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Dogs/Crate training


Me and my boyfriend have a puppy who is 13 weeks old. We got him at 8 weeks old. We completely disagree on how to train the dog. My family has always crate trained, his did not. I don't believe dogs should be left endless hours by any means in the cage. But I feel if I have errands to run I do not want to come home to a chewed up house. Which has already happened.
So this puppy has been sleeping with us, goes to work with my boyfriend and is spoiled beyond belief. So basically the dog has separation anxiety I believe. So when I leave him in his crate whether a half hour or two hours he has horrible diarrhea everywhere. Like coming out of the cage. He panics and gets it everywhere within a three foot radius. I always make sure he is taken out before being caged and it doesn't change it. He knows to go to the bathroom out side. He always goes. And he rarely has accidents in the house. Only if he gets up and nobody notices that he woke up from his nap. I take him on walks in the morning lunch time and night. So he's getting his exercise. His cage is only big enough for him to stand and turn around. He cries for hours if he's in it. I don't know what to do it's so frustrating giving him a bath and cleaning EVERY SINGLE TIME I LEAVE. I've tried leaving him in a little room and he does the same thing to the room. Diarrhea on the  walls and everywhere. What do I do?


Hi Kendra,

It sounds like you're having two problems, the crate training issues and also your puppy having diarrhea.

Diarrhea isn't a normal thing for any dog or puppy, it's a symptom of a problem. If you haven't had your puppy examined since you brought him home (and even if you did), you should have him examined by a vet now, because he's having some kind of problem.
Bring a fresh stool sample with you to the appointment. It's really common for puppies to have intestinal "worms", it's an easy thing to treat, but it won't go away on it's own. It's possible your puppy is having a problem other than "worms", and it's impossible to guess at what that might be. Please don't put off having your puppy examined.

A puppy doesn't gain control over his bladder and bowels until he's at least 16 weeks old (and after that it's still limited as to how long he can "hold it"). Crate training a young puppy who can't yet control his bladder or bowels is setting him up for house training accidents in the crate, and that will counteract using the crate as a house training tool. A crate is not a place to be soiled in! Rather than crating your puppy for such a long period of time during the day, confine him to part of a room with child-gates, or use an indoor puppy pen, such as this one:

Whether you confine your puppy to part of a room (by using child gates), or use a puppy pen, paper the entire confinement area with a thick layer of newspaper, so cleanups will be easier. If you don't paper the entire confinement area it's literately a case of hit or miss. For now, don't give up on crate training, use the crate for short periods when you're at home but can't be supervising him, and during the over night.
It's best to put the crate next to your bed so that you can hear him if he gets restless and needs to go outside.  This also gives you the chance to work with him to learn how to be quiet while in his crate.

The correct size for a crate is just big enough for the puppy or dog to stand up, turn around, and lay comfortably. It sounds like you have the correct size dog crate, though as your puppy grows you may need a larger one if you didn't buy an expandable model.
It's natural for a puppy to cry when crated, he'd much rather be with you! It's just like raising a child.  There are times when you, as the parent know what's best, even when your child doesn't like it and protests. Be firm and stand your ground, if you don't, your puppy will only learn that protesting works as a means of getting his way! Read more about how to crate train here:

A big part of training a puppy is consistency. Both you and your boyfriend need to be on the same page, and do the same things when it comes to training. If one of you is a softy, the puppy won't learn these important life lessons which will result in a well trained adjusted adult dog.

Your puppy does indeed need to learn how to handle being alone. If this isn't learned, you will have a dog that has a separation anxiety, and that is a super hard thing to overcome. Read about how to start teaching a puppy how to accept being left alone:

I hope I've been a help.
Best of luck,



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To date, I've owned 7 dogs, all of which have lived into old age. Having cared for them in all stages of life, I feel I can offer sound advice to other pet owners, and people considering getting a dog. I am knowledgeable about the AKC (American Kennel Club) dog breeds, training and exercise, caring for sick and elderly pets, feeding, as well as many holistic treatments pets can benefit from. My only request is that you write me using standard English and punctuation.


My life experience in this field is more like "on the job training" rather than an actual degree in animal welfare. You may benefit from my experiences over the past 30 years. Aside from the dogs I've owned, I'm also involved in "breed rescue" and have fostered several dogs, all of which have been adopted to wonderful "forever homes". I find helping people who want a dog very rewarding.

Real life experience, based on over 30 years of dog ownership.

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