Jump to content

Again?! What Are We Doing Wrong?


Guest cwholsin
 Share

Recommended Posts

Guest cwholsin

We had another accident tonight -sigh- This time he did it right before dinner, so right before his scheduled time to potty.

 

2.5 months with us, we've had him on a very consistent schedule the last few weeks (he's been having an accident every few weeks since we got him--only pee with the exception of one time when he did both--which was totally our fault). When we go out, we plan around his meals and necessary potty breaks or take him with us.

 

-Goes out first thing in the morning (sleeps in the crate) to pee

-Out again at 9am right after his breakfast for a poo

-Out at noon to go get mail with me and have a pee

-Pee and poo between 3 and 4pm

-Out right after dinner at 8pm to pee and poo

 

We do occasionally add one here or there if he seems like he's looking for a place to go to the bathroom.

 

He does understand that it's good to go potty outside (He knows the word Outside and the command 'go potty') and we praise the heck out of him every time we take him out and he eliminates. We've always caught him in the act with an accident and interrupt him with a NO! to take him outside--and praise the heck out of him when he goes out there.

 

We haven't taken him to the vet specifically for the accidents, but he's had a physical and full blood workup in the last several weeks and everything came back normal.

 

Within the first few weeks we had him, he got to about 70-80% to being completely housetrained and we haven't really made any progress since then. He gets that it's good to go potty outside, and he's got to know that we aren't happy when he does it inside, he's on a consistent schedule... why isn't he getting that he needs to hold it when he's inside? Tonight he wasn't showing any signs of distress before he tried to pee.

 

I have never met a dog so HARD to housetrain!! I'm sad that we still can't even trust him in the house when we're here, much less when we're not. dunno.gif

 

Any advice? I'm going to call the vet on Monday to ask for his advice, too.

Edited by cwholsin
Link to comment
Share on other sites

In very very worst case scenarios sometimes actually leashing the dog to you for a while can help. Thank goodness I've only had to do it a couple of times.

 

You will notice when he is about to go and can correct. You can often see the thought cloud of most dogs that says "ummm...hesitate here...might be a good place to mark...ummm.....". A well placed *aack* just as they decide to do it works, but you have to pay attention.

gallery_8149_3261_283.jpg
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest cwholsin

In very very worst case scenarios sometimes actually leashing the dog to you for a while can help. Thank goodness I've only had to do it a couple of times.

 

You will notice when he is about to go and can correct. You can often see the thought cloud of most dogs that says "ummm...hesitate here...might be a good place to mark...ummm.....". A well placed *aack* just as they decide to do it works, but you have to pay attention.

 

More often than not, we're in the room with him when he has the accident. Tonight I saw him sidle up to the corner of the bookcase in that 'special' way and immediately corrected him. We've been able to do that every single time but once, and he's still having the accidents. We have a negative noise like what you typed that we've been using when he's doing something we don't approve of and he's caught onto everything except not peeing in the house.

 

It's so frustrating that they're so sporatic. I can't keep him leashed to my waist all the time every day for weeks. He's literally been having them every few weeks since we brought him home in August.

 

Most of the accidents were when it's raining. We know he doesn't like the rain and have to make him go outside instead of opening the door for him to walk out. The time before this, he snuck upstairs and had started peeing by the time I got up there.

 

Maybe a better question would be: How do we help him get over his dislike for going to the bathroom in the rain? We live in Oregon, and it's going to be a really long winter if we can't get this problem under control.

 

I want my dog to be able to live in the house like he belongs here, not be crated up all the time because he can't be trusted not to do his business inside.

Edited by cwholsin
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Rain: Go out with him.

 

Other times: A schedule is a wonderful thing, but dogs innards don't always follow a schedule. Here I figure if the dog is on his/her feet and not actively playing, getting a drink, or eating, he probably has to go out. Mine will also go out more often during the active part of the day -- for them, late afternoon / early evening -- when they're anticipating supper, organized playtime, little walkies, etc.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

P.S. I've never found it necessary to plan around meals or scheduled potty breaks with a new dog. I simply take the dog out before I leave, making sure he goes to the bathroom, and again first thing when I get back. Initially, I do that even if the dog went out 10 minutes ago and I'm only going to be gone for another 10. As the dog settles in and we learn about each other, there might be times when he doesn't go out one or both of those times ... but I always offer. Always.

