her bladder during the day is four month, and it is often less than that realistically. At night their bladders are less active so puppies can hold it for much longer. Whenever she is awake, her bladder will be too. Which is why puppies have to go to the bathroom very soon after they wake up in the morning. If you are gone during the day for longer than three or four hours, then you will need to provide a way for her to go potty. The ideal solution is to hire or recruit someone to come by your house and to let her outside and watch her go potty, to ensure she goes, every three and a half hours. If that's not an option, then I would suggest purchasing a exercise pen, also known as X-pen. Place her smaller crate inside the X-pen with the door open and the primopad type bed inside the crate. Place a litter box in the opposite side of the exercise pen, with litter in it, and train her to use the litter box when in the exercise pen. Instructions for teaching her can be found here: https://wagwalking.com/training/litter-box-train-a-chihuahua-puppy The reason that I suggest using a litter box instead of pee pads or paper is two fold. First, because Violet is a Bernese Mountain Dog I would assume that your end goal is for her to learn to go to the bathroom outside. The litter in a litter box will more closely look resemble the gravel outside, but the pee pads and paper resemble items found inside. If you do not wish for her to continue to pee inside when she is full grown, then you do not want her to be able to find anything in your home that looks like a toilet, such as napkins, books, paper, paper towels, area rugs, floor mats, and so forth. The second reason is similar to the first. Many dogs will continue to have accidents on area rugs in the house when trained using pee pads, especially when there are no longer pee pads in your home. The rug looks like a substitute for a pee pad to many. If you do not wish to use a litter box, then you can also build a grass toilet area using a plastic of wooden box that will not leak and a piece of grass sod. If you are not already doing this, I would suggest making one or two of her toys be a food stuffed frozen Kong. You can place her dry dog food into a bowl and cover it with water. Let it sit out until the water absorbs and the food becomes soft, then loosely stuff the food into the Kong. Place the Kong into a Ziplock bag and place the bag into the freezer to freeze. When you get ready to leave, simply grab the Kong from the freezer and give it to her in her crate. It does not sound like fear is the problem however. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Eckhart
Australian Shepherd
2 Months
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Eckhart
Australian Shepherd
2 Months

I'm not sure if I introduced the crate to him too early, but he goes in there willingly and I have to close the door on him. He also keeps barking and whining. This is the first time I've had a puppy and I'm not sure what to do.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Heidi, Most puppies cry when you first introduce the crate. This is normal for the first two weeks. Be sure not to let him out while he is crying unless you know he needs to go potty or he will learn that crying gets him out and will continue to cry past the first few days. He needs the opportunity to realize that nothing bad happens while he is in there and you always come back to let him out again later. To help him adjust check out the article that I have linked below and practice the "Surprise" method during the day. Only give treats during the day though. Do not give treats at night because you want him to settle down and go to sleep at night. You can also stuff a chew toy with his dog food and give that to him in the crate during the day. The "Surprise" method will discuss doing that also. The Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate The Crate Training method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Domino
Chiweenie
6 Months
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Domino
Chiweenie
6 Months

My spouse and I got domino in December and until this last week she has been pretty good about sleeping through the night and only barking if she goes in the crate (which is becoming less common) but lately she has started barking on and off through the night. She isn’t a fan of water so I have started spraying her when she starts barking but it only buys us minutes of quiet. I don’t mind the barking if she is standing in pee (I get it... it’s uncomfortable and smelly and I wash her kennel out as soon as she gets back from her potty trip outside) but she has started barking at all hours for attention. Honestly earplugs aren’t a workable option due to our work schedule. Right now her “home” is in the guest bathroom and if she is in her crate we leave the fan on to make it harder for her to hear us leave or come home. Do you think a white noise machine would help stop this behavior easier? We need sleep lol and we need it soon

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Caleb, A white noise machine may help if the barking is being triggered by people moving around your home - I would try that first. Many iPads and phones have white machines apps that you can download and try first, before investing in a more expensive one first - just be sure to put the device on airplane mode so it doesn't ring or buzz. I also suggest practicing crating her during the day some while you are home. If she bark, correct her, but if she becomes quiet or stays quiet for five minutes, go to her and sprinkle treats into the crate, then leave again. She needs to be taught what she is supposed to do in the crate - be quiet and rest. Also, be sure to give her a food stuffed chew toy during the day while in the crate - like a Kong stuffed with her dog food and a little peanut butter (avoid Xylitol sweetener - it's toxic to dogs). At night give her a chew toy, but don't put food in it because you don't want her to have to go potty from eating. Also don't give her treats at night - this is why you practice during the day, so that you aren't giving food at night to teach. If after doing all that for a week, if you don't see improvement, I suggest purchasing a high quality, small dog bark collar and using it in combination with the treats for being quiet during the day, and chew toys. It's important that she is rewarded during the day for being quiet so she learns how, then when she is disciplined (in a way that doesn't also give her attention for barking - the bark collar) she can more clearly understand how to behave to avoid the correction - making it more fair. Do not use a citronella collar. They can actually be far too harsh because of how sensitive dogs noses are, and confusing because the smell lingers instead of stopping when the dog gets quiet. Stimulation collars tend to be most effective but you can try vibration or unscented air collars first. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Kekoa
Labrador Retriever
Seven Months
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Kekoa
Labrador Retriever
Seven Months

So I've had my dog for about two months. The first month and a half were a breeze, he would go in his cage with a puzzle toy or Kong and go about his day for a few hours while I worked and I would come and go to let him out and walk him. Recently he has begun Getting complaints from neighbors about his relentless barking while I'm gone. As soon as he hears me arrive he stops so I was completely unaware of this. As soon as I enter the room he's an angel so correction on this has led to be difficult. As long as I'm in the room or home he is calm. As soon and he can't sense me he goes into full panic mode and nothing calms him. He doesn't particularly love his kennel although we've made all the steps for him to like it. Help!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sheena, Because of the environment you are in with neighbors I suggest first teaching him the Quiet command by following the article linked below and the "Quiet" method. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, I suggest purchasing a stimulation bark collar. Do not buy a citronella collar because the scent lingers for too long and continues to punish the dog after they stop barking. Put the collar on him and put him in the crate. Do your usual routine when you leave, giving him a food stuffed chew toy in the crate also. Set up a video camer to spy on him while you are outside. Two smart phones or tablets with FaceTime or Skype with his end on mute, a video baby monitor, security camera, or GoPro with the Live phone app are a few suggestions you might already have. Go outside where he cannot see or hear you. Get in your car and drive away and then walk a couple blocks back so that you are close to your home again if needed to make him think you are gone. Watch him on your camera. When he barks, the collar should automatically correct him. After a few corrections he will likely start to pause between barks as he is learning what to do. When he stops barking for at least five seconds, go back inside while he is quiet, calmly sprinkle a few treats into his crate without letting him out, repeat your Quiet command, then leave again. Repeat the above training for 30 minutes -1 hour, going inside when he gets quiet to reward him then back outside to practice. After 30 minutes - 1 hour of practice go back inside while he is quiet, do things around the house for ten minutes while ignoring him, then let him out of the crate using the protocol below for crate manners. Once he is out of the crate keep interactions calm for a little while so that getting out of the crate is a bit boring. Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Be sure to only purchase a high quality bark collar for this. Look for well respected brands like Sportdog, Garmin and Dogtra, and read reviews online. If you feel uneasy about doing the training yourself then I suggest hiring a professional trainer to come to your home and help you with the training. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Zuko
Samoyed
1 Year
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Zuko
Samoyed
1 Year

Hi there, our Zuko is a rescue dog and he has another Samoyed sibling, Appa who we have had since he was a puppy. We got Zuko about a month ago and we've been crate training him. He usually gets up and barks around 5AM and I'm not sure if it's just his natural alarm clock and he's ready to get up. But, recently, he's been barking throughout the night. He usually runs into his crate whenever we bring it out, but I'm not sure why he is barking so much now. I'm assuming it's because he doesn't want to be crated and he knows everytime we take him out of the crate he gets to go outside and play in our fenced yard without a leash on - but until we can gain his trust and start training him, we can only crate him up when we are sleeping. And we have been responding to his barks in the morning since we also assume it's time to let him out to use the bathroom. Could it also be because his older brother Appa is not crated? Appa is trained and is allowed to roam the house 24/7 since he doesn't chew anything up/is potty trained and I'm sure Appa will sometimes walk past the crate as well. Is the best thing to do is just really ignore him when he barks? Or block off the area for Appa so he isn't a distraction?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Alexandria, It's great that you are crating him because you are correct that he is not ready for freedom. I suggest crating him in a quieter location where Appa cannot roam around his crate and wake him. I also suggest when you take him potty at night and in the morning to take him on a leash, then bring him straight back inside, without letting him play at those times so that potty trips surrounding bedtime and early morning are very boring, so that he is only motivated to wake you if he actually needs to go potty. If you do not want him to wake up for the day at 5am, then take him potty on leash at that time if he wakes, but keep the trip boring and put him right back in his crate to go back to bed afterward, without feeding him, so that his internal clock will reset gradually and he will learn to sleep in longer. Expect him to be able to sleep about 9-10 hours at night. Ignore early morning barking when you know he no longer needs to pee. Try ignoring the barking with the above suggestions for two weeks. If you do not see at least some improvement with a week, then I suggest disciplining the barking. Teach the Quiet command using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Once he knows the Quiet command, practice crating him some during the day and when he barks tell him Quiet. If he gets quiet and stays quiet for 2 minutes, return to him and sprinkle some tiny treats into his crate. If he continues barking, purchase a Pet Convincer and spray a small puff of unscented air at his side (not face) through the crate while saying "Ah Ah". After you correct him, leave, and if he stays quiet for five minutes, return and sprinkle more treats. Gradually require him to stay quiet for longer before giving treats, as he improves. Once he can stay quiet during the day in the crate, then at night, instead of ignoring his barking, when he barks go to him, tell him "Ah Ah" and correct him by spraying a puff of unscented air at his side through the crate, then leave again. At night do not give food or extra attention - you want to practice with food during the DAY to help him learn, then keep NIGHTS BORING. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Cookie
American Pit Bull Terrier
2 Years
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Cookie
American Pit Bull Terrier
2 Years

I’ve adopted cookie 2 weeks ago. I got her for an ESA dog. At first she was really quiet and listened very well. Now she barks way more than before, isn’t really listening well, and we have a teacup dog so when she see, or hear, him then she loses it! I don’t know what to do and my mom is already saying get rid of her

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Samya, What do you mean by looses it around your smaller dog? If she is aggressive toward him, then I highly suggest an evaluation by a professional dog trainer who is very experienced with a variety of types of aggression. There could be a lack of socialization early on, a predatory drive toward your small dog (less common but possible), or another form of aggression going on. With such difference in sizes I suggest getting the help of a professional skilled in dealing with aggression (ask a lot of questions and read reviews). The type and severity of the aggression will determine how treatable it is, in addition to your own commitment to train and learn. If by loose it you simply mean excitement, then based on that, the lack of listening, and over excitement with barking I suggest joining an obedience class or canine good citizen class (if she doesn't have aggression issues and already has basic obedience skills). A canine good citizenship class will work on calmness around distractions but you need basic skills in obedience first (a basic obedience class). For the barking, check out the "Quiet" and "Desensitization" methods from the article linked below. Also check out the video linked below on desensitizing to noises. I suggest beginning the barking training while waiting on a class to start to go ahead and get started with the barking since that won't be handled directly in a a class environment. Quiet and Desensitization methods: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Video on barking https://youtu.be/Jp_l9C1yT1g Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Dobby
Mix
2 Years
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Dobby
Mix
2 Years

