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Opinion on crates

Discussion in 'Dog Chat' started by Nellybelly, Aug 12, 2009.


  1. Nellybelly

    Nellybelly PetForums VIP

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    I dont know if anybody remembers my posts a few weeks ago about an 8 week old labrador cross poodle puppy, Maya, that I needed help with because she was chewing/eating everything in site. I hadnt left her alone at all as I was reluctant to use a crate at all and my house plan is such that we didn't have a "safe" area we could close her off in the house with all her toys, chews etc when we were away. We also do not have a big garden and even though she would be getting 2 long off lead walks a day we decided that we were not the most suited home for her. The main reason is actually that we refuse to use a crate. My previous boy Nelson who we sadly had to pts 3 motnhs ago was never ever ever restricted and I couldn;t keep a dog that I need to put in a cage. I realise their value I just have personal issues with crates - i dont own rodents, fish etc because I cannot stand seeing anything physically confined, so I would not be able to do this to a dog either (even just for 1-2 hours, even just for training...I cannot). Anyway, we decided to find Maya a new home and we were lucky to find a great home for her in Germany with a HUGE garden, and 2 kids.

    The reason I am saying all this is because I believe with the appropriate house we could have kept Maya without the need for a crate. And I know I might come across as "uneducated", but I am aware if usd correctly puppies see crates as a "safe haven", they feel comfortable in their crates, it is safe when the owner cannot supervise, useful for toilet training. I also know you can encourage a dog to enter the crate by placing food inside and keeping the door closed to arouse interest and then let the dog in. I know that feeding etc in the crate can make it more likeable, and that safe chews and toys should eb left inside the crate with the dog. But still, it just seems to me that to go to all this effort to make the crate "likeable", perhaps an animal like a dog that likes dens prefers ones with a gate that does not close them in. My boy Nelson used to have den-like areas, under tables etc that we esepcially had for him and put his basket there and he liked them...but the purpose was to give him the option, not to confine him there.

    As for safety, I agree a puppy is not going to be safe given the run of the house (wires, detergents, the list is endless). it just seems much kinder in my opinion to close off an area of the house for the puppy that has been puppy proofed.

    And toilet training. With Maya (the puppy with a new home) who we got at 8 weeks, we only ever had ONE accident in the house on the first day. I watched over her like a hawk, took her out immediately when she showed the typical signs before weeing/pooing. At night she slept in my room with me on her own bed with my door closed. I woke up 2 times during the night to take her out to do her business. I am giving this example as proof that a crate is not the only way to achieve certain things.

    The reason behind this post is not only inspired by this forum. Generally, I see crates being advocated everywhere. So it seems logical that I am the contrary one here making thisd post, but I do feel very strongly crates are not the only way forward. Ivbelieve it is greatly to do with convenience. Owners can achieve more easily what would require more effort without a crate. Also, it prevents needing to puppy proof the house / an area of the house.

    I would like to know if there anybody apart from myself on this forum who shares / partly shares my opinion!
     
  2. mindymoo

    mindymoo PetForums Member

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    I was worried about using a crate but as soon as Poppy came home she went in of her own accord and went straight to sleep, she loves her crate. The only time she has a whinge is in a morning (5am-ish) when she fancies some company.

    I did get it origionally thinking more for the toilet training side of things but she has so far (touch wood) never had an accident in the house and always warns us (scratches carpet) to let us know its toilet time.

    I can totally understand why people would be against them but I personally for my pups safety prefer to use one for now and she seems to like her little sanctury :) xxx
     
  3. stellab

    stellab PetForums Junior

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    I agree with the above.

    I have used a crate since I brought Stella home and I don't know what I would have done without it. She now treats it as her quiet place and goes in when she is tired.

    The only time I put her in the crate is at bedtime and if I am going out for a couple of bits and pieces.

    She has toileted in the house once and that was when I forgot to close the crate at night and she was wondering around all night :D

    Each to their own but I found it a godsend
     
  4. Nellybelly

    Nellybelly PetForums VIP

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    Ideally dogs should not be left alone, but I think 4-5 hours is an acceptable compromise. I would never ever leave my dog alone for longer. I am just interested, would you still put your dog in a crate for this long? What if the dog doesn't feel like lying down and chewing, and fancies a bit of a run??
     
