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  1. My pit just started to absolutely freak out in his crate

    I recently adopted a one year old male pit from my friend. For the first year of his life he was kept as a shop dog and didnt get much attention from people so my friend gave him to me to have a better home. He is just a big lover and has been absolutely wonderful with my other little dogs and the family. In just a month he has responded very well to training and all the attention he is getting. We have had him for a month now and he has been doing just fine while in his crate during our work day. The past few days however we have come home to signs of complete "freak outs". The cage with him in it will be moved across the room, and bottom plastic tray slid out. He also some how managed to completely get out of his crate yesterday. There are signs that he is slamming his whole body against the sides because they are all bent up. Today when we got home the whole entire bottom tray was chewed up and outside of the cage. So far we have tried leaving him with toys, taking him for runs in the morning before he goes in the crate, and also leaving our other two dogs (his buddies) in the room with him. Other than that there is not a single thing about his routine that has changed. I understand we have only had him for a month but this seems odd for him to change his behavior in this way all of the sudden. Please help! need some suggestions on what to do!

  2. Did you try any crate training first? I'm not an expert at all, but I'll relay what I did which helped a LOT. The goal was to make him feel like his crate was his safe place. While at home I left the door open, he'd have toys, some water, some snacks and a blanket in there. He would go in there to lay down or drink, or take a nap. When he'd go in I'd close the door without latching it to get him used to that environment. Being free to go in and out while having all his favorite things in there got him very comfortable. Then I would latch the door for an hour or so at a time while being at home. Eventually I could go to work and come home and he'd be just fine, no more freaking out. Even now days, a few years later that's where he prefers to go take his naps or just chill out.

  3. Try the 3 piece plastic crates at walmart. I just bought one for about $50. There is no way for the dog to get out of it. And doing as Triumphant suggested wouldnt hurt. I wouldnt put a blanket in there for a puppy until its 100% potty trained....unless you like washing blankets. But you said he was a year old, so he should be fine with a blanket.

  4. #4
    Separation anxiety can be extreme when a dog has gone from a living situation of barely no attention to lots of attention and affection! I'm not sure how ur getting him into his crate before you leave for work and if your speaking to him and telling him you will be back soon? When you return home are you greeting him right away with a lot of excitement? Some dogs can handle all the talking and the excitable greeting . Since you have said his past home there was no attention or barely any and if you are talking to him when you leave you are giving him tons of attention even if you are saying 3 words to him he's learned to love his new home, by talking to him when you leave you create excitement and he now is in a crate in an excited state anticipating your return because he knows the greeting will be full of excitement, that's very hard for most dogs to handle and they end up doing what your dog is doing! I'm not saying you are doing this I'm just giving you a possible cause! I have used very large kongs or stuff able bones if u take his breakfast and add water and make it mushy and stuff it all into some sort of kong or bone before you leave. This works wonders because now he is working for his breakfast it helps. Even if you can't fit all his food give him half in a bowl as usual and the rest in a chew. And if you are speaking to him try not to at all when leaving. And same coming home!

    :)

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by XxDELIVERANCExX View Post
    Try the 3 piece plastic crates at walmart. I just bought one for about $50. There is no way for the dog to get out of it.


    BULLSHINY there isn't. I've had more plastic crates destructed than metal ones!

    To the OP - The dog is just now getting past the "honeymoon" period and is settled in enough to start showing his true self. You should backtrack and teach him about the crate, and make sure he is getting PLENTY of exercise!

    Also, if he is escaping his crate DO NOT leave your other dogs in the same room :-/

  6. Thank you for all the suggestions! Axle is about the 6th dog I have crate trained so yes we are making it his home and safe place. It's where his toys and blankets are, and when it's dinner time his food. We get him into the crate by telling him very entergeticly to go in his house and reward with a treat when he is in, and when letting him out praising him and acting excited to see him. As of yesterday we are going to start outing him in the crate for 5-10 min periods while we are home. Hopefully this will also help with his comfort level. Thanks again everyone!

