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We need some advice regarding the crate. I have read through a lot of previous discussions about this topic, however I have yet to find what people are doing during the day with their pup. Should we put our 8 week old puppy in a crate when we leave for a few hours, or should we make him his own room that contains a crate, training pads, ect? How long can we leave him alone in the crate, or in a room? Thanks ahead of time!
 

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I would recommend always putting your pup in a crate when leaving, especially a young pup. Aside from house training, crating also prevents unwanted destruction of furniture or personal items; in addition, it provides down time in a safe place. Make your crate a pleasant place to be. Avoid using it as punishment as your pup grows. Only when house training is complete (without question) would I even contemplate leaving my pup in his own room. Training pads are an aid for some people, but I would avoid using them. Pads prolong the training process & can be confusing, IMO. You will probably get a wide range of opinions on how long you can leave your pup crated, but I really believe a young pup 8-12 wks should not be left more than 1.5 to 2 hrs max.
 

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charlie2011 said:
We need some advice regarding the crate. I have read through a lot of previous discussions about this topic, however I have yet to find what people are doing during the day with their pup. Should we put our 8 week old puppy in a crate when we leave for a few hours, or should we make him his own room that contains a crate, training pads, ect? How long can we leave him alone in the crate, or in a room? Thanks ahead of time!
Hi Kelly!

You have come to the right place looking for advice regarding Vizslas! :) Everyone here is very helpful and has made training Dax (our 7.3 week old pup) a breeze with there insightful suggestions, tips and methods.

We got our pup Dax the Sunday that just passed and we didn't waste time letting him get used to his crate. Because you stated you've read through threads regarding this particular topic, and you are more concerned about what owners are doing during the day for crate training them I'll give you a rundown of what WE'RE doing that has helped Dax get adjusted to his crate since getting him.

Yes, in a matter of 3 days he's gone from agonizing yelps of hating his crate too now enjoying his crate and only wimpering for a couple minutes when he's put inside. Afterwards he's as calm as a whistle and either naps, watches tv or listens to the radio or plays with his toys. Sometimes we catch him just randomly staring off into nothing haha

During the day before we go to wor, we let Dax out of his crate and immideately take him outside to use the bathroom. However before we actually let him out of the cage, we make sure he calms himself down and stops yelping, barking and whining when he sees us first thing in the morning. After he's settled down and is quiet, is when we take him out.

We were told by a breeder not to bother using a puppy pad as it will reinforce his thoughts that it is ok to pee inside the house, and unless you live in an apartment and don't have access to a yard then don't bother with a puppy pad. Like Kelly mentioned above it'll make potty training a longer process.

After he's done doing his business, we let Dax wander the yard for a couple minutes then we bring him in to eat his meal... we give him about 30-45 minutes to finish whatever he can of his dish (during that time, either myself or my girlfriend is preparing breakfast). We bring him out back out pretty much right away after he's done eating to let him go about his business of pooping and peeing. We let him play for a couple minutes again, then we bring him inside.

When we eat breakfast, we put him in his crate in the living room where he cant see us.

After we've finished eating breakfast and cleaning up we go see Dax and again we wait for him to settle down before we let him out. We take him outside and we play with him for about half an hour if not more. We bring him in, let him drink water. Then we take him outside again to pee.

When we bring him inside again we start crate training him for 15-30 minutes. So, we'll put him in the crate for a couple minutes. Let him whine, settle down. Then we let him out and reward him with TLC or a kibble (we've alternated). Then we put him back in again. We repeat this process several times. For the first couple times, we make sure Dax can see us and after awhile we hide where he cant see us.

As we're getting ready for work, we keep Dax in the crate. Before we leave for work, we take him out to the bathroom yet again. Afterwards we put him in the crate and leave.

Obviosly we've made adjustments to each day but that is the basis of what we were pretty much doing. And there have been improvements in just three days!

Regarding to what's inside the crate we've kept it pretty simple. A handful of chew toys including a kong filled with kibble. A bed and two shirts that have our scents in them. We make sure he's got enough stuff in there to keep him occupied while were gone.

And as to what Kelly said also, she is correct that everyone has there opinions on how long you can leave your pup crated. We feel we're fortunate and that we've been able to leave Dax 4 hours and come back with no accidents. The schedule my girlfriend and I have allow us to make sure that Dax is alone 4 at most 5 hours at a time during the period we're working.

So far our baby boy has been a treat and he's nothing but a sweetheart.

Best of luck to you!!
 

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Crate is the answer! Don't feel bad about leaving him in it--it's enough room, and it's much safer. I tried leaving my dog a small area with pads, and it just ended up confusing him. That experiment was scrapped after two days.

The rule of thumb for bladder control is 1 hour plus 1 hour for each month of age. I wouldn't expect your 8 week old pup to be able to hold it for 3 hours right away, though, especially as he won't know he's supposed to hold it. :) Some dogs can hold it longer or shorter, of course. That being said, if you're going to be leaving a young puppy alone in his crate for more than 2.5 to 3 hours (especially very early in the potty training process) be prepared to come home to a messy crate. They're not going to like it, you're not going to like it, but it's probably going to happen even in such short time periods.

As for length--for the first week I was home all day with him (aside from when I was desensitizing him to being alone), then he was home for 3 hours at a time. He did fine, but there was definitely an accident or two in the crate the first week or so. If it hadn't been for terrible bus schedules, I would have preferred to come home every 2 hours for the first two or three weeks, but we made it work.
 

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Hi, I posted this before but I kind of like the way it sounds.

The kennel imitates a den. In nature, puppies stay in a small den, just big enough for everyone to fit. While the adult pack members are off on the hunt, the puppies stay behind, safe in the den usually with an adult puppy-sitter. Only when the pack returns will the puppies emerge to happily feed on regurgitated food.

P.S. You don't have to regurgitate anything, just put kibble in bowl, add some water, ask dog to please sit, place bowl in front of polite little dog.

8 weeks old I would not leave longer than 2 max 3 hours. Depends on how much he ate/drank.
We tried training pads, he chewed on them, very unproductive so no to that.
 
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