  5. Ducky

    Ducky PetForums VIP

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    i dont think anyone would disagree with you that there are other effective methods other than a crate. they just maybe take more persistance maybe. but you have obviously used other methods to a successful end. so congrats.

    i personally am a big fan of crates and used one for my last dog and am now using one for my pup. if not only for my peace of mind, but so the pup doesnt hurt herself either. she has no objections to her crate and has happily gone in of her own accord from day 1. i wont be using it with her when she is older, she will be too big for this one by the time she is 5months old anyway i think! i just like knowing that she is safe in her cage at night or when i am out. i would never use it as a punishment.
    my last dog adored his cage (it was huge, he was a wee beagle and it was a size for a labrador).

    but everyone has their own methods, and if your one is working then stick to it :)
     
  6. haeveymolly

    haeveymolly PetForums VIP

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    I share your opinion, we had 2 springers and never thought of using a crate they were confined to the kitchen at night we never got up to them and they never chewed, in the day as i was at home all day which makes a huge difference they had the run of the downstairs would follow me wherever i went we never once had anything chewed as in furniture, wires, anything out of cupboards, because yes they tried to, as the chance for them to chew was always there we never put things away so there was always a temptation so with a no or moving them away they learnt. crates are good if you wish to always use them and thats only my opinion, as i felt you were teaching them twice.

    Having said that, we got our 3rd pup in september last year and harvey our other dog is 9 this month, as harvey and his elder brother were only 18months apart they were young together, but a pup with a older dog is different and thought a crate would be a good idea to pup the pup in for time out for harvey:rolleyes: but i still hated putting her in it and i know there is nothing wrong with it so would never argue for or against, because i know it was just me, but we did it for harvey's sake she was only in it for around 2 months, we left the gate open 1 night to see whether she would come out or feel safer in there and i came down about 2/3 hours later and se was laid curled up with harvey the same way has his brother used to and that was it no more crate. So i do understans exactly how you feel.
     
  7. Nicky09

    Nicky09 PetForums VIP

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    We've always used crates even the cat sleeps in one at night we started when we were getting him used to it for the flight and now he won't sleep anywhere else. The dogs are more than happy to sleep in there or just go in there for a bit of peace. Crates aren't the only way to do this of course we found housetraining pretty easy but they were only crated at night and when we couldn't supervise never left in there for hours during the day.
     
  8. Nonnie

    Nonnie PetForums VIP

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    I cant be bothered to tyep a long reply, so ill give my short answer.

    I used a crate when mine were puppies, to assist with toilet training, and to keep them safe when i wasnt at home. Up until they were about 3/4 one was shut in, whilst the other loose when left alone, as i feared they may fight. I also had 7 cats at the time, and there was no way id risk their lives.

    I havent used a crate since, and mine is in storage now as my boys are fine to be left together unattended.

    Id only consider using one with an adult dog if it was destructive, therefore at risk of injury, or if it was ill and needed to be confined.

    If you feel uncomfortable in using a crate, then dont. You shouldnt feel guilty for the way you choose to raise your puppy. As long as you take steps to make the pups environment safe, then thats perfectly ok. There are loads of people that successfully rear and train pups without the use of crates/cages. They arent a must, but if you find things hard, they can be introduced at any time of the dogs life.
     
  9. Oblada

    Oblada Guest

    It does seem that the pro-crates are a bit more vocal than the rest of us who decide not to use it lol but maybe they have something to justify there ;)

    I personally would not cage any live animal, I just would not feel comfortable. I would rather clean the mess and puppy-proof the house than lock my boy.
    Only in extreme circumstances I would consider such a solution and only on a temporary basis. There is no way I would introduce a locked cage as part of the daily routine of my boy on a permanent basis...
    I dealt with destructive behaviour (puppy like) without a crate and with toilet training without a crate. Maybe its a bit harder work but I would rather do that than confine my dog!

    Its a personal preference really and up to each individual to decide!

    I just dont think there is a need to crate (lock) a pet dog who really should be part of the family and there is too much room for over-use and abuse.

    But thats only my personal opinion ;)
     
    #9 Oblada, Aug 12, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 12, 2009
  10. Mese

    Mese PetForums VIP

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    We never used a crate with our first BC , had never even heard of them

    But I do use them with the two BC's we have now, only at night though , without them my pair would play all night and keep the whole house awake , lol
    But ive found that in the day they will take themselves off for a bit of peace and quiet in their crates (they have one each) away from my Grandkids , the kidlets can be noisy and the dogs crates are in their own room that the kidlets dont go in so its a good solution for the dogs :)
     
  11. Nellybelly

    Nellybelly PetForums VIP

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    oblada you expressed what i feel much better than i could.
     
  12. Oblada

    Oblada Guest

    Glad I could be of help ;) lol :)
     
  13. goodvic2

    goodvic2 PetForums VIP

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    I have recently crate trained my 3 adult dogs, although I have not shut the door on them yet.

    My reason for getting them was because 2 of my rescue dogs can be territorial/dominant towards people in the house. So if people come over (most have been put off coming over now!) then the idea is that I can shut them in.

    I pesonally would not shut them in over night or whilst I was out. I also hate the thought of caging animals. But for me, because my dogs have been aggressive, it means they can be in the room with people, but so people are safe.

    x
     
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