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Thread: How big a deal is it if bulldog doesn't go to crate on his own?

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    Default How big a deal is it if bulldog doesn't go to crate on his own?

    So we picked up our now 9 week old English bulldog a week ago. He's doing good, no crate messes, getting better about holding it already.

    But reading up on crate training and how the crate is supposed to be a sanctuary. I wouldn't say he hates it, he doesn't bark when he goes in, sleeps well in there..only for a second when he sees me leave does he whine....but he certainly has no interest in the crate when he's awake and roaming the living room playing with toys, Us, etc. And often naps on a pillow on the floor or by my feet.

    How big a deal is this? Are we setting ourselves up poorly by not teaching him to go in on his own? But like I mentioned...he doesn't hate it, just doesn't care about it.

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    Default Re: How big a deal is it if bulldog doesn't go to crate on his own?

    Not a big deal at all.... Our first two loved their crates and it was their sanctuary-- they knew we or the other dog would bother them in there, but our current would rather not be in them at all... They unwilling go when told.
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    Default Re: How big a deal is it if bulldog doesn't go to crate on his own?

    I think it was muscle memory for Lola, once her routine for work days especially was set, she would go on her own. Eventually she earned her free roam of the house but she would still sleep in there. In our new house (Lola is 4 1/2) we didn't even put up the crate. 9 weeks is a bit young to LOVE the crate yet. It's fine if he sleeps elsewhere but I would always crate when you're not home, and during the night when everyones asleep.

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    Default Re: How big a deal is it if bulldog doesn't go to crate on his own?

    He's so young right now, I agree that it's really too early to b attached to his crate. Two of my previous bullies really loved their crates when they were young. Then when the got older, they kind of gave it up. By then they had the run of the house all the time, even when we were gone. Those two bullies were so easily potty trained, that we didn't really need the crates for very long. We would leave the crate door open and they would go in on their own if they wanted to. All of our bullies have always slept with us in the bed. I'm still using the crate for my current bully Winnie, because she hasn't been as easy to potty train and I just feel better when I leave the house leaving her in the crate. I'll probably leave her out pretty soon. We are both home all the time, so we only crate her occasionally when we both leave.

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    Default Re: How big a deal is it if bulldog doesn't go to crate on his own?

    Mine doesn't use her crate during the day as she only eats and sleeps at night in it. However, she has a playpen in my office that she loves and goes in and out all day long.
    Bulldogs are like potato chips. You just can't stop with one.

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    Default Re: How big a deal is it if bulldog doesn't go to crate on his own?

    Mine only really goes in his crate when we put him in there. He will occasionally wander in but never stays. He is in the crate at night and then during the day anytime we are not at home and between 1-3 - trying to get him used to the time when we will be gone to pick up kids once school starts - and he seems to like the nap time without children bothering him since even my teenager won't leave him alone at time when he's sleeping


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    Default Re: How big a deal is it if bulldog doesn't go to crate on his own?

    My pups had a pen in the kitchen,with a crate in the pen,with the door open for naptime,or for when I was gone. As they got older,they graduated to being crated at night, or when I was gone. Then gradually were left out of crate,for longer periods when I was gone. Now they still sleep in their crates at night-but never go in them in the daytime at all! When they go in at night,they get a couple of treats.They don't sleep in my bed because there would be no room for me. They OWN everything else!
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    Default Re: How big a deal is it if bulldog doesn't go to crate on his own?

    How are you training him to go/be in the crate?

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    Default Re: How big a deal is it if bulldog doesn't go to crate on his own?

    Quote Originally Posted by RiiSi View Post
    How are you training him to go/be in the crate?
    I would say right now we're not?

    I mean we have a large wire crate we partioned off to be small, have a kong toy and an old shirt of mine, ticking clock nearby. I put a large blanket over the top to give it more or a den feel.

    When he seems tired we usually pick him up and put him in and he goes right to sleep. Never for punishment (although by God I want to sometimes hah)

    I just didn't know if we are going to have some sort of problem later because we didn't teach him young that when we say something like "Go to your crate" he goes.

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    Default Re: How big a deal is it if bulldog doesn't go to crate on his own?

    Since he is still so young, I would say that he is still in the early training days. Goob was crate trained for his first 3 years. In the crate, he had a licks-it bottle, blankets, puppy pads, a pillow, and toys (he wasn't a destroyer). We left the top opened but put a sheet over the face of the crate so he couldn't see out of it. This eliminated the whining since he couldn't see us. Whenever you want him to go in the crate on his own just repeat yourself over and over and OVER again with a "crate" catch phrase like "crate time" or "go in the crate." Using a treat to guide him in will work wonders also. To this day, Goob responds really well when he hears his phrases (get water, get your toy, are you hungry, want a treat, want to go in the truck, and MANY other commands). I think I annoyed my husband with how many times I would say the same things over again but it paid off in our case.

    I would say the most important things (IMO) are the catch phrase/treat usage AND a schedule. We had the same routine for Goob down to the hour. After several weeks/months, depending on how quickly he picks it up, he will be very well trained. I also wouldn't worry about him not choosing to be in it on his own. Goob rarely ever went in his crate by himself if we were home and he was free to roam. He always wanted to be where ever we were.
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    Default Re: How big a deal is it if bulldog doesn't go to crate on his own?

    I would say it's not a big deal at all! He's a baby and needs to be close to you. As I've said elsewhere, in Sweden, dogs are not crated (well, some might be, but it's against the law here), and to me the mere idea of having a cage for the dog in the house is strange. Having said that, I understand there may be situations when dogs need to be restricted to some part of the house, but a nine-week-old puppy needs to be close to his family. I think napping by your feet sounds great!

    Good luck with your little one!


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    Default Re: How big a deal is it if bulldog doesn't go to crate on his own?

    He will begin to like the crate. It takes a while. My bully is 3 now and even last night she left me all alone in bed to go sleep in her crate! We haven't shut her in it in years, she just loves it.

    I got her to start enjoying the crate by bribery. I'd only give her treats, special bones, new toys, etc in the crate. She thought the crate magically produced these things. I also never forced into the crate. If I needed her to go in because I was leaving/not watching her/sleeping time, I'd grab a treat or whatever and toss it in the crate while telling her "Go to your room". Then it got to the point that I could just say "Go to your room" and she'd rush in really excited, then I'd give her the treat, and shut the door.

    We never used the crate as punishment either - if she needed a timeout (like when we were teaching her not to bite us), I'd put her in the bathroom instead.

    We also never forced her out of the crate. If she chose to be in the crate, we didn't pull her out. Sometimes I would go to let her out and she'd just stay in there even though the door was open. This is important because it taught her that no one is allowed to touch her in the crate - so it's a safe space. If like a repairman comes to the house and she gets scared, she will go and crate herself because she knows he can't "get her" in there. She only associated the crate with positivity.

    Now, she adores the crate. If I pack it up to take with us on trip, she gets super upset and will sit in the spot where it usually is and pout. She likes to leave us and go take naps in the crate during the day, and if she gets a special bone or something she doesn't want to share with us (rude), she'll go off and crate herself to eat it.

    Crate training is the best, even though we don't really use it much now, it's great when you stay somewhere else and need a safe place to put your pup when you leave. Or like when we moved, have cleaners in the house, etc, it's so easy to have a spot she likes to put her!

    Stick with it!

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