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Puppy happy to be left but only for a short amount of time..

Discussion in 'Puppy Forum' started by AmyV122, Mar 4, 2022.

  1. AmyV122

    AmyV122 New Member Registered

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    Hi,

    we have a wonderful 13 week old terrier he’s a very excitable chap and has lots of energy! We’ve been slowly training him to be happy left alone, and he’s doing pretty well! So far we have been able to leave him in his crate for around an hourish as long as he is very very tired. However, if he’s a bit sleepy but still awake he will just whine and howl and not settle at all.

    Also, he generally naps for around an hour and then wakes up, as soon as hes woken up he will look around and then begin to cry and howl if he’s alone (we have a little camera to keep an eye on him!)

    My main question would be is this something he will get more used to and grow out of? I’m wondering whether as he’s older he will learn to play with his toys and feel comfortable after waking or be able to settle himself if he’s not super tired but we need to pop out.

    (we use his crate to feed him, play with him etc and he’s always left with a kong toy and chew for when he wakes up)

    any advice is hugely appreciated!!
     
  2. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    Hi Amy,

    Does he need to be in the crate, or could you leave him out of it when he's on his own? You want him to see his crate as a wonderful place to be, which won't be the case if he ever feels caged by it.

    You are probably asking more of him than he's ready for. Ideally, you should always work within your dog's comfort zone - so if he is reliably happy being left for 5 minutes, you leave him for 5 minutes and 30 seconds... if that's OK, 6 minutes... and so on. Every time you leave him and he cries, this will reinforce that being left is scary, and this will result in a backwards step - he'll start getting anxious as soon as he realises you're getting ready to go out.

    In terms of toys, some dogs never play with toys when they're on their own. Something like a frozen Kong can be better, but also make sure that he is tired and relaxed and not ready to bounce off the furniture when you leave him.

    There's more about separation anxiety here: Separation anxiety Have a read, but do come back if you have any further questions.
     
  3. AmyV122

    AmyV122 New Member Registered

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    Hi Judy,

    thank you for your reply! He’s a bit of a chewer and takes interest in eating anything he can get his mouth on so we’re crating him until he’s gotten out of these habits!

    that’s really helpful though thank you, I think we will work more on leaving him as you’ve mentioned above when he’s awake as this seems to be his issue!

    thanks again :)
     
  4. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    Also, have a read of this article by the behaviourist Emma Judson: Crate Training, by Emma Judson It's long, but do persevere, as it really will pay dividends.
     
  5. Tinytom

    Tinytom Well-Known Member Registered

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    Could you use a puppy play pen instead of a crate to give him more space ...chewing at his age is perfectly normal as he is lie a baby teething so everything will go in his mouth ....none of my terriers have liked going into a crate unless its a very large one ;)would love to see some photos :)
     

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