We just adopted a German Shepard/Beagle mix. Unfortunately my husband and I both work during the day, so we need to put him into a crate. We were told that he does great in a crate. We, however, have found that he barks for about a couple of hours before calming down. We have a neighbor that complains about everything. (She does not like dogs.) How can we crate train him and not miss work? I have been using a dog monitor to monitor his behavior.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Felicia, Since your neighbor is complaining and you cannot wait for him to adjust on his own by ignoring the barking, I suggest correcting the barking. First, purchase a high quality bark collar that has a setting that let's you choose the correction level. It can also have automatic rise, but being able to choose the correction level yourself tends to give you more control. Good brands include Dogtra, Sportdog, Garmin, and e-collar technologies. Read reviews and do not choose a poorly made one - those are the ones that get the terrible reputations for malfunctioning. Have him wear the collar around while it is turned off to get him used to wearing it ahead of time. While you are home from work, turn the bark collar that he is wearing on (adjust the level to low at first), and set up a camera to spy on him from outside. It sounds like your dog monitor will work for this. Do your usual leaving routine, put him into the crate, and go outside - drive down the block and walk back if going outside does not make him think you have left. You should be somewhere where he cannot see or hear you from inside though. Watch him from your camera while outside. When he barks, he should be corrected with the collar. If he gets quiet, while he is quiet, go back inside, sprinkle several treats into the crate quietly, then leave again. If he barks seven times in a row without a break, then go inside, turn the collar stimulation level up one level, not letting him out of the crate while you do this (take the collar off, close the door, then adjust the collar, put the collar back on, close the crate door back). Put the adjusted collar back on him and go back outside. Repeat listening to him from outside. If he pauses his barking, go back inside and reward him with treats calmly while he is quiet, then go back outside again. If he barks seven times without any pauses again, then go back inside and increase the collar stimulation level by one again. Repeat rewarding him or adjusting the collar until you find a level that occasionally stops his barking (the barking should decrease even more as he begins to associate it with his own barking - right now it is more of a lower level interrupter that surprises him enough that he stops)...The level that he will stop barking at is the level you are going to use for this - remember what level it is set on because that will probably be his normal level while doing this exercise. Regularly practice the crate training with the collar for 30 minutes to an hour. After an hour or so, while he is quiet, go back inside, ignore him for ten minutes while you do other things throughout the home without letting him out of the crate (so that your return is a bit boring). After ten minutes, practice the crate manners protocol from the video linked below to teach him how to exit the crate calmly - you want the crate to equal calmness. Crate manners: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mn5HTiryZN8 Once his barking has improved, then when you put him into the crate, put a dog-food-stuffed hollow chew toy in the crate with him - it's important that its stuffed with his food to make it interesting! The chew toy will help with boredom and help him to continue to stay quiet while in the crate by automatically rewarding his quietness while you are gone. You can stuff a Kong several ways: 1. Quick and easy: Place dry dog food 2/3 of the way in it, cover half of the opening with a larger treat, smear a little peanut butter around the opening if he needs extra motivation. 2. Longer and more challenging for the dog: Place your dog's kibble in a bowl and cover it with water, let it sit out until the food turns into mush, mix a little peanut butter (avoid xylitol ingredient- it's toxic!), or liver paste or cheese into the food mush. Loosely stuff the Kong with the mixture, place the stuff Kong into a Ziplock baggie and put it into the fridge to freeze overnight - this Kong creates a frozen, time released treat that keeps determined chewers busy for longer (plus its good for teething pups the next time you have a young one). I suggest stuffing multiple Kongs like this at a time for convenience sake, then you can just grab one out of the freezer as needed. Here are some other Kong stuffing ideas: https://thebark.com/content/frozen-kong Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Frankie
Beadle
2 Years
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Frankie
Beadle
2 Years

Barking when left over night I have 2 other dogs which don't bark when left I crate frankie at night and he doesn't bark its only when I either go out or leave him over night when I'm not home

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sarah, First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating crate anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk If the barking continues even after building independence, calmness, and structure like the article linked below mentions, then I suggest using the following method under the guidance of a trainer. Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of his life too. Second, purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator for this. If you are not comfortable with an e-collar then you can use a vibration collar (the Mini Educator is also a vibration mode) or unscented air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh). Because of your dog's strong reaction, it is unlikely that the vibration or spray collars will work though, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar at first. The Mini Educator has very low levels of stimulation, that can be tailored specifically to your dog. It also has vibration and beep tones that you can try using first, without having to buy additional tools. Some very sensitive dogs will respond to just vibration. Next, set up a camera to spy on him. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear him but he will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on him while he is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on him, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if he responds to the collar at all. Look for subtle signs such as turning his head, moving his ears, biting his fur, moving away from where he was, or changing his expression. If he does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when he is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing his reaction at that level until he indicates a little bit that he can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM Once you have found the right stimulation level for him and have it correctly fitted on him, have him wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours. Next, set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate. Put him into the crate while he is wearing the collar and leave. Spy on him from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear him barking or see him start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time he barks or tries to get out of the crate, push the stimulation button again. If he does not decrease his barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. He may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator or one level on another collar with less levels right now though because he has not learned what he is supposed to be doing yet. The level you end up using on him on the mini educator collar should be low to medium, within the first forty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for her. If he continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog. Do not speak to him or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it and that will help him to enjoy the crate more. First, he needs her anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate for him to relieve his boredom instead, since he will need something other than barking to do at that point. Practice all of this during the day at first. Once he has learned that e-collar corrections are for barking and is able to calm himself back down during the day, then you can transition the training to night time when he tries to bark then - if you are certain that he does not need to pee at that time. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Bogey
Labrador Retriever
12 Weeks
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Bogey
Labrador Retriever
12 Weeks

Hey There!

Bogey is a lab/golden mix. The challenge we're dealing with is consistent behavior in the crate during the day. At night he sleeps like an angel in his crate down on our main floor, he sleeps 7+ hours straight without a peep. He's even quiet if we make some noise, he just waits for us to come down and begin the day. During the day is a different story, sometimes he's ready to go in the crate and doesn't put up a fuss, other times - a total meltdown. I've been freezing a kong with peanut butter in it and he won't play with it regardless. He either goes in there and sleeps right away or he has a major meltdown that a kong can't remedy.

My boyfriend and I both work at tech companies and he recently started a new position where he works from home. We are struggling though because he can't be on the phone with a screaming dog in the background. It's like we're rolling the dice every time we put him in the crate. He is not afraid of the crate whatsoever, he just throws tantrums randomly when he wishes he was out. He goes to a friend's house a few days a week to play with other dogs but we're scared to have him home alone with my boyfriend (I have to be at work) because he's so unpredictable! Need to fix the issue ASAP so he can get some work done during the day.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Laura, Check out the surprise method from the article linked below. I also suggest continuing to give him a food stuffed chew toy in the crate whenever you put him in there. After adjusting to the crate he may be more likely to eat it and he will need something to do in there other than protest. Try stuffing it differently if you are using dry kibble also. To stuff a hollow chew toy, you can put his food into a bowl, cover it with water, let it sit out until it turns to mush, mix a bit of peanut butter (avoid Xylitol sweetener - it's toxic) or liver paste or cheese into it, place the whole thing into a zip-lock bag, and freeze overnight. To make it easier, purchase several Kongs and stuff them all at once so that you can just grab one out of the freezer as needed. He can even eat all of his entire meals this way, and as treats, without using a food bowl. Stuff the Kongs very loosely so that he can get the food out after it freezes. There are some quicker methods you can use also; pups just tend to like the cold while teething and the frozen acts like a time released treat so it lasts longer. surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Crate Training method, steps on introducing the crate: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside In addition to the Surprise method you can correct the barking if needed. Normally I don't recommend this until dogs are older because most puppies will adjust if you give them time, but given your husband's situation you may want to. If he doesn't adjust, purchase a Pet Convincer and teach the Quiet command from the article linked below: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Once you have taught him the Quiet command, when he barks, tell him "Quiet" in a calm tone of voice. If he gets quiet and stays quiet for 2 minutes, give him a treat. As he improves wait until he is quiet for longer before you give the treat, working up to 10, 15, 30, and 60 minutes. If he doesn't get quiet or starts barking again before the 2 minutes, then spray a small puff of air at his side through the crate using the Pet Convincer while saying "Ah Ah" calmly, then go back to ignoring him. When you do this do NOT spray it near his face. If he is pretty sensitive, then hold it further away from him when you do this so that he feels it less. You want to interrupt the barking but you don't want to punish him too harshly. Only use unscented air canisters. Do NOT use citronella. Even if you find that you need to use the Pet Convincer for the barking, continue to reward him when he stays quiet for longer periods of time and give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate so that he will learn what NOT to do and what TO do instead. It is important for him to understand what he should be doing in the crate besides barking - i.e. being quiet, chewing a chew toy, and resting. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Betty
Beagle
13 Months
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Betty
Beagle
13 Months

I have a 13-month old beagle that I have crate-trained from a young age. She is mostly fine with being in the crate but she does give a couple of barks when I first close the crate-gate. I was trying to train her not to do this by ignoring her and I thought this was working fine, i.e. she still barks when I close the gate, but once I've left the room she will settle down. However, my neighbours are now complaining about her barking so I can't continue to do this. I've tried correction, keeping her mouth shut whilst saying "quiet", and treats when she goes in the crate quietly. Nothing works, if anything she is even louder than she was before the neighbours complained. I think this is now confusing her training and only making matters worse and I worry the neighbours will complain even further about her. She's become even needier since this has been going on, I used to be able to leave her on the bench in my garden and go about with my gardening. Now she even barks if I try to walk away from the bench as if she suffers from separation anxiety which was never an issue before.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Andy, First, I suggest a trip to your vet to get her eyes, ears, hormones and mental health checked out. Her increased anxiety could be due to one of those things, especially since she barks when you simply walk away outside - if she cannot tell where you are and what's going on, then she will feel more worried. Second, I suggest putting a food stuffed Kong in the crate with her to actively give her something to work on for longer. For example, if she is starting to decline mentally, then teaching her not to bark will be less effective because she won't remember the lesson as well the next time, but giving her something in the moment to focus on instead of her anxiety may help. Make a food stuffed hollow chew toy really fun with things like plain chicken, liver paste, peanut butter, or cheese (depending on how sensitive her stomach is - chicken and liver are easier on digestion). Mix the good stuff with her dog food that has been soaked in water for a couple of hours beforehand. Loosely stuff the toy - such as a medium or large Kong. If she gets the food out of it too quickly, freeze the entire stuffed Kong it ahead of time for her. Make sure the food isn't packed in too tight though. You can buy several of the toys and stuff them all at once and grab out of the freezer or fridge as needed to save time. Also, leave the crate door open when you are home and sprinkle treats around it and inside it when she isn't looking. Show her the treats a few times, then replace them when she isn't looking. Next, only sprinkle the treats inside the crate periodically. Continue doing this until she starts to go into her crate on her own looking for treats often. You can even use her own dry dog food for this if she is food motivated. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Milo
Minipin
3 Months
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Milo
Minipin
3 Months

I have been taking Milo out to the bathroom consistently to the same place every half hour. He will pee and poop. About a half hour later or less he then poops in the kitchen with no sign that he needs to go out. My question is how can I start to get him to communicate with me he has to go out to go to the bathroom? Not sure if its his age and should I not get discouraged.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Tammy, If he is pooping more than three times a day, I suggest a trip to your vet. Puppies poop more often than adults but it sounds like his might be excessive and your vet may want to run a fecal or blood test to check for parasites or a bacterial infection that would cause frequent pooping. All puppies are normally born with parasites and are dewormed at certain ages, it's possible he needs another worming but your vet will know better. It could also be related to a poor quality food, feeding too much, or a sensitivity to a particular food ingredient. I am not a vet though so check with your vet. If he is not pooping more than three times a day or your vet doesn't find anything wrong, then I suggest switching to the "Tethering method" and the "Crate Training method" from the article linked below. Use the Crate Training method whenever you cannot supervise him, do not want him attached to you with a leash, or you must leave the house. Whenever he is free use the tethering method until you have made a bit more progress with going potty only outside. If he starts to go potty in front of you, clap your hands, then quickly rush him outside. Don't yell, hit, smear his nose in it or do anything else too harsh, simply surprise him by clapping to get him to stop then rush him outside so that he realizes he did something wrong. Praise and reward him if he goes potty again outside when you take him. Whenever he goes potty outside in general praise him and give him four treats, one at a time. Tell him to "Go Potty" when you take him outside - after a while he will learn what that means and go quicker when told to. After he pees always tell him to "Go Potty" again and slowly walk him around your yard on a leash again to help him poop if he needs to. Most puppies will hold their poop if you don't insist that they go potty again after peeing. Taking a puppy potty on a leash is also important while they are still learning because they get too distracted otherwise. Tethering and Crate Training methods - the article below mentions German Shepherd puppies but the methods work for small puppies too: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Oakley
Catahoula mix
4 Months
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Oakley
Catahoula mix
4 Months

I have been trying to get my 4 month old puppy to stop crying in her crate when I am not home. She will cry non stop for up to at least 2 hours. I have been doing everything under the stars to help her and she seems to not be getting it. I feed her in her kennel, and she will sleep in it, but being in her kennel by herself she has a coniption fit. I am moving to an apartment and I know it will be a big ajustment for her, and for me, but I cant have her crying in her crate and need help. Is there anything more that I need to be doing??

