Hello,
I have a 7 week-old Akita/husky mix. She has a great personality, and I am hoping to keep it that way. I have read that crate training can be harmful to a dog's mentality. Furthermore, I would feel guilty about leaving her in cage when she if full grown while I am away at work. I read in "Smarter than you Think" that a tether is the more preferred way to do this. Has anyone had any luck with this for large breed dogs? Would locking her in the kitchen be more humane? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated
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Hello, I have a 7 week-old Akita/husky mix. She has a great personality, and I am hoping to keep it ... this for large breed dogs? Would locking her in the kitchen be more humane? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated

have two pit bulls with fantastic personalities who spend a few hours each day in their crates. they're also crated when they sleep. they don't have a problem with it, in fact, they go to their crates voluntarily when they're sick, because it's a safe place. and when i pull out the good treats, they run to their crates, so they can eat them in peace (neither is allowed in the other's crate).
i've never heard of a dog running to the wall, eager to be chained up.

-kelly
A kennel/crate is a great way to train a dog. Dogs naturally like to be in a cave or small place I have one mixed dog that loves to go and lay down in the back of my closet. I keep the door open all the time so he can go in when he wants to. My 9 month old Komondor puppy stays in his kennel during the day and at night. I throw in a couple of treats and a chew and he is more than happy to go in. NEVER use the kennel as punishment I feel a tether has a much greater chance of causing injury, what happens if she wraps it around her leg? You going to stake her outside? Rain/hail snow. Tether a dog indoors?
Wayne
Hello, I have a 7 week-old Akita/husky mix. She has a great personality, andI am hoping to keep it that ... with this for large breed dogs? Would locking her in the kitchen be more humane? Any suggestions would begreatly appreciated

Hmm.
I have three dogs. One was crate trained as a puppy by his breeder. The second was crate trained at about 2 years old. The third was never crate trained. All three, however, are happy and willing to go into their crates. I use crates currently only for travel and at shows, but if necessary would use them in my home as well. I will never, ever raise a puppy again without using a crate (and an exercise pen - both have different uses and are each very wonderful tools.) If you do decide on the kitchen vs. a crate, please invest in a pen - otherwise, you will be risking too much, as puppies can learn to open doors, chew on everything in their sight, and can be in danger when left to their own devices.
As for my dog's mentality? They are all nuts. The crates had nothing to do with it, though, Emotion: smile
Christy
Hello, I have a 7 week-old Akita/husky mix. She has a great personality, andI am hoping to keep it that way. I have read that crate training can be harmful to a dog's mentality.

In what manner? A dog that is crated 23 out of 24 hours will probably go psychotic when let out. They will probably have "issues" of some form or another. RESPONSIBLE crating creates well-behaved dogs.

Furthermore, I would feel guilty about
leaving her in cage when she if full grown while I am away at work. Iread in "Smarter than you Think" that a tether is the more preferred way to do this.

NEVER tie your dog when you are not home not to ANYTHING inside or out. Your dog can spin, wrap the tether around it's leg or neck, and basically kill itself trying to free itself. Either leave the dog loose (to get into everything imaginable) or crate it safely or build an outdoor run.

Has anyone had any luck with this for large breed dogs?

Not when I'm not home. With my Labrador, he was crated when we weren't home or were doing things where we couldn't properly supervise him (for example, cleaning the bathroom, painting, moving furniture, in the shower) until he was old enough to behave himself and not have an "accident." We tethered him when we were doing something he could "help" with or something where he wasn't in the way (watching TV, playing on the computer, cleaning a room with a convenient spot to tie him to). He grew out of this at about 6 months of age and was 100% housebroken at 8 months.

Would
locking her in the kitchen be more humane?[/nq]I don't consider it so. Do you keep chemicals under the kitchen sink? Will you come home any less than thrilled to see her if she's pottied on the kitchen floor? If so, she probably would be happier in a crate. I initially left Rusty loose in a spare bathroom when we were to be gone for more than 4 hours as I didn't have a crate the proper size for a 10 week old puppy. One was too small, the other too large. The second time we did this, I came home to an absolutely FLOODED bathroom, plus it hung over the front porch, so that was soaked, as well as the bathroom directly under it.

(That was the cat's bathroom, with her litterbox. She was NOT impressed and left us a "present" on the couch.) He had somehow chewed apart the hose that supplies fresh water to the toilet. IMO, there is just too much stuff for a dog to get into if left in a free room. I once had friends that had a dog that developed severe separation anxiety, but when they started locking her in a very small room, she improved dramatically. Less stuff for them to think about that way.

The less they think, the less they worry. (The dog was crated in the "too big" crate from that point foreward.)

I don't find crating to be inhumane. My Lab goes in his crate at "bedtime" (whenever he deems it time for us to go to bed). I have used them with great success for kittens as well. It's important to make the dog as much a part of your life as possible. I DO feel it's important to teach them to sit quietly in their crate when you are HOME. This is great for guests that don't like dogs. But make as much as possible interactive. Rusty helps with laundry, cleaning the kitchen (I brush all the crumbs on the floor for him), pretty much he "helps" with whatever I'm doing at home AND goes for LOTS of rides.

