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Hello,

I'm hoping to get some advice form you guys.

This is my first Vizsla and first dog (outside of my childhood home).

We have her Crate in the kitchen, she likes her crate and sleeps in it with no problem at all. We have put a stair gate on the door way of the kitchen as we wanted this to be her room when we need to leave and don't want to shut her away in her crate.

She just doesn't seem to like it. When we leave her in there she will whin and moan for quite a long time and unfortunately has now learnt how to climb over the stair gate which leads into the lounge where she actually seems to be ok, even when we go up stairs. We have no doors between the kitchen and lounge so couldn't shut her in even if we wanted to.

I am also an on call firefighter so really wanted the space to be able to put her when I get a call. The kitchen is the safer place to do this but she seems to like being in the lounge.

What do you all think? should I just persist with keeping her in the kitchen or accept that she just might not like it in there?

Thank you,

Adam
 

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Persist. Build up the time she spends alone gradually. But climbing the stair gate is a problem, you may need to crate.

I had to train Greta to be alone at home, at work and in the car so for me the crate was the best solution. That awful pulling at your heart strings noise will stop. She only did it at work, for a good 3/4 weeks. The stable staff had not heard anything like it!
 

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Hi Adam,

Two things: First (and I so wish people would recognize this, I keep repeating it!) Dogs have a much different experience of space then we do. They are den animals. They actually like smaller, enclosed spaces. "Shutting her in" the crate is pure projection, we might not like that, but if you've used the crate and trained her to it properly, the size is a non issue for her.

What is more likely the issue is her loneliness. Dogs are pack animals and do not like to be separate, regardless of the size of the space. This is just natural, more so b/c they are Vizslas and incredibly attached to us.

So, use the crate as part of the day, even when you are there so she doesn't just associate it with being alone, and when she hollers, ignore it. She needs to learn to self soothe and tolerate the separation, and that can occur easiest in a smaller space while you are there, and gradually add time and separations.
 
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