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello, First, know that it's normal for a puppy to cry in the crate for the first two weeks. When she cries and you know she doesn't need to go potty yet, ignore the crying. Most dogs will adjust if you are consistent, but it can take a couple of weeks. You can give her a food stuffed hollow chew toy to help her adjust and sprinkle treats into the crate during times of quietness to further encourage quietness. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below and practice that method often during the day! Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate If she continues protesting for long periods of time past two weeks, you can use a Pet Convincer. Work on teaching "Quiet" by using the Quiet method from the article linked below. Tell her "Quiet" when she barks and cries. If she gets quiet and stays quiet, you can sprinkle a few pieces of dog food into the crate through the wires calmly, then leave again. If she disobeys your command and keep crying or stops but starts again, spray a small puff of air from the Pet convincer at her side through the crate while saying "Ah Ah" calmly, then leave again. If she stays quiet after you leave you can periodically sprinkle treats into the crate to reward her quietness. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Only use the unscented air from the Pet Convincers - don't use citronella, it's too harsh and lingers for too long so can be confusing. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Tugs
Mix
11 Months
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Tugs
Mix
11 Months

So we live in an apartment and my dog has to be In a crate so he doesn’t get into anything. Well every time we leave he barks until we get back home. I’m at my wittsend I’m currently trying to work with him on this. Is there anything I can do to help? I don’t want to use a bark collar unless I have to. Please help!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Katelyn, There are a couple of routes you can take with the separation anxiety. The first step is to work on building his independence and his confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into his routine. Things such as making him work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and stay on Place for long periods of time while you are home, such as 1-2 hours, and teaching him to remain inside a crate when the door is open. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Change your routine surrounding leaving so that he does not anticipate alone time and build up his anxiety before you leave - which is hard for him to deescalate from, and be sure to give him something to do in the crate during the day (such as a food stuffed Kong to chew on); this is the general protocol for separation anxiety. It is gentle but can take a very long time for some dogs. Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction. Who is extremely knowledgeable about e-collar training, and can follow the protocol listed below, to help you implement the training. Building his independence and structure in his life will still be an important part of this protocol too. Done right this should involve low levels of collar stimulation, positive reinforcement for quiet and calm behavior, and probably not needing the collar long-term. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of his life too. Second, purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator for this. If you are not comfortable with an e-collar then you can use a vibration collar (the Mini Educator is also a vibration mode) or unscented air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh). The vibration or spray collars are less likely to work though, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar first. The Mini Educator has very low levels of stimulation, that can be tailored specifically to your dog. It also has vibration and beep tones that you can try using first, without having to buy additional tools. Next, set up a camera to spy on him. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear him but he will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on him while he is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on him, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if he responds to the collar at all. Look for subtle signs such as turning his head, moving his ears, biting his fur, moving away from where he was, or changing his expression. If he does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when he is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing his reaction at that level until he indicates a little bit that he can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM Once you have found the right stimulation level for him and have it correctly fitted on him, have him wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours. Next, set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate. Put him into the crate while he is wearing the collar and leave the room. Spy on him from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear him barking or see him start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time he barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate him again. If he does not decrease his barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. He may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator or one level on another collar with less levels right now though because he has not learned what he is supposed to be doing yet. The level you end up using on him on the mini educator collar should be low to medium, within the first forty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for her. If he continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog. Do not speak to him or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it and that will help him to enjoy the crate more. First, he needs her anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate for him to relieve his boredom instead, since he will need something other than barking to do at that point. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Teddy
Cocker spaniel mix
5 Years
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Teddy
Cocker spaniel mix
5 Years

Teddy is a rescue dog. The problem we have is him barking non-stop when he is in the crate. He willing goes in. Sleeps in his crate at night with no barking. He does whine in the morning after a full night to be let out. BUT when we put him in the crate to leave the house, he barks non-stop. We both work from home, so the only time we've left him is for 1 hour to exercise out of the house and one other time for 3 hours, he barked the entire time but did slow down some. He is the sweetest dog but does seem very attached to me and never leaves my side. Any assistance you can provide is greatly appreciated.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Ann Elizabeth, There are a couple of routes you can take with the separation anxiety. The first step is to work on building her independence and her confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into her routine. Things such as making her work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching her to remain inside a crate when the door is open. Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Change your routine surrounding leaving so that she does not anticipate alone time and build up her anxiety before you leave - which is hard for her to deescalate from, and be sure to give her something to do in the crate during the day (such as a food stuffed Kong to chew on); this is the general protocol for separation anxiety. It is gentle but can take a very long time for some dogs. Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction. Who is extremely knowledgeable about e-collar training, and can follow the protocol listed below, to help you implement the training. Building her independence and structure in her life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, purchase a high quality e-collar with at least thirty stimulation levels and vibration. Look for a high quality brand such as E-collar technologies (mini educator), Dogtra, Garmin, or Sportdog. Pay attention to weight ranges on these when choosing one. High quality e-collars can give much smaller/gentler corrections and are far safer than random unknown brands bought overseas. Have her wear the collar around for a bit to get used to the feel of it. Next, find the correct level of stimulation to use for her training, called her working level. To find this level, wait until she is simply standing around acting boring and not distracted. Without saying anything, push the stimulation button for a second. Watch her to see if she responds. This response might be subtle like scratching, acting like a bug is on her, shaking her head, looking around, moving away from where she is, or something else. She might yelp out of surprise, but if you are using the lowest level and a high quality e-collar a yelp is typically due to surprise. If she seems overly sensitive to the collar you can use the vibration setting instead but vibration tends to be harsher than low stimulation for many dogs. Repeat pushing the button three times at the lowest level and watching for a response. If she does not respond, increase the level by one and watch for a response again while you test that level out three times. Continue increasing the level by one and watching for a response, until you reach a level that she responds too - If the collar you are using has a lot of levels, like the Mini Educators' one hundred levels, then many dogs won't even feel it until around level ten. It all depends on their own sensitivity level, which is why you find each dog's individual level. Check out the video linked below, demonstrating finding the correct level for a dog: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM Next, set up a camera to spy on her while she is in her crate. You could use a GoPro with the Live app on your phone, two smart phones or tablets with Skype or Facetime with her end on mute so she won't hear you but you can hear her, a video baby monitor, security camera, or any other camera you have that you could watch her from outside on. Once you have the correct collar stimulation level and she is calm and relaxed again, start your leaving routine, put her into the crate, and go outside. Drive down the block and walk back if she isn't convinced you really left. From outside, watch her on the camera. When she barks or tries to escape from the crate, push the stimulation button on the remote for one second. Repeat the correction every time she barks. This will probably take a few repetitions before she starts to connect the stimulation on the collar with her barking. If it doesn't improve after seven corrections, increase the collar level by one, and again by one if she still doesn't respond. When she pauses barking for four seconds, while she is quiet, go back inside, sprinkle a few tiny treats into her crate without letting her out or talking to her, then leave again. Repeat correcting her when she barks from outside, going inside and sprinkling treats when she is quiet then leaving again; do this for 30 to 45 minutes each session. After about 45 minutes, while she is quiet, go back inside for good. Leave her in the crate and ignore her for ten minutes. Correcting with the e-collar without acknowledging her if she barks at you from the crate. After ten minutes, while she is calm, go to her and let her out of the crate using the method from the article linked below: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mn5HTiryZN8 You generally want to encourage calmness around the crate - being overly excited, anxious, or worked up can make separation anxiety worse because of the chemicals released into the body. Expect to need to repeat the crate collar training several times for 45 minute sessions for her to realize that the results are always the same and she needs to be calm and quiet in the crate. You can do this more than one time each day to speed up the process, just make sure she has breaks in between each session to unwind. When she is quieter in the crate, then when you leave, give her a food stuffed chew toy, like a Kong, to help with boredom and to automatically reward her for staying quiet. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Bentley
St. Bernard
15 Months
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Bentley
St. Bernard
15 Months

We have a female dog and he keeps trying to jump her she is spade but he isn't neutered/ we rescued him 2 day ago and intend to buyer him very soon. he is sexually aggressive with her and won't let her be. To separate them while we are gone we try to put him in a crate but he barks and bites the crate. Also, whenever we are sitting he starts to whine and bark. Please help or my mom will make me get rid of him.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Chloe, First, you really need to hire professional help to address this one because a sexually frustrated dog might bite whoever is interfering with their attempts to get to the other dog if training isn't done carefully and correctly. This behavior needs an interrupter that is clearly understood by the dog to decrease his arousal while in the crate. Once his behavior has been carefully interrupted with something like a Pet Convincer or e-collar stimulation, you can work on desensitization and rewarding calmness instead. The Check out the video linked below. This trainer has several good videos on separation anxiety, aggression, and anxiety. This behavior would be addressed similarly to correcting separation anxiety for some dogs - by interrupting an aroused state of mind with a corrector, then working on calmness and desensitization after the dog is a bit calmer. Again, I highly suggest hiring a trainer to work with you though - because a sexually frustrated dog is far more likely to bite than a dog with separation anxiety so things like a muzzle, correcting from outside the crate and not opening the crate while he is aroused, and dealing with the frustration while loose needs to be done carefully. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GdMv69QNczU Place, Leave It, and Out are great commands to teach for this issue also, but need to be done carefully and probably with a muzzle on while your other dog is in the house and Berntley is frustrated: Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Oliver
Mixed
1 Year
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Oliver
Mixed
1 Year

Our dog Ollie was left in a parking lot so we picked him up and brought him home. He wasn’t on the streets long because we saw the people that left him. We have taken him to the vet, gotten him at a healthy weight, and got him potty trained. The big issue is his crate. We have tried everything and continuously barks no matter what we do.

Is this for attention or maybe even anxiety? Either way, what can we do?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Elizabeth, First, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As he improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating him during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. If you are home during the day, have lots of 30 minute - 1 hour long sessions with breaks between to practice this, to help pup learn sooner. Whenever he cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet". If he gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if he stays quiet. If he continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at his side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever he cries. When he cries at night (in the crate - where he needs to be sleeping for now) before it has been 8 hours (so you know it's not a potty issue), tell him Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if he doesn't become quiet and stay quiet. Only give treats during the day, not at night. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Wheeler
Goldendoodle
8 Months
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Wheeler
Goldendoodle
8 Months

Wheeler is ver good in the crate until someone gets up in the middle of the night or early morning. Then he barks. He responds to the quiet command most of the time but sometimes it takes two or three commands. And in any event by the. The house is awake. How do we get him to not bark at typical morning sounds around the house? He’s not barking to go out because when he does respond to the quiet caimans he can be in the crate for 5-10 minutes quietly without being anxious to get out.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Lisa, First you need to determine if he is barking at the sounds because he finds them suspicious before realizing it's you or is just overly sensitive to them, or if he is barking to get your attention or demand to be let out? If he is overly sensitive to the noises, then I suggest desensitizing him to those same types of noises at times where the house is also quiet and he is crated. Only give food during the day or evening and not middle of the night though. Barking at door noises - can be used for other types of noises too: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DxPrNnulp5s Barking desensitization series: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLAA4pob0Wl0W2agO7frSjia1hG85IyA6a If the barking is happening for attention or because he is demanding to be let out, you can use a corrector combined with the Quiet command. Command Quiet and if he barks again or starts barking again within five minutes of the command, then you can use a Pet Convincer, which is a small canister of unscented, pressurized air. Tell her "Ah Ah", then spray a small puff of air at his side and leave again. Another option is to use a vibration collar - with multiple vibration intensity settings, so you can pick the level he responds to best. Every time he barks, vibrate the collar to interrupt him. During the day you can also practice this, and if it's daytime, then when he stops barking for five minutes, return to him, sprinkle a couple treats into the pen and leave again. Repeat this for 30 minutes to 1 hour, then when you return to sprinkle treats, stay in the room and ignore him in the crate for 10 minutes while you pretend to get things done around the house - you don't want your entrance to be super exciting and always mean immediate freedom. Correct with the vibration if he barks at you. When he is quiet and it has been 10 minutes, then let him out of the crate, but when you do so, open the door slowly and when he tries to rush out, close it again. Practice opening and closing the door until you can open it all the way and he will stay inside the crate and wait. When he will wait, then tell him "Okay" and let him come all the way out - you want him to calm down in relation to the crate, and going in and out of it more slowly can help with that. Best of luck training. Caitlin Crittenden

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Jax
Dachshund
11 Years
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Jax
Dachshund
11 Years

He has always slept in his crate. He gets into things otherwise & is destructive. He's started barking when the light go off & continues to bark most of the night. How can we stop this? We yell at him, we've given him treats before & bones to occupy him. Nothing works.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello, First, due to age, I would check with your vet. Many times changes in mental awareness, eyesight, hearing, bladder control, or other changes that come with age, can increase needs or anxiety. Check with your vet to see if pup has a need that's not being addressed. If the issue is purely behavior and attention seeking, I suggest the following. First, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As he improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating him during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. If you are home during the day, have lots of 30 minute - 1 hour long sessions with breaks between to practice this, to help pup learn sooner. Whenever he cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet". If he gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if he stays quiet. If he continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at his side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever he cries. Practice for a few days until he is doing well during the day. When he cries at night (in the crate - where he needs to be sleeping for now) before it has been 6 hours (adjust that according to his age, and what you have noticed is his current bladder capacity, so you know it's not a potty issue), tell him Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if he doesn't become quiet and stay quiet. You may want to pretend like you are all going to bed two hours early and read in bed with the lights off - anticipating having to get up a lot the first couple of hours to correct - so that you don't loose as much sleep. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Migo
Yorkshire Terrier
3 Years
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Migo
Yorkshire Terrier
3 Years

potty training my dog is hard . Keeping him in the crate without barking when I leave is hard too

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Jada, How long have you been working at this? What specifically are you doing to potty train - inside, outside, crate training, pee pads, grass pads, litter box, ect....? If pup has been barking in the crate for over two weeks or you cannot ignore the barking until he adjusts on his own, I suggest doing the following: First, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As he improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating him during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. Whenever he cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet". If he gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if he stays quiet. If he continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at her side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever he cries. Know that what you are going through is probably normal. Not always easy but likely normal. Crate training and potty training can both be a lot of work. The reward is years of a trustworthy dog who can travel, be left home alone with more freedom, not destroy your things, and be adaptable to things like time alone and boarding, but it's not always easy at first. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Alaska
Alaskan Malamute mix
8 Months
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Alaska
Alaskan Malamute mix
8 Months

