a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: Crates, Ex-Pens (X-Pens), and Harnesses

Thursday, February 11, 2021

Crates, Ex-Pens (X-Pens), and Harnesses

SUMMARY: The topic goes on and on
From comments on my posts from the previous 2 days--

RATZ -- I'm sure that I have some relevant photos, but they're old enough that they'd be on film, so I'll have to look thru albums and boxes and scan them in. Which I'm not going to do tonight, sooooo no photos mostly for now.

I responded to a comment on my post "About Crates vs X-Pens For Dogs, My History Thereof"  about a friend's dog and crates and all that, and that her Katie was annoyed that she didn't get to sit loose in the front seat--

Mean humans! 

I didn't start using crates in the car until I adopted Tika. 

Four or five years previously I had finally become smart about restraining dogs in the car, given how many miles I traveled with them and at odd hours and in all weather and a long way from home. Remington and Jake started riding in very sturdy, well-tested seatbelt harnesses and by the time Tika came home, they had become used to that restraint. They were getting up in age and so I didn't want to start trying to get them used to traveling in crates, although by then they were plenty accustomed to staying in crates at trials. (And Remington loved standing up the entire time we were driving, particularly looking for cows-- couldn't take him away from that.) 

In fact, getting Tika and deciding that all future dogs would travel in crates was the impetus to get a minivan instead of a fun-to-drive car like my prior ones. Sigh. Soooo practical--because a crate wouldn't fit into my four-door sedan along with 2 other dogs on seatbelts and all that agility gear. 

About whether to leave a dog in the car while, say, walking courses, or working in a different ring or whatnot: Getting a dog accustomed to being crated for longer times I think requires that the dog receive plenty of practice while they are aware of where you are and then gradually increasing times when they can't see you. At least, that's how it has worked for my previous dogs. Zorro and my late Chip haven't had nearly enough of that kind of practice. They'll sleep in crates in my bedroom at night, but if I get up and go downstairs, say in the middle of the night, without them, I don't trust them to not claw holes in the mesh of the soft crates. 

Which Remington did the first time I left him alone (with Jake) in my tent to walk to the nearest water faucet in the campground. 


But, yep, like Katie, they'd all rather be in the seats, preferably the front, if they had a choice.

Still, for a long time, if I were simply tooling around the area on errands, the  dogs could usually be trusted to be loose in the car so they could look out the windows. Although--lesson learned--one errand I thought would take me 15 minutes and instead became more like 3 hours, and Tika, alone in the car, explained that she didn't care for that so much.

I lived with this reminder for the next 11 years.

Then I noted:  Hmmm, this feels like I just wrote another related blog post right here! ... and so here it is--rewritten and expanded a bit! 

No comments:

Post a Comment