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help!! crate training chihuahua ---My fiance has a 4 month...

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Question by mikeTX
Submitted on 3/3/2004
Related FAQ: rec.pets.dogs: Chihuahuas Breed-FAQ
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help!! crate training chihuahua ---My fiance has a 4 month old chihuahua she bought at 2 months. the dog slept with her from the first, and now has been taught that if it is not getting full attention, shrieking will get its way, not just at night. i love tia, she is a great dog, but she has learned that if she is not the center of attention at any time, to shriek and panic until it is brought into the bed, etc....it will never sit quietly if we wish to be alone. Recently she has decided to try to crate train it. Now, it cries all night and all morning. My question is --- she uses a baby play pen, where the dog cannot get into it on its own. should she get a crate with a door? my fiance has roommates she is self conscious about when the dog barks, and an unpredictable school schedule. at night, she lets the chi sleep with her until about midnight, then puts her in her crate, then gets her out in the morning to stop its crying and lets it sleep with her until its time for class...can this ever work? the play pen is big and she puts food, water and "wee wee pads" in it...
I'd like any insight into things that would help cratetraining this dog...i presume she needs a more consistent system to actually train the dog...should she scrap the play pen and get a crate and leave the door open? how strict does she have to be to train a dog that has slept with her for 2 months already? I'd really appreciate any insight on a good system she can follow, since i am pretty sure the dog needs to be less confused and have a definite kennel situation soon for it to learn. Thanks in advance for any help!!!

Answer by chimama
Submitted on 3/10/2004
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You've got a problem.  Tia is head of household, and she has her human trained very well.

1) No more sleeping with humans.  She's got to learn to sleep on her own.  This will mean a few sleepless nights, just like teaching a human infant to sleep by itself.  Tia will likely cry and cry and cry.  Eventually, she will get tired and/or realize it isn't working, but until then it's going to be very hard on your girlfriend and her roommates.  They're just going to have to tough it out.  They must ignore Tia until she is quiet, then praise her for being a good girl and being quiet.  The same when you want time alone, Tia needs to go into her playpen and ignored until she is quiet.  If Tia gets any attention while she's acting up, it reinforces that screaming will get her way.  Give her attention when she's doing what you want, ignore her when she isn't.  Since she's been so spoiled, I suggest that your girlfriend start by putting the playpen in her bedroom at night.  Then Tia is with Mommy, but not in the bed.  Gradually she can move the playpen out to wherever she wants it to be.  When she is home, Tia can be in her playpen in whatever room your girlfriend is in.  Again, Tia is with Mommy, but she needs to be well-behaved if she wants to be out of her playpen.

Chihuahuas love their humans, their entire existence revolves around making their humans happy.  Being ignored is worse than death to them, which is why it is important to lavish attention on her when she is being good.  Soon she will come to understand that the way to get attention is to behave.

2) A playpen is fine, as long as it's a confined space, that's all that matters.  I'd advise against a crate at this point, since Tia is used to being able to go potty when she needs to, which she can't do in a crate.  Also, a chi has a tiny little bladder, I'm not convinced it's fair for any animal to have to hold it for hours.  I used my bathroom, since it has a tile floor.  Both my girls were trained the same way, Gremlin first and her sister Nixie a year later.  Bathroom had litter box, food and water, bedbox with blankie and toy.  Bedtime meant puppy in the bathroom, Mommy in bed.  When I was up, puppy was with Mommy, when I went to work, puppy was in the bathroom.  When I got home, puppy was with Mommy until bedtime.  Only when each was over 6 months old and reliably trained were they allowed to sleep with me, and to have access to more of the house while I was gone.  There are still rooms they are not allowed in, and they are only allowed in the bedroom when I am.  Sometimes they don't get to sleep with me at all.  They know that "Off Mommy" means it or they will be removed and the steps taken up so they cannot get onto the loveseat.

Tia will also get better as she gets older, be ready for the 'terrible twos' in a few months, just be firm and she'll stay in line.  Good luck.


Answer by chimama
Submitted on 3/10/2004
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I also suggest getting the book Chihuahuas for Dummies.  It's the best book I know on the care and training of these adorable little creatures.


Answer by Quincy
Submitted on 5/17/2004
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She should get rid of her boyfiend. any one who would not allowe my dog to sleep with us I don't think he would fit into my and my little guys life!


Answer by chimama
Submitted on 7/2/2004
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I agree that I would pick my babies over a man anytime, they were here first.  However, there are times when you don't want the kids in bed with you, you know, when the adults want to have adult-time, if you catch my drift.  Sleeping with humans is a privilege, it has to be earned, and it can be taken away.

