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Just ordered a crate for 2yo border collie - advise?

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by spacekadet, Apr 4, 2011.

  1. spacekadet

    spacekadet PetForums Newbie

    Jan 2, 2011
    Likes Received:
    Hey all,

    As some of you know I've been pushed to my limits with my dog, Jay.

    He's had the run of things for his whole life and now I'm trying to put up some boundaries. Not an easy task.

    So, lots of people have recommended using a crate and I've finally ordered on... counting the days til its arrival.

    Can anyone recommend a good read on crate training?

    It's really hard for me to imagine constraining Jay to a crate, because right now he's all over the place. When I restrain him to a single room he whines and cries and barks. But there are some rooms that he just can't handle... take the living room, with the windows, where he gets super hyper watching outside for anything and everything that moves.

    I *think* my goal is to train Jay that the crate is his space, and it's all he needs to worry about, and he needs to respect me in the rest of the house. (Right now he's a total brat half the time when he doesn't get his way... i.e. I don't let him in the office with me, or I take a phone call, or do anything that involves not giving him attention.)

    So, I'd like to read up on how to get Jay used to the crate, and how to use it without being cruel. For instance, sometimes he gets so out of control barking and obsessing over what's outside the window, that I need to put him in the bedroom until he calms down. But I'd like to put him in the crate (so he doesn't scratch down the door!). I want to limit his options, but I don't want to be cruel!

    Anyway, that was a long ramble for just one little question.

    Thanks in advance.

    Everyday Dog Training
  2. Pawsitive

    Pawsitive PetForums Junior

    Mar 24, 2011
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    Good news about the crate - try not to think about it as trying to constrain him though - shutting a border collie in a confined space can lead to stress and anxious behaviour.

    When you crate train him, you need to get him to realise exactly what you said - that the crate is HIS space. Somewhere safe and good to be.

    My Collie bitch was crated as a pup and she still has her crate - because we made it a fun place to be. If the dogs hear 'on your bed' it knows they mean something good is coming.

    (my Collie boy never had one until I noticed him creeping into my girlie's crate to sleep. We got him one and he's used it every night since)

    We also feed them in their crates and they know the routine so well that we don't even have to say 'on your bed' - as soon as i pick up food bowls they wait like little angels, sitting on their blankets!

    My point is, don't ever make the crate feel like a punishment for him. My pair's crates are left open all the time - this might not be possible for you but it's a good idea to spend time letting him go in and out as he pleases whilst he's getting used to it.

    I also cover the tops of their crates so it has a den-like feeling and makes them feel safe.

    I really hope it helps him and makes a difference for you.

    Goodluck! Keep us posted! :)
    #2 Pawsitive, Apr 4, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2011
  3. RobD-BCactive

    RobD-BCactive PetForums VIP

    Jul 1, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Look for advice on habituating a dog to a crate. Very likely you will find intially luring inside with food reward is recommended to build a good association, which perhaps contradicts some other advice you've been given. Totally agree with not forcing a Collie into a confined space by physical means, good recipe for getting bitten if he's afraid!

    For instance a quick search found Crate-Training for Adult Dogs at www.veterinarypartner.com, which looks reasonable (I typed few key words into Google http://www.google.co.uk/search?q=habituating adult dog crate )

    The Crate is your dog's den not a cage, and , he should feel happy and comfy and secure there.
    #3 RobD-BCactive, Apr 4, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2011
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