About Me

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My name is Lesli Hyland. In my fifty one years on this earth, my home and my heart have been graced with the company of twenty four dogs. Many came to me as seniors. All of them taught me something and helped determine the course of my life. I became a dog trainer because of them. I met my friends because of them. My husband and I are are forever bonded by our mutual connection to them. Currently, as a Dog Walker I have access to other people's dogs and I am allowed to experience their unique personalities. The dogs make me a better person by forcing me to closely examine my motivation, my actions and my choices. Everything I do affects their behavior, safety and happiness. It is an awesome responsibility. The dogs keep me honest.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

RAISING GOOSE - Don't fence me in

Doesn't this look like a nice place to take a nap or have a meal?

How bout this one?

Goose says thanks, but no thanks.  

My little angel is not enamored with confinement.  He strongly expresses his displeasure when crated or gated ... for naps, home alone time or meals...in other words he barks his fool head off!  Ay yi yi.

Before any of you well meaning dog trainer types roll your eyes and tell me I need to ride it out - he'll stop eventually...WRONG!  He will bark a LONG time.  When I tried to "let the baby cry" he barked until he had himself so distraught that he had hiccups and was shaking.  Not to mention the fact that he DOES have to eat, so letting him "cry it out" at meal times is counter productive.  I have left him crated and crying when I've had to leave the house without him.  He is barking when I leave and barking when I return (I sneak up driveway and listen).  Has he been barking the whole time???  He will not eat food or treats I leave with him in crate.  The blankets and food look like a tornado  came through his crate.  Obviously he was not a happy camper in my absence.

So here are our current solutions and training goals:

Bedtime was solved easily enough - Goose happily (and quietly) sleeps through the night in bed with my husband and I. 

Meals?  We're working on having him eat in a crate with the door open. That means gating him out of the kitchen where the other dogs eat.  At first that was too hard.  He sat at the gate and cried, ignoring the food in his open crate.  But this morning he moved back and forth between the gate and his crate and finished his breakfast.  Good boy.  We will work up to closing the crate door.

In the car?  He will fall asleep in a crate in the car if 1.  He is VERY TIRED and 2. Another dog is along for the ride. So that's where we are right now.  We will work up to him being able to tolerate the crate without another dog.

As for naps throughout the day?  I just let him crash wherever.  Not a solution, not a plan, just being human. Don't wake a sleeping puppy. 

When I do have to leave him crated when I leave the house...
1.  I spray crate with DAP
2.  I play the radio (same noise that he hears when we are home)
3.  I make sure he can see at least one dog for comfort.
4.  I hope that eventually he will just get used to it.
5.  I cry as I drive down the road. :-P

He is only 7.5 wks old and has only been here a week!  So I'm not TOO worried yet, but if his crate tolerance does not improve I'll get out the clicker and work on shaping him to go in and stay in willingly.

Stay tuned...


  1. I think puppies should stay with their litter mates foe 8 weeks. At 5 to six weeks I place a crate in an x-pen. They all pile in together and sleep. I know that this may have not been possible for you. When my pus leave home they are not unfamiliar with a crate.

  2. Being familiar with a crate doesnt always translate to being happy confined slone in one. Lol

    1. maybe it is because they are dachshunds that they love their crates.

  3. Aw...that stinks Lesli. I'll hope for option 4 with you.