  7. #7
    I am FAR from a expert, im a new pup mom, my baby is 5 months old. I have a 15 year old basset hound and a 1 year old tabby cat. We tried leaving Trina in her room (fully furnished just for her) and that didnt end well. We tried leaving her with the basset in the same room, she just aggrivates him. When I left her in her crate the first time, the basset was in the room with her.....not good either. I think she was jealous that he was outside and could walk around the room and she couldnt. Now i put her in her crate and the basset goes into another room. After a minute of fussing she settles down really well. She is only there for an hour or so because fortunatly my hubby works nights and he gets home shortly after I leave, but this seems to work. She gets realy excited when he gets home, but when she knows (or thinks she knows) lol that we are gone, she settles right down and chews on her KONG filled with a kong treat and peanutbutter,,,,frozen, and that keeps her occupioed. I always leave a tv on for her too.

    in a nutshell keeping the other dogs away where she cant see them might be your answer.

    good luck!!!

  8. #8
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    Do not praise, act excited make eye contact or talk to the dog when letting him out of his crate. It should be more fun to go in than it is to come out.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by XxDELIVERANCExX View Post
    Try the 3 piece plastic crates at walmart. I just bought one for about $50. There is no way for the dog to get out of it.
    That's not true at all. It's plastic. Any determined enough dog can get out of a plastic crate.


    OP: Are your other dogs also crated during the day or are they left to walk around him?

  10. Going in excited and coming out excited is not going to help his state of mind at all. Ignore him completely when you come home until he is completely quiet. Laying down quiet, preferably asleep quiet. Then let him out of the crate and ignore him until he goes off on his own and ignores everyone. Then call him to you, make him sit (or any other command) treat and pet. Not excited though. When you are leaving or crating for any reason, quietly in the crate with no excitement and walk away without acknowledging the dog. My pit never was a problem for the crate, not much anyway. She was a VERY overenthusiastic greeter. Ignoring her completely when coming or going and although it took some patience, she will just lay on the floor and look at me and wag her tail when I or anyone else come in the house. Hardest part is getting all the humans to comply!

  11. #11
    Wow, I read your post and this is almost EXACTLY what is happening w/ my 8 mo old blue pup. He was 100% and happily crate trained since I brought him home in March at age 3 mos. All I'd have to do was say "crate", and he would happily trot inside, lay down, and start working on the peanut butter filled Kong I had prepared for him. 2 chew toys on top of that, and he was happy as a clam until the next morning (or when I got home).

    Fast forward to 4th of July time. We learned that fireworks FREAK him the heck out. Also, he is now afraid of storms (had gone through MANY of them previously with 0 problems). Slowly he started whining for a while at night, then not wanting to go into the crate at all. Now, in the past two weeks, he has brokwn out of his crate about 5 times. He has two older doggie buddies in the house that do not get put into crates because they can be trusted to not chew up the house while unattended.

    We are working w/ the behavior specialist that helped our middle dog stop being a nightmare (disobedient, hard headed, barked his head off). I swear the guy is cesar milan in a white mans body, and he had the dog in shape in 10 minutes. Two weeks later, he's 80% better and a totally different dog.

    SO - to the point here. We asked him about this issue and he's coming over to our house tomorrow. He states that he has some seperation anxiety and he is simply "trying to be with his pack" because he's the only one crated. He also states that because we ignored the whining that started in his crate back in July (practically everything we read about this problem said to ignore, and that going to him would only reinforce the behavior). Apparently WRONG! What he says we SHOULD have done was immediately correct the unwanted behavior. He is suggesting that starting tonight, the minute we hear him start whining that we go down to this crate, give him a firm/sharp "HEY!!!" to jolt him out of the behavior, and ONLY when he shows the calm submissive behavior we want, we walk away pleased. Apparently after a week of this, he should be back to his normal self.....so we hope and pray!

    Of course this is only his verbal instructions and I cannot prove this works, but it may be helpful to you to at least try. I am starting this tonight, and would be happy to get back to you in a few days to share stories.

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