Emily Carroll
Fluttervale Labradors: www.fluttervale.com/kennel
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I have a 7 week-old Akita/husky mix. She has a great personality, and I am hoping to keep it that way.

Socialize, socialize, socialize. That's the key. Let her meet as many people as she can - babies, children, adults, elderly, people of different races. She also needs to meet as many dogs and puppies as possible, but at 7 weeks of age you have to be careful. Her immune system isn't well developed yet, so I would suggest play dates with friends' dogs who you know are healthy.

At her age, you have a wonderful chance at ensuring she remains friendly and lovable her whole life with the proper socialization. She's moldable clay right now.
I have read that crate training can be harmful to a dog's mentality.

Only if it's abused. If she's only in there for a few hours at a time when you're not home, it's the best way to prevent housebreaking and chewing accidents. I say a few hours because of her age. The older she gets, the longer she can stay in there (as she develops better bladder control).
Furthermore, I would feel guilty about leaving her in cage when she if full grown while I am away at work.

The goal is to train her so that she's trustworthy with the run of the house when you're not home. You crate her until she is housebroken and no longer chewing. And that's different for every dog. My border collie was crated for two years (housebroken, but loved to remodel my apartment with her teeth).

It's not at all cruel. When you're not home, she's going to sleep. Dogs feel safe and comfortable in a small enclosed den.
I read in "Smarter than you Think" that a tether is the more preferred way to do this.

Tethering when you're not home??? Absolutely not. Being tied up *is* detrimental to a dog's mental health. However, tethering her to you in the house when you're too busy to directly supervise her is fine.
Has anyone had any luck with this for large breed dogs?

Doesn't matter what breed.
Would locking her in the kitchen be more humane?

Not really. Some dogs are more nervous when left alone in larger spaces than in a crate. Some dogs eat floors and walls. And unless you lock her in a very small area, she will have accidents. Every accident in the house puts you two steps behind in housebreaking.
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated

Proper potty training: http://hometown.aol.com/dfrntdrums/potty-training.html

By the way, our resident loon is going to attack you. I'm sure you already know who I'm talking about. :} I won't see it, because I have him killfiled - as do most of the posters here.
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Hello, I have a 7 week-old Akita/husky mix. She has a great personality, and I am hoping to keep it ... this for large breed dogs? Would locking her in the kitchen be more humane? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated

i'd go ahead and crate train. i can't understand how people can raise pups without crate training for house breaking reasons.

when she is older and full grown you will know whether she needs to be crated when you are gone or if she's trustworthy around the house.

i absolutely would not tether too dangerous!! not to mention my dog would chew through a tether in about two seconds!
my pit bull is crated when i am not home. she has to be. she would go through the window trying to follow me if she were not. she knows when it is time for me to go to work, and she goes in her crate, lays down, and starts drooling because she knows her stuffed kong is coming.

my old miniature poodle is left loose if i have to leave her. she gets hysterical in a crate, and confining her to one room stresses her out as well. she's too little, old, and senile to be too destructive though Emotion: wink

han solo shot first.
http://shattering.org
Thank you for your advice everyone. It appears that crate training would be the preferred choice. I do have a few more questions.

I got Rukka, my dog, for two reasons. Companionship and Protection. I live alone in a rougher part of town, and I want a dog that will watch over me and place. She needs to be confident enough to fend off aggressors when we are running/walking. Also, I intend to take her with me backpacking, and I want her to be comfortable sleeping outside of a crate, and next to me. Will crate training prevent us from achieve these goals? I have heard that it can make a dog less confident, because it always has the security blanket to run to.
Also, is the housebreaker progress faster because the dog does not want to spend extended periods of time lying next to it own leavings?

Thank everyone for your advice. I do appreciate it!!
I got Rukka, my dog, for two reasons. Companionship and Protection. I live alone in a rougher part of town, ... will watch over me and place. She needs to be confident enough to fend off aggressors when we are running/walking.

Using a dog for protection is very dicey. The best case scenario is a dog who is big and scary-looking, with a deep bark. The worst case scenario is a dog who actually attacks. Without the proper protection training (which stresses that the dog act ONLY upon your command), you are relying on the dog's judgement on what is and isn't a threat. In other words, a child running around yelling with his arms waving in the air may just trigger the dog's attack mode.
Also, I intend to take her with me backpacking, and I
want her to be comfortable sleeping outside of a crate, and next to me. Will crate training prevent us from achieve these goals?

Nope. The crate is for when you're not around or unable to supervise. Your dog should be perfectly happy to be in her crate, yet even more happy to be next to you.
I have heard that
it can make a dog less confident, because it always has the security blanket to run to.

Not at all. That's just... bull doody. :}
Also, is the housebreaker progress faster because the dog does not want to spend extended periods of time lying next to it own leavings?

Yes, that's one of the benefits. Most dogs don't want to mess their sleeping areas, so it teaches the dog to hold it. But it also prevents the dog from developing the habit of going in the house. If the dog makes mistakes in the house when you're not home, she sees going in the house as "normal." Then instead of simply teaching her that outside is the potty place, you have to also teach her that inside is not the potty place. You have to break a bad habit that needn't have been established in the first place.

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