View Full Version : Really need advice - Cage or no cage when on their own???

Emma n Renco
24th June 2007, 03:12 PM
Hi everyone, we really would welcome advice here as we are getting family 'advice' which is not always constructive but on this topic we are concerned that we might have it wrong - and we would like to know opinions of people 'in the know'.
We have a large cage - (called a bench here in Holland) for Harvey.
He used to spend his time in the house in the cage with the door closed until we came home to let him out. However, we started to think this was not fair on him at all and lwe now leave him in the hall where he can run around but he is scratching holes in the walls.
Apart from that it was going ok but today at puppy training we heard that some of the bigger dogs stayed in cages all day until their owners were home. Then some family members were horrified that we let him run around the hall all day and are of the opinion they should be in the cage not running round in the hall.
So my question is - do other cav owners have them in the cage all day? Does this harm them in any way (do they need to have the freedom to move aroud more)? Ideally of course if he can be left just in the cage it is easier for us but would rather have advise and opinions on what is best for this breed so that we know we are doing the best for Harvey.
Thanks in advance...

Cathy Moon
24th June 2007, 03:25 PM
When my cavs were puppies, we set up an x-pen (exercise pen) in the kitchen for each of them. This gave them more room to move around and play in, but also it kept them safely out of trouble when we were away. The x-pens we used were 30 inches tall, because India could jump out of the 24 inch tall one.

24th June 2007, 03:50 PM
Hi Emma

Our dogs only go in their crates at night to sleep. I am not comfortable with crating a dog when I am not at home, nor with crating them all day. We are fortunate where we live, we have a large veranda all around the house so the dogs can be locked on there when we are out and they have lots of room to run around & be dogs.

If I could not do this, then I would allocate a room in the house (preferably without carpet) or as Cathy has suggested I would use an exercise pen, either to keep the dog in or to section off a safe part of the house.

24th June 2007, 04:06 PM
My lot are free all the time we are home but confined to the kitchen area and the garden as I have slightly more than most people!! Plus I have 4 young children! They are crated for feeding and also to sleep at night or if we have "non-doggy" visitors etc. As I don't work and my OH works nights there is usually always some-one home, can't remember the last time there wasn't actually! :lol:

In your situation, when left loose your little chap is causing damage to your house! I would agree with Cathy and suggest you invest in an Xpen, then you can section off a bit of your house, leave his crate in there with the door open so he does not view it as a punishment. He can move around a bit this way but will not be able to continue damaging your walls!!

24th June 2007, 04:41 PM
We had a rescue was very very distressed when left alone in her new home . They bought her a cage & she settled quite happily.
sometimes if they are used to being caged they don't like the freedom

24th June 2007, 04:42 PM
I crate Dixie only at night. When I leave her during the day, she stays in the kitchen and I put down a potty pad. This has worked out great so far. I could never crate her all day, and then turn around and crate her again at night. The Xpen sounds like a good solution if you don't have a kitchen area that would work. Judy

Scouty girl
24th June 2007, 05:18 PM
Scout is almost 15 months old and when I leave for work in the morning I do crate her. That way I know where she is and what she's doing. Puppies can get into lots and lots of things that are dangerous to them.

I work 40 hours a week. Thankfully, my Mom lives two doors away and comes over at least four days a week at around 1130a and takes Scout to her house.

At first I thought crating was cruel, but when I bought Breeze home to live with me I crated her. It's a very safe way to keep your puppy out of harms way. That's all she knew. She never chewed anything like walls or baseboard.

24th June 2007, 05:25 PM
I crate my 3 cavaliers at night and while we are gone during the day we put up a baby gate and corral them in tthe kitchen. They can't do any damage to the house (and believe me, they can do some damage!!!) and if accidents happen, it is easy clean up on the tile.

I always have a bed for them, toys and play soft music. Usually when I come home, they are all sound asleep. I am sure they wrestle like the dickens while I am gone, but they are quite used to the routine now and rush in for their cookies when I say "kitchen up". ;)

Barbara Nixon
24th June 2007, 07:10 PM
I leave monty loose and used to leave Izzy free, too, but the other two are crated when I'm out. This is usually up to two hours, has occasionally been three and very very rarely (some time ago) four hours.

24th June 2007, 08:47 PM
Up until recently I used the x-pen for Maddy when we were out during the day. But then she just started climbing over it and roaming around. We would come home and she was in the family room on the couch. Because she had not done any damage after several episodes of this we decided to let her loose. The only damage we would find was she loved to take the moss out of the fake tree so we sprayed it with bitter apple. She also liked the fake plants/flowers so I just moved the very colorful floor plant that she loved into the basement for now. One of the funny things I caught her doing was standing on her hind legs looking out of the dining room window (which is close to the floo) which has a direct view across the street to the home where her favourite doggy friend lives.
My preference however is the x-pen and when we return to Florida I may try to find a higher one.

Cleo's Person
25th June 2007, 11:17 AM
We do leave Cleo in her crate all day, but we have it rigged up to the doggy door, so she can either be in her crate - we got the biggest one so she has room to play - or in the walled in back yard - which isn't enormous. She does go back and forth between the two and it seems to work for her. My mother calls in every day to take her for a walk so she gets out and about as well.

25th June 2007, 12:19 PM
We have Chester in the kitchen as well. We always put down a puppy pad but that hasnt been used since Xmas and there is a baby gate separating him from the hall. I felt it was a little too closed in to have the door closed - stupid I know.

He has lots of toys, water & the radio on. Someone always goes home at lunchtime to take him out for a walk. He knows the routine now & gets a little treat when I leave for work in the morning & again when I leave after lunch.

He always used to sleep in his cage in the living room but started scratching to get out so now he sleeps in the kitchen as well.

Bruce H
25th June 2007, 12:44 PM
I would second what others have said about an x-pen and use the x-pen when you are gone for longer periods of time. You will spend a few bucks on a pen initially, but you may be surprised how useful it is and how much you use it.

For those times when you are gone for shorter periods, like an hour or two, a crate is fine. And I would recommend crating him at night.

Every once in a while you can let Harvey out as kind of a test to see how he does. Chances are he will eventually get to the point where he is trustworthy having the run of the house.

Emma n Renco
25th June 2007, 03:28 PM
Thank you all so much, we have just ordered an X pen and will have it next week... really appreciate your advise on this as we really were at a loss for the best option.. Thanks again.. :-)

Emma n Renco
29th June 2007, 08:37 PM
We bought our x pen and I am sooo happy to say it is a great invention! Thanks for the advise, highly recommended to others as well...