More Bark For Your Buck
Issue 4                                                                                                                          April 2010
Dear Anu,
A puppy is but a dog,
plus high spirits, and minus common sense.
Agnes Reppllier 

My friend Pam emailed me after last month's newsletter to point out that I didn't mention using a wire kennel with divider panel to accommodate a growing puppy. 

That was no oversight on my part because I have a confession to make. I've got a bias against wire crates. Let me explain why: 

First of all, they're heavy which makes moving them a pain. (And I'm just referring to doing so to clean the floor. Traveling with them requires Herculean effort).
I also found my wire crate difficult to keep clean. Despite careful drying, mine ended up with rust spots.
That said, Pam made her case for wire crates and I'd like to share her thoughts with you so you can make up your own mind:
She informed me that today's wire crates come with plastic (not metal) pee pans so these kennels are not as heavy as the all metal one I had. Rusting is far less of an issue with the newest wire crates sold today because of the plastic pans too.
With a wire dog crate you buy the size needed for your puppy as an adult dog. You create the right size inside for your puppy by inserting a divider panel to reduce the space within. As puppy grows you move the divider's placement.
Pam added that she " . . . usually covers the back half of a wire crate with a piece of cardboard covered by a sheet or blanket to give the dog a 'den' area. (The cardboard is to help keep the pup from chewing the sheet or blanket. While the pup will probably chew the ends of the cardboard, this can easily be replaced, and cardboard is much safer than a blanket or sheet should the pup ingest it)".
Using a wire crate with divider panel means purchasing just one kennel and avoiding the buying/selling process with multiple crates I outlined last month.
So there you have it, the plastic vs. wire crate smackdown. After comparing prices and features, decide which you'd prefer and which way you want to accommodate your growing dog.
PS: For first time puppy owners, don't even consider a soft-sided (fabric) crate until your pup's outgrown her ferocious teething phase. Your little darling can shred that fancy fabric kennel faster than she can poop in the middle of your living room.


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