Author Topic: Who Kept the Dogs Out! (who? whowhowho?) OR baby gate alternatives  (Read 7547 times)

NumberCruncher

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We have recently acquired a lovely, elderly 80-lb golden retriever. He loves food, and is quite mustachian as he does not like food to go to waste. This can be problematic as (1) he might eat something that's bad for him (2) he'll counter surf when we're not in sight and (3) he gets in the way/becomes a tripping hazard - not good when you're dealing with hot food and sharp objects.

We have a galley style kitchen that's fairly narrow, but too wide for most baby gates. Also, on one side there's not much wall at all to connect something

This is definitely not my kitchen, but functionally similar, just without any wall on one side (as opposed to a wall that ends at the last counter):
 

Our dog's not a jumper most of the time, so I think the height of a baby gate/sturdiness should be fine...only problem is the price point of some of these that might actually work:
http://www.amazon.com/North-States-Superyard-Metal-Gate/dp/B000U5FOT2/ref=pd_bxgy_ba_img_y
I can find some cheaper, but nothing <$50. I'm not opposed to something DIY, but I also don't currently have a lot of the tools one might expect (easier DIY projects preferred!). I just started watching Craigslist and saw that same gate posted for $75 - yeah right. I offered a lower price, but we'll see.

Any ideas, DIY or otherwise (we rent, too, so minimal hardware in the walls preferred)? We're working on training him to not eat random things/stay out of the kitchen, but it takes time. Our current solution is to keep him in another room when things get hectic, but that can be tiring and he whines.

Rural

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Re: Who Kept the Dogs Out! (who? whowhowho?) OR baby gate alternatives
« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2014, 11:23:14 AM »
For the time being, try putting a couple of dining chairs at the end of the galley? That way, he could be in the same room with you but not have access to the food area. Probably the reason he whines is he's lonesome.

CommonCents

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Re: Who Kept the Dogs Out! (who? whowhowho?) OR baby gate alternatives
« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2014, 11:27:45 AM »
Flat cardboard box = DIY baby gate

I just borrowed one from my parents to keep the cat out of the bedrooms.

superone!

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Re: Who Kept the Dogs Out! (who? whowhowho?) OR baby gate alternatives
« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2014, 11:34:02 AM »
Flat cardboard box = DIY baby gate

I was going to say this. or if you need something sturdier, large sheets of plywood are fairly cheap.

NumberCruncher

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Re: Who Kept the Dogs Out! (who? whowhowho?) OR baby gate alternatives
« Reply #4 on: May 14, 2014, 11:49:20 AM »
For the time being, try putting a couple of dining chairs at the end of the galley? That way, he could be in the same room with you but not have access to the food area. Probably the reason he whines is he's lonesome.

Haha, he gets shut in the bedroom with me - he doesn't get lonesome, just hungry (even though we feed him before we start making our own food)...

I didn't even think about using chairs - that's definitely the simplest solution/doesn't require any work. We'll try that tonight.
Flat cardboard box = DIY baby gate

I just borrowed one from my parents to keep the cat out of the bedrooms.


Do you just wedge it in? How do you get it to stay? We actually happen to have a large cardboard box at home that could be used...:) 

naturelover

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Re: Who Kept the Dogs Out! (who? whowhowho?) OR baby gate alternatives
« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2014, 12:10:20 PM »
Re: the eating of random things that you mentioned you are working on -- I trained my dog with the command "leave it". Whenever she starts to go for something she shouldn't, I say "leave it" and then give her a dog treat. This is especially useful when I drop things that would not be good for her (hot food, onions, etc.). I know this only works in the beginning when you're watching the dog, but the dog should learn over time what they shouldn't be getting into. I've been doing this with mine for years now, and it works great. She is not a counter surfer at all, despite her love of food.

Cromacster

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Re: Who Kept the Dogs Out! (who? whowhowho?) OR baby gate alternatives
« Reply #6 on: May 14, 2014, 12:36:07 PM »
Gates will provide a technical fix, but why not just modify the behavior of the dog.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xZCIeEUm_n8

Training dogs is the easy part, it's the humans (owners) who are the tough ones to crack.....

CommonCents

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Re: Who Kept the Dogs Out! (who? whowhowho?) OR baby gate alternatives
« Reply #7 on: May 14, 2014, 12:40:24 PM »
Flat cardboard box = DIY baby gate

I just borrowed one from my parents to keep the cat out of the bedrooms.


