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Hi all!

We brought home a 8 week old Golden Retriever puppy, Finnegan, yesterday and have started crate training right away to help with potty training and to him him adjust to when we are at work.

When we brought him home, we introduced him to the crate with the door open, throwing in treats, playing games, etc. It's in our living room so he can see us and its covered to feel more den like. We do not want to move it the bedroom so that isnt an option. He does not like to be in it and will have full blown puppy tantrums where he will yelp, scream and bark. Last night, his first night, I expected it to be tough and it was. He DID sleep for a solid 5 hours in it (probably from the pure exhaustion of the day, stress of leaving his litter, etc) but then woke up about 3:30am. I did bring him out for a potty break and he peed and pooped. I didnt talk to him or make it fun like I have read to not do, brought him back in and put him right into his crate and said "crate" and dropped a treat in. He then proceeded to have a 3 hour puppy tantrum. He would not calm down. I did not interact with him at all, to not reward him.

Today we have been working with him to contain him in his crate for short increments of time- about 40-60 minutes at a time. He will whine and yelp and make a fuss at first and then settle eventually. He doesn't yet go to it as a safe place, but it's only Day 2 so I'm not surprised about that.

So, I know crate training is a process and it takes time. I think I am on the right track but just had 2 questions:

1. When he whines and I know he doesnt need the potty, do I just ignore him completely? Let him tire himself out to learn it wont get attention?

2. At night, if I do have to take him out for a break, Im supposed to just put him right back in his crate right? Even though he reallllllly doesn't want to?
 

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1. When he whines and I know he doesnt need the potty, do I just ignore him completely? Let him tire himself out to learn it wont get attention?

Yes, all they want is attention. If you give him any attention when he whines, it will lead to more whining.

2. At night, if I do have to take him out for a break, Im supposed to just put him right back in his crate right? Even though he reallllllly doesn't want to?

Yes, if he doesn't then he will want out of his crate more which will lead to even more whining.
 

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1. Yes you could ignore him but you could also do some simple commands like a firm “NO” to stop him from whining. If he does stop whining maybe drop a treat into the crate to show him that if you stop whining you will get rewarded. If you keep doing this he may start to understand that whining and having a tantrum is not acceptable. This is just what I did to stop my puppy from having tantrums this may not work for every dog.

2. Yes you should put him right back into the crate after going potty at night....if you don’t he will think it’s time to play and have fun which is probably not what you would want to do at 3:30 am in the morning lol.
 
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