I have a question....
....and here it goes....
WHAT IS THE DEAL WITH THIS "DON'T CRATE YOUR DOG" MENATLITY?
I ask, because my dog's mentality on crates is as follows:
- Kittie couldn't ask for a more fun place to lounge around on a hot summer day.
- The other dogs don't bother her while she's in her crate, so if she wants it to be naptime...It's NAPTIME! No muss, no fuss. Heck yes; that's what she says.
- All the good food toys, rawhides, stuffed squeaky things, and our shoes if she so pleases can go with her into the crate.
- Actually, the crate is the go-to spot for dinner, Kongs, and (vet approved) Rawhides.
- You've never seen a dog run to her crate so fast when it's dinner time. We stopped asking her to actually go into her crate for dinner some six or so months ago. She still thinks it's the hot spot.
- When we leave, she goes in her crate. She sleeps, mostly; and yes, we do know this for a fact. Sometimes she stretches, chews on her stuff, and has fun...but mostly she sleeps.
- When in her crate, without our supervision, she cannot do the following:
- hang herself via the curtains
- chew through the walls
- chew waterbottles - don't ask how she gets them, we haven't quite figured it out - full of water on someone's bed.
- get so strung out that she does this:
- bark like mad until we "come back"
- when we don't respond, decide to follow us herself
- escape anything that needs to be escaped to do the above
- finally, as panic settles in and she realizes that we are nowhere to be found and have, in her mind, abandonded her - a dog's worst fear - become so out-of-her-mind that she loses control of her bowels and bladder, pukes, and rips apart anything that smells like us in a heartbreaking, desperate attempt to find us.
Inside, she feels secure enough to lounge, play, and nap.
I don't care if you think it's unnatural; it keeps my dog alive and sane.
It's a great training tool - and it's all in how YOU make it for the dog. If you know how to make it a positive thing, it will be a positive thing for your dog.
[This being said, yes; we do know there are escape artists that you couldn't keep in long enough to teach that it's a good thing. Or, on the other end, will escape anyhow. There are other, just as safe, options for these dogs! We keep the big black lab in the back bedroom. He sleeps on the bed, usually after having gone down into the laundry and fetched a pair of my brother's pants. He doesn't chew them; he sleeps with them. Either that, or shoes. I don't know what it is about the shoes.
[.....The point is that being left in the back bedroom is still basically the same as crating. It's being left in a safe spot while you aren't there to supervise.]