 

One exception to the above -- I have had dogs who needed to go out a second time @ 1-2 hours after a meal (first time being right after the meal). For those dogs, if I'm going away, I have sometimes adjusted feeding times so I could get them their second out before I left.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I get that it's the sporadic-ness that is making this hard because it throws off the patterning. Rain may be one thing he doesn't like.

 

Have you tried a belly band? Is he marking or peeing because he has to go? I see those as two separate triggers.

 

I'd leash or belly band him if it's marking.

Doe's Bruciebaby Doe's Bumper

Derek

Follow my Ironman journeys and life with dogs, cats and busy kids: A long road

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Does he wear a rain coat in the rain? With our girl (we'll she doesn't mind the rain in the first place), but she MUCH prefers wearing a rain coat when it rains. Otherwise she's totally distracted.

 

Also, when it rains we have to take her for a short walk to ensure she really pees / empties her bladders. Otherwise sometimes she just pees a little, and tries to get back inside as quickly as possible. It's a pain, but we just suck it up and put on our rain jacket as well.

 

 

Jennifer, Mike and the menagerie ---

Molly (Blue Sky Dreamin), Tinker (BT My Lil Girl) and their feline brothers Miles and Lewis

Visit Molly's Photo Album

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest giantsfan

These are the things we've done:

Because we take a walk everyday, rain or shine, they've learned that going out in the rain is no big deal. So if it's raining and they just need to do a quick pee, they'll run out and do their business, no problem.

 

We didn't let them have unwatched, run of the house until we were sure they were 100% housetrained. We learned that lesson when 1 of them snuck off to a room they didn't normally inhabit twice to poop.

 

Ours almost never need to go out right after they eat, more like an hour or 2 later. Because of that, we adjust our feedings accordingly if we are going out. We don't feed and leave - or feed and let out b/c we know that's not going to work for them. If that means they eat a little earlier or later, then that's what happens.

 

Like others have said, initially we took them out before/immediately after leaving them.

 

We also trained them to use a bell. One of ours - the one we really needed it for b/c she gave us no signals and doesn't have the incredible bladder of the other - uses it regularly when she wants to go out. Even those few times in the middle of the night when she needs to go out, she'll whine and ring the bell. It was a huge help with her in the beginning for sure.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest 4dogscrazy

When I get a newbie, I treat them like puppies. Out every half an hour if they are awake. Mine run in and out all night, it drives us bonkers, but with four? who knows which one has to go when. Usually when one has to go they all want to go outside too, and it can be annoying when your are trying to relax after getting home from work, but they don't have the option of taking themselves out. My Tempe absolutely can not hold it if she has to go, and she will bark at you if you aren't paying attention. But if I am not home? She will go in the house. She does have separation anxiety though, which is another matter. Mine typically go out once or twice at 7 am, also feed time, then once before DH leaves for work. Out at noon, sometimes twice and a snack. Out at 4, again when I get home at 5, also feed time, then several times at night. Nothing after 11pm unless someone is ill.

 

Is there any chance you can get a dog door installed? That would be wonderful here, but I have a cat that doesn't go outside so it wouldn't work for us right now. I couldn't tell if you had a fenced in yard or not from your post. I work on the every half hour thing for a long time, then go backwards to 45 minutes, and hour, until I know the dog and he knows our schedule. I also change meal times in the evening if I am not going to be home. That's for Tempe who just can not hold it. She's been medically cleared, that's just the way it is with her.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest greytloves

Another suggestion for the belly band.

 

If anything, they don't really like it and once they realize they are wearing it for peeing in the house and the way to not wear it is to not pee in the house, they catch on pretty quick. They really don't like having to wear something wet like that.

 

It is like the muzzle, people don't like using it as they think it sends the wrong message and the reality is this: it prevents.

 

You may also want to try the squirt bottle mixed with white vinegar so that when he approaches the things he pees on you squirt him with a mist in the face with a loud "NO". Eventually they learn to associate that piece of furniture means bad things.

 

Is it just peeing? I thought I remember him poop issues too. I don't remember, was he fostered? How long?