Hello, Alaska is the sweetest pup around. She loves people, she loves other animals. We adopted her at 2 months old and I honestly have only heard her bark twice in the entire time. We started receiving complaints that she was barking when we were gone. So we started taking her to a doggy day care where she’s in a kennel for parts of the day and out running around for the other parts. The staff there informed us “she’s the quietest dog they’ve ever had” never barks or whines when she’s in her kennel or playing even when all the other dogs are barking up a storm. We only put her in her kennel when we’re gone for a few short hours at a time and she goes into it easily. We provide her with a frozen Kong filled with food and an antler to chew on along with another rubber toy to chew so she doesn’t get bored. She’s never barking or whining upon our arrival back home, yet we’re still getting complaints that she barks and whines constantly when we’re not home. I’ve done the slow increments of increasing time in her kennel with me beside it then providing her with treats when she’s quiet and then walking away so she’s alone for longer increments of time and going to give her treats when she’s quiet increasing the time. I’ve had her in her kennel with me out of sight and imitated leaving for upwards of an hour and I’ve still never heard her bark while she’s in her kennel. I’m out of ideas on how to fix this issue. She won’t make a peep when I’m home so how do I correct this bad behaviour when I’m gone?!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Leslie, First, i would confirm that she is barking while you are gone and there isn't another dog that neighbors could be hearing. To do this, leave a camera, such as a tablet or smartphone with skype or facetime, plugged into the wall, and on mute on her end, set up where you can spy on her from it. Act like you are leaving for the day, crating her, gathering the same things you normally would leave with and actually getting into your car and driving away (she will listen for the sound of you leaving). Drive out of the neighborhood, come back, park a street away and watch her from the camera with the sound on so you can hear her. If you can't be that far because of the range of the camera you are using, walk back to the yard of the house, but don't go past any windows or go anywhere she will hear your footprints (dogs have great hearing and she will recognize the sound of you opposed to another person and become quiet if so). Expect to stay in your car or outside for several hours if needed to really find out if she barks - if she isn't starting it right away. She may also be barking in response to something like noises from neighbors so it may not happen all the time. Once you have verified that she really is barking and it's simply because of your absence, you have two basic options - use an automatic treat dispensing device like Pet Tutor or AutoTrainer - that rewards her periodically for staying quiet like you do when you are home, OR use a remote training collar to interrupt the barking while you spy on her from a camera. You can also use a bark collar, but when you use that you want to pair it with other training. If you use a remote training collar or bark collar (stimulation and NOT citronella - citronella is actually far harsher), you will correct each time she barks (or let the collar collar), then when she has been quiet for five minutes, return home, ignoring her for ten minutes so that your return won't be such a big deal, and letting her out of the crate finally, using the crate manners method below: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Check out the videos below for more information on how to train this - either spend a lot of time learning about proper remote training collar use, like finding a dogs' working level (what to set the collar to for each dog) or hire a professional trainer who is experienced in this area to help you - do not simply put the collar on your dog without knowing how to use it correctly with training. The goal with proper e-collar training is to train effectively using the leash amount of aversion necessary to help the dog learn - this means using the right level, knowing how to train with the device, and combining it with the right positive reinforcement also. The benefits of structure and boundaries with separation anxiety - I apologize that this trainer is a bit harsh how he talks. I have included his video anyway though because he is very experienced in this area. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Fitting: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Working level: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM The automatic treat dispensing devices are gentler so may be worth trying first, but the disadvantage is that they are also expensive and are less likely to work then the remote training collar with the correct training. They do work for many dogs though - so may be worth trying first, especially since pup is so young. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Latte
bichoodle
2 Months
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Latte
bichoodle
2 Months

I recently just got a puppy and we are not exactly crate training it but similarly putting the dog in a playpen as a safe place for him while putting a bed just outside. However, whenever we close the flap of the playpen, it seems like he always wants to get out and will just scratching and digging the entry/exit of the pen and excessively bark whenever we are out of sight. Any suggestions on how to correct this behaviour because the last thing I want would be to create separation anxiety for the new pup.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Joy, Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below. It is written to address crate training but can be used with an exercise pen too. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate At this age don't worry about his crying in the pen leading to separation anxiety. Almost all puppies will cry during the first two weeks learning to be by themselves - not letting them have time to practice being alone is actually what can lead to separation anxiety, not crying at this age while adjusting. Ignore any crying until the is quiet for a couple of seconds - reward quietness and calmness by sprinkling a few pieces of puppy's food into the pen when he is quiet. Give a dog food stuffed hollow chew toy in the pen for pup to entertain himself with also. You can also freeze a Kong to make it last pup longer if pup gets good at getting the food out of a non-frozen kong; to do this, place pup's food in a bowl and cover with water, let it sit out until it turns to mush. Mix a little peanut butter (No Xylitol - it's toxic to dogs), or liver paste into the food mush. Place a straw through the Kong's holes, loosely stuff the Kong with the food around the straw. Place the stuffed Kong into the freezer to freeze overnight. When you need the Kong, remove it from the freezer, take out the straw and give it to pup - the straw will create a hole that prevents suction. You can stuff several of these ahead of time and actually feed pup part of his meals this way, grabbing the frozen kongs from the freezer as needed. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Phoebe
terrier
6 Months
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Phoebe
terrier
6 Months

Getting very frustrated with our puppy as she is not doing well with housebreaking after several months of trying. She also barks incessantly in her crate to the point we end up taking her out for our sanity,which I know in turn rewards the behavior but she will bark for an hour straight. I am losing my patience with her. Help !

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Stacy, Check out the article linked below and follow the tethering and crate training methods found in that article. When you cannot supervise or are gone, she needs to be crated. When you are home she can be tethered to you with a leash and taken potty frequently. You may need to exclusively crate train at first before tethering. She shouldn't have any freedom though unless she potties outside within the past four. After 1-1.5 hours of freedom after pottying outside, she should be crate until the next potty time. Since she is older, instead of taking her out every hour you can take her potty every 2-3 hours, crating her after 1-1.5 hours of freedom until it has been 3 hours since she last went potty - at which time you will take her back outside. When you aren't home, she should be able to hold it in the crate for a maximum or 6-7 hours, starting with probably 5 hours until she has some practice being left in the crate. As far as the crying it's probably time to correct. First, teach pup the "Quiet" command using the Quiet method from the article linked below. Only give treats during the day. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Practice short sessions of Quiet often so pup learns Quiet quickly. Once pup knows Quiet, when you crate pup and she barks, tell her quiet. If she gets quiet and stays quiet for 2-5 minutes, sprinkle some of her dog food or small treats into the crate. If she doesn't get quiet or starts barking again quickly, use a pet convincer, which is a small canister of pressurized, unscented air, and spray a small puff of air at her side (not face), while staying "Ah Ah" calmly. Reward her with a treat sprinkle every five minutes if she stays quiet and correct Everytime she barks if she barks. As she improves, space your treat sprinkles out further to every 7 minutes, 10 minutes, 15 minutes, 25 minutes, 45 minutes, ect...until pup simply stays quiet in the crate in general. When you crate pup, you can also give pup her meals in a dog food stuffed Kong. Google ways to stuff a long, there are many ways, including freezing it, adding things like peanut butter, softening the food first, quick ways, ect... When doing all of this don't use citronella - it's too harsh and lingers for very long - making it confusing. Use the regular unscented air canisters. A remote training collar or bark collar can also be used to teach this but that requires a lot of e-collar and training knowledge so the pet convincer tends to be simpler and easier to o train correctly with for this. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Axle
Husky Jack
1 Year
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Axle
Husky Jack
1 Year

Our dog has been kennel trained since he was a pup. We lived in a house and his kennel was in our bedroom. When I tell him "go to bed" he knows instantly to go to his kennel. We moved out of our house and across the world to South Korea where we now live in an apartment. We have only lived here for two weeks and Axle is not doing good with being in his kennel here. In between moving, we stayed with family and Axle was not in his kennel much whereas at our house in the states, he was in his kennel each day when we were gone to work. Here in our apartment, he barks the entire time we are gone. His kennel is in our laundry room and he can see out into the living room. I am not sure on how to stop him from barking and I need to because it is problematic with living here in an apartment. He only barks in his kennel when we are away.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Olivia, Since he was previously kennel trained and the kennel is not new to him and you have neighbors so can't allow the barking to continue I suggest using corrections. Purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator for this. If you are not comfortable with an e-collar then you can use a vibration collar (the Mini Educator is also a vibration mode) or unscented-air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and because the scent lingers instead of stopping when the dog gets quiet they are ineffective). The vibration or spray collars are less likely to work than the stimulation collar though, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar first. The Mini Educator has a hundred levels of stimulation, including very low levels of stimulation, that can be tailored specifically to your dog. It also has vibration and beep tones that you can try using first, without having to buy additional tools. Next, set up a camera to spy on him. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear him but he will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on him while he is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on him, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if he responds to the collar at all. Look for subtle signs such as turning his head, moving his ears, biting his fur, moving away from where he was, or changing his expression. If he does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when he is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing his reaction at that level until he indicates a little bit that he can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM Once you have found the right stimulation level for him and have it correctly fitted on him, have him wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours. Next, set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate. Put him into the crate while he is wearing the collar and leave. Spy on him from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear him barking or see him start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time he barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate him again. If he does not decrease his barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. He may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator or one level on another collar with less levels right now though because he has not learned what he is supposed to be doing yet. The level you end up using on him on the mini educator collar will likely be low to medium, within the first forty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for him. If he continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working - with the prongs making contact with his skin - because of his fur use the longer prongs, most collars come with a short and a long set. After five minutes to ten minutes being outside, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog. Do not speak to him or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it and that will help him to enjoy the crate more and entertain himself better in the new location. First, he needs his anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate for him to relieve his boredom instead, since he will need something other than barking to do at that point. When you are home, also practice the crate manners and work up to a long Place command - where you are able to walk out of the room and pup stay on Place without you there. A long Down Stay using a long leash in places like parks is also a good activity to practice. You want to build pup's independence and confidence with being alone. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ A couple more commands that are good to practice with anxious dogs: Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Amber
cockapoo
14 Weeks
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Amber
cockapoo
14 Weeks

cage barking for attention

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Alen, At this age I suggest using the Surprise method. Skip to the part where the crate door is closed with pup inside. Whenever she gets quiet for even a couple of seconds, return and sprinkle treats into the crate, then leave the room again without letting her out. Whenever she barks, ignore the barking. As she gets used to being quieter in the crate, also give her a dog food stuffed chew toy in the crate with her - you can even feed her her meals via dog food stuffed chew toys at this age. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate It takes most puppies two weeks to adjust to crate training. If you are still struggling with the barking after two weeks, you can add in a Pet Convincer - which is a small canister of unscented, pressurized air (do NOT use citronella for this, only unscented air). You would teach the Quiet command, then reward her while she is in the crate whenever she stays quiet for a bit. When she barks, you would tell her Quiet, and if she continues barking still, spray a small puff of air toward her side through the crate wires. At this age, don't spray too closely, be sure to give her the Quiet command first to that she understands how to avoid the correction, and only spray at her side (NOT her face!). I highly suggest practicing the Surprise method without the corrections first at this age though - most puppies this age will bark the first couple of weeks and ignoring the barking and rewarding the quiet is all that's needed if you are consistent for a couple of weeks. Only use the Pet Convincer if the barking continues to be an issue or is leading to neighbor or landlord complaints. Quiet method for teaching "Quiet": https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Declan
Golden Mix
6 Months
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Declan
Golden Mix
6 Months

Our puppy is about 6 months old. My husband just started working a more consistent schedule after a month of working from home and the thanksgiving holiday. I have a camera in the room and he just has been barking and working himself up all day. I can speak through the camera and when I talk he settles down. He has been barking for a few hours straight today and I don't know what to do. I am afraid he is going to hurt himself. He had a bathroom explosion a day ago in the crate when he has never had this issue before. I watch the camera and feel so guilty all day.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Donna, First, I would pay attention to his poop in general for a couple of days - is their diarrhea or is he pooping super often? If something like that is going on, that could be part of the issue and getting his stomach settled would be an important first step. ' If it's during the first two weeks of being crated again, he may just need time to adjust. If it's past 2-4 weeks or you can't wait for him to adjust on his own, then I suggest the following. There are a couple of routes you can take with the separation anxiety. The first step is to work on building his independence and his confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into his routine. Things such as making him work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching him to remain inside a crate when the door is open. Change your routine surrounding leaving so that he does not anticipate alone time and build up his anxiety before you leave - which is hard for him to deescalate from, and be sure to give him something safe to do in the crate during the day (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on); this is the general protocol for separation anxiety. It is gentle but can take a very long time on its own for some dogs if the anxiety is worse - if he did fine in the past, it's possible this is all it will take to see improvement in a couple of weeks. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction. Who is extremely knowledgeable about e-collar training, and can follow the protocol listed below, to help you implement the training. Building his independence and structure in his life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of his life too. Second, purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator or Garmin Delta Sport or Dogtra for this. If you are not comfortable with an e-collar then you can use a vibration collar (the Mini Educator and Garmin should also have a vibration mode) or unscented air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell - punisher lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). The vibration or spray collars are less likely to work than stimulation e-collars though, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar first. The Mini Educator has very low levels of stimulation, that can be tailored specifically to your dog. It also has vibration and beep tones that you can try using first, without having to buy additional tools. Next, set up a camera to spy on him. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear him but he will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on him while he is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on him, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if he responds to the collar at all. Look for subtle signs such as turning his head, moving his ears, biting his fur, moving away from where he was, or changing his expression. If he does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when he is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing his reaction at that level until he indicates a little bit that he can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM A modern, high quality collar will have so many levels that each level should be really subtle and he will likely respond to a low level stimulation. It's uncomfortable but not the harsh shock many people associate with such collars if done right. Once you have found the right stimulation level for him and have it correctly fitted on him, have him wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours or days if you can (take it off at night to sleep though). Next, set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate. Put him into the crate while he is wearing the collar and leave. Spy on him from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear him barking or see him start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time he barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate him again. If he does not decrease his barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. He may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator or two more levels on another collar with less levels right now though because he has not learned what he is supposed to be doing yet. For example, if his level is 13 out of 100 levels on the Mini Educator, don't go past level 16 right now. The level you end up using on him on the mini educator collar will probably be low to medium, within the first forty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for him. If he continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog, sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting him from outside when he barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when he stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, when he is quiet, go back inside and sprinkle more treats. This time stay inside. Do not speak to him or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it and that will help him to enjoy the crate more. First, he probably needs his anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate for him to relieve his boredom instead of barking, since he will need something other than barking to do at that point. Also, at this age he won't be able to hold his bladder for longer than 7 hours during the day - if he is left alone longer than that you will need to hire a dog walker to come midday for another month - until he is at least 7-8 months old. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Matt
Shih Tzu
13 Years
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Matt
Shih Tzu
13 Years

