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We have a 6 month old male. We always crate him when we aren't home but wondering at what age we should start giving him access outside of his crate in a blocked off room to start. Any suggestions on age and/or how to test this? Ideally, we would love for him to be fine enough to just be in the house alone and not get into trouble.
 

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Mine have always been over 2 years old, really closer to 3. Each dog is an individual. There is no right age, that fits every dog.
June will be 10 in February. Two weeks ago she pawed a clean ceramic spoon rest off the counter.
I was in the middle of loading things up to leave. Walked back in the house, just in time to hear it crashing to the floor. Put her up, and cleaned up the broken pieces.
It's been a lot of years, since her counter surfing days. But she was on steroids, for an upper respiratory infection. She's always been highly food motivated, and being on steroids, I guess she just couldn't resist.
If there is a way to get in trouble, or hurt, a Vizsla will figure out how to do it. I never 100 percent trust mine.
 
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They experience personal space differently than we do....

To answer your question, it depends on the dog. Some just cannot nor should not be left in the house, ever. Some can handle a limited amount of time. Others have no problems at all and will just refuse the crate altogether. AJ was fine at 4 months..he was an incredibly mature, settled puppy...but at 5 yrs really cannot handle more than a couple hours. So, even if it seems OK it can change. Is yours complaining or is it your guilt?

6 months seems early for long stretches regardless, you can try leaving him for a few minutes..after exercise!... even set the cam up from your PC and see how he does. Recall that an anxious Vizlsa...imagine!...can get into an incomprehensible array of destructive behaviors when alone and anxious or stressed.
 

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We were very lucky with our Cashew, at 6 months old we were able to leave him out of the crate, & he never did anything to our house. We started out just leaving him out while we went to grocery around the corner from our house, came home & he was all spread-out on the sofa waiting for us :)

He has a doggy door to the back yard where he can go potty in his area, sometimes we would find him outside sunning on the patio loveseat with our cat! He did however like to go dig & hide his chew-bones in the garden.....! He out grew that by 1 1/2, does not do that anymore. He is 3 1/2 yrs. old now, & is fabulous, & of course very spoiled.

I do believe it is very individual to each vizsla though, as I have several friends with Vizsla's & it is a mixed bag. Some are like Cashew & some they cannot leave them out of crate when home alone.

We did make a consorted effort when Cashew was a pup to walk him, & twice a day take him to run his little brown butt off with other dogs, also took him everywhere with us that dogs were permitted.
 

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Sadie was very destructive when we first got her (rescue) and we thought she was OK with a crate, but something set her off and she destroyed a heavy duty crate and then proceeded to destroy my shop (crazy photos somewhere in the past on this site).

Skipping a description of other destruction, and getting right to our solution:

1) A dog door so she could go in and out of the house at will (closed after sunset).

2) A special shoebox of rawhide treats and a kong that she ONLY got when we left the house. She would look forward to the "treat box" so us leaving became a "good" thing in part.

3) Never gone for more than 5 hours (pet sitter or with us otherwise).

Not a single destructive episode after that.
 

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Any ideas about type of crate wire vs plastic for sleeping? We have both: wire for car and plastic in kitchen but I am looking at alternatives for him to our bed ;). He spends little time in the plastic kitchen crate but will have treats or eat in there- spends much more time in the car crate (wire) but has anyone had problems with injuries with wire crates? (no collars on in crate) Thank you,
 

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Wire crates are known to be the least safe option in case of a car crash. you may want to look into some researches about it and switch to plastic or higher end safety solution for car travels.
Both of my boys can open the wire crate from inside and outside, even double latch ones... Miksa being an immature 18 months old does not stay in them anymore without supervision as he would use his crate opening skills if he feels like he is getting lonely without his human, and if nothing else works, he would move the crate as long as it gives in and collapses:).
Bende is fine by now in any type of crate, even in the soft one or without crate.
Friend of mine has a severe crate phobic GSP who would chew himself thru even the plastic crate if left alone for 2 or more hours...
So what you use indoors really depends on your dog and situation.
 

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I've always used the plastic kennels exclusively because that is what they are transported in.
I feel that they're safer in the truck in a box with no corners, in case something goes wrong. I have zero evidence to back up that statement, just a gut feel.
 

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I've always used the plastic kennels exclusively because that is what they are transported in.
I feel that they're safer in the truck in a box with no corners, in case something goes wrong. I have zero evidence to back up that statement, just a gut feel.
Hi Gunnr; I use only the Ruff-Tough (aka Ruff-Land) crates for in and outdoor crating. I very recently heard of a case where a dog was traveling with it's owner, uncrated, but with a Ruff-Tough kennel in the back seat of a truck. The dog got tired and went into it's crate, no door on it, and went to sleep. The driver fell asleep at the wheel. The truck rolled. Between the driver being seat belted in, airbags and the dog being kept in the kennel via centrifugal force, there were no major injuries.
Another person, a long time dedicated dog owner/hunter/trainer, had dog boxes in the back of his pick up truck and was in an accident where he hit another car of the California freeway. The dog box was a 3 dog box and ended up being thrown from the truck, crushed and with significant injuries to the dog.
I recommend the molded plastic Ruff-Land kennels as an economical safety crate for the dogs.
 

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Starrpath


Those look like nice Kennels. I see they're at Cabela's. Will have to take a drive to Cabela's and check them out.
I used to have some of the original Vari-Kennels from the 80's. Those were some tough boxes. Now I have some of the Petco brands, largest plastic crates. Nice boxes, but not nearly the build quality of the original Vari-Kennels, or that Rough-Tough box.
It's very, very, rare that my dogs are ever in their boxes in the bed of the truck. I have had crew cab pickup trucks for many years and their boxes fit behind the seats easily.
I've seen 3 horse slant loads converted to transport dogs and horses together. Nice setups for a trainer/trialers. Takes a lot of dogs to equal the weight of one horse.
If I ever retire and get serious about this "dog thing", I'll convert my 2 horse, Brenderup BaronTC to haul dogs. A dog loads a heckuva lot easier than a horse.;)
 
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