Labradoodle & Goldendoodle Forum
I know it's VERY early. We got Lucy yesterday morning. She's an 8 week old Labradoodle. We want to crate train her. We have the kitchen gated off, a play-yard area in the kitchen, and a crate for her in the play-yard. We also have a crate for her to sleep in in our bedroom.
We introduced her to her kitchen crate gently and she seemed just fine... neutral to it. We didn't leave the house at all yesterday but we did try shutting the door. She barked a lot. She'd quiet down for a few minutes here and there and we'd let her out when she was quiet. She didn't like being just in the play-yard either. Oh and then when we do take her out of her crate, she falls asleep anywhere else, so I know she was tired!
She did do well at night in her crate in our room. She'd whine a little but quieted right down. We took her out at 3am and she didn't actually do anything, and then again at 7.
So today we did need to leave the house for 2 hours. It was NO more than 2 hours. We put her in the kitchen crate and when we got home she had peed in it. We had taken her out before putting her in there and everything.
I know that things don't happen overnight, but shouldn't she be able to handle an hour or two in the crate without an accident? We can stay home a lot, and I understand that with a puppy this is important, but we can't stay home 100% of the time!
We homeschool so the kids and I are home during the day so we are available all the time to take her out as much as possible. And we can take breaks any time and as often as we need. But we will also need time to do our work and it would be super if Lucy wouldn't be barking! I'd love to get to the point where she's resting quietly in her crate or play-yard.
To the matter of her peeing in her crate, is there a divider in it? It will definitely get better in time I promise! The barking is just her being alone for the first time, she is use to having a lot of commotion around her. You really just have to ignore it if all her other needs are met!
The first few days are an adjustment period for you both- Charlie had whining fits in his crate for about the first three days. Do make sure the space is the right size for a young puppy- you may need to make it smaller. Follow the guideline of room to stand up, lay down, and to turn around.
My practice at night was if he didn't wake me up, I didn't wake him up to go outside.
We just brought our pup home 12 hours ago and she is not liking the crate too well either.
We do not have room in the kitchen so it is in the living room where all the action is. I am wondering if we should move it to the spare bedroom where it is quieter.
She was in a large free standing pen inside the breeders house, so maybe the smaller crate is bothering her as well.
Right now she is sleeping like a baby in there... We'll see!
Good luck and if you are like me, I am hoping it gets better each day!
Julie is right, it does get better. Remember Lucy has been with her litter mates and suddenly she is in a crate alone, that is why she settles down and sleeps when she is with you...your family is now hers and she wants to be with you. There is a stuffed puppy that many people buy and swear by that you may want to look into, snuggle puppy I think it is called and it makes the pup think they are with their litter mates, you may want to give that a try.
She will learn to love her crate so just give it more time. I swear by the Snuggle Puppy. Dougie loved to sleep with it in his crate and we never had any problems. I also have to add that the breeder had already started to crate train him so that also helped. Keep up the good work and it will eventually become her "safe place".
Thanks - I will look into the snuggle puppy for sure!
So.... just keep her in there while she barks like crazy? Or should we be consistent in doing some sort of corrections with her? (just like saying QUIET, or making a startling noise)...
Oh, also we feed her in her crate. It's something I read to do to help her to know that good things happen in there. But all she does is take a bite and then bark. So she's not eating much :( Should we maybe not feed her in there, or keep being consistent?
You 'got it' with "I know it's VERY early." Most pups whine in the crate initially. It's not that she doesn't like her crate specifically as much as doesn't like confinement and separation. She just has to get used to it. I was so determined NOT to respond to whining that I remember one morning before 8 AM...on a Sunday I had Rosco in his puppy crate while I decided to wash the floors. He whined and cried like he was being tortured. My roommate popped out of her room, groggy and annoyed and asked "Can't you make him stop?" I replied, nonchalantly "Not really". Super insensitive of me, but I was one track minded on not responding to whining that I totally spaced out that perhaps THAT was not the time to teach this lesson. LOL
You can respond with a loud "QUIET" and giving his crate a little earthquake to break his whining for a moment.
Quincy used to sit outside the shower waiting for me (actually he still does) but back then as soon as the doors steamed up and he could not see me, he would start to cry. Your pup, too, will grow up!
I don't usually comment on this subject as I did almost everything wrong. After Trav howled and cried very hard in his X-pen the first night I tried to keep him there, he ended up sleeping on a towel by my bed. He did end up spending time in the puppy-proofed bathroom or his crate when I had to go out for a while, but he never did sleep in his crate.
Lucy is sure to have a few accidents, but she'll catch on quickly to where she's supposed to pee. I just expected that Trav would bark when I had to go out, and he did. He had free rein in the house fairly early on, and didn't bark when he wasn't confined in the bathroom or crate. Sounds like with you and the kids, you have a great training crew!
The first time I left my puppy alone in her crate it was for ~4 minutes while I took out the trash. I came back to discover she'd pooped in there. Awesome.
I think you're just expecting too much too soon. My pup never really took to the crate and I stopped trying to force the issue after about 4 months. She is now 15 months old and has graduated from kitchen-only privileges while alone to having free reign in the house while I'm gone. Though she could go anywhere, I know she spends most of the time curled up by the door waiting for me to come back.
I certainly wouldn't recommend doing away with the crate until Lucy is house trained, but for me, cleaning up an accident from the kitchen floor (which only happened once) was easier to deal with than coming home needing to scour the crate and bathe the dog.
Good luck! Hang in there, it gets better.