We are fostering two dogs that were rescued from a neglectful owner. We have had them for two months and they were always pretty good at sleeping in a cage at night. Two days ago we had to euthanize one and now the other one is acting horrible. He won’t sleep in the cage without barking forever and recently pooped all over the bed and blanket inside while we were gone for a couple hours. He’s used to being in that cage for 8+ hours while I’m at work with no accidents. What can I do?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Amel, It sounds like pup was dependent on the other dog's presence and isn't used to being completely alone, which means you would treat pup like a dog who had never been crate trained and learned to be alone. I suggest working on some confidence building exercises and independence building exercises. It's also super important to act calm and confident around him and not to act like you feel sorry for him. What he probably needs from you is confidence and not worry. Place, crate manners, and practicing a distance Down-Stay are all really important for increasing confidence with independence: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Confidence building - teaching tricks that require him handling new, uncertain things can also help: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=elvtxiDW6g0 Also, practice leaving and coming back and getting ready to leave then not leaving over again over again to help desensitize. If you don't see improvement then check out Jeff Gellman from SolidK9Training on YouTube. He has several videos on separation anxiety. His methods are effective but harsher so I suggest implementing the above gentler training first - which would be a part of his protocol anyway. If the soiling on his blankets in the crate continues, you will need to remove all absorbent material from the crate. Check out www.primopads.com for a non-absorbent pad option you could put in the crate for a while. During the day practice crating pup and rewarding for brief times of quietness to encourage further quietness. Check out the Surprise method linked below. Only give treats during daytime practice, not at night. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Ignore the barking between quiet times that you reward. Be sure not to let pup out while he is barking unless you know he definitely needs to go potty. I would use the surprise method, practice confident and independence building protocols and ignore the barking for the next two weeks. If pup is still barking, also begin using a pet convince - which is a small canister of pressurized, unscented air (don't use citronella). When pup barks, tell pup AhAh calmly and spray a small puff of unscented air at his side (NOT face) through the crate, then leave again. If pup stays quiet, return and sprinkle treats into the crate (dont skip the treats during the day - you also want the positive reinforcement for doing the correct thing - being quiet). It can be hard for a highly aroused, barking dog to stop and calm back down on their own. The pet convinced helps deescalate the dog enough for him to make a better choice - being quiet, which you can then reward to increase how often he chooses calm and quiet. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Riverita
Shihpoo
8 Months
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Question
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Riverita
Shihpoo
8 Months

Separation anxiety from me, not my husband.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sasha, There are a couple of routes you can take with the separation anxiety. First, crate train pup if she isn't already. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below and work on that method to get her used to you being out of the room while she is crated. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate The first step is to work on building her independence and her confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into her routine. Things such as making her work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching her to remain inside a crate when the door is open. Change your routine surrounding leaving so that she does not anticipate alone time and build up her anxiety before you leave - which is hard for her to deescalate from, and be sure to continue to give her something to do in the crate during the day (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on); this is the general protocol for separation anxiety. It is gentle but can take a very long time on its own for some dogs with more severe separation anxiety. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ You can also give pup a dog food stuffed chew toy, or using something like an AutoTrainer or Pet Tutor - which can be programmed to release a treat when it detects pup is quiet if you get a certain model. Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction. Who is extremely knowledgeable about e-collar training, and can follow the protocol listed below, to help you implement the training. Building her independence and structure in her life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of pup's life too. Second, purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator or Garmin Delta Sport or Dogtra for this. If you are not comfortable with an e-collar then you can use a vibration collar (the Mini Educator and Garmin should also have a vibration mode) or unscented air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell - punisher lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). The vibration or spray collars are less likely to work than stimulation e-collars though, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar first. The Mini Educator has very low levels of stimulation, that can be tailored specifically to your dog. It also has vibration and beep tones that you can try using first, without having to buy additional tools. Next, set up a camera to spy on her. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear her but she will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on her while she is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on her, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if she responds to the collar at all (if you use a collar like mini educator, most pup's can't even feel the first few levels out of the 100 levels - you are trying to find the level where she begins to feel it without going too high for her). Look for subtle signs such as turning her head, moving her ears, biting her fur, moving away from where she was, or changing her expression. If she does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when she is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing her reaction at that level until she indicates a little bit that she can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM A modern, high quality collar will have so many levels that each level should be really subtle and she will likely respond to a low level stimulation. It's uncomfortable but not the harsh shock many people associate with such collars if done right. Once you have found the right stimulation level for her and have it correctly fitted on her, have her wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours or days if you can (take it off at night to sleep though). Next, set up your camera to spy on her while she is in the crate. Put her into the crate while she is wearing the collar and leave. Spy on her from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear her barking or see her start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time she barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate her collar again. If her fur is long, make sure the metal contact points are both touching her skin, and be sure to order longer contact points - many come with a short and long set). If she does not decrease her barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. She may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator, or two more levels on another collar with less levels right now though because she has not learned what she is supposed to be doing yet. For example, if her level is 16 out of 100 levels on the Mini Educator, don't go past level 19 right now. The level you end up using on her on the mini educator collar will probably be low to medium, within the first fifty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for her before proceeding at a higher level. If she continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog, sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting her from outside when she barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when she stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, when she is quiet, go back inside and sprinkle more treats. This time stay inside. Do not speak to her or pay attention to her for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When she is being calm, then you can let her out of the crate. When you let her out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want her to be calm when she comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore her when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with her. Once she is less anxious she will likely enjoy it even if she didn't pay any attention to it in the past, and that will help her to enjoy the crate more. First, she may need her anxious state of mind interrupted so that she is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give her a food stuffed Kong in the crate for her to relieve her boredom instead of barking, since she will need something other than barking to do at that point. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Rocky
Weimaraner
8 Weeks
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Rocky
Weimaraner
8 Weeks

Hi! We adopted rocky at 6 weeks. He is now 8 weeks. We have tried kennel training him while we are out during the day. However, all he does is bark and bark and bark while he is in the kennel. He is not night kennel trained. The same thing if I leave him outside if I need to take care of something. He will sit at the door and bark, whine, and scratch. Any advice to stop this behavior?

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
65 Dog owners recommended

Very cute! If you are not planning to crate train Rocky at night, you could consider an exercise pen area for him. Take a look here for a great set up: https://www.preventivevet.com/dogs/how-to-set-up-puppy-long-term-confinement-area. When you put Rocky in the pen area, give him a kong to work on. To prepare a kong, soften kibble and place inside the kong. Add a smear of peanut butter (natural only - no xylitol as it is toxic to dogs!). Put the kong in a ziploc bag and freeze it. Give it to Rocky when you are going out. It will take him a while to make his way through it and could stop the barking. As for outside, he could be nervous out there all alone. Make sure that you go out with him often so he gets used to the environment with you safely at his side. Provide water, toys and a comfy spot to rest in the shade. If you would rather use the crate during the day, instead of the pen. look to this guide for advice: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate. All the best!

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Brody
Golden Retriever
8 Weeks
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Brody
Golden Retriever
8 Weeks

He is waking up every 2-2 1/2 hours at night to pee. Hi know their bladders cannot hold a lot at this age but I thought at night they should be able to go longer. We stop food and water at an early enough time at night to where it t shouldn’t be affecting him. So he goes in his crate around 10-10:30 wakes up at 1, then 3:30 and then 5:30. He always is to go pee when we take him. The problem is the 5:30 AM wake up...We tried ignoring the barking as all of the sites said but he barks and howls and cries and won’t stop and I have two young boys who are sleeping. So ignoring sounds like an easy fix but I can’t have him waking up everyone in the house. If we took him out at 5:30 and out him back in the crate for awhile until it was time to eat, he would still just bark and howl and wake everyone up. Crate is in bedroom with us right now.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kathleen, Unfortunately, pup really will need to pee that often right now. 1-2 times is normal. If pup wakes up too soon, they will need an additional 3rd time also. Once pup wakes up and it's been more than 2 hours, their bladder wakes up too and they will have to go out. If they get better at putting themselves back to sleep before fully waking up, they will be able to hold it a bit longer, to reach the 1-2 times per night. To help pup learn to wake less initially, it takes times, keeping potty trips on the leash and super boring - no play, no food, little attention, then straight back to the crate. You want pup to only be motivated to wake to pee and not for a fun time or food. The easiest answer in the end is to ignore pup's crying at 5:30am once you have taken them potty and put them back into the crate. That can mean a rough couple or days to two-weeks, depending on how persistent each pup is. Working on the Surprise method linked below during the day can certainly help that process go faster. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Another option is to freeze pup's meal in two large hollow Kongs, and when you return pup to the crate, put those in there with them. Often puppies will quietly work on the kongs for an hour, and sometimes fall back asleep after all that work. The down sides are that pup may cry again asking to poop at some point because of the food, and you will still have to reset pup's internal clock and ignore crying at some point in the future when their bladder capacity is better, and you want them to learn to wake up to eat at 7am or some more reasonable time. Doing the kongs temporarily can buy you some sanity while in the process of loosing sleep due to puppy waking up to often for potty trips though, then that time wake up can be dealt with on it's own once pup is better during the rest of the night. If you choose to use the Kongs, place puppy's food into a bowl, cover it with water, let it sit out until it turns fully into mush, mix a little peanut butter, liver paste, or treat paste into it (make sure the peanut butter doesn't contain the sweetener xylitol - it's extremely toxic to dogs!). Place a straw through the Kongs' holes, LOOSELY stuff the food around the straw, then freeze both overnight. You can purchase and make several of these ahead of time to grab from the freezer as needed if you find this works well for you. Once pup is older, the barking can be corrected in other ways when you get ready to phase out the 5am wake up if you do the kongs for now, but puppy isn't ready for that method yet at this age. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Murray
Golden Doodle
11 Weeks
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Murray
Golden Doodle
11 Weeks

During the night Murray does good with the crate. He wimp a little but I tell him no time to sleep and he is good. But during the day he barks all day, I do have my mother in law living with me and she is constantly making noise. How long will he bark like this for and he now does not want anything to do with his crate.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Heather, First, the barking is normal during the first two weeks of crate training. If it's been less than that amount of time, stay strong. Second, whether is has been more or less than two weeks, you can use the Surprise method from the article linked below. I would skip to the part where the crate door is closed with pup inside since the crate isn't completely new to him. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Third, make sure he isn't being crated for longer than he can hold his bladder for - which is one hour for every month he is in age plus one. At 11 weeks, that means he shouldn't be crated for more than about 3- 3.5 hours at one time without potty breaks. Taking him potty every 1-2 hours while potty training and you are home is ideal though. The 3 hours is a maximum amount of time. Fourth, if it's been more than three weeks, you follow the Surprise method and aren't seeing enough improvement, and he isn't being crated for too long, you can add corrections to the Surprise method. Because he is still so young, start with the Surprise method alone or wait it out longer at first though. To modify the Surprise method to include corrections to help with the barking: First, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As he improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating him during the day for 1-2 hours at a time each day doing the treat rewards. Whenever he cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet". If he gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if he stays quiet. If he continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at his side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate The Pet Convincer should interrupt the barking long enough for pup to learn to stay quiet for a couple of minutes - then that quietness needs to be rewarded so that pup will see that being quiet is how he gets you to return, receives rewards, and eventually gets free. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Buddy
Boxer
13 Weeks
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Buddy
Boxer
13 Weeks

Buddy now goes into his crate every evening after going for his last wee in the garden and sleeps through night until we get up - but My husband works at home in the day and takes him out for 2-3 walks a day and we find that if we go out and crate him he is barking like mad when we come back. we only leave him around 2-2.5 hours a time