What Tia is doing though is running the house.  She needs to learn that her place in the pack is not at the top, it is at the bottom.  What I believe the boyfriend is upset about is the dog running the house rather than the girlfriend.  That's right on, the dog is spoiled rotten and the sooner the girlfriend puts the dog in its place, the sooner they can all live together in harmony.  I didn't get that he doesn't ever want the dog on the bed, just that he wants the dog not to have to be on the bed in order to have peace in the house.  I stand by my first reply.


Answer by chilliesmom
Submitted on 9/24/2004
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I have the same problem, I have 2 chihuahua puppies that can cry for hours and hours... Youd think theyd get a sore throat. Putting them in bed with you is the only way to get any sleep. Im also having trouble getting them to go on the training pads.


Answer by Dae-Dae
Submitted on 9/28/2004
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My chihuahua is 3 months old.  i want to find a way to teach him how to sit. Whenever i train him, he ran all over the house.  WHen i used treat to teach him, he not listen but tried to jump up to reach for the treat.  What should i do in this case...? Should i have a leash on to train him or train him without leash.  
THanks you


Answer by chesca
Submitted on 1/1/2005
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hi chimama!u seem to know a lot about chihuahuas. I have 2 male chihuahuas. they're turning 2 months on jan 4. i got them abt a week ago.they've been caged eversince.i dont have enuf space to confine them. how should i train them? im really stressed about this. pls help me!thnks


Answer by grace
Submitted on 3/5/2005
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I just brought home a baby chi for my daughter.  We have her in a crate and she dose great.  I do have a question about the cat litter box.  Can we train our chi to use one?  I would much rather her have free rain of house while we are gone than be stuck in a crate.  How do I start introducing it to her?  If you can email me at gancas@sbcglobal.net.  thanks


Answer by Christena5
Submitted on 5/11/2005
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Thanks for your advice.  This has really helped me too. My husband and I just got a 2 mo. old chi and we have started having some of the same problems.  Now I know what to do to help him learn to behave. Thanks!


Answer by helllppppppp
Submitted on 6/2/2005
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Answer by Bethany
Submitted on 3/15/2006
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Give your baby a break. i Mean my baby chi. sleeps with me and she is fine. yes. there are times when i kick (not actually kick) her off my bed, but she gets, over it, her dog was there before you, so let her dog stay.


Answer by Lolasmom
Submitted on 3/17/2006
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When you put them to sleep @ night, do you leave the lights on or turn them off? My chi is afraid of the dark...and it's getting expensive.


Answer by IGBT
Submitted on 5/16/2006
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smooth coat


Answer by *Tinkerbell*
Submitted on 6/24/2006
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Chihuahuas love to be with their owner almost constantly and they have fear if they are alone and that is why they cry a lot when they are alone.  If you don't want the chihuahua to sleep with you then try putting something that is warm near them so that they feel someone is with them and they feel safe.  


Answer by megansmom
Submitted on 7/10/2006
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Three weeks ago i was adopted by a chi.  She showed up starved and ill leaning against my door.  I came here for help.Thinking over what i read and learned, training her is the same as any dog...I, I, not she, had to be trained to be consistent and disciplined, to act like the leader of the pack, not just for my sanity, but for HER sense of well-being...  now, how do i respond when she and my male/gelded German shepherd grumble at each other and steal each others toys?


Answer by jay
Submitted on 7/11/2006
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well, you just have to be firm with the it. when it does something good, congratulate it, when its bad scold it or take away a priveliges


Answer by frustrated mom
Submitted on 8/1/2006
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thank you for your postings.  i have a beautiful 4 month old chi..but i am having such a hard time with him!!  i feel like a terrible mom.  nothing seems to work with him.  i was almost at the point of getting rid of him it's THAT BAD!!  i have found new hope in reading your postings.  thanks again.


Answer by flea
Submitted on 10/16/2006
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I think this is a great idea because it will keep chihuahuas alive.


Answer by dude
Submitted on 1/10/2007
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I got a chihuahua today too, but he keeps on crying because he has recently left his mother and siblings. What can I do?


Answer by freakkk
Submitted on 1/27/2007
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thats so Fagin gay


Answer by WitMom
Submitted on 3/26/2007
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It sounds as though the humans in this situation need  to have a discussion concerning their wishes. They Must agree with one another before they can begin training. I agree that this little angel is in charge. Perhaps the adults could try sleeping in the playpen? lol


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