Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Newcastle, WA
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Hudson's home! Need crate training help, please!
Hudson is now 10 weeks old and has been home with us for two weeks. He is cuter, sweeter, smarter and more perfect than we ever could have imagined! He has a great, friendly personality and often topples himself over with his vigorous tail wagging. No one is a stranger to him, and he's quickly become very popular in our neighborhood.
Having said all those positive things, we are having some definite challenges. One of those is crate training. And/or maybe separation anxiety?
When we got him, he had not spent time in a crate, so it was all new. We enticed him into the crate with treats, and his first night was pretty rough.
Now he does all right in the crate at night (usually waking once to potty), but we've gotten into the routine of me slipping my toes through the bars so he can snuffle them. Kind of weird, I know, but he calms down and is quiet until he needs to potty.
The daytime is a completely different story. If I give him a treat in the crate and close the door, he wines, cries, barks and sometimes even howls and claws at the crate. I intended to have him in the crate when I couldn't be right with him, but it seems like he's so miserable, it's hard to do. After I've played with him, he often falls asleep on the floor at my feet and is so much happier. But because I haven't been using the crate, we've had a lot more accidents in the house than we should.
The potty training is going well in that he knows where to go and always goes out there to poop. Always. But when he needs to pee, he goes out there about half the time (some days are better than others) or he goes when I take him out there. But he also goes in the house, and, from what I read, I think that's because he's not watched closely enough.
Is it normal for a puppy to be that unhappy with his crate? Hudson's breeder and vet both recommend the "tough love" approach. The breeder moreso, the vet says I should feed him in there, give him treats in there, etc., but he still just gets hysterical.
Does anyone have any ideas how I can handle this? I'm really happy to put the time in, but I feel a little lost. Is it just a matter of getting him in there and letting him cry? If that's the right thing to do, I'll do it, but I just want to confirm I'm not traumatizing him.
He cries whenever I leave the room and leave him with my sons and/or husband, and he loves them. I'm worried he's getting too attached to me, but he's still so young.
I just want to "raise" a dog that is happy and well-adjusted. Any input you have will be greatly appreciated. Thank you!