Training tips for Hurricane Mickey?

Discussion in 'Labrador Training' started by Emily_BabbelHund, Jan 4, 2017.

  1. Emily_BabbelHund

    Emily_BabbelHund Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2016
    Messages:
    1,133
    Location:
    Chiclana de la Frontera, Cádiz, Spain
    I keep a friend's dog, Mickey, in the mornings until she can go to a third friend's store for the rest of the day. The reason is if left alone, Mickey will attempt to go through doors and, barring that, eats the wooden door frames, furniture legs and couch pillows. She's like an enthusiastic beaver with a feather fetish. I love having her in the mornings, but I'm off to Spain in three weeks, so Mickey will once again be alone in the mornings for an hour. Yes, that's it...only an hour alone and she goes completely nutballs. She's not even technically alone, as her human has three other dogs and five cats who are also in the apartment.

    Out of desperation (she's replaced her doors/woodwork several times at this point), my friend recently got a crate for the first time and I've offered to help crate train Mickey while she is with me in the mornings. My idea was to go VERY slowly - door open for a week, then closing the door for a couple minutes at a time with me in the room, then doing the same but stepping out of the apartment very briefly and slowly building up time, etc.. However, my friend doesn't want to bother bringing the crate over (I understand, as it is heavy and she lives on the 4th floor with no lift). I suggested buying a temporary fabric crate but she doesn't want the extra expense, which I also understand.

    Does anyone have any suggestions about how I can help Mickey with this behaviour in the three weeks I have left with her? I've thought about maybe building a little "fort" out of kitchen chairs and some sheets with the idea that this might be kind of crate-like. But I've also thought that this would simply be an exercise in Mickey laughing her doggie head off at me.

    By the way, she is an adult (8-12 years old) very smart medium sized (20kg) ex-street dog. She gets lots of walks and a ton of love, but little actual training and mental stimulation beyond the walks. I've worked with her on leash dog aggression and taught her some basic obedience stuff - she learns very quickly.

    Any ideas on training to solve the beaver behaviour?

    Here's Mickey (big one) and Fritzi (little one).

    Screenshot 2017-01-04 11.07.03.png
     
  2. snowbunny

    snowbunny Administrator Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2014
    Messages:
    11,803
    Location:
    Andorra and Spain
    Well, my first thought would be, will you crate train your own new dog/puppy and therefore need your own? :)
     
    Naya and Emily_BabbelHund like this.
  3. Boogie

    Boogie Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2014
    Messages:
    5,553
    I would use a puppy pen with plenty of chews and toys for that hour :)

    Chairs and blankets are no deterrent at all for dog teeth.

    The beaver behaviour is bound to be a mixture of boredom and habit which won't be solved in a week or two.


    ....
     
    Emily_BabbelHund likes this.
  4. Anne123

    Anne123 Registered Users

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2014
    Messages:
    327
    I would rather have a crate in the house then repeatedly buying new furniture or new doors. You can buy a crate on internet and the delivering company will bring it upstairs. Or as Mags said a puppy pen, but is the puppy pen reliable with a grown up dog?
    Finn is in a crate and loves being in there. It is his own and feels very comfy. It is the largest you can buy and rather big in the house. When I am gone Finn is in the crate, door open.
     
    Emily_BabbelHund likes this.
  5. Emily_BabbelHund

    Emily_BabbelHund Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2016
    Messages:
    1,133
    Location:
    Chiclana de la Frontera, Cádiz, Spain
    Oh, I know. I just meant that might be sort of a 'faux crate" that I could use to help with her training at my apartment. I thought it might help her get used to the idea of being enclosed and associate it with good stuff instead of panic. The actual crate is already at my friend's apartment, she just doesn't want to lug it up and down the stairs and to my place. Which I totally understand.

    Precisely. It's been going on for 1.5 years now so there's no easy fix. She doesn't do it all the time, but enough that she can't be trusted alone. But she needs some solution - she can't even go grocery shopping without making sure that Mickey is being cared for by someone else.
     
  6. Emily_BabbelHund

    Emily_BabbelHund Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2016
    Messages:
    1,133
    Location:
    Chiclana de la Frontera, Cádiz, Spain
    I will indeed! However, in three weeks all my worldly possessions get packed into my very small car for the trip to Spain, so a full sized crate is not in the cards right now.
     
  7. Emily_BabbelHund

    Emily_BabbelHund Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2016
    Messages:
    1,133
    Location:
    Chiclana de la Frontera, Cádiz, Spain
    My friend already bought the crate but she hasn't used it yet as she hasn't had to with me here. My concern is that in three weeks, Mickey will get stuck in the crate for the first time in her life, have a full scale freak out, and hurt herself trying to get out. A puppy pen, while a great idea for most dogs, would hold Mickey for about 5 seconds. She's older, but like a little gazelle and clears 6' fences without a problem. It would be very impressive if it wasn't so frustrating.
     
  8. Anne123

    Anne123 Registered Users

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2014
    Messages:
    327
    I understand the problem. I think you are doing the right thing by crate training. She has to do it too in her house. Even if it is for one hour when unsupervised she must be consequent by putting her in the crate, even when she is in the room. But I don't think I have to tell you this!
     
    Emily_BabbelHund likes this.
  9. Emily_BabbelHund

    Emily_BabbelHund Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2016
    Messages:
    1,133
    Location:
    Chiclana de la Frontera, Cádiz, Spain
    Yes, agreed...I've just got to figure out how to crate train without the crate!
     
  10. Anne123

    Anne123 Registered Users

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2014
    Messages:
    327
    Oh, that makes a difference....I guess I didn't read properly....

    Is it possible that you go to her place for that one hour and crate train her at her own house? It's only for 1 hour, or am I mistaken?
     
    Emily_BabbelHund likes this.
  11. Emily_BabbelHund

    Emily_BabbelHund Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2016
    Messages:
    1,133
    Location:
    Chiclana de la Frontera, Cádiz, Spain
    That's a good idea, but I work from home and need wifi to do that, which (very strangely) my friend doesn't have at her place. Also Mickey actually stays with me for about four hours a day, though there is someone else to cover for the last three hours if I didn't have her. But, yes, barring lugging the big crate to my place, going to Mickey's would probably be the only other thing that would work.
     
  12. Samantha Jones

    Samantha Jones Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2016
    Messages:
    635
    Location:
    Northampton
    I love the idea of building the doggy crate with chairs and blankets....I can just see it, what a great game :D not sure if it would help but if you do do it please video it and share!
     
    Emily_BabbelHund likes this.
  13. Emily_BabbelHund

    Emily_BabbelHund Supporting Member Forum Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2016
    Messages:
    1,133
    Location:
    Chiclana de la Frontera, Cádiz, Spain
    You are right, maybe I should try just for the entertainment value even if it doesn't help the crate situation!
     
    Samantha Jones likes this.

Share This Page