Dory is driving me nuts!! You guys have got to give me suggestions. We have recently moved, we are in our third week at the new house. Dory was doing great going potty. She was like clock work. Same place and same time, no worries. Now she just goes outside and sniffs and looks around mostly. She will sit if we stay in one place too long and won't go potty outside. She has peed and pooped in her crate the last couple of days but not all the time. It is like she is holding it as long as she can.
Background on Dory:
I got Dory when she was 6 months old and she was purchased from a breeder that had a kennel but allowed inside time with all the dogs so while she was in the kennel she learned she could go anytime, anywhere. Potty training her when I brought her home was a bear. She didn't even mind going in the crate let alone going on the floor so when she doesn't go outside she doesn't get to be out of her crate b/c I know she won't have an issue popping a squat on the floor in the house and taking care of buisness. I I have been taking her out every 2 hours or everytime I hear her ask to go but when she goes in her crate is when I have to leave the house. The yard is clean, I have poop eaters so as soon as it hits the ground it is picked-up so we don't have to deal with that issue. One of the other dogs has had loose stools so not all of it has been able to be cleaned up. That is the only thing I can think of that has changed recently. Do you think walking her in the front yard on a leash would help? I am open to any suggestions because utnil she goes potty outside she stays in the crate and I hate doing that to her but I don't want her to think she can pop a squat in the house. It took me months to break that habit with her. TIA
I would ensure that the crate is small enough that she CAN'T pee/poop in there. Sounds like she has too much room?? Once she's holding it in there, you can leverage that habit to ensure that she goes ONLY when outside. And praise with a brass band for the successes..
Good luck -- We've currently got a 2 y.o. Katrina dog in our obed classes who was never properly potty trained. Getting the point through to dogs who aren't puppies seems to be a MAJOR challenge.....
quote: ''same place & time, no worries''.
aha!!!! she is NOT happy about having a New ''place & time''. my hubby is like this, will NOT use the toilets at work, lol!
just keep taking her to the same place, maybe leave a tiny mess there.
[p.s. 'poop eaters' are born, not made, some will go through concrete to get to it, many don't care or even are averse to it, and always will bre, so just exposure to it won't hurt or help.]
and use a special word, and have a special party, Every Time, until she relaxes and accepts that 'this' is now 'the place'.
Maybe I don't know your entire situation, but I have to pose this question to you... Don't you think it would be easier to correct her if she is going in the house than in her crate? I mean, one of the biggest keys to housebreaking is to catch them in the act and correct them immediately. I would think you'd be much more likely to catch her going in the house rather than her waiting until no one is around to go in her crate. Unless you can catch her going in her crate, I don't know that it is going to help anything. If she doesn't care about going in the crate then there is nothing that you're probably going to be able to do about it.I am open to any suggestions because until she goes potty outside she stays in the crate and I hate doing that to her but I don't want her to think she can pop a squat in the house.
Lexus couldn't be crate trained; she was the same way. She would go in the crate; she didn't care. (And spare me the talk about the crate being too big because it was the perfect size it was supposed to be.) Finally, after having to clean the crate and give Lexus a bath all the time, I just gave up on the idea. Quite honestly, yes, she did go in the house a number of times (it happens) but she really took to going outside to potty. The second I gave up on the crate idea and just let her figure it out (that she wasn't to go potty inside, period) she did so much better. I don't think that crate training works for every dog and I do believe there are some dogs who have some serious problems with the crate. The thing was, when she was out of the crate and went on the floor, I normally caught her in the act... That way she could immediately learn that what she was doing was unacceptable. Whereas, when she would go in the crate, I could never catch her in the act and she never seemed to learn that it was unacceptable.
Has she gone in the house at all since this move? If not, how are you sure she would go in the house? Maybe you are keeping her crated for no reason at all. Just because you "think" she might go in the house doesn't mean she will. Perhaps she is getting very frustrated at being crated and that could lead to her problems. I would not crate her so much and see what happens. So what if you have to clean up a mess in the house (we have all had to), at least give her the chance to show you it won't happen and that she doesn't need to be crated all the time.