Do you just wedge it in? How do you get it to stay? We actually happen to have a large cardboard box at home that could be used...:)

Depends if you want a permanent installation (then you can tape it) or if you want something that can be moved easily (then you wedge it with heavy items like chairs or books).  Our cat won't try to jump, she's lazy so we actually just lean our gate, we don't even bother locking it and you could do the same with the box if your dog won't try to get over it.

paddedhat

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Re: Who Kept the Dogs Out! (who? whowhowho?) OR baby gate alternatives
« Reply #8 on: May 14, 2014, 01:07:13 PM »
I love your description of your golden. Ours just turned 14 YO, and according to the vet, is healthy beyond belief.  She stopped all the bad habits you describe using a time tested technique. It's fool proof and will work for you......we simply gave up the fight, and she got too damn old to engage in most of her food stealing antics like counter surfing, and emptying the garbage.

She did give us some great stories in her day.  One day I opened the door after work to hear, "guess what your idiot dog did?"  I look down at a very sad Golden who is sitting on her butt and so bloated that I can't see her front paws. She is quietly and pathetically moaning for me to do something. It seems that she took a liking to the nine pound bag of raisins I bought at the bulk food store, and pulled them off the very back of the counter. ( for those without a Golden at home, these things stretch out to like seven feet or so, and mine can use her front arms with the dexterity of a monkey, if she wants something) She then polished off the entire bag, including the bag itself. No lasting harm, but she did spend a few hours dispensing raisins from both ends, like a soft serve ice cream machine.  Another time she ate five pounds of chicken that my wife was defrosting. since she ate the meat, bones, plastic wrap AND the foam tray, my wife thought she was going crazy, since she couldn't find the chicken, and would not accept the fact that the dog could make ALL the evidence disappear. Field investigations of canine poop confirmed that there was no break in by any chicken burglar.

jpo

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Re: Who Kept the Dogs Out! (who? whowhowho?) OR baby gate alternatives
« Reply #9 on: May 14, 2014, 01:53:27 PM »
We bought that exact gate for our irregularly shaped kitchen entrance when our dog was a puppy. It's sturdy and worked very well.

Then the dog discovered she could jump over the gate after a while, and we sold it on craigslist for a net loss of about $25.

neophyte

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Re: Who Kept the Dogs Out! (who? whowhowho?) OR baby gate alternatives
« Reply #10 on: May 14, 2014, 02:33:32 PM »
If you're looking for something sturdier/ semi-permanent you could try something like a stall guard http://www.amazon.com/Nylon-Stall-Guard-Blue-JA776/dp/B0011UA7GU  They have clips at the end, so you'd have to be willing to screw some hardware into your walls to clip it to.  You could even DIY one with some sturdy cloth ribbons.

oldladystache

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Re: Who Kept the Dogs Out! (who? whowhowho?) OR baby gate alternatives
« Reply #11 on: May 14, 2014, 02:44:53 PM »
When I was actively dogsitting I had a kitchen with an open end I had to keep the dogs out of. I invented a semi-permanent fence.

I used a section of wire fencing, 3 feet high, and a couple of pieces of 3 foot plastic pipe. I folded the ends of the fencing around the pipes, then used hook and eye fasteners to attach the ends to the walls. It was easy to take down and roll up for easy storage when it wasn't needed.

NumberCruncher

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Re: Who Kept the Dogs Out! (who? whowhowho?) OR baby gate alternatives
« Reply #12 on: May 14, 2014, 03:37:01 PM »
Thanks everyone for the input! I think I can pull off a great solution using mostly things I already have. This is why the community rocks so hard. :D

Agreed, the best thing is to work on training - great video, Cromacster! Ours is really good at leaving food when we tell him to now (and he sits and waits in front of his food until we tell him he can eat - so cute!), but we need to go to the next level. We've only had him for a little over a month - give us time :)  He doesn't counter surf when we're watching, sneaky dog!

I currently have two chairs blocking the kitchen and it's working well! They are a bit bulky and cut off access to a counter, but it's rarely used anyway.

Oldladystache - awesome DIY job! You wouldn't happen to have pictures, would you?

Neophyte - great idea! I have some scrap fabric, yarn, and some bungees that might do the job - I hadn't even though of cloth/fabric before. I think I might just need some hardware to make attaching/detaching easier (might be able to attach it to furniture of ours, as opposed to the walls).

Paddedhat - omg, poor doggy. I can just picture how pathetic looking he must have been!

sheepstache

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Re: Who Kept the Dogs Out! (who? whowhowho?) OR baby gate alternatives
« Reply #13 on: May 14, 2014, 04:25:05 PM »
Regarding the dog trying to be in the kitchen while you work, if you simply walk around the kitchen as you normally would, which, to the untrained eye this may have the appearance of kicking the dog and/or stepping on its feet, you'll find that it quickly learns to stay out from underfoot.

oldladystache

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Re: Who Kept the Dogs Out! (who? whowhowho?) OR baby gate alternatives
« Reply #14 on: May 14, 2014, 04:39:33 PM »
Quote
Oldladystache - awesome DIY job! You wouldn't happen to have pictures, would you?

I didn't have any but I just got the fence out of the garage and set it up and took a couple pictures for you: