Friday, March 06, 2009

So much for the doggy den.

We (and by "we" I mean Mike) will keep trying, but so far he's not a fan of his crate.

Did I mention that I'm not a dog person?
And my kids (who really wanted a dog) are scared of him?

This is going to take some getting used to.
But yes, he is cute.
In a puppy kind of way.

p.s. Please leave lots of advice.
Heaven knows I need it.


  1. advice - if you want him to use the crate you have to MAKE him go in there no matter how much he whines his cute little puppy whine! btw....I couldn't do would drive me crazy!

  2. I agree with Karen, you have to make the dog get into the crate. You can lead him in with a little dog treat each time, but you need to use the same command or set of words like "let's get in your house" or just "house".

    If you have access to the National Geographic Channel you can watch Cesar Milan (aka the dog whisperer) who is an excellent dog trainer. One thing you should keep in mind at all times is whatever energy you project towards the dog, like being scared, the dog will pick up on this as he gets older and it could trigger bad behaviors. You all should make sure you approach and handle the dog with confidence at all times. If a dog thinks it can be in charge of you it will certainly try to be.

    I recommend going for some training or getting a book and training yourself and the family first. If you're not a dog person, and you've never trained one before, you might be setting yourself up for a lot of misery if you don't learn some basics.

    I am a huge dog lover so feel free to email me if you have specific questions. I'm happy to help!

  3. He may not be a fan of the crate now, but you must hand in there... just like teaching a child to put himself to sleep. when we first got our boxer, she hated the crate... the key is for 2 weeks to leave the dog in the crate all day long except for potty breaks 4 to 5 times a day. It sounds so cruel, but after a while he will come to find refuge in the crate. and every time you put him in you need to say "load up" or "crate". These key words will let him know what he needs to do. Goldens are very smart dogs and it will not take long for him to learn. I even "crate" our dog for naps, she loads up for about 2 hours a day while my 2 year old naps. It gives her time to chill out as she is ver wired and sometimes taking care of her is just like taking care of another child... You have to put up with the whining for the time being until he gets used to it. Sometimes even after he is used to it he will still whine. Oh, and when he does bad i would not reccoment punishing him by putting him in the crate. You are trying to establish a home for him in the crate, not a detention center.

    I hoe my advice works.. I am no professional, I have gone through this and was given this advice from someone else and it worked...

    ps- we have a great dog, she never runs away, she stays in the yard with out a leash and she is super smart...

    Good luck...

    raising a puppy is just like raising a kid...

  4. Hey!! I have been following your blog and since I have a dog I will just give a little bis of advice. Well first of, I am not really a fan of the crate. That must be something typical america bc over here in Europe we never put them in there, even when we leave the house.
    Many things take time to learn for dogs. You have to make it fun for him. Play with him and thow the ball or stuffed animal in there for him to get. Throw treats in there and when he goes in talk to him in a high pitch voice. The more you make yourself to a fool the happier he will be. Heck if that thing is big enough sit someone in there with him. Put his pillow in there and make it comfy. I for sure would hate going in there. You really have to make if look cozy and nice. He shouldn be afraid of going in. Ok and if he whines go away and as soon as he is quiet you have to give a treat. That way he will learn to be quiet in there.
    And if you want a well trained dog I really would give the advice to go to a doggy school. It's soooo worth the money. It takes forever to teach them to walk on a leash and to sit b4 you cross the road. You need to teach him to go to his blanket whenever you guys eat so he will never start begging. Oh and NEVER give him something from the table. He will always want more. Even if he gets left overs it has to be in his bowl. Hmm.. what else did we do wrong?? Oh.. dont play with him when he wants it. You have to always be the one to start playing and to stop playing. That will help him learn that you are the boss!
    We did so many things wrong with our dog. He was allowed on the couch and stuff like that and it takes forever for them to understand why he isnt allowed anymore. So the ealier you start the better!!

    He sure is cute and I would take him in a heartbeat!!
    Have fun with him!!

  5. He will grow on you I promise. After he's fully potty trained and not annoying. (Can you tell I'm not a dog person either?) My dog wasn't fond of his crate either, and we don't have it up...some dogs consider it their bed and love to escape to it. BUT, when he was a puppy, I never felt guilty about putting him in there, till he was potty trained good and when I wanted a break for him.
    Good luck! Get a basic puppy book...that will help you...don't flood yourself with too much info.

