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Hey dog lovers,

Perhaps you can puzzle this one out for me. I have a female, spayed 18 month old Elkhound-Chow-Heeler mutt named Tuva, on all necessary preventatives (flea, heartworm, etc) and up to date on vaccinations. She was, until two weeks ago, crate trained.

Around a monthago, I moved to a new home. Up til two weeks after I moved, she slept very contentedly in her crate in my room. Then she started whining and barking in her crate. I rewarded her when quiet and ignored her when noisy. Instead of improving, she started pushing the floor out and pulling on the bars. I had to try thoroughly dogproofing the room and letting her sleep loose ... but she was just as desperate to get out of the room as out of the crate.

I have tried re-acclimating her to her crate with classical conditioning over the course of a weekend, have moved her crate into the room she's comfiest in, have covered it. I feed her only in her crate, and she only gets her knucklebones in there. All have resulted in only temporary improvement, and I am on my computer at 1:30 AM because yet again she caterwauled incessantly and I am at a loss.:eek: She loves hanging out in her crate when it's open, but the instant it closes she is rigid with tension and won't touch her food.

I would be immensely grateful if anyone had any idea what could have made a solidly crate trained dog lose her cool so completely. I'd be even more grateful for ideas on a) how to fix the problem and b) how to get some goshdarn sleep in the mean time.

Thanks!
-Ellen

PS: I should add, she always stops when she thinks no one's around or everyone's asleep, and there are no problems when I leave, so I am pretty sure it isn't separation anxiety.
 

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I would leave once you have her in there for now-if she's calming down when you leave, maybe she just needs time to settle down again. Is her crate in your room? If she's fine being in her crate with the door open, why not leave her like that for a bit?
 

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I should add, she always stops when she thinks no one's around or everyone's asleep, and there are no problems when I leave, so I am pretty sure it isn't separation anxiety.
Does that mean you put her in her crate before you go to bed or leave the house?

Dogs are very social animals, and want to be with you, whenever you're around... If she can hear you having fun, she'll obviously want to join in...
 

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Thanks for the responses!
I do leave her in her crate with the door open fairly frequently, when I am around. She was still occasionally tearing up shoes, socks, cushions, etc until a couple weeks ago, and though she seems to have stopped, I am not comfortable leaving her loose when I leave. Neither my room nor the living room (the possible crate spaces) can be completely dog proof, as she likes ripping the foam liner out from under the carpet. Her destructiveness seemed unlinked to the amount of exercise she gets, as that has been fairly consistent at 2.5-3 hours/day.

I put her in her crate right before going out the door to work, and right before going to bed. When I leave for work, she will cry and bark until she has heard me go all the way down the front steps, then gradually quiet down (I have stopped and listened a couple of times, just within earshot). When I go up to bed, she will cry and bark until she is sure no one is listening, anywhere between 5 minutes and 30. Problem is, we are all on different work and sleep schedules, so wherever in the house her crate is, when she starts barking, it wakes people up. This might be okay for a night or two, but I cannot be depriving my housemates of sleep regularly. If I am in the same room she will fuss longer.
 
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