We live in a happy two-dog household, but you won't see any pictures of Badger and Mushroom snoozing together in a puppy pile because it's never happened. In fact, Badger and Mushroom are happiest when they're not together, so we've settled into a crate and rotate routine.
I don't think crate and rotate is publicized nearly enough as an alternative to rehoming a dog. As we like to say, Badger and Mushroom are both wonderful dogs, just separately.
|I beg to differ (and for treats)|
Crate and rotate isn't only for dogs that are aggressive toward one another. In fact, Badger and Mushroom get along with each other and most other dogs. However, they are very excitable when they play together, so we need to always keep an eye on them, rewarding them for calm behavior and separating them if they get too rowdy.
Crate and rotate is also good for dogs that need to stay calm because of a medical condition. Mushroom was recovering from heartworm treatment when she first came to live with us. This is actually the reason we started to use crate and rotate.
Since L stays home with the dogs, one of the dogs will be crated in the morning/afternoon, and the dogs switch in the evening when I come home. We try to alternate which dog gets the "morning shift" vs the "night shift" because I only get to interact with the "night shift" dog on weekdays. For me, the biggest con about crate and rotate is that, on any given weekday, I can only spend time with one dog.
|Can it be meeeee?|
I've come to recognize that phasing out crate and rotate may not be a good goal for us. Rather, we should focus on helping Badger and Mushroom to be calm around each other. We purchased Patricia McConnell's "Feeling Outnumbered?" booklet yesterday, and I've been reading Dr. Sophia Yin's blog for tips about dog play.
Ultimately, whether we continue to crate and rotate will depend on what Badger and Mushroom are most comfortable with. I did catch them snuggling yesterday while they were waiting for treats.
|Didn't get a picture of it, but here's one of both dogs|
Thoughts on crate and rotate?
Thoughts on dogs being calm around each other?