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Amy, First, I suggest setting up a camera to spy on him while you are gone - such as a smartphone or tablet with Skype on mute, a video baby monitor, or security camera you can monitor remotely. Many puppies will cry right after you leave and when they hear you pull up but are quiet the entire time you are gone - you will want to find out whether pup is actually barking the entire time or just when he thinks you can hear him. If he is only barking when you come back, change your arrival routine by practicing the crate manners protocol from the video below. Ignore him for 10 minutes when you first get home if he can hold his bladder, and use the crate manners protocol to practice calm crate exits and greetings. You want to condition him to be calmer when you arrive so there will be less barking - also, quietness is part of the criteria for him to get out of the crate. Which he will probably naturally do when you start practicing opening and closing the crate door - it will help him calm down and also become quiet before being allowed to exit. Crate manners protocol: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ If he is crying the entire time you are gone, practice the Surprise method from the article linked below, but while practicing go out your front door and pretend to leave. When he gets quiet for even a couple of seconds, then return and sprinkle the treats into the crate, then leave again. You will be teaching him that getting quiet is what brings you back. Also, giving him the dog food stuffed hollow chew toy like the article mentions can help. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Cooper
Border Collie X
2 Years
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Cooper
Border Collie X
2 Years

Our dog has been crated since he was a baby, he is used to it when he knows we aren't in the house and he will just sleep. We always have issues getting him into the crate. We recently started agility and cannot for the life of us get him in the crate without him freaking out and barking once he is in there. We have tried not making it a big deal when he goes in and praising him when he is quiet but nothing seems to be clicking with him, he has the full mindset that the kennel is BAD place! Is there any way i can break this mind set with him? I am feeling hopeless

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Tegan, Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate I suggest practicing the above two methods with pup very regularly while you are home during the day. I also suggest giving pup a dog food stuffed hollow chew toy, like a Kong in the crate to help with boredom. If pup is really persistent with the barking even after practicing all of the above training (which needs to be done either way), you may also need to interrupt pup's aroused state long enough for pup to be able to learn to calm down - it's also possible since pup is fine while you are away that the barking is just protest from boredom - this is pretty common - in which case a correction is what I would recommend too. To correct, if he continues protesting for long periods of time past three-seven days of training, you can use a Pet Convincer. Work on teaching "Quiet" by using the Quiet method from the article linked below. Tell him "Quiet" when he barks and cries. If he gets quiet and stays quiet, you can sprinkle a few pieces of dog food into the crate through the wires calmly, then leave again. If he disobeys your command and keep crying or stops but starts again, spray a small puff of air from the Pet convincer at his side through the crate while saying "Ah Ah" calmly, then leave again. If he stays quiet after you leave you can periodically sprinkle treats into the crate to reward his quietness. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Only use the unscented air from the Pet Convincers - don't use citronella, it's too harsh and lingers for too long so can be confusing. Even if pup doesn't want treats or the dog food stuffed Kong, I suggest trying to give a dog food stuffed kong after practicing with the pet convincer for a few days - if you end up needing to go that route. Some dogs won't eat while in an aroused/stressed state of mind and once they are calmer, the food is appealing again and can help with boredom. You can google and watch several Youtube videos on various options for stuffing Kongs - some quick and simple and some made ahead of time and frozen to last longer. If you freeze moist dog food inside just be sure to insert a straw through the Kong before freezing then remove the straw when you give to pup - which will leave a small hole to prevent suction while eating. Pup's own dog food and liver paste are the best stuffing options often, but there are other safe options like (Xylitol free - it's toxic!) peanut butter, soft cheese and treats made for that purpose. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Cash
Labrador Retriever
3 Months
2 found helpful
Question
2 found helpful
Cash
Labrador Retriever
3 Months

My boyfriend and I have run into a problem crate training out puppy Cash. He spends most of his time at work with my boyfriend and only uses the crate at night. The first week was rough, there was a lot of whining and very little sleep, but we ignored him. For two weeks he did good. He would go right in lay down, sometimes let out a couple whines but would go to sleep. The last two nights seems like we have taken 20 steps back. He will no longer just go in a sleep. He sits there and barks louder and louder, to the point that it’s so hard to ignore. What would be the best method to take some steps forward again?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Hannah, Continue to remain consistent with Cash with what you are already doing, but there are a couple of additional things that you can do to help him to like the crate more. The first is to fill a hollow chew toy, such as a Kong, with food and to give it to him in the crate for an hour as part of his dinner. The best way to stuff the Kong is to place Cash's dinner in a bowl with water. Let the food soak up all the water so that it is soft, then loosely stuff the Kong with the wet food. When the Kong is stuffed then place the Kong into a Ziplock bag, and then place the entire thing into the freezer to freeze. If Cash needs extra incentive, then you can mix a little peanut butter or cheese into the food mush also. It is best to have two or more of these and stuff them all at the same time so that you can just grab one whenever you need it. Since he spends most of his time at your husband's work, you can give him the Kong in his crate for an hour in the evening, right after he gets home around dinner time, so that he will have some free time again before bed and before his last potty break outside. You can also do it on the weekends when your husband is home. When your dog is quiet while in the crate chewing on his stuffed toy, then also randomly walk over to the crate and drop kibble inside for him to eat, to reward him for the quiet behavior. On the weekends and during the evening before bed, you can also place treats in front of and inside of the crate with the door open when your puppy is not looking. That way Cash will begin to go into the crate on his own, in search of treats. When you put him into the crate at night be sure to reward him with a treat when he goes inside and also give him a safe, normal chew toy to occupy himself with. The chew toy will help him to wind down before he goes to sleep and again when he wakes at night. Also make sure that he is being given enough opportunities to go to the bathroom and has an empty bladder before bed. It is possible that at three months he will occasionally need to go potty during the middle of the night. If you believe he is ever whining because of that, then take him outside on a leash to go, but when you do it do not talk to him or play with him or get him excited. Make the trip very boring and immediately bring him back in after he goes and put him back in his crate. Keep things boring and business like so that he does not think asking to go potty at night is a way to get you to play with him. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Maya
Labrador Retriever
8 Months
1 found helpful
Question
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Maya
Labrador Retriever
8 Months

Maya is completely housebroken. She’s great and only barks around the house when the doorbell rings. I’m a stay at home mom so Maya is loose only when I step out of the house and go somewhere dogs aren’t welcome. The issue we are having with her is the barking in the crate. Her crate is downstairs in the room next to kitchen under the master bedroom(so I hear her bark all night). We puther in the crate around 8pm and then she starts barking non stop till around 3am that my boyfriend gets up to let her out because he goes to work at that time. The issue is that as soon as she hears the baby gate slide at the top of the stairs she stops barking(assuming she knows someone’s coming downstairs). I haven’t been able to catch her barking when I’m close by to show her the “quiet” word because she never barks in the crate when we are around her. She goes in her crate at her leaisure. Her crate door is open and she at times goes in herself to chew a toy or lay down. We recently bought her a 48” crate because we though maybe she was barking cause she felt cramped in her other crate, but those crate size didn’t seem to faze her.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Germaine, I would recommend giving her a stuffed Kong at night to prevent boredom, then crating her some when you are home during the day to see if she will bark when you ignore her for long enough. If she does, then work on teaching "Quiet" and showing her that she can only get free when she is being quiet. Crating her with a nice toy, such a as Kong, during the day should also help her to learn more independence and appropriate ways to self-entertain, which it sounds like might be part of the problem. If she will not bark when left in the crate during the day, then teach "Quiet" using "The Knock Method" or "The Video Method", and simply remove the final step of teaching your dog to bark softly from this article: https://wagwalking.com/training/bark-softly-1 More independence ma also help. You can also teach her more independence by working on distance commands such as "Down Stay" at a distance, and by teaching her a "Place" command, and having her stay in her place some during the day, rather than following you around the house. You can also make your interactions with her more calm, and having her work for affection by doing things like sitting before you pet her. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Albus
Labrador Retriever
10 Weeks
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Question
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Albus
Labrador Retriever
10 Weeks

I've had Albus for almost 2 weeks. Most days he plays outside the crate then goes into the crate when it's time to go to sleep, but he needs some coaxing. Unfortunately, I'm having an issue with leaving him alone. He won't associate playtime with the crate so doesn't understand that he can have fun in there and it's a safe quiet zone. Sometimes he toilets in the crate which we clean up with enzyme spray straight away. The main issue I'm having is he now doesn't want to sleep in the crate either as he will have spent alone time in there and he cries to be let out because he thinks I'm leaving him in there again, becoming overtired because he should be asleep.
I think I need advice on how to make the crate seem like a happier place rather than just somewhere to sleep, and also how to prevent this separation anxiety from becoming too big an issue as he gets slightly destructive. He doesn't always cry at night unless he needs to go out, and he does calm down and go to sleep after crying/barking if I ignore him but I don't want him to fear the crate.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Myrran, First of all, know that it takes most puppies a full month to adjust to the crate. Good crate training exercises can actually prevent separation anxiety later in life. Crying a bit at first each time is normal at this stage - loving the crate generally comes later once the crate is more familiar and pup gets older - so I do encourage you to persevere and not let pup out when they cry unless they need to potty or are injured or sick. With that said, there are certainly things you can and should do to help pup feel more at home! Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below. I suggest practicing a bit of all three methods but focus the most on the "Surprise" method. That method also mentions giving pup a food stuffed hollow chew toy in the crate - I highly suggest this for puppies. You can use pup's own dog food and there are several great ways to stuff the Kong to make it easier or harder, quicker or longer lasting - depending on what's needed. You can even place pup's kibble in a bowl, cover it with water, wait until it turns to mush, mix a little liver paste or peanut butter (Avoid Xylitol it's toxic to dogs) into the mush, place a straw through the Kong's two holes, then loosely stuff the kong with the mush mixture around the straw. Freeze the entire thing, then take the straw out and give the frozen kong to pup when crating for a while to help with teething discomfort and be a time-released treat that lasts longer. Using the straw creates a hole that prevents suction while pup is licking the kong later. Surprise method plus other methods for introducing a crate: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Also, you mentioned accidents in the crate. Be sure that there is nothing absorbent in the crate with pup - www.primopads.com sells non-absorbent beds if you need something. Look for something similar. Make sure that the crate is only big enough for pup to stand up, turn around, and lie down while pup is still being potty trained - too big and pup will be encouraged to have accidents if he can go potty in one end and stand in the opposite end to avoid it. A crate divider is great for larger crates - so that you can adjust the size as pup grows. As a general rule a puppy can hold their bladder max during the day for the number of months they are in age plus one, so a 10 week old puppy, physically cannot go longer than 3 hours without having an accident - make sure pup isn't being left too long and forced to go in the crate. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Glacier
Sheepadoodle
9 Weeks
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Glacier
Sheepadoodle
9 Weeks

Just got our puppy last week. Wondering the best way to begin crate training our pup? I've heard a little while at a time during the day... then increasing the time every time he goes in. He seems anxious as a pup, then again he just left all his family a week ago. I want to encourage him and not scar the little dude. Just looking for some help.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Josh, Check out the article linked below. You can practice all three methods together - play and treats, ect... but I specifically suggest practicing the Surprise method the most for your pup. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Also, know that on average it takes puppies two weeks to adjust and calm down in the crate. Four weeks is not unusual, but for most puppies it takes 2 weeks, with the first three days of crate training being the hardest. The Surprise method should make things easier for pup but there will likely still be some crying - your help with training can guide pup to show them that they are safe in there sooner time-wise though. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Brecker
Golden Retriever
3 Months
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Brecker
Golden Retriever
3 Months

Hi there. Our puppy seems to be getting worse rather than better w barking in the crate. He is fine with holding his bladder all night, but if he hears us getting up to pee etc. he barks his head off. Unfortunately, we have two young girls who are getting woken up. We never pay attention to him in the night, but he still barks. He also has to be physically put into his crate at night. Tips? I’m really struggling having my little girls woken up.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Casey, It sounds like the easiest thing would be to move pup's crate somewhere where pup won't be woken up during bathroom breaks to start with. Move pup's crate during the day and spend time practicing the Surprise method in the new location during the day, then place an audio baby monitor with pup in the new location, for the times when pup wakes up actually having to pee still. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Work on doing the above training for the next week. If things aren't improving, I also suggest practicing the following. First, you need a way to communicate with him so I suggest teaching the Quiet command from the Quiet method in the article I have linked below - don't expect this alone to work but it will be part of the puzzle for what I will suggest next. (You can go ahead and teach Quiet regardless of whether its still needed for the barking by next week, after moving the crate - because it's simply a good command to teach with lots of uses, and then pup will already know it if you do need it next week). https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Next, once pup understands what Quiet means, you will choose an interrupter - neither too harsh nor ineffective. A Pet Convincer is one type of interrupter. A pet convincer is a small canister of pressurized, unscented air that you can spray a quick puff of at the dog's side to surprise them enough to help them calm back down. (Don't use citronella and avoid spraying in the face!). You can hold the canister further away from pup to make this gentler. During the day, practice crating pup in the new location (or practice in early evening too if pup only barks at night while in the crate). Command pup to be Quiet when you put them into the crate. If they obey, and stay quiet, return a couple of minutes later and reward with a treat and very calm praise, then leave again (give the treat through the crate's wires instead of opening the crate). If they bark anyway or continue to bark, say "Ah Ah" firmly but calmly and give a brief correction with the air puff, then leave again. Repeat the correction each time they bark until you get a brief pause in the barking. When they pause, praise and reward them. The combination of communication, correction, and rewarding - with the "Ah Ah" and praise to mark their good and bad behavior with the right timing, is very important. Once pup is calmer in general after the initial training, practice in all the types is situations he barks in - like when someone makes the types of noises he barks at at night. Whenever he DOESN'T bark, reward him. At bedtime, after having practiced this with treats during the day to teach pup what they should do also - be quiet, then practice this at night without treats, only using the corrections and Quiet command. When pup barks and it's been at least 4 hours since they last went potty, you will need to take pup to potty since they will have to go sooner once awake. If pup barks earlier than 3-4 hours, you will correct though. When you take pup potty, take pup on a leash and keep the trip super boring - no play, affection or treats. Return pup to the crate, command Quiet calmly, then if they bark, tell them "Ah ah" and correct with the Pet Convincer air at their side. Correct each time they bark, then leave again right after - until pup goes back to sleep. A dog's bladder is different when asleep than when awake. Once awake a dog needs to potty similar to how often they do in the day - at this age at least every 3-4 hours, but if they stay asleep, they can go almost twice that long many nights. The goal is to get rid of attention barking and decrease what's waking him in the first place, so that wake ups begin to only happen when pup truly has to pee. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Tug
Corgi mix
18 Months
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Tug
Corgi mix
18 Months

