I’ve had Petmate’s portable pet home available for my dogs during the past several weeks. My hope was that, despite not being crate trained, they would come to love these durable, easy to use ‘dens’. Dogs are supposed to have a natural desire to live in dens, and I thought the wonderful Petmate people may have saved my furniture.
Alas: I apparently have ‘special needs’ dogs. They never truly bought into my plan for them to love these portable pet homes. I sprinkled treats on the comfortable pad that goes inside the home, rolled up the windows so they could see the outside world, rolled down the windows so they didn’t have to see the outside world, put toys in there…all to no avail. I even tried to lead by example and took a nap in there myself. No luck. Then I thought ‘I’m pressuring them too much’, and left them alone w. the pet homes, with full expectations that I’d return to a National Geographic moment of dogs nestled together in their dens. Hah. The only thing they did was chew the really nice carrying case to bits.
But there is some good news. While my dogs seem to be lacking in the brain function department, others are not. I’ve loaned the Petmate homes to friends and neighbors, with great results. The owners didn’t want to give them back to me. One even took his already-crate-trained husky snow camping, and reported that the portable home was like the dog’s own tent. The owner much appreciated not waking up with fur in his mouth.
I think ‘already crate-trained’ is the key. If your dogs have grown up with the idea of nesting in a crate, then these portable pet homes by Petmate can be a hugely valuable addition to your pet accoutrements. They are easy to use, durable (just keep the carrying case out of reach), attractive and comfortable. But if your canine is not accustomed to using a crate, do a trial run with a borrowed crate or even a large box. If your dog is not interested in a den, then this Petmate product may not be worth the investment. However, if you can convince your pet to use it, lucky you and rock on!! Happy camping.