  6. I'm sorry.
    And also, there is a special place in heaven for mothers like you who love their children enough to buy them a dog.
    Good luck!
    PS... after you train him to like his crate, I would train him to go to the bathroom only in one certain part of the yard. Our neighbors do that with their dogs, and it is SUCH a good idea. They have a little rock area where the dog does it's business.

  7. I TOTALLY agree with Ging on the certain place in the backyard. We also had some friends who did it with their lab. It will help the kids avoid stepping in it and, by default, you cleaning it off of their shoes.

    Are the kids afraid of him because he nips? Hope it goes better!

  8. i just need to bring gracie over so she can show your kids how to take the nips and how being bitten and jumped on and scratched can be fun! if nothing else, it will work out champ's energy so he's more mellow after playin with gracie. want us to come over?

  9. I hope you have a doggy door. I am no help because I am not a dog person and have never had a dog and though I've learned to love dogs I still (secretly) hope I never have to get one. One of my best friends got a lab last Dec. She'd be a wealth of information on training a new puppy if you want her phone # or email address let me know. She is such a dog person.

  10. O my goodness! SUCH A CUTE puupy! do mabel and oliver just LOVE IT??? so cute!! im sure he's so fun!

  11. looks like he might end up being big??
    i am not really a dog person either, so for me it was all about small. our dog goes in his crate to get away from my little boy or just to relax. he sometimes sleeps in it. anyway. we are pretty much potty trained. he just stands by the back door. i want to get a doggy door badly.
    no real advice.
    so why do you think they are afraid of him?

  12. my friend has a dog and isn't a dog person but because of that she could train him good cause she didn't have a soft heart for him like her husband. good luck. love the red barn outside. cute.

  13. I agree with the others who say just put him in there even if he doesn't like it. Juno whined a lot the first few days in her crate too; now she goes in there on her own if she's tired and ready for bed (if she's inside). It really is like a child; dogs need boundaries, rules, and a "place" (like a baby in a crib or playpen) and they will be much easier to deal with.

    How old is he? Looks big in that picture!

  14. He is getting big- and still very cute. I'm with you- not a dog person- but we have 3, including one cute puppy that the kids are now afraid of also! I don't mind them because they don't come in, ever, unless there's a lot of food on the floor, then we might let the puppy in for a minute to help clean it up. They stay in chain link "kennels" all day and go in the crates at night. Throw a piece of food in the crate and he'll probably chase right in after it- then close it. Or force him in, but that's harder. Good luck!

  15. If you can afford it, enroll him in a puppy class at Pet Smart or whatever you have in Mesa. We did this with our Jack Russell Terrier Sam and it has helped so much! You attend with all of your kids and they all learn along with the dog!

    You must be in charge. BE THE ALPHA! Read everything you can get your hands on about training puppies and watch the Dog Whisperer. He is amazing. His techniques were the only thing that helped me with our dog's desire to bark at anyone who knocked on our door. He also taught us how to get Sam to back off from the vacuum.

    I love your little lump of puppy there! I had a Golden in high school and they are very smart. You will love him if you are the one in charge!

  16. we put old blankets in the crate and a few of his favorite toys and also a blanket over the top to keep the light out; this satisfies his natural "denning" instinct and you don't hear the whining as much. now his crate is his favorite place to be, besides with us!

  17. I agree with all above- you've got to force it. It sucks, (our Dane howled all night for the first week. It was awful). For a few days, I just left the house with him in it for a while- he got used to the crate, I didn't have to listen. Give it two weeks. It will feel awful, but you'll be grateful!

  18. He is adorable. And what a great photo! I wish I had some advice, but you're braver than I am (although my kids have also been begging for a dog, so I may be joining you soon...). You're a great mom. I can't wait to see you this summer!

  19. I see that you have already received some solid input. Defintely, if you have not done so already, get a book on crate training. I did it w/ our current dog (great dane) and my mom's last dog (golden retriever). Other dogs we've had in the past were not crate trained and I'll always crate train in the future. However, once our dogs are house brokent they get free run of the house - no crates.

    Keep in mind, the crate should only be big enough for your pup to turn around in. From the picture on your blog I would say the crate is way too big. Make it smaller by putting in a divider (if your crate did not come w/ on just just a piece of wood, sturdy board, etc).

    You can do it. Just be consistent, consistent, consistent!

  20. I read your blog often and really enjoy it. That dog is adorable! My son is looking and pointing and laughing at the picture. We have a black lab and LOVE LOVE LOVE her so much. The best thing for a lab is to crate train it. I haven't read all of the advice entries, but we crate trained our lab for 6 months and then could leave her in our home while we were at work all day and she didn't do anything. Good luck!


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