Hi there, we recently started fostering Tug. He calmly sleeps through the night in his crate, and is quiet in his crate when my fiance and I are in other rooms in the apartment where he cannot see us. We have been giving him a frozen Kong filled with peanut butter only when we leave him alone, leave the TV on, and have the crate covered. When we leave, Tug immediately starts barking and will not stop. What else can we try?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello, If it's during the first two weeks still, he may just need time to adjust. If it's past 2-4 weeks or you can't wait for him to adjust on his own due to neighbors before 2 weeks, then I suggest the following. There are a couple of routes you can take with the separation anxiety. The first step is to work on building his independence and his confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into his routine. Things such as making him work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching him to remain inside a crate when the door is open. Change your routine surrounding leaving so that he does not anticipate alone time and build up his anxiety before you leave - which is hard for him to deescalate from, and be sure to continue to give him something to do in the crate during the day (such as the dog food stuffed Kong to chew on); this is the general protocol for separation anxiety. It is gentle but for some dogs it can take a long time on its own. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to be more effective for harder cases. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction. Who is extremely knowledgeable about e-collar training, and can follow the protocol listed below, to help you implement the training. Building his independence and structure in his life will still be an important part of this protocol too. Purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator or Garmin Delta Sport or Dogtra for this. If you are not comfortable with an e-collar then you can use a vibration collar (the Mini Educator and Garmin should also have a vibration mode) or unscented air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell - punisher lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). The vibration or spray collars are less likely to work than stimulation e-collars though, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar first. The Mini Educator has very low levels of stimulation, that can be tailored specifically to your dog. It also has vibration and beep tones that you can try using first, without having to buy additional tools. Next, set up a camera to spy on him. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear him but he will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on him while he is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on him, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if he responds to the collar at all. Look for subtle signs such as turning his head, moving his ears, biting his fur, moving away from where he was, or changing his expression. If he does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when he is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing his reaction at that level until he indicates a little bit that he can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM A modern, high quality collar will have so many levels that each level should be really subtle and he will likely respond to a low level stimulation. It's uncomfortable but not the harsh shock many people associate with the old shock collars if done right. Once you have found the right stimulation level for him and have it correctly fitted on him, have him wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours or days if you can (take it off at night to sleep though). Next, set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate. Put him into the crate while he is wearing the collar and leave. Spy on him from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear him barking or see him start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time he barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate him again. If he does not decrease his barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. He may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator or two more levels on another collar with less levels right now though because he has not learned what he is supposed to be doing yet. For example, if his level is 13 out of 100 levels on the Mini Educator, don't go past level 16 right now. The level you end up using on him on the mini educator collar will probably be low to medium, within the first forty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for him before continuing. If he continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog, sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting him from outside when he barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when he stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, when he is quiet, go back inside and sprinkle more treats. This time stay inside. Do not speak to him or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it and that will help him to enjoy the crate more while you are away. First, he probably needs his anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate when you leave also for him to relieve his boredom instead of barking, since he will need something other than barking to do at that point. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Coco
English Bulldog
3 Years
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Coco
English Bulldog
3 Years

We have Coco crated at night in our downstairs living room (stairs are difficult for her, so she doesn’t go upstairs where the bedrooms are). Often times, we wake up to her barking in the middle of the night. We try letting her out, getting water, etc. but it doesn’t seem like she needs anything. She is used to the crate and doesn’t mind it, but if we let her out in the middle of the night it is very hard to get her to go back in. Once we do get her back in, we will typically hear her start barking again an hour or so later. Any suggestions?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sarah, First, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As she improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating her during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. Whenever she cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet". If she gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if she stays quiet. If she continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at her side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever she cries. Practice for a few days until she is doing well during the day. When she cries at night before it has been 8 hours, tell her Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if she doesn't become quiet and stay quiet. Don't give treats during the night, but do practice with treats proactively during the day to help her adjust to nights quicker. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Rogue
Golden Retriever
9 Weeks
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Rogue
Golden Retriever
9 Weeks

He is fine in his crate at night. Honestly the last few nights I will go 5 hours, take him out, and 3 hours, then wake up because he wasn't barking in his crate every 2-3 hours like I started off doing. But when we place him in the crate during the day 10 min-1 hour, regardless the time, he barks nonstop. We have tried toys in the crate, PB Kong, bully sticks in the crate-- nothing works. He could just be too young still, but I'm worried we are missing something. He needs to be able to fair well when we go back to work.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Ginna, Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below. When he barks while practicing during the day, you will reward the brief seconds of quiet with treat sprinkles - keeping things very calm when you do so. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate It sounds like things are going well overall though - especially at night. What you are experiencing is still normal at this point. Some degree of barking is to be expected for the first two weeks, and I am guessing you are at the end of week 1. If it goes past four weeks, then something will need to be adjusted. Normally what happens if you don't reward the barking with attention - but wait until they are quiet to return, even if that means two seconds of quiet - then he should begin to give up on barking sooner and sooner each time, until finally there is none. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Sully
English Labrador
3 Months
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Sully
English Labrador
3 Months

Sully is doing amazing with potty and not mouthing. However he's begun barking and whining. Both in crate and pen. It is very stressful. When I need to do something I either pen/crate and give a puzzle. After he is done he barks and barks. Help.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kate, First, make sure that you are not rewarding the barking by returning to him or freeing him while he is barking and whining - that only teaches him to bark more. Wait until you get a at least a couple of seconds of pause in the barking to return - so he is being rewarded for being quiet instead. Second, when he pauses his barking, return and sprinkle treats over the pen or through the crate's wires without letting him out. As he improves, wait a bit longer before returning - so that he is being rewarded for staying quiet not just getting quiet. Gradually work up to him staying quiet for whole time you are gone and not barking to begin with. Continue giving him a dog food stuffed hollow chew toy. To make it last longer, place pup's food in a bowl and cover with water, let it sit out until it turns to mush, mix a little liver paste or peanut butter, stick a straw through the kong holes, loosely stuff the kong with the mush, place it into a baggie, freeze overnight. Make a few of these ahead of time and grab from the freezer as needed - so that the treat it a time released Popsicle that takes pup longer to finish. Barking at this age is nromal - pup is testing what will get you back and learning to adjust to being alone now that they are more alert and awake age-wise. Work on the above training for the next couple of weeks at least. If you are still having issues with the barking after doing the above for two weeks, I suggest also doing the following. First, you need a way to communicate with him so I suggest teaching the Quiet command from the Quiet method in the article I have linked below - don't expect this alone to work but it will be part of the puzzle for what I will suggest next. (You can go ahead and teach Quiet regardless of whether its still needed for the hall barking - because it's simply a good command to teach with lots of uses). https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Next, once pup understands what Quiet means you will choose an interrupter - neither too harsh nor ineffective. A Pet Convincer is one type of interrupter. A pet convincer is a small canister of pressurized, unscented air that you can spray a quick puff of at the dog's side to surprise them enough to help them calm back down. (Don't use citronella and avoid spraying in the face!). You can hold the canister further away from pup to make this gentler. If they obey, reward with a treat and very calm praise. If they bark anyway or continue to bark, say "Ah Ah" firmly but calmly and give a brief correction, then leave again. Repeat the correction each time they bark until you get a brief pause in the barking. When they pause, praise and reward them. The combination of communication, correction, and rewarding - with the "Ah Ah" and praise to mark their good and bad behavior with the right timing, is very important. Once pup is calmer in general after the initial training, practice in all the types is situations he barks in - like the pen and the crate. Whenever he DOESN'T bark when you leave, return sooner, calmly praise and reward him for staying quiet to continue the desensitization process. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Heiko
German Shepherd
8 Weeks
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Heiko
German Shepherd
8 Weeks

Hey, he wont stop barking in his crate when I leave the room, no matter how tired he is. As soon as i go to him he will fall right asleep

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Raiyaan, Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below. Practice that method during the day. Some puppies are extremely persistent the first three days, and it's normal for crate training to take two weeks before pups don't cry at all - but the amount of time should decrease along the way, and it shouldn't be an hour of crying each time a week and a half in in most cases. Each time you go in, except when pup has to go potty - at this age around 2 hours while crating, and 1 hour when out of the crate, often up to 3-4 hours at night if pup stays asleep, then it will prolong crate training. If you can hold out until you get a couple of quiet seconds - even if it takes two hours to get, and be ready to go in as soon as pup gets quiet before barking resumes - so that pup's quietness is rewarded with your return (and treats during the day) and the barking isn't rewarded instead, then pup should gradually learn how to self-entertain and relax in the crate. Realizing that you always return and nothing terrible happens to them while in there. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Pup needs to see that they can relax, and that they don't have to cry to be let out later - which takes persistence from you. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Pepper
Portuguese Water Dog
5 Years
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Pepper
Portuguese Water Dog
5 Years

We just adopted a 5 year old Portuguese water dog and she is a breeze when we are home. As soon as we leave she howls and barks incessantly. She was crate trained in the past by her previous owner, but she still barks in the crate. We are new to the whole dog thing and arent sure what we need to do to stop the barking.
Thanks!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello McCall, If it's during the first two weeks home with you she may just need time to adjust. If it's during the first two weeks, check out the Surprise method from the article linked below and work on that method to get her used to you being out of the room while she is crated. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate If it's past 2-4 weeks or you can't wait for her to adjust on her own due to neighbors before 2 weeks, then I suggest the following. There are a couple of routes you can take with the separation anxiety. The first step is to work on building her independence and her confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into her routine. Things such as making her work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching her to remain inside a crate when the door is open. Change your routine surrounding leaving so that she does not anticipate alone time and build up her anxiety before you leave - which is hard for her to deescalate from, and be sure to continue to give her something to do in the crate during the day (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on); this is the general protocol for separation anxiety. It is gentle but can take a very long time on its own for some dogs with more severe separation anxiety. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction. Who is extremely knowledgeable about e-collar training, and can follow the protocol listed below, to help you implement the training. Building her independence and structure in her life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of pup's life too. Second, purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator or Garmin Delta Sport or Dogtra for this. If you are not comfortable with an e-collar then you can use a vibration collar (the Mini Educator and Garmin should also have a vibration mode) or unscented air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell - punisher lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). The vibration or spray collars are less likely to work than stimulation e-collars though, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar first. The Mini Educator has very low levels of stimulation, that can be tailored specifically to your dog. It also has vibration and beep tones that you can try using first, without having to buy additional tools. Next, set up a camera to spy on her. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear her but she will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on her while she is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on her, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if she responds to the collar at all (if you use a collar like mini educator, most pup's can't even feel the first few levels out of the 100 levels - you are trying to find the level where she begins to feel it without going too high for her). Look for subtle signs such as turning her head, moving her ears, biting her fur, moving away from where she was, or changing her expression. If she does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when she is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing her reaction at that level until she indicates a little bit that she can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM A modern, high quality collar will have so many levels that each level should be really subtle and she will likely respond to a low level stimulation. It's uncomfortable but not the harsh shock many people associate with such collars if done right. Once you have found the right stimulation level for her and have it correctly fitted on her, have her wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours or days if you can (take it off at night to sleep though). Next, set up your camera to spy on her while she is in the crate. Put her into the crate while she is wearing the collar and leave. Spy on her from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear her barking or see her start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time she barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate her collar again. If her fur is long, make sure the metal contact points are both touching her skin, and be sure to order longer contact points - many come with a short and long set). If she does not decrease her barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. She may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator, or two more levels on another collar with less levels right now though because she has not learned what she is supposed to be doing yet. For example, if her level is 16 out of 100 levels on the Mini Educator, don't go past level 19 right now. The level you end up using on her on the mini educator collar will probably be low to medium, within the first fifty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for her before proceeding at a higher level. If she continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog, sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting her from outside when she barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when she stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, when she is quiet, go back inside and sprinkle more treats. This time stay inside. Do not speak to her or pay attention to her for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When she is being calm, then you can let her out of the crate. When you let her out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want her to be calm when she comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore her when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with her. Once she is less anxious she will likely enjoy it even if she didn't pay any attention to it in the past, and that will help her to enjoy the crate more. First, she may need her anxious state of mind interrupted so that she is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give her a food stuffed Kong in the crate for her to relieve her boredom instead of barking, since she will need something other than barking to do at that point. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Mando
Standard Poodle
7 Months
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Mando
Standard Poodle
7 Months