I don't think it would be a case of her having too much room... If she isn't going outside and is holding it, I don't think it would matter if the cage was small enough or not; she can't hold it forever. A smaller cage would probably just mean you having to clean her as well as the cage. (Like what I went through with Lexus.) Plus, if you are keeping her in it a lot you don't want it to be so small that she cannot turn around or anything; you wouldn't like to be kept in that tiny of a box all day either.
Have you seriously considered taking her to the vet? If you haven't, I would definitely consider it. Sometimes when dogs change their potty habits it can be a sign of something medically wrong. Our Beagle started going in the house and not outside, we took her to the vet and found out she had a UTI therefore, she couldn't help herself and didn't go outside when we asked her to because it hurt for her to go. If you cannot resolve this problem quickly, I highly suggest a vet visit just to make sure there isn't something else going on that you are unaware of. Let the vet know what is going on; perhaps he/she might have some better suggestions for you.
Also... Something else to consider... Some people recommend having one spot that you take your dog to so that it knows when it is time to "potty". Although this is a good idea, don't you think that it could actually work too good so that the dog doesn't want to go anywhere else? While Lexus was a puppy we did a LOT of traveling. She had to go at dozens of different rest stops, places, etc. So, she is used to just "going outside" and not to a specific area. As long as your dog is going "outside" I don't think you should be too picky about it. (Maybe she doesn't like you telling her where to go...)
Perhaps you could invest in one of those retractable leashes that allows the dog to walk a good distance away from you... Lexus doesn't like going to the bathroom with me hovering over her. However, if I give her some slack on the leash and let her wander where she pleases then she will go. If she is off leash, she will normally run to the other side of the yard to go. Why? I'm not sure, but I know she will not go if I am pressuring her or standing over her. Maybe if you give your dog some space, don't keep talking to her and just act as though you are completely uninterested in what she is doing (meaning, turn your head away and don't just stare at her), maybe she will feel more comfortable and go. The key with this is patience. You might have to be working on her time in the beginning. If she wants to just sniff around for 10 minutes, maybe you have to be willing to give her that in order for her to feel comfortable. I think, for right now, the key should be getting her to go outside... Not putting all these restrictions on where she goes, how long it takes her, etc.
I don't want to discredit anyone who is on this board... I think so many people here have such wonderful suggestions and are so helpful. But with all due respect not all dogs are alike, not all situations are alike, etc. Just because something works for one dog doesn't mean it will work for the next dog because those two dogs may have very different problems going on in their heads. As I said, I was given a ton of suggestions for help when Lexus was a puppy and it didn't work because of her own personality and her own fears/insecurities/etc. So, I apologize for the length of this post, but I wanted to offer some suggestions from a different point of view... I hope reading all of this has given you some ideas to try or consider.
Successful toilet training ALWAYS requires just as much (usually FAR more) training of those with 2 legs than those with 4.* When you feed always at the same time and exercise always at the same time, then puppies digestive systems produce output at usual, generally predictable times.* As they grow and mature, they abandon the first rut after awhile for another, and usually go through several changes to adulthood.
I kept a chart on the side of our fridge for when Puff's times were and whenever they changed, I changed my schedule for taking her out. (As in -- Go with the flow, never try to swim up Niagra)
Now that Puff's an adult, her schedule has been consistent for 4 years:
6:30 - 7 AM* Pee several times and poop.
2 PM* Same as above
10 PM* Same as above
Building in a mantra helps.* This becomes a Conditioned Stimulus so that when the dog hears it, it promotes the desired response.* It takes many repetitions to build up to sufficient strength.* When your pup starts assuming the arched back poop position, start saying something like "Dory -- Potty!* Dory -- Potty!" and continue while the stools are coming.* Then praise and treat.* (It usually takes at least 3 weeks of consistent use of this before it's built up enough power to begin being effective.* And it is NOT effective when the dog does not have to go.)
Vigorous exercise hastens pooping when it's near time.* For Puff's 2 PM poop, we go out to the sidewalk in front of the house and I "bowl" a softball or baseball down the sidewalk for Puff to chase.* After about 5 - 7 vigorous chases and retrieves, Puff starts looking around for a good spot and I begin reciting my mantra, "Puff!* Potty!* Puff! Potty!"* *Her back arches, poop comes out, I bag it in the plastic bags I always carry, and the duty has been completed.* Both hers and mine.*
Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]
Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":