Doesn't Like Crate

Discussion in 'Training Challenges' started by luciascencio, Jul 16, 2014.

  1. luciascencio Member

    My Sammy, a 9 month old GSD doesn't want her crate anymore. Since she was 2 months she has been sleeping in her crate. Every night before bed, I give her a Kong with her favorite treats and she used to run into it. These past two weeks, she hesitates to go in, when she does, she eats her treat and wants out. She cries, cries, and cries...any suggestions????
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  2. Ripleygirl Experienced Member

    Have you tried properly cleaning the whole thing? Rearranging where it is and checking for sharp points that may not have been there before that could cause discomfort?
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  3. MaryK Honored Member

    Good advice by Ripleygirl.

    Also, has anything frightened her when she was in her cage? A loud noise at night for example.

    Further, has she ever pottied in her crate? Dogs are very clean and do not like to potty where they sleep or eat. Or, even if she hasn't physically pottied, maybe she's had to 'hold on' a bit too long and, as we all know, that's extremely uncomfortable.

    Is her crate still big enough for her? She would have grown a lot between 2 months and nine months, I know I've had GSDs. Perhaps she is feeling cramped, not enough room to turn around properly.

    Do keep us updated as we are here to help you all we can.
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  4. running_dog Honored Member

    Great advice from Ripleygirl and MaryK.
    If all else fails I wonder whether you could take a step back and play a few crate games or get some ideas from this video:
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  5. MaryK Honored Member

    Great video Running Dog and advice.:)(y)
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  6. luciascencio Member

    I did check for sharp points that may cause discomfort, I even changed the padding. I have not tried rearranging, but I will try that tonight (thank you!).

    I am not sure how it should be properly cleaned? I just wash it with water and let it air dry.
    MaryK likes this.
  7. luciascencio Member

    I have been ignoring her when she cries, it is getting better. But she still hesitates to go in.

    Is ignoring her ok??? I feel bad :(

    I am not sure about something scaring her, but I don't think so because I keep it in the room where I sleep.

    She pottied in it once, because she had diarrhea, it was cleaned right after her accident.

    It is her size, she is 60 lbs. and the crate she has is for dogs up to 90 lbs.

    I have attached a picture of when she used to like it.

    Attached Files:

    MaryK likes this.
  8. southerngirl Honored Member

    I clean my dogs crate with Vinegar water. I will put some vinegar in a mop bucket add some water than use a rag(an old piece of cloth(such as a washcloth) and scrub the crate down.
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  9. southerngirl Honored Member

    Can she stand up comfortably in the crate and easily turn around in it still?
    Have you tried the crate games? They may help. Personally I found ignoring didn't work for my dog, she couldn't care less.
    What I would do is put her in the crate leave the room. As soon as she was quiet for 30 sec. I let her out and slowly increased the time. I worked on it every day. Though my dog still doesn't like the crate(that's just how it's going to be for her) she doesn't bark and whine as much know.
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  10. MaryK Honored Member

    Great advice Danielle. I was going to say the same re washing and ask if she could still stand up and turn around in her cage. Cannot add more, Danielle has said it all.:)
  11. lindsay_dogids Well-Known Member

    I know this may be a little obvious, but do you think it's just her age? Maybe she is just at that age where she needs a lot more exercise and interaction so she is more worn out at the end of the day. She is probably also at an age where she is trying to push her limits a bit to see what she can get away with. I'm sure she is getting plenty of exercise/interaction/training, but may be a factor to consider.

    Anyone with shepherds have any input?
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  12. MaryK Honored Member

    I grew up with Shepherds, amongst other assorted mix breed rescues, so I do know a reasonable amount about them. And now have a working breed dog.

    You could well have a very good point. She's a teenager and LOL we all know teenagers love to test the boundaries, it's their way of learning to become adults and dogs are no different. Plus they always have an excess of energy to burn.

    A 9 months old Sheppie needs heaps of exercise both physical and MENTAL. In fact, mental stimulation is VERY important to these dogs as they are working dogs.

    You can find many ways of mentally stimulating your girl. There are various products designed just for that purpose, but they can be expensive depending on where you live. But you can also devise loads of 'games' for her to play, such as hide and go seek - just hide tasty treats (LOL she won't keep her eyes shut so make sure she cannot see where you hide the treats) around the house. Keep it fairly easy at first and then it's up to you to judge how smart she is and extend the hiding places. Another mental stimulation, and also helps with the physical side, is teaching her tricks, especially those which require her to use her own brain - i.e. shaping is one very good way to make her use her brain. We all know that studying is more tiring than dancing all night, dogs are no different.

    Exercise is also vital a good, fast paced hours walk is necessary, along with if possible, a good time off leash in a safe area. Her skeletal develop will hold up, there are those who say 12 months but I've always found with Sheppies that it doesn't hurt to give them a decent walk from around 8/9 months old, never had any damage to their bones/muscles etc.

    She may also like Agility work. This gives a physical and mental work out, though most clubs do have an age standard of 12 months and please make sure they do not over stretch a newbie, or push too hard. In fact at the Doggy School my girl attends they have a miniture Agility course, suitable for very small dogs and puppies, purely to keep/get the dog's brain working and thinking, and believe me Leaf is tuckered out after an hour at Doggy School:-).

    Canine Freestyle is a very good physical and mental exercise and fun too if you're into dance. No age limit just your dog does need to be good at recall and not get into mischief with other dogs as that can be very disruptive to a class.

    But these are not to be substituted for a good, interesting walk. Vary where you walk her, don't always take the same route, have a few different routes and take her out just for a visit to say, do a bit of window shopping, do lunch with friends at out side bistros/cafes etc. where they welcome dogs. Keep her life full of different interesting fun things, take her everywhere you're allowed too.

    When a dog, any breed, is bored they will find varies ways to amuse themselves. And those ways are not generally compatible with our lifestyle:rolleyes::);)

    In the past one of my Sheppies actually spent his whole life living in an Apartment and he was never destructive, never grizzled, but he went pretty much everywhere with me, even to open air concerts and pyrotechnic shows, he loved fireworks, not all dogs do though so be careful on this one! He loved swimming and I lived right on top of a beach, so he got to swim a lot, plus have a grand time chasing seagulls, something he never out grew unfortunately but fortunately never caught one!

    Hope this helps, keep your lassie well stimulated and she should settle down and don't forget, she's a TEENAGER and will test her boundaries quite a lot!:whistle::whistle::D
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  13. MaryK Honored Member

    I forgot, have my gal 'helping me type' always remain PATIENT one of the hardest things, unless you're naturally gifted that way, to do do when training a dog, especially a youngster. If you feel frustrated, remember she will feel that also, so walk away, three deep breathes and end training if you're still not feel up to it. You can always do more later in the day when you've calmed down. We've all been there, felt as if our dogs are never going to be the perfect little angels we envision, but believe me, they will get close to that, may be never 'perfect' but then who really wants a totally boring perfect dog, I love them to always have their own personality, never want that to leave them. But they do get over the teenager times and grow up. Some, like my girl, take their time but it does happen!:D
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