We got Mando when he was 10 weeks old. From day one we started crest training. We would start with about 5-10 minutes while we were with him just so he could get use to it during the day. We would feed him in the kennel as well. He never barked or whined in his kennel even on the first day of having him. He would even sleep through the night from 10 pm to 5:30 am then go back in his kennel from 5:30 after we took him out to go potty to about 7:30-8 am. We got him a new kennel a month ago since he grew out of the one we we were given by my parents when we first got him. He had no problems adjusting to the new kennel other than once he was up between 5:30 and 6 he was awake. But a week ago he started barking as soon as we put him in his kennel. He will whine and cry for about 15 minutes then finally settle down and go to sleep but only sleep for a couple hours at a time before waking up to bark again. Some nights he will just bark and whine for hours. Nothing has changed in his routine other than my husband doesn’t get up at 5:30 every morning for work because of the quarantine. It is getting to the point where he barely sleeps and I dont either. My husband sleeps right through it. But I’m at my wits end I have no idea what to do or why he has started barking so much. And we can’t let him just bark it out we live in a duplex and our neighbors have younger children. Please help! He is such a good dog other than this whole sleeping thing!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Addie, Work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Practice the Surprise method from the article linked below during the day. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As he improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating him during the day for 1-3 hours at a time each day that you can. If you are home during the day, have lots of 30 minute - 1 hour long sessions with breaks between to practice this, to help pup learn sooner. Whenever he cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet". If he gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if he stays quiet. If he continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at his side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever he cries. Practice for a few days until he is doing well during the day. When he cries at night before it has been 8 hours (so you know it's not a potty issue), tell him Quiet, and correct with the pet convincer if he doesn't become quiet and stay quiet. If he cries after taking him potty when you return him to the crate, also command Quiet, and correct if he doesn't quiet down. You may want to pretend like you are all going to bed two hours early and read in bed with the lights off - anticipating having to get up a lot the first couple of hours to correct - so that you don't loose as much sleep the first couple days of doing this. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Luke
Labrador Retriever
4 Months
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Luke
Labrador Retriever
4 Months

Hello- I have a black lab named luke. He is 4 months old and I've had him for two weeks. Week 1 I could leave him crated during the day around me or for 30min to an hour. He also sleeps in the crate fully through the night with no accidents. This week whenever I leave him in the crate and go out he barks non-stop the entire time, barking, whimpering, panting, and he actually urinated in his crate also which he never does. My concern is this is something that will stick with him or he won't grow out of...not allowing me to have a normal life and him. What do you suggest I do ? I give him toys, treats, don't use the crate as punishment, it's big enough, etc. All the standard responses I have tried but am in a really hard spot.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Andrew, While you are home, practice crating pup and being in another part of the house, or even going out the front door and listening out for his crying. Keep departures and arrivals super boring. When you first return, ignore pup for 5 minutes, then practice the Crate Manners exercise from one of the videos linked below, to have him wait patiently for permission before exiting the crate - that helps set an expectation of calmness getting out of the crate. The overall goal is pup to associate the crate with calmness more. First, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As he improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating him during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. If you are home during the day, have lots of 30 minute - 1 hour long sessions with breaks between to practice this, to help pup learn sooner. Whenever he cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet". If he gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if he stays quiet. If he continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at his side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever he cries. Building some independence overall can also be helpful. Practicing things like staying in a crate with the door open, holding a long Place command while you walk in and out of the room, and doing a long, distance down-stay outside using a long-training leash to tether him to a tree so you can walk several feet away, and a structured heel, can all help to build pup's independence and confidence. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Heel - Turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with him also. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it and that will help him to enjoy the crate more. First, he may need his anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate for him to relieve his boredom instead of barking, since he will need something other than barking to do at that point. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Aspen
Husky + Standard Poodle
10 Weeks
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Aspen
Husky + Standard Poodle
10 Weeks

We've had Aspen for 2 weeks now and he does not like to be in his crate at all. Even treats don't keep him quiet. I can sit on the floor next to his crate and give him treats, yet he will still whine. If I need to walk away from the crate he will bark and howl like crazy! I'm not sure what to do and I'm afraid to try this at night time!

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
65 Dog owners recommended

Aspen will get used to it but it will take time and may not be easy. I like the Feeding Method here because it is a casual and relaxing way to make the crate not seem like a scary place: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate. When you do start crate training Aspen at night, don't worry about having the crate in your room. It will give Aspen security to know you are there. Once he is used to sleeping in the crate, you can slowly move it inch by inch each night until the crate is where you want to keep it (and you may want to keep the crate in your room). Remember, if you have Aspen sleeping in your room at night, you can have him on a dog bed - he does not have to be in the crate to sleep. However, it is best to have him in a crate when you are away from home so that he does not chew everything in the house. Make the crate a fun place to be - give Aspen a kong-like toy with a bit of dog-safe peanut butter (be careful - no xylitol!) smeared inside each time he goes in the crate. He may even look forward to it! In case you train at night, here you go: https://wagwalking.com/training/crate-train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-at-night. All the best and remember patience is needed. Have fun with Aspen!

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Beau
German Shorthaired Pointer
4 Months
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Beau
German Shorthaired Pointer
4 Months

So we have had our dog for about 2 months. We have been attempting to crate train him since we got him. All he does is freak out in the crate (whines, barks, slobbers, sweats, and moves the crate around the room). We have tried everything from small amounts of time in the crate when at home to leaving for short periods of time (longest he has been left in the crate is about 2.5 hours). We tried to put his bed in there and he tore it up. We put a blanket in with our scent and he ruined it. We tried to put his favorite chew toys in there and he ignores them or throws them out of the crate. We have tried the treats and frozen stuff in the Kong and he gets so worked up, he will throw up whatever he ate. We have also tried white noise makers and leaving the TV on and all he does is continue to bark the whole time (hours on end). We have also made sure he gets a long walk or playtime outside before he goes in the crate. I am going to be going back to work full time here soon and don’t know what else to do.

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
65 Dog owners recommended

Thank you for the question. I'll be honest - it seems as though you have tried everything I would have recommended. I think the next thing to try would be your choice of: 1) Consult a canine behavioral specialist - look online, there may be someone you can skype with. 2) Try gating off a safe area and using that as Beau's crate. He would not be as confined and may feel better, but it has to be an area where he cannot get hurt. I would also try a dog appeasing pheromone. This is like an infuser and the pheromones often calm a pup down. This article is quite extensive and explains the pen option well, and mentions the pheromones, too. https://www.preventivevet.com/dogs/how-to-set-up-puppy-long-term-confinement-area. I think it may be the solution. Try an interactive feeder or puzzle toy as well, that slowly releases the food as Beau manipulates the toy. Once Beau starts puppy training, you can ask other dog owners, too, but I hope the problem is solved before then. All the best to you and Beau!

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Zeus
German Shepherd
1 Month
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Zeus
German Shepherd
1 Month

Hello , I got a brother and sister puppy they are a month old an the girl she is fine in the cage it’s just the boy he cries an cries we work 3rd shift an we can’t even get sleep but when they are out the cage and with us he is wonderful any helpful tips on how to keep him quiet or calm so we can sleep and we’re in an a apartment as well and I’m pretty sure our neighbors can hear him

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
65 Dog owners recommended

Adorable! It could be that Zeus is miserable and sad at night without his littermate by his side. Some dogs (especially so young away from their mom) need to sleep in a "pack." Why not set up a pen area for the two to sleep in together at night? This may solve the problem. Here is an excellent article on how to set up a pen: https://www.preventivevet.com/dogs/how-to-set-up-puppy-long-term-confinement-area. I think this is a good alternative - otherwise, you will have to persevere. Zeus will stop the crying eventually but it may take weeks of sleepless nights. As well, try dog appeasing pheromones (buy at the pet supply store). This is a diffuser that emits a calming scent. All the best!

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blondie
Labrador Retriever
3 Years
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blondie
Labrador Retriever
3 Years

Blondie is a lot. I had a trainer come train him when I first got him and he learned a lot but he chooses when to listen. One of my biggest issues is that when I try to leave Blondie in a room by himself, for example if I have a friend over that is afraid of dogs, blondie will bark endlessly until he’s let out. I just moved into a new apartment and it’s a quiet area so I need to make this problem go away. Please help me!

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
65 Dog owners recommended

Very cute, Blondie looks pretty relaxed! I can understand the barking when you shut him in a room. Why not train him to stay on his dog bed either in the same room as you or in a gated area when you have guests? This may be a much more peaceful solution. Teach him the Wait on Mat Method: https://wagwalking.com/training/greet-visitors-calmly and have him stay on the mat. It can be in another room but perhaps with a gate so that he can still see you. Provide him with interactive puzzle toys and feeders so that he has something to do. You can also take a Kong toy, put some softened kibble and a bit of peanut butter (natural only - no xylitol as it is toxic to dogs!) inside. Place in a ziplock bag and then freeze. Have Blondie on the mat or behind the gate and give him the Kong to work on. Because it is frozen, it will take some time to get through and will keep him occupied. (He may feel as though he is being punished when closed in a room with the door shut so try to avoid this) Before guests arrive, also take him on a long walk or run to tire him out and he'll be ready for a rest. Good luck!

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Winnie
Goldador
2 Months
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Winnie
Goldador
2 Months

Hi :) we have a 9 week old puppy who has been amazing about potty training and slept through the night 4 days in . We are crate training but when I go upstairs to make dinner or I know she’s tired I put her in her crate after less than 10 mins she stops barking and goes to sleep. After about and hour or less she whines and I take her out. Recently she’s starting barking when we go upstairs or leave the room. Should I continue to put her in her crate but I don’t want to have to every time we leave the room ? Our house is stacked so bathroom on main level and right now we only introduced the basement and slowly the kitchen which is also on main level for when I’m making meals.

I worry during COVID about separation anxiety . Should her naps be in the crate every time or is a few naps with me and a few naps in the crate an okay balance ? I have a schedule and really work on training and basic commands. I just hope I am where we should be and not expecting too much or too little at this point. Trying to struggle the bonding but also separation at the same time since I will be going back to work in September 8-4.

Sorry all over the place I guess my
Question is how do I curb the barking when we leave the room and how much should she be in her crate each day.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
614 Dog owners recommended

Hello Meg, It does sound like you are doing a good job. At this age pup is starting to be more awake so the protesting is likely related to that. It is very important to practice her being alone. I suggest crating pup an average of 4 times for 1 hour each each day. This can be more or less and broken down into longer and shorter times depending on the day, but at least that number will give you an average to shoot for overall to help with independence. Night sleep can count as one of those or an additional time. Naps are good times to practice this, nighttime pup should be crated at this age, but I also suggest practicing leaving the house while pup is crated - go on a walk without pup just to get pup used to you leaving completely a few times a week. Pup doesn't necessarily need to be crated every time you leave the room, but you do need to ignore the attention seeking barking and crying until pup becomes quiet for at least a few seconds. Whether pup needs to be crated or not for this depends on how safe it is to leave the room without pup without crating, with potty training and destructive chewing issues. Having a crate where pup sleeps now and adding an exercise pen to a more convenient area can be a good solution to this issue, so that you don't have to take pup upstairs every time. When you are crating for a bit longer, pup is sleeping at night, and you are leaving the house, use the crate to keep pup familiar with that. When you just need to walk out of the den for a minute and want pup to learn to be alone in the room, place pup in an exercise pen in that room until you return - ignoring any barking. During the day, you can give pup chew toys in both the exercise pen and crate. For longer times away and longer times being penned in general, you can stuff a hollow chew toy with dog food to help pup learn to chew quietly and self-entertain. When you feel it's safe to do so, you can also work on socialization via social distancing by having friends meet you at parks or your yard outside and letting them feed pup treats when they come over to greet them. You can use a long training leash for this so that pup can go over to the friends for interaction without you having to get less than 6 feet yourself. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Training Success Stories

Success
Miggy
Golden Retriever
1 Year

I feel for you...we had problems with our dog also. He used to hate other dogs/people... Both my husband and I work a lot and had no time to take our Bud to dog training classes. We asked one friend who works in foster care (he is always surrounded by dogs) what we should do. He recommended one online dog behavior trainer. I love this trainer https://bit.ly/2MJj46k It helped us a lot, and I strongly recommend it for you.

9 months, 1 week ago
Success
Nicco
West Highland White Terrier
3 Months

I can't. I just can't. It's been litterally 50 minutes since we left him with his crate open in the laundry room and he keeps barking and crying. I'm about to cry, I just don't want to hear him anymore. I'm so tired of him. Maybe it was a mistake having him. Please, do you know what I should do? I'm so tired of him. He just won't stop.

1 year, 3 months ago
I feel for you. You aren't alone. Stress is very high right now. Take a step back. Do some self care. Get some sleep and refocus. Once we have a plan we can start to implement it and move from where we are. I am going through a similar situation with my puppy. He is so brilliantly smart and he is nearly potty trained and barely mouths me now but the barking is absolutely maddening. You may want to check out AbsoluteDogs (it is all games and fun). There's the Happy Puppy Handbook, Victoria Stillwell etc. I am live in an apartment so I am definitely concerned with the barking Sully is doing. Sending you gentle hugs should you want them.
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