Originally Posted by Gingerling
What you want to do is get into a routine ASAP so they can anticipate crate time, dogs are very sensitive to routines and patterns, this predictability allows them to anticipate and adjust. So, getting up, potty, eat, play...and then nap time in the crate.
So, in addition to making crate time predictable and consistent, you want to make it soft and comfy, I use a bath mat and blankets folded neatly on top so its always soft and inviting. If he has accidents, wash the stuff. But, don't leave it bare.
I also prefer the large plastic crates, especially when they're really young, b/c they're safer and they're also much more den like...recall they like enclosed spaces, so consider getting one and having both available.
Have patience, it takes time.
Routine helps our V IMMENSELY. He's almost 3, but will still pitch a fit if we don't signal him to let him know crate time is coming. He likes to be prepared! You can do it based on time (like from 10-12 each morning, etc.) and also give him signals that crating is coming up (taking him for a potty break, letting him see you put a kong in his crate, fill his water bowl, etc.)
I would also make his crate comfy. I buy cheap fleece at the craft store by the yard and just fold it up. When it gets too chewed/raggedy, I cut it into strips to make tug toys. And repeat! Just wash it immediately every time he has an accident (helps to have a spare on hand). And wipe down the crate with Nature's Miracle or another cleaner that erases the scent.
I've also come to prefer the plastic crates. Our V broke out of a wire kennel a few times, so the plastic crate seems a lot safer to me now. We just replaced our weim's wire kennel with a plastic crate as well.
It really does just take time! Stay consistent and try not to stress out about it too much. The wailing is really awful though, I know!
Originally Posted by nymeria
We use our GoPro to watch our V when we leave her alone. There's an app for your phone that you can use to view the video if you're in range of the camera (so I use it to watch what she's doing downstairs if I am upstairs, for example), and we video her when we leave her to see how she does. That's how we decided when to leave her alone longer. I want to get a nanny cam so I can see what she's doing real-time when I leave the house, although mostly she seems to just sleep, stretch, maybe chew for a while, then go back to sleep (lots of times on her back with her legs in the air, it's so funny).
We have a NestCam on our pups. I like to watch what they are doing in "their" room while I'm in the kitchen (our weim has a nasty habit of breaking blinds trying to look out the window). Our V goes in just to check his crate for cookies because we did that so much with him as a pup since he hated his crate. Still makes me smile... small success!