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Dog refusing to poop out, reverting on housetraining

September 29th, 2010, 11:53 AM
Jasper is a very smart little dog. He's a two year old Pomeranian, with a command repertoire of about 20 individual tricks and behaviours, and about 50 variations on the lot of them. He's clicker-trained with positive reinforcement, crate-trained, loose-leash trained, well-socialised, and loved.

However, this dog has been driving me insane since about May of this year. He was housetrained for the longest time, with no accidents except piddle puddles when he just couldn't hold it anymore when I was working long (14) hour days. In May, and since, on-and-off, he's refused to poop outside.

Flat out refused. He walks outside and he stares up at the sky or off into the distance, or looks at me like, "No." Like I've gone stupid expecting him to poop out there. For about two months I just let it be, thinking it was another of his phases. Early in those months, he'd hold it for a few days before deigning to poop outside. Later, he'd start waiting until we were showering, preparing for bed, or just find an open door and hide behind it to poop in the house.

After dealing with this and growing impatient, I started to crate him if he did not poop when he went outside. Shortly after the crating started, he started pooping in it. I took his bed out, which stopped the pooping for a while, as he couldn't hide the poop under the blanket so he didn't have to touch it. Then he started again. I put him in a smaller crate. He stopped pooping in it. He started to poop only once a day, after anywhere from 20-60 minutes outside. That was fine.

Then he started on-again-off-again not pooping for several days. He'd end up spending two or three days crated all the time before he'd finally poop. And he clearly understood that pooping released him into the house (Yay funtime!) and not pooping did not, because he wouldn't even be allowed into the house, I would carry him in and up to his crate. It's not for lack of opportunity! He would go out almost every hour with my puppy, who is housetraining better than him. He'd just refuse to poop.

I'm at my wit's end. This morning he didn't poop, so he was crated. I went to class and came back two hours later, and he had pooped in the crate and made a fuss the whole time I was gone. I had spent forty minutes outside with him before class, constantly interrupting his pauses with, "Jasper, Go. Poop."

I just want my dog to stop refusing to poop outside, so I can enjoy my time with him instead of having him in his crate. I've tried all the potty training 101 things I can think of, and I still get nothing. My puppy is going through the same training exactly, and she is 100% poo/90% pee outside, with her indoor accidents being pee after overdrinking and being excited. They're true accidents, when she suddenly stops and has to pee immediately. J is 100% pee/30% poo outside.

September 29th, 2010, 06:55 PM
Even when walked after eating is he still refusing to poop outside and holding it for indoors?

September 30th, 2010, 09:54 AM
Yep. Here's a breakdown of the past few days: since Monday evening, he would not poop outdoors. Wednesday morning between 9-11, he pooped in his crate instead. I spent at least 30 minutes walking around with him each time he went out for "official poo breaks", twice a day, and he was tied out on the yard with the puppy several times in between. He had every opportunity to poop outdoors, and chose to hold it and poop on himself, in his crate, then cry about it.

He was crated when not outdoors. He was crated all night when he didn't poop outside. This morning, we went on a shorter walk because it was raining, and he's a little princess who can't get his feet wet. I put him on the tie out again within thirty minutes of returning. He was crated during that time and whined a lot- but didn't poop- which is out of character. He's generally very quiet, we worked for ages on making him love his crate. Within about ten minutes he pooped outside, and I click/treated him for pooping.

He ran inside, all proud of himself, and I was thinking since we were about to leave and I didn't want him to think that pooping or not pooping, he was crated when he came in, I put him in our bathroom and closed the door. He pooped in there again while we were gone, less than an hour.

I am so tired of this. I'd never, ever get rid of him for lack of housetraining, but this is infuriating to me, and annoying. I can't enjoy having a dog when he's in his crate most of the time, so he can't poop on the floor. The puppy is more trustworthy with her bodily functions than him. They're the same breed and on the same schedule, eating the same amount of food (Taste of the Wild, for their body weight and ages they just happen to match up to 3/4 cup a day each) at the same times. Gypsy poops twice a day at the same times as J used to without fail, and she pees about 6-8 times a day. He pees maybe 3-4 times a day and USED to poop the two times, now I'm lucky if he poops once in three days, and I'm luckier if it gets outside.

September 30th, 2010, 07:10 PM
I am mum to 2 poms and a pom mix (male) and the mix used to have a hard time pooping plus anal gland issues from straining so my vet recommended a small sprinkle of metamucil every a.m. on his breakfast and since then anal issues are non-existent and he poos after walking only about 20 feet. If your dog is stressed and tense then he might have these issues (psychological) so if Metamucil doesn't work then I would be taking him to the vet. Have found Poms are very sensitive and can be easily affected by our moods. Good luck with your furball.

October 1st, 2010, 06:58 AM
It may be worth trying, but I'm wary. J doesn't have anal gland issues, but he does have allergies. I don't know if psyllium might trigger a reaction in him, or how bad it would be.

October 2nd, 2010, 08:04 AM
Since the arrival of the 'new' pup is he feeling left-out and not getting as much attention?

October 2nd, 2010, 06:29 PM
The issues started well before Gypsy arrived- in May, she joined the family in early August. Regardless, he LOVES her. I have never seen two dogs get along quite so well. She's annoying the heck out of him now that she's getting a bit older, and he keeps looking at me like, "Save me? I don't want to tell her off, she won't like me if I do!" But they lie down and play bitey face together, they eat nicely together, they share toys, they sleep cuddled up together.

Yesterday, I got some canned pumpkin (I keep hearing it's good for poop problems, and figured it was safer than trying Metamucil) He got about a teaspoon in his food last night, and this morning. There was a poop last night outside after they were both put out for about 20 minutes, without me standing out there. This morning, there was another poop outside, same circumstance. I put them out for a potty break before we went to my boyfriend's mother's for supper. We were gone for about 3 hours. In that time period, Jasper pooped in his crate. It was a lot darker than his poo normally is, so I think that was the pumpkin really kicking in.

Should I maybe cut the pumpkin down a bit more, or divide it between his breakfast and supper instead of just at breakfast? Last night I only gave it to him to give him a jumpstart on his bowels.

October 2nd, 2010, 09:19 PM
I have 3 Shih Tzus and a terri poo and they get a big spoonfull of pumpkin with both their meals. They love the stuff. The pumpkin should help the poop. What a cutie you have there.

October 5th, 2010, 04:38 PM
Well, I... Tentatively, seem to have resolved the issue.

Since adding the teaspoon of pumpkin to 1/3 cup Taste of the Wild breakfast at 7AM, J's been pooping every chance he gets... Outside! He poops morning and evening like he used to, and now he will also sometimes poop at about mid-day, if I give him the chance (IE am home from school at the time, etc). If I come home from a later class, he tends to hold it until the evening.

I'm also teaching them both to ring a small set of jingle bells to go outside. They're both so used to sitting and watching me until the door opens, it's a bit hard to convince them to hit the bell.

Pumpkin! Breakfast of champions!