 

 

eta: I know it seems like Hermes has had some issues you weren't expecting, and they may be more than normal. But it is wonderful you keep coming here for suggestions and I know that collectively we can help you guys threw this hard part. :grouphug Hang in there.

Edited by greytloves
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't see anywhere that he's getting any EXERCISE? Do you walk him, or just open the door? 'Cause in a case like this, you REALLY need to go out with him and see what he's really doing out there.

 

You may even need to take him into the yard on a leash for a while.

 

 

You really need to start from step one, as if he's a puppy. /And you also have to make sure that you eliminate all traces of his prior urine or he's just going to keep peeing in the spots he's already peed.

 

Believe me, I feel your pain having had some ongoing issues myself!

 

But before I realized my dog's issues are medical, I was really frustrated too!

 

And I also have learned that to George, telling me he has to go out isn't walking to the door and whining--it's trotting around the living room with a stuffy in his mouth--I'm sure that's clear to HIM, but I'm used to a more obvious sign!

 

 


Hamish-siggy1.jpg

Susan,  Hamish,  Mister Bigglesworth and Nikita Stanislav. Missing Ming, George, and Buck

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest cwholsin

Thanks for the feedback, guys.

 

I'm considering a belly band--maybe that will get it through to him that peeing in the house isn't fun stuff. Our correction hasn't been having that effect!

 

He does get exercised either at noon or at the afternoon potty break' either a walk or a trip to the dog park for a run.

 

Poop- He did poo in the house once, and it was totally our fault. Ironically, we had popped over to the neighbor's house to let their dog out and he just had to go when we weren't there. Came back and he had pooped and peed. We weren't thrilled, but it was our fault for not confining him when we weren't in the house to let him out.

 

He does have the ability to hold it as he doesn't eliminate in his crate. He lets us know when he needs to go outside in the morning by whining. He doesn't whine when he needs to go out when he's not in the crate--could it be that we need to confine him and slowly increase his space until he learns that the rest of the house is kennel too?

 

Marking-- He marked when we first got him, and once more after we got new carpet installed in the downstairs. Other than that, I believe it's peeing behavior. He will also try and mark other people's house so we keep him on leash whenever we visit anyone else. So far, that's worked.

 

Rain- He does have a cute as a button red raincoat to wear outside when it's raining. Maybe we'll try intentionally taking him for the walks in the rain. It doesn't seem to be anything other than a strong dislike. A friend suggested after the last accident that we just make him go out when it's raining, which we have been doing.

 

The backyard- it is fenced in and we go out with him every time to make sure he does his biz as he will eat mulch if left unattended. He's not on leash, but he does know the command 'go potty' and will fairly reliably do it when we tell him to.

 

Dinner- we've been getting to know his patterns in the time that we've had him, and he doesn't usually have a desire to go out one more time at night. He poos and pees after dinner and breakfast pretty reliably. When we do put him out one more time he lollygags and may eventually pee but usually doesn't.

 

Cleaning up- God bless carpeted apartments (not)! We have a portable wet vac with a cleaning solution specifically for pet messes and once that's vacuumed up we spray nature's miracle on it and leave it to dry, I'm pretty sure it's all clean. He's had one spot (the spot last night) that's had a repeat accident but I think that might just be because it's convenient. He doesn't sniff there or anything. Last night he wasn't sniffing around at all like he usually does when he needs to go out--circling and sniffing, that's his thing.

 

Fostered- Hermes was not fostered, so he didn't have any training when he came to us. He was at his track kennel, then the rescue's kennel, and then our house.

 

I think that answered all the queries!

 

The root of the problem seems to be that he still considers the house an acceptable alternative to outside. I can (and will) be on top of him like a hawk which should prevent accidents, but isn't going to teach him that the house isn't an okay place to pee--or at least it hasn't made him make that jump in his mind so far. I'm not really sure how to teach him that part.

Edited by cwholsin
Link to comment
Share on other sites

He does have the ability to hold it as he doesn't eliminate in his crate.

 

Not necessarily. Most dogs will nearly burst before they'll go in their crate because they don't like to sit in it. Note that waiting until nearly bursting isn't particularly good for the dog's health..... There's also the quietness factor. Unless dog fusses in the crate, when they're in there, they're asleep, not up walking around. Thus less need to go.

