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Old 11-27-2012, 11:55 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Eating the gate and the wall

My sweet little Jade has picked up the not very sweet habit of chewing on the wooden separation gate and the wall at night while we sleep. She is 6 1/2 months old now and mostly very well behaved.

She spends the day in her kennel while my husband and I are at work so at night I like to leave her out (now that she has proven her ability to let me know when she needs to go out by ringing the bell on the back door). Our bedroom is right next to the kitchen (when she spends most of her time). We have a wooden baby gate that goes in the hallway so that she has free access to our room and the kitchen where her kennel is while we sleep at night. She normally spends the first few hours laying on the floor by my side of the bed before moving into the kitchen for the rest of the night.

Two nights ago I woke up to this very strange noise. I get up and catch her chewing on the wooden gate. She is just laying on the ground munching away at it! I scolded her greatly, sprayed the entire gate with bitters spray and went back to bed. Last night I was sure to spray the gate again just to be safe. Well around 3am I wake up to an even stranger noise. Go out here and now she is chewing on the corner of the wall when the gate is attached. Again I scolder her greatly, spray the area and go back to bed.

We had a problem with her chewing the wall a few months ago, but I thought she was over that, and it was always caused when I left the area and for whatever reason she could not follow. Since she had free access to me I didn't think it would be a problem.

Does anyone have any suggestions? She has her kong at night so its not that she doesn't have anything to play with. She gets a short walk in the morning before work, a much longer walk after work, and then about an hour of play/training in the evening. She is pretty laid back and normally spends the last few hours before bed just following me around and munching on a toy or just watching me. I really don't want to make her sleep in her kennel since she spends all day in there, but I am also hesitant to give her free rein of the whole house and removing the gate. I trust her, but not that much. Any ideas???
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Old 11-27-2012, 12:13 PM   #2 (permalink)
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She hasn't earned the ability to stay out of the kennel at night. I'd continue to crate her until she matures more.
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Old 11-27-2012, 12:25 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I'd keep her crated til she's older. I just went through this with my sister's GSD and we thought she was mature enough to be out of the kennel at that age. She chewed the up TV stand, couch, floor trim and ripped the carpet up in areas. She didn't really mature enough to be left out til around 12-14 months.

My new GSD pup Jazzy (11 weeks old) will remain crated while i'm gone and crated at night in my room. I've learned my lesson. lol
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Old 11-27-2012, 12:37 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lilie View Post
She hasn't earned the ability to stay out of the kennel at night. I'd continue to crate her until she matures more.
It's very difficult, if not impossible to train a puppy not to chew when you're not there to prevent it.

Why is her crate in the kitchen? Will it fit in your bedroom? If you don't want to crate her at night I'd close her in the bedroom with you rather than letting her have the run of several rooms in the house.
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Old 11-27-2012, 12:51 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I agree with Cassidy's Mom, just put the crate in the bedroom. I just want my dog's to lay down and sleep all night and the crate has more than enough room for that.

What I would also recommend is upping your exercise and training during the waking hours for the pup. If my dogs want to be wide awake all night and get into trouble, I've found that correlates with my being too busy to meet their mental and physcial needs during their waking hours.

When I pay attention to what they are clearly 'telling' me by getting into trouble, and deal with what I am doing or not doing, then the issues tend to clear up very quickly. Adding an extra dog class. Joining a different dog class (agility?). Finding new dog friends for socialization activities. New hiking areas. Packing the dog in the car to go visit friends/downtown?

When I change my dogs day up and plan for activities to interact and wear them out, then my nightimes are restful with a sleeping and happy dog!

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Old 11-27-2012, 01:39 PM   #6 (permalink)
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If you don't want to crate her during the night how about confining her to your bedroom only at night and putting her a bed next to yours and see how that works. If she continues to chew your only safe alternative would be to crate her I guess.
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Old 11-27-2012, 03:35 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Contain her at night and also up the exercise and training. I have never had a dog waking up in the night and getting into stuff b/c my dogs are worn out at night.
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Old 11-27-2012, 04:39 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Maybe she just wants to be with you...my dogs like being WITH me.
Is it possible to place her crate or just allow her in the bedroom?
Just a suggestion.
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Old 11-27-2012, 04:47 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I am going to try keeping her in our room tonight and see what happens. If she still gets into trouble it will be back in the kennel, but I really don't want to have to do that.

I try to get her as much exercise as possible but with the time change it is pitch black when I get home so all I can do is walk her and play inside (our backyard is too small for anything but going potty). I'll try increasing the length of the walks and possibly through some jogging in there (probably couldn't hurt for me to get a bit more exercise). I'll let you all know how it goes tonight!
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Old 11-27-2012, 04:48 PM   #10 (permalink)
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When you say kennel, do you mean outdoor kennel? Or are you just calling an indoor moveable crate a kennel?

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