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Thread: A Few Questions About Crate Training...

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2010

    Default A Few Questions About Crate Training...

    Hi All,

    I have a few questions about crate training if anyone is able to help out. I've had a read of a few articles from google but have a few specific questions.

    Our boys haven't been trained yet (they are now 9 months) but we are looking to train them soon to make things easier if we're doing housework, want to go camping ( ) and also because now that's its winter, they have been going to the toilet inside sometimes, they have access to go outside but are avoiding the wet/cold.
    Just when I thought that toilet training was over....

    * Should you get the size to suit them eg. Large or is it ok to get a bigger one for space?

    * Do you just keep a bed and a couple of toys in there? I think I read somewhere a water bowl as well but I'm thinking that this could get messy and then they'll need to go to the toilet more...

    * Do you keep them in there overnight when sleeping? If so, is 8 hours too long? Do you still need to let adult dogs out say at 2am to go to the toilet?

    *How long can you leave them in there when they are awake eg. if a handyman is over or something?

    * If you have 2 dogs, should you teach them which one is there's or let them swap and change? (our dogs have identical beds and change all the time without a fuss, not sure if this would be different with crates though?)

    *What do you personally prefer soft portable crates or metal cages and why?

    *Does anyone use a playpen type set up permanently at home? (Picture attached) And if so, would you put 2 dogs in there?

    Sorry, I know this is long, and there a often topics about crate training on here. don't need all questions answered if you cant be bothered
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2


    Hey Stef. Alot of what you're wondering will come down to your individual dog - like length of time they can stay in without peeing etc.

    The cloth ones look lovely but get really hard to clean if your dog is prone to accidents. We used to have a lovely one that our borzoi used to adore (they tend to be very clean dogs). But I used it for a saluki (grotty dogs ) and she wrote it off in less than a day... and no she wasn't in it all day.

    You can't get pee smells out of them if it gets in the seams, and if a zipper gets chewed off it all over. So they are really best under constant supervision or for older very settled dogs.

    Wire ones are easist to keep spotless, and you can buy or make alll sorts of lovely fabric covers for them so they look great indoors and stay snug and cosy.

    If your dogs are very close they can sometimes prefer to have a bigger one to share. Again it's an individual thing.

    Ours are really big and have collapsible pens for when we're camping or showing. They like to have two or more in the pen, depending on the size. As long as they can all lie down happily they seem content.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2010


    Thanks for your reply Natty,

    I do prefer the look of the soft pens but our dogs have a tendency to chew. Would like it too last more than one day!!
    When it comes to the time to buy them I might just go to one of the big pet warehouses so I can see them all, and go with my gut feeling.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2009


    I have a few different sizes of crates and pens.

    I also have a dog run and am looking at building another next year. These are great if you have non-dog people over or work being done around the place and need to leave the gates open etc etc. The dogs have got room to play etc.

    Currently there is a C-Crate set up in my lounge room that is used for swapping bitches in season and dog in and out of. As at the moment one or the other HAS to be in there.

    C-crates however do not have a floor so a determined dog can get out of them.

    Whippets are a very clean dog so I tend to go on the larger size regarding crates because it's very rare that they would dirty in their crate with the extra room whereas some dogs would if there was too much space.

    My adults are happy to share and so too are the puppies but I wouldn't subject the adults to putting up with a puppy so as previously stated depends on the relationship your dogs have. But as I said my crates are large. If you go off recommendations from websites/manufacturers etc as to size etc it's best to get individual crates. This is what is really recommended but wouldn't suit my lot, especially in winter.

    Build the time up slowly, and a good association with the crate, feeding etc in crate, giving bones inside the crate, shutting door for short periods 15mins, 30mins, 1 hour, etc.

    Overnight provided the dogs go to the toilet before being shut in I'd say about 7 hours once trained to the crate. Of a day mine are shut in no longer than 3 hours with water secured in a small bucket clipped to the crate. Of a night water is removed. If I needed to secure the dog for more than 3 or 4 hours on a regular basis throughout the day I'd prefer they go in the dog run.

    I like the wire type, much more secure and easy to clean.

    The C-crate is covered in blankets to keep the warmth in and has bedding in there. I also have a pce of lino laid down cut to size so any dog smell does not permeate into the carpet and some dry bed whelping box matting just in case of accidents. If you were to buy two wire crates I'd put them side by side and cover with the same blanket so they could trap in the body warmth.
    Last edited by mouseandchicken; 06-04-2010 at 10:44 AM.

  5. #5


    I just got a new puppy yesterday and have a question about crate training.. when you are home should you leave the puppy in the crate with the door crate closed at any time so she can get used to it? I need tips on crate training please, she is about two months old. so far she has been free and i have been playing with her but when she goes in the crate she starts crying frantically.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2009


    I can recommend

    Crate training
    games for self control and motivation

    by Susan Garrett

    Say Yes Dog Training

    They teach a dog to be comfortable inside a crate and about 20 ways of being nicely behaved around the home and dog sport competition.

    She recommends, as do I, a wire crate or hard sided crate for starting and if you need to leave the dog on its own when you're out. I recommend separate crates for each dog. You can put them next to each other but they should be separate.

    Water, not for over night but if you're leaving the dog all day it might be a good idea. You can get licky water dispensers which only let the water out when the dog licks the tip of the thing, that would be less messy.

    Part of the crate training games definitely involves closing the door. And you give the dog a treat when it goes in the crate and again when you shut the door...

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