We have had Penny since she was a pup. She and our other dog have been trained to sleep in their crates at night. There has never been any problem with either dog going directly to their crate when told. Their crates have faced each other across the living room. They have the plastic crates with the metal grid type doors that they can see out of.
We became tired of having the plastic crates in our living room. I hate to say it, but they were unsightly and there was never a good spot for them. We bought two new wooden crates and my husband assembled them on Sunday. Penny is having a lot of trouble with hers.
At first, we had the crates on either end of the couch, but Penny whined and barked the entire first night, so the following night we placed her crate where the old one used to be, across the room from our other dog, since we thought she might be upset that she was separated from her friend. That did not help. Monday night she yelped and whined so much that we could not sleep. Last night she threatened to do the same, so we gave up and dragged the old plastic crate in and let her sleep in it.
Penny has no desire to go into the new crate at all and you have to force her. By force I do not mean doing anything to hurt her; I just mean that you have to physically place her in the crate against her will and close the door right away or she will turn right around and run back out. She cries or barks the entire time that she is in the crate.
Penny has been just fine with the plastic crate, so it must be something about this one. We have always fed the dogs in their crates. She seems to be very concerned because she did not eat in the wooden crate and wouldn't even chew on the bone that we put in.
The door of the new crate is different. My husband thinks that Penny may not be able to see out as well, so I am thinking of taking it off and securing the door from the old crate onto the new one temporarily with a bungee cord or something to see if that is the issue. If it is, we can adapt the new door. The new crate is also a bit smaller, but I doubt that it is so small as to cause a concern. The other dog is now in a slightly smaller crate and she does not seem bothered by it at all.
I just can't think of what it is about this crate that is bothering Penny. I would really like to find a way to get Penny to accept the new crate. I don't want to have one nice wooden one and one ugly plastic one.
Also, I don't want to be making things worse by either forcing her into the crate and making her hate it more or by giving in to her protests and letting her sleep in the old crate. So far we have done both. We just don't know what to do. Has anyone faced this situation? Can anyone guess what the cause might be or suggest ideas to help us solve this?
I have not had your problem, but you might try putting her food and water beside the door opening on the outside of the new crate, a toy and bone on the inside and just leave the door open. Put a comfy little blanket in the new crate. Leave the door open all the time for her to explore and decide it is alright. Pull out her old plastic crate to sleep in at night temporarily. Give her special new treats in her new crate. Play ball or fetch toys and throw them into her new crate for her to retreive. Try to make her see her new crate is a fun comfy place and not a new jail that she hates. Good luck.
I love German Shepherds and will always have one with me for the rest of my life!
First of all, make sure your crate is comfortable and appealing - puppies can get easily scared or anxious, and you want to introduce the crate as something they’ll be comfortable going into. Keep bedding, toys, water, and anything else to make your puppy feel right at home inside the crate.
Keep bedding, toys, water, and anything else to make your puppy feel right at home inside the crate.
I don't think I would ever put water in a dog's crate.
OP -- I know the sizes of your current crates probably don't allow this, but is there a way to put the create Penny likes inside the wooden crate? Have you tried covering the crate she likes with a blanket? That might address the visibility issue (if that's what is bugging her). If nothing else, it might address the "unsightliness" issue.
sometimes dogs get used to "normal", and a change stresses them out. I had a friend who washed her dogs toy, and so his sent was gone. He whined and cried for days, thinking he has lost his toy. She may be just upset and want her old crate back. She liked it, and it was what she was used to. Change is not always a good thing.
Yes those plastic crates are horribly ugly, but there is so much you can do to them to make them nice. I had one years ago at my moms(long before the nice wooden ones came out). I painted and decorated it with doggie things. It was still a crate yes, but fit much better into the decor of the living room. It was no longer really unsightly.