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I have crate trained Chanel now for about 1.5 months, ever since I got her. I am a teacher and will be gone most of the day, and to protect her and keep my peace of mind, I keep her in her crate. I used to feel weird about "caging" dogs up, but I read this on the bhejei.com site:

"Long ago, when dogs were still wild animals, they often slept in dens - shallow holes they dug in the ground hidden away in places where they felt safe from predators. A "crate" is justa modern version of a den. Just as you enjoy having your own room where you can go for peace and privacy, your dog likes having his own room, too. As well as giving him a safe,cozy place to stay, crates can make training your dog a lot easier. Housebreaking goes much faster when you use a crate and destructive chewing becomes easier to control.

A crate need only be big enough for the dog to stand up, turn around and lie down comfortably. The crate should be large A crate need only be big enough for the dog to stand up, turn around and lie down comfortably. The crate should be large enough for your Maltese to stretch out on his side to sleep. "

Hope this eases your mind. I am a big advocate of crate training. Especially during the puppy stages.

~Elegant
 

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I also used a baby playpen...but...Chanel jumped out of it twice. But it did give her lots of room, and she was potty trained in about a week. She was 16 weeks old when I got her. She loved it. But make sure the playpen has a top, I have seen those (ofcourse after I purchased mine).

~Elegant
 
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