Escape artist Coton de Tulear

by Susan

I'm hoping you guys can give us some ideas from your experience - thanks in advance!

My 5 mo old Coton de Tulear, Argus, hates to be left alone when we leave for work, and he is an escape artist supreme.

Argus is not wholly reliable with the paper training yet (mostly, I freely admit, due to lack of consistency in training) so we need to keep him in the kitchen (cleanable and fewer dangers/less potential mischief) when we're away.

When we first got him, I got a little exercise pen for him, the kind that hooked onto his crate/cage so that he'd have a nice little space for sleeping, playing and could have his pee pads a ways away from bed and food. It was under two weeks before he learned to climb out of it. I got a baby gate and let him roam the kitchen, but it didn't take long before he was over that too. We had some success for awhile with large sheets of corrugated plastic board, but no matter how we secured them he managed to get them pulled away from the wall enough to chew on them and squeeze past - even when combined with the baby gate. Finally we installed a 3.5' plywood sheet recessed so he couldn't chew, and I don't yet know how, but sure enough he's getting over that too.

I've been trying to follow the advice of various books and info websites regg: reducing his anxiety at being left alone, but it doesn't really seem to be helping much. If I could train him, or reduce his need to escape enough, to stay in the kitchen it would be far preferable to constantly trying to up the barrier.

I've been reading about crate training, but don't really like that option because we can't get home to let him out early or often enough for him to meet his 'business ' needs - hence the paper training.

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May 09, 2012
Escape Artist
by: Anonymous

LOL! Little stinkers they can be! What about hiring a dog sitter, family friend or relative (retired parent) to come to your home or a doggy day care. I have found another companion always helps too.

Crate training is the best if you can do it.

Time to think outside the box. heehee

Mar 08, 2012
Escape artist
by: Vicky & Jonah (Az)

When Jonah was little I have an old crate that has a little door on the bottom where a tray used to slid in & out. He used to push the door out & flatten out to slide out. I had to cable tie it closed.

Even when ur Coton is potty trained when little they can get into all other mischief if out & about until usually a yr. old if lucky. Is there anyone whom u might be able to depend on to help out while u are gone from home with crating? A local daycare situation that might actually be cheaper then all the gates & preventive cupboard chewing. Also the prevention from the dig up the carpet & linoleum games puppy's know so well.

I at times in my life tried all u mentioned until I started crate training some 25 yrs. ago. Once they know they can get out it will not stop. No matter how high u go. They also can run the risk of getting hurt in the attempts to dare devil which will end up more costly. Good luck.

Mar 01, 2012
Cotons are good fence climbers . . .
by: Kathy

and they can slip under any kind of flexible fencing. Chain link fence has to be fastened to the post at the ground to prevent escape.

I will post a photo on the Facebook page of Poppy climbing out the pen. She was about 3 months old. Then one day she was so excited that she jumped up and over the 2 ft high fence without any difficulty.

After the puppies started chewing the kitchen cabinet corners, I started keeping them in the laundry room (it has a window) with both a fence around the room PLUS the doors closed. I have a sliding pocket door into the kitchen that I leave partially open (a few inches).

The space is 8 ft x 4 ft. With 3 cotons there is room for bedding on one end, food, water and a pee pad on the other end. Usually they don't need the pee pad.

Mar 01, 2012
Coton escape artists
by: Gale

Luc can definitely be added to the escape artist club. I know I've posted before that when he was a puppy I'd put him behind a baby gate in the kitchen and I'd come home to find him wandering around the house with the baby gate still intact. I have no idea how he got out since there was no room to crawl under the gate and it was too high to jump over. It's embarrassing when your dog starts to outsmart you :)

There's only one fix for a super smart escape artist and that's good consistent TRAINING!

Mar 01, 2012
Coton training
by: Jean

When my coton was a puppy I got an ASPCA approved dog gate at Walmart and put it in the doorway to the laundry room. That's where I'd leave him when I was gone until he was potty trained. His bed and water were in there too so he could sleep and see out into the house and had windows with light etc.

It worked fine until he was potty trained.

I originally tried to use a wooden panel closing off the kitchen but yes, he squeezed through that with no trouble.

Now he's 3 and since he's trained when we're out he has the entire family room and kitchen area and I close off the carpeted bedrooms. He does fine. He looks at us with sad eyes when we're leaving but he knows we'll be back and he climbs up on top of the couch or into his bed and takes a nap.

Good Luck!

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