Jump to content
BC Boards

Exercise pen recommandations

Recommended Posts

Bringing a new puppy into the household soon. Normally as they learn the house rules they start to get free time in the dog wreck room (screened porch).


My male is 14 1/2 yrs. loves pups and would think nothing of rough housing with them, however he is not up to being slammed dunked even if he doesn't know it. I don't want him to get accidently hurt. He loves lying on the porch and I hate to ban him from it.


Also new pup will be about 6/7 months when we hit the road for trials.


So I'm thinking of an x-pen. I can section the porch off with it.. Set it up in the barn..take it to trials. My thinking is that as I work with puppy and old dog to chill with each other I will have a safe place for old dog without having to isolate them from each other.


For those of you who use x-pens what size do you recommend? And have you had problems keeping hyper little guys in them.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I recommend the biggest size you can get. You can always not use the whole thing when you want a smaller space, but it's impossible to grow them when you need more. I have had to stake one down for a rambunctious puppy before, tent stakes worked fine, and he did learn eventually.


Loved the "wreck room"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I had a 48-inch high ex-pen, but it was very heavy and awkward. Eventually I traded it for a shorter, 36-inch high version. But I kept the 48-inch high extension panel, which is two hinged 24-inch wide pieces. The extra panel folds out flat to make a 48x48-inch square -- exactly the right size to use as a top (clipped or tied on), if I set up the ex-pen as a square. I seldom need to use the top, but it has been invaluable occasionally. (Keeping climbers in, and sometimes keeping uninvited visitors out.) One time I actually used the extension panel as a bottom, when I'd set it up on grass/soft dirt, and Some Pup was determined to dig under. That time I clipped a tarp on the top. Tarps are lighter and easier, and they make better shade, but they're not as secure as wire.


The 36-inch high ex-pen is still pretty heavy, but I lay it across the top of two dog crates in the back of my van and lash it down with a couple of hefty bungees. It travels most places with me.


The last time I used it was at a dog trial, but not for a dog. We set it up in a corner of the exhaust pen to keep a stressed lamb in. (Just till the end of the day when the lamb got a ride back to its home farm.)


I've also used it as a blind (draped with a tarp), and also to in various configurations to protect my stuff from being marked by off leash dogs.


I will say that if a dog is truly determined to get out, under or over, they'll probably be able to find a way. But that goes for most forms of containment. :-)


Just my several cents. Good luck with whatever you decide -- and with your new pup!


Liz S in central New York

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We used x-pens to keep Timber out of certain rooms in the house until he was about 7 months old and his potty training was more solid. We would also use them to put the older dogs in safety spots when he was being a terror and they needed a break.


I like the 36'' height as it's not a cumbersome and difficult to store at the 48''. I figure if they really want out, the extra 12'' is not going to stop them anyway. That being said the old deaf dog and the young one are not left in the x-pens at trials unless we are right their with them, it's too difficult for them to say no to some temptations. Boots and Renoir are more reliable and will resist temptations, although I don't like to leave them in there if I go out of sight, not b/c I don't trust them, but I don't trust other people letting their dogs come into our area and such. Just two weeks ago we had some woman with 3 off leash standard poodles let her dogs come sniff all around our tent/shade cloth area and one came behind our shade cloth into the x-pen area, I mean really, ugh.


A few things that helped Timber learn they were a boundry was to never let him stand up against the gates, when he was little he could have done that without knocking them over, but as he grew it would have caused issues. The other thing we did when we started was he was only allowed to go through the gate entrance on leash or having his collar held onto and led through, so he never learned he could nose open the entrance, Renoir has learned that trick, he doesn't go anywhere just opens the gate so we all know he is the all powerful, stinker :)


I have an agility friend who had a lab puppy who just couldn't get it through his head that he wasn't suppose to charge through the gates. So she put one of those ground tether stakes into the ground in the middle of the pen and attached a leash that was a little shorter then the radius of the x-pen to help him learn he couldn't bowl himself through them (and no he was never left unattended). But I think maybe that's more of a lab issue :)


Here's a picture of our guys in our camping set up; they love their home away from home.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...