AmazonBasics Two-Door Top-Load Kennel – Amazon offers their own dog travel crate as a direct competitor to Petmate's option, and this one has almost the exact features but is available at a slightly lower price and with slightly lower quality. AmazonBasics travel crate for dogs also has only two sizes for small dogs and available only in one color. Other than that, it resembles Petmate's crate very closely.
I had this problem with my Chihuahua/Yorkie mixed. I moved her kennel by the back door. The backyard is where she uses the bathroom. I allowed her to stay in the yard for one hour per bathroom break. I monitored her intake. I noticed that after each meal she immediately used the bathroom- doing a number 1 and 2. I would never leave her food out because I wouldn’t be able to monitor her bathroom break. I fed her twice to 3xs a day with plenty of treats for using the bathroom outside. I treated her as soo as she walked back in the house- but that’s only if she actually used the bathroom. I hope this helps. House breaking a puppy can be frustrating.
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ProSelect Empire Cage – For a significantly less money, ProSelect is a decent alternative to Variocage if you're going for a short distance car travel and it's been rated as one of the best heavy duty cages for dogs. It's not crash tested, isn't as stylish or as heavy and large as Variocage, but they will be an appropriate choice for most pet owners with medium to extra large dog breeds.
All of Petmate plastic travel dog crates, including this one, come in a variety of sizes to fit most dog breeds, although you'll be hard pressed to find one for a large breed (mostly, it's for small to medium dogs). The wire doors of these crates lock shut with a chrome squeeze door latch. The crates are shipped as two half shells and are very easy to assemble. They come with no-rust plastic wing nuts. These crates are also equipped with side air vents.
When your pup is eating and spending a short period in their crate following a meal without any sign of distress, it’s time to start crating your pup for short periods while you’re at home. Call your dog over to the crate with a treat and an accompanying command – many use “kennel” or “kennel up” – and once your dog is inside, give them another treat, shut the door, and sit quietly with your pup for a few minutes before letting them out, giving them praise and another treat. From here, slowly add in minutes when you are away from the crate until your pup is comfortable with you being out of sight for 20-30 minutes. From here, you may begin leaving the house with your dog crated for short periods of time.
I broke down and got a pompoo for my 14 yr old daughter. I am getting wonderful help from friends – but very conflicting. One says do not let pup graze – put food in crate – and shut the door. The other says never feed in crate. I tried feeding in crate – but he gets upset – spills food and whines. Now I have a pup who has not eaten and is upset. and I have to wait for the moment that he stops whining to take him out of the crate. I am exhausted and I feel he is in the crate so much already – at night and during the day when I am at work….I want him to enjoy his new family.

This thing is huge and the price was great, but the design makes for a very challenging effort to assemble or move this. While we don't need to move it often - we do like to bring a kennel for road trips or when we have visitors, it's a pain the rear to disassemble and reassemble. It does not collapse and fold flat like every other kennel I've seen - it uses (4) rods in the corners through metal loops in the sides to keep the structure together. The top, sides, and bottoms simply hook together, but this alone can be a frustrating experience. I put it together alone, but I struggle to think two people would make this easier due to frustration and potential marriage counseling required after This thing is huge and the price was great, but the design makes for a very challenging effort to assemble or move this. While we don't need to move it often - we do like to bring a kennel for road trips or when we have visitors, it's a pain the rear to disassemble and reassemble. It does not collapse and fold flat like every other kennel I've seen - it uses (4) rods in the corners through metal loops in the sides to keep the structure together. The top, sides, and bottoms simply hook together, but this alone can be a frustrating experience. I put it together alone, but I struggle to think two people would make this easier due to frustration and potential marriage counseling required after. To make matters worse, the packaging materials included styrofoam that must have been damaged in transit. The structural foam had dissintegrated causing a snow storm in the house that was very difficult to vaccuum up because of the static charge. Lastly, the crate pieces were bent when they arrived, so the packaging isn't great for shipping. This further complicated assembly because the hooks that connect the pieces saw the bulk of the damage. My dog doesn't challenge the structural integrity of the kennel, but I would guess an ambitious dog can quickly defeat this enclosure. I would not buy this one again if I could go back. In fact, I am looking for another XXL crate to use for trips so I never have to reassemble this one again... It's just not worth the hassle to return this given the price. … more
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