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Houdini dog

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  • Houdini dog

    We have to crate the dog on the days housekeeping comes by. He's a good dog and is fine alone outside the crate but I'd also really like housekeeping, too.

    This dog is quite the escape artist. I've seen him on our security camera bust out of an all metal crate and the other day, he broke out of the kennel we used to fly him back in. I joked with my wife throughout the flight that I could hear him barking down there or we'd be on the news because of an escaped dog in the cargo hold. He's fine inside an apartment but if he gets trapped in a bedroom (which has happened), he gets crazy and tries to get out.

    For the flight, I ran zip ties through these 4 holes and all was good. I guess I could just buy a bunch of cheap ties and keep a pair of scissors handy to cut them open, but that will be a pain especially if there's an emergency and he needs to be extricated quickly. Maybe there's something reusuable I could run through these holes that doesn't take a lot of effort to take off?
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    What he exploited was the weak plastic latch. He pushed the door hard enough (actually requires quite a bit of force, but he's determined) to flex the bottom locking rod which then pried open the plastic lock and then he pushed the door open. The only thing I could do to reinforce that plastic it to maybe run some zip ties around it to prevent it from opening up. What I'm thinking is to weave some kind of cord through the door and secure it on either side to those wing nuts.

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    I've also considered turning the crate around so the door faces the wall, but then I think he would go after the plastic ventilation slats in the side of the crate.

    Any ideas would be appreciated.

    Here's the ferocious beast. A 12+ year old beagle/basset mix.

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  • #2
    The simplest would be to use good cord in place of zip ties and situate a bow tie in a position where Houdini couldn't pull on the release tail. The release tail could also be taped down with blue tape. Then, there's also the over 2,000 knots in Ashley's Book of Knots you could confound him with. Actually, my first thought was to use webbing and snap fasteners, since I have that equipment on hand. I use them to replace broken plastic latches on plastic tool cases and such. Those snap fasteners used on covers for boats have incredible side load strength, yet pull off straight up easily.
    But, at 12 years old, he's honed his abilities and still keeping you trying to outsmart him. It may be futile. He looks like a pretty smart fella.


    • #3
      My thought would be carabiner clips
      Hank Lee

      Experience is what you get when you don't get what you wanted!


      • #4
        Welcome back ( for a while, I believe)
        Ken in Cincinnati

        Pretend this line says something extremely witty


        • #5
          I like the carabiner idea.


          • #6
            Well, but I believe I'm likely too darn late but the carabiner idea, while handy are too frail for your brute of a hound! They are aluminum. So, I thought of the screw locking clips and did a search on Amazon and these are the cheapest in that variety and they sure have a bunch. That link is the cheapest but do look around on Amazon but I can vouch for these when ease of entry isn't an issue.


            • #7
              Here's an idea. If you go to the hardware store like ACE they have an aisle with all kinds of nylon webbing and clips and adjustable clips. You find these on straps made to secure luggage, on inexpensive backpacks and briefcases and carry bags, camera bags to close all the pockets and flaps. Also those adjustable quick releases on life jackets You cut the nylon straps to length and fold the ends over and sew for loops. They have sliding tensioners and male and female snap locks. The straps come in 1" and 2" wide.
              You have several options, including simply putting two big long straps completely around the cage. the ends should be flame polished so they don't unravel.



              You will have to be careful, if the strap passes inside the cage door he may be able to gnaw on it and cut it.
              Last edited by LCHIEN; 03-31-2020, 02:52 AM.
              Loring in Katy, TX USA
              If your only tool is a hammer, you tend to treat all problems as if they were nails.
              BT3 FAQ -


              • #8
                I fought the dog and the dog won. I'll have to look into these suggestions when things go back to normal.

                I started teleworking every other week when the cleaning crew would be around so it wasn't an issue for him to be out. There was one week where the crew cleaned with him out without us around so it seems like it depends on which crew comes, too. Then the dog got into the kitchen trash one weekend and had MAJOR GI issues for days so I ended being home for even longer and TWing.

                Then this coronavirus thing hit, we haven't been in the apartment for almost 3 weeks, and the cleaning company rightly stopped coming in to clean. So now we're home with the dog all day.

                Anyway, I'll have to revisit this when we're back to the apartment and the cleaning service is resumed.


                • #9
                  I’d make 4 tab out of 12 ga aluminum, each to be bolted to the 4 existing holes that are marked in the photos. The new tabs should each have a hole slightly outboard of the existing bolt hole. These holes will allow you to drop 2 steel rods, probably 3/16” down through the top tab into the lower tab. Bend a 90 into each rod for a handle/stop., now Houdini dog can’t get out of jail!