Crate Training

I may have mentioned that my dog, Shadow, has a storm phobia.  Like many dogs, it has gotten worse as he has aged.  Since his illness (we are waiting for some labs to see if he needs more treatment for Cushing’s Disease and I expect that he does), he has developed a rather major fear of being alone.  Locks himself in the bathroom, tears up the walls, that kind of thing.  There hasn’t been much damage (it is to the paint, rather than the actual walls), but there was blood on the floor the last time he locked himself in my bathroom.

My friend Karen (Volunteer Director at the Refuge) is a vet tech and she told me to crate him.  “Can you crate train a 12-year old dog?!” was my response.  “Absolutely.”  Well.  I had visions of him locked in a crate and thrashing around and destroying the TV or something.

I went to Fosters and Smith and ordered the biggest hard plastic crate they had.  It arrived on Tuesday and I built it in the family room, leaving off the door.  My thought was to see if he uses it as a den without locking him up.  Well.

That took less than 48 hours.  Of course, we don’t know whether he will use it during the day and it hasn’t been crisis tested and we haven’t locked him in.  But that is a start.

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