We are having major problems training our 5 month old Basenji to stay in his crate. He freaks out when we close the door, crys, screams, poops and pees. We feed him in his crate, he sleeps every night in his crate (with the door open) but as soon as we close it he freaks. Does anyone have any suggestions?????
Has he been good all along? Our girl was terrible the first week we got her but we rode it out and she sleeps all night happily in there now, I was tempted to leave the door open also but afraid she would get into trouble. It was hard but try ignoring the screaming, that is what we did and it worked.
Some dogs will simply be crate phobic, and it takes a bit of work to try and reverse that mentality with them.
Kananga is crate phobic but he has improved over the years. Initially though, he was allowed full roam because crating was not an option. He was not destructive while outside of the crate so it worked out very well. Over time he has gotten more comfortable with his crate when shutting the door. I'll do this time to time when I'm cleaning to help isolate him, and he will be OK for a short period of time. I would never leave him in there and leave my home though, I know he still has that phobia and will injure himself while I'm gone.
You will either have to work through the phobia with proper conditioning, or accept the fact they are not willing to be crated and find a way to leave them out while you are gone. I don't have much experience trying to reverse the phobia as with Kananga it was very strong and he was fine to just be out all day, but I know others on here have had success with working through it when crating is a must and free roam is not an option.
Some people have said that if you keep the crate next to your bed and put your fingers in when they get frantic it will help Personally, I was never able to successfully crate Shaye - all our overnight troubles stopped when we just let her spend the night with us. She has been able to sleep through the night and wait till morning to go out to do her business since she was about 13 weeks. As for the trouble they get into, it never happened overnight, and when we got her a companion, the panic over our leaving her also went away. She still finds trouble to get into if we aren't careful, but that's just the breed. She's over 3 now, and seems to be a little better. She never has been crated, nor has her basenji/sheltie mix sister, and we are all just fine overnight. Just saying. We are older, and neither of us ever even heard of crating until we got our basenji, so maybe we aren't the ones to advise you.
It's true, I've never had to even think about crating until I got Oakley. All previous breeds were no problem staying loose in the house, oak is very house destructive so that was a no go, we also went through crate phobia but at 16 months he tolerates it better than I ever imagined