First I wanted to announce that we are now 100% Nyx’s legal owners 🙂
We hadn’t heard back from the dog warden (they were supposed to ring yesterday) so we called them just after 9am this morning. Nobody had asked about Nyx, nobody had reported a dog her age / look missing, so she is ours. Officially.
We have been working so hard on crate training, it’s exhausting!
We began by rewarding her for every time she stepped into the crate, and every time she sat or settled in there. We dropped treats into the crate when she was out the room, so she was constantly going in to check what good things might be in there, and we bundled all her toys in there.
Up until yesterday we had only closed the door when she had a puzzle feeder, and we opened it before she finished and whined – anywhere between 10-30 minutes depending on the toy.
Last night though Nyx needed a time out and enforced rest. She’d had a 15 minute walk with Kasper, done training, played, and had puppy-zoomies for close to an hour…she sprinted from room to room, flinging toys about, that entire time!
That’s a helluva lot of exercise and stimulation for a 13 week old puppy.
She’d got herself into that panty wide-eyed “I AM SO EXCITED!” puppy state, so she needed help settling…cue the crate!
We put her away with a puzzle feeder, and then just ignored her. She whined and whined and whined (LOUDLY) for about 15 minutes, then finally settled. She slept for over an hour, then we opened the door before she woke and she came out and slept some more 🙂
She has gone into her crate with no unease towards it since then, and has settled in there of her own accord. We still leave treats in the ccrate when she’s not looking, we still reward her for settling in there with the door open.
Today we’ll be closing the door and ignoring any whines again. The noise is like nails on a chalkboard, but it’s imperative she learns to settle on her own and cope being home alone.
I especially struggle with the noise of whining puppies in crates, so crate training is tough on me mentally.
When Nyx is being noisy we ignore her completely, do our own thing, or leave the room. It is only when she is totally calm and quiet that we let her out.
Here’s a video of our crate training process:
If she continues to do well, we should be able to leave the house without her in a day or two, which means I can start joining Raiden on his walks again.
It’s been weird not walking the little booger, and since he’s hit 11 months old now he deserves some mummy time 🙂