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post #5 of (permalink) Old 04-29-2005, 05:36 AM
RSbunny
Tarzan Mama of Two
 
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Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: The land down under!
Age: 37
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Rowan gave some great advice! when you start out don't put her in there to crate her as such. Think of it as a training tool, when you are at home. So treat her next to the crate...then put a treat as close to the crate as possible for her ot be comfortable to get it. Praise her for it! Kepp putting the treats closer and closer, and praising her for each one she picks up until you can get her to take one from the entrance to the crate (so if she stretches her tongue far enough she can get it without having to go in it). Don't push her too hard, if she seems hesitant with one of the treats, once she has taken it (or move it back if she won't take it, so she can get it) and end the session. If you push too hard too soon you might end up with a dog that goes nuts in the crate (I had a dog with seperation anxiety plus other problems..I was warned if I forced him into a pen, so that he couldn't attack any innocent passer by, he would likely rip his nails out trying to get out). Do that a few times a day...it only has to be five minute sessions. When you get her to the stage where she'll walk into the crate fully (could take you a couple of weeks so have patience) by herself (you can encourage her and go in with her at the start, just so she'll get the treat, but then get straight back out) you can start by sitting at the door so she can't get out (without closing the door). Just a second at first and build her up to five and ten minutes. Praise her the whole time...you want her to be totally happy and comfortable in there. Then when she's happy doing that you can start closing the door on her, for a second at first again.
Be careful to not have her associate the crate with you leaving. If she does have seperation anxiety she'll still associate it with something bad. so once she's happy to be in there be sure to mix it up. Make her go in when you are at home as well as when you are going out. When you are going out give her a stuffed kong or something that she can occupy herself with for an hour or two while you are gone.
My current dog came from a shelter..she'd been at the pound and had been locked in a cage. Only for a couple of weeks but she is crate trained and did have a bit of seperation anxiety. When I'd get home she'd scream so I'd wait until she had stopped and calmed down before letting her out. I never made a big deal of me coming home, she was crated in the bathroom and the door was shut. I wouldn't even say hello to her when I got home, until she calmed down. After a month she was an angel when I got home. Now if she is in her crate she never complains, she loves being in there.
Anyway good luck!

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