 

The root of the problem seems to be that he still considers the house an acceptable alternative to outside. I can (and will) be on top of him like a hawk which should prevent accidents, but isn't going to teach him that the house isn't an okay place to pee--or at least it hasn't made him make that jump in his mind so far. I'm not really sure how to teach him that part.

 

It isn't necessarily that he sees the house as an acceptable alternative -- it's that he has to go and doesn't yet know how to tell you so that you'll take him out. The answer is plain old repetition. When he has to go, you take him outside. After a period of time, that becomes a very strong habit. He knows that's where to go, and he'll probably try to give you some signal that he needs to go there. It might be a very subtle signal -- some dogs will stand and look at you, some will go stand by the door out (very helpful when you're in another room, eh?), etc.

 

I've never used a bellyband nor kept a dog crated for extensive periods of time while home. Some of the things that have worked for us:

 

- As someone above mentioned, new dogs go out a LOT.

- If I'm leaving and dog hasn't pottied recently, we go out and we stay out until dog potties.

- Gating the dog into the same room or two I'm hanging out in, so I can keep an eye on him.

 

It can be helpful to keep a journal of when the dog does what, where, when. Sometimes a pattern comes to light (for example, "Aha! He doesn't *want* to go out at 11 a.m., but if I don't take him, he'll have an accident while I'm at lunch with my friends.").

 

Last, while it's good to be concerned, to examine what you and dog are doing, and to look at ways to improve, try not to get over-alarmed. I've had dogs that never had an accident unless ill, but the norm for most dogs is to have a few accidents when first acclimating to a home, and to have a few more over the years. :)

 

 

 

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest greytloves

Not being fostered speaks volumes to me. So, you are basically starting with a clean slate and a dog that did not get to learn about not peeing in the house from other dogs in a foster home. And the boys I have fostered have always been a little harder to house train then the girls.

 

If he pees in front of you then I would do the belly band while you are home. I think it is a great training aid - but not a fix and not a permanent thing to do. But he has not learned the boundaries of a house yet.

 

If the NO or other things seem not to have an impact, use the vinegar and water mixture. They hate that, does not hurt them but it will get their attention. Some dogs react to the NO, some do not. Find what works.

 

At this point I do not think he sees the indoors as anything but an extension of outside. It is just another great place to roam and pee in! When he goes outside and pees, praise, praise, praise and maybe treat. Help him build the association of outside = pee = happy people and inside = pee = not happy people. He wants to please you so he will catch on.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest cwholsin

Some good suggestions. I still definitely want to consult the vet and see if that's the problem. The rain thing is going to be the real problem, I think. Most of the time he seems okay to ask to go outside except when it's raining. We're trying to train him to use the bell, but I'm not sure we're going to have much success until he starts to understand that going inside is not acceptable and he needs to alert when he needs to go like he started to with the query "Outside?"

 

On a related note, when he's in his crate overnight he's usually awake at least a half an hour or so before us and won't start whining until shortly before nine. When he pees in the morning, it doesn't seem like it's much more than a 'normal' pee for him. He just doesn't treat the house the same way as the crate as far as 'no potty' goes. (Why can't you just do that for us Hermes?!?!) Is restriction a viable option to help him see the rest of the house progressively as an extention of the crate? If that's what it takes, I'm willing to do it.

 

He does signal when he needs to go to the bathroom, he'll 'ask' for outside or he'll start sniffing around--but sometimes (usually the accidents that happen when it's raining) he won't make any kind of signal at all. He'll just be standing somewhere and start peeing. In the case of last night, he was up because the cats were being fed (which he always does) and just let loose on the bookshelf. Fortunately I was right there and caught him as soon as he cocked the leg so there wasn't much clean-up this time.

 

I guess it's possible that we're not being 'displeased' enough with him when he does it inside so it's not making the impact that we think it is. Anyone have experience with the noisy can method? We might try the vinegar solition and see if that works.

 

How long can we reasonably expect housetraining to take for a dog who has never lived in a house before--provided the troubles are not medically caused? I've never known a dog to take so long to housetrain, so I don't know what a reasonable amount of time is and what is a problem behavior. We've also read that some dogs never really get to being housetrained. Any idea how common that might be? We will eventually need him to be okay being at the house by himself once I'm done with school and I really don't want to have to continue crating him whenever we're not home to prevent him from soiling the house.

 

We've tried to be very consistent with taking him out frequently--we take him out before we're going somewhere like you do--we also usually make an effort to tire him out also so he sleeps in his crate while we're gone.

 

It's nice to know that he isn't being totally abnormal, but these accidents every few weeks are getting really old. He'll be doing great for a while after the accident and we start to trust him more and then he goes and pees again!

 

Any advice on fairly cheap bellybands? We've had him 2.5 months and already bought a raincoat, a pair of jammies, and are now looking at bellybands... so spoiled! :blush

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If he hasn't had a urinalysis, I would certainly start there! If that's clear, very likely all you need to do is take him out more often. According to your original post, he goes out @ 5 times a day. If he's having accidents, that isn't often enough. For example, in the original post he had an accident shortly before his dinner. So I would start taking him out @ an hour before that in addition to the other times he goes out. That is a time when he might not ask to go because he is anticipating his meal and doesn't want to miss it.

 

 

 

 

P.S. When I'm housetraining a dog, the only time I "scold" is if I catch a dog in the act. Even then, I just don't find it useful to make a huge deal out of it. "AAAAH" to interrupt the process, followed immediately by a firm, cheerful, "Let's go out!" and whisk the dog outside to finish.

 

Dogs who came here straight from track or other type of kennel started out going out at least every 1.5 hours during the day, with no more than 8 hours over night, until they proved they absolutely did not have to go that often.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Greyt_dog_lover

I agree with Batmom, more trips outside.

 

To new adopters I recommend every hour that your hound is awake, they get taken out. I tell the adopters to do this for the first two weeks at least. Also, when you take them out, bring treats and when they eliminate, treat and make it the biggest deal in the world. Regardless of your fenced yard, I would walk him on leash every single time you take him out (each hour), and treat.

 

You keep repeating the same thing "I've never known a dog to take so long to housetrain", this is because you are comparing your past experience with dogs that have been raised in a HOUSE all their lives. So in all actuality, the dogs you are comparing your hound to probably took even longer to housebreak, you just dont realize it. Think, they were raised in a house as a puppy, and housebroken for the first 6-12 months of their life, or longer. Your boy has lived in a house for a whole 2.5 months. The two don't compare. Realize that all of your past experience with dogs really doesnt translate very well in the greyhound world, they aren't similar to any other hound most people have known because of their distinct upbringing on a farm, not a home.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Swifthounds

You've gotten some really good advicere: house training, especially from Batmom.

 

I've housetrained greyhounds (from the track, from a kennel, from a foster home, and from puppyhood) as well as two IGs (both from puppyhood - one of whom had, at 7 months never been outside of a small wire crate). No matter the starting point of the dog's experience, two things are key: consistency and reward.

 

A few tips:

 

1) Every new dog has been on leash and with me, except for sleeping hours, work hours, or the occasional matter requiring that a hound not be present (in which case it was back to the crate for a short while). That means the hound should be on leash, attached to a human, and thus in eyesight all the hours you are home and awake.

 

2) Outside potty trips beginning every hour while you're home. If you go a week with no accidnets, go to 1.5 and so on.

 

3) Potty trips are to be on leash, even in a fenced yard. Keep the hound moving until there's potty, then treat and praise and fuss and take inside.

 

4) Use an enzyme cleaner anywhere there has been an accident. Soak the area. Leave on and blot up the excess.

 

I guess it's possible that we're not being 'displeased' enough with him when he does it inside so it's not making the impact that we think it is. Anyone have experience with the noisy can method? We might try the vinegar solition and see if that works.

 

If the hound isn't already housetrained, demonstrating being "displeased" will be unhelpful at best and confusing and frightening at worst. What you want to foster is routine and learning, not expectation and punishment. Punishment stops all learning. What you want to do if you catch him is make a sharp sound to interrupt him say something like "Let's go outside" and take him out to finish. When he "goes" outside, treat and praise.

 

As for being out in the rain, you just have to go out in the rain with him on leash. If you're not willing to get wet in the rain for as long as it takes for him to relax and potty, why should he?

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.

Guest
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.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...