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(Almost) At the end of my leash

keliza
October 5th, 2010, 08:21 PM
HELP!! I've adopted a (now) 4 month old black lab/aussie shepherd who is the spawn of Satan, I swear. She is too smart for her own good and probably mine as well. As we speak she is tied to my waist via her leash because if I don't do this I'm afraid I might have to string her up by her toenails or something.

My problem is housetraining. She is absolutely brilliant with everything else, picks up a command or a trick in 5 mins and doesn't forget it. Unfortunately, she doesn't have the same intelligence when it comes to peeing outside. Tonight, in the 4 hrs since I've been home I've cleaned up 6 accidents, one of which on my couch (for the second time) and she's been let out atleast 10 times. Here is what I've been doing:

She goes out immediately after leaving her cage. No stops anywhere, I am fully dressed, awake and ready to go before she is let out. We used to carry her but she's getting too big so now I run along behind her making sure she's out the door before peeing anywhere. She is actually able to hold herself over night, last night went 9 hrs with no problems.

She comes in after successfully peeing outside, gets lots of praise and usually a treat (sometimes she doesn't get a treat since we think she is conditioning us to let her out only so she'll piddle and then still get a treat).

She is taken out within 10-15 mins of eating or drinking water and immediately after naps and playtimes. Occasionally she will whine to go outside, and always when she has to poo, but not always when she has to pee.

She has been to the vet and checked for a urinary tract infection and put on broad spectrum antibiotics in case she does have an infection, tho the vet didn`t seem to think so. He suggested limiting her water intake by only putting 1-2 cups in 2 or 3 bowls at a time and once they`re empty, to refill them with another 1-2 cups. We have been doing that, it`s cut back on the accidents from 8 or 10 daily to 5 or 6 but I still think that at 4 months, with the ability to hold her bladder for 8 or 9 hours at night, I should not have to clean up 5 or 6 accidents a day.

Is there something I`m doing wrong that I`m not realizing:confused: I really dont want to have to walk around with a dog tied to my waist but if thats what it takes I`ll do it. Generally she is not sneaky with the accidents, they`re usually right in front of us but since she pees so much they`re only little piddles and she`s done so quick we don`t have the chance to usher her outside (tho the pee on the couch was pretty big... :mad:)

Please help!!

Bailey_
October 6th, 2010, 10:51 AM
Hi Keliza! Sorry to hear about your housetraining difficulties. It can be one of the most discouraging issues for pet owners, but just remember: patience and consistancy is the key! :)

We used to carry her but she's getting too big so now I run along behind her making sure she's out the door before peeing anywhere.

This would be the initial problem I notice in your situation. Puppies are so cute and adorable, and often fairly small, so we tend to want to pick them up and carry them wherever they want to go because they are so cuddly and because it's often much faster. But the problem with this, especially when house-training is involved - is that we inadvertenly take away the dogs ability to figure out that he/she needs to do the work to GET to where it has to go for potty time. Your puppy then learns to rely on you, and isn't really figuring out that when it's time to go to the bathroom - she should walk to the backdoor.

Another thing that carrying does, it takes away the dogs ability to "learn" any method to let you know she needs to go out. (Whining, simply standing at the door, etc.)

Continue encouraging her to walk with you outside, instead of carrying her there.

She comes in after successfully peeing outside, gets lots of praise and usually a treat (sometimes she doesn't get a treat since we think she is conditioning us to let her out only so she'll piddle and then still get a treat).

If your puppy pee's outside, keep praising her everytime. I personally am not a fan of treats in most situations, but it certainly won't hurt your puppy. It's also to your puppies benefit if it happens immediatley after she finishes going and she's still standing outside on the grass; not afterwards when she comes in the house.

but I still think that at 4 months, with the ability to hold her bladder for 8 or 9 hours at night, I should not have to clean up 5 or 6 accidents a day.


Unfortunatley, four months is not old enough for some dogs to entirely understand housetraining.

I really dont want to have to walk around with a dog tied to my waist but if thats what it takes I`ll do it.

Keeping her around your waist is a GREAT way to assist with housetraining. You want to avoid as many accidents as possible with her, and sometimes the only solution is physically attaching our puppies to us so that we are forced to watch them more closely.

JennieV
October 6th, 2010, 11:02 AM
All I can add to previous answer is be patient. She is still small and while she may pick up tricks in no time, this is obviously something she needs to work with you on...And it is much more important than tricks.

I think that with consistency and patience you'll get there... 9 hours to hold is alot, especially for a 4-month baby, for, essentially she is a baby. Think a toddler - would you get frustrated with a baby's accidents? no doubt.. would you continue working on it tlll the child is fully potty-trained? yes. So keep up all you're doing, it will be easier as she grows. And there might be step-backs, just keep at it, you're doing great!! :thumbs up

lilwhitefurball
October 6th, 2010, 11:04 AM
hello keliza!
all there is would be close supervision as in keeping a close eye at her by confining her some place where you can see if she is about to pee and telling her a stern "no pee." hopefully will she get the idea that she is just about to do something you do not want her to do.
or maybe try startling her my a noise bottle eve throwing the bottle at her direction when she is just about to pee. but DO NOT HIT HER! just startle her though.
reward her with something that is not a part of her diet whenever she peed somewhere where you want her to pee or give her a pat on the head with a happy toned "good girl" whenever she does that.
extend the leash more. you'll see it will repay.:rolleyes:

good luck.

Jumajum
October 6th, 2010, 12:22 PM
Think about the steps you went through for training her for tricks. You were probably very clear and consistent with your trick training and very happy with the results. Use the same process with her housetraining.
Leashing her to you is a good idea. I have my 15 week olds leashed to me when I’m puttering about or on a drag leash when we’re just hanging out. There will be times when they’re crated or stationed. There is no free roaming access to the whole house for them yet. This allows us train and reward for good behaviour throughout the day and to redirect unwanted behaviour like jumping onto furniture or chewing at drywall :wall:to more desirable actions like playing with their toys.
My puppies have been crate trained and they took to it pretty well after a couple of days. We have learned to ‘read’ the signs of a full bladder puppy. They have learned that frantic scratching at the door or sitting right infront of the door gets mom’s attention really fast.
I am a big proponent of reward training. I reward the girls for all outdoor piddle and poop with kibble from their daily rations and lots of praise. Even at 4:30 in the morning:rolleyes:, they get praise and reward for waking me up with their whining so I can hustle them outside for a piddle.
We take them out every hour for a piddle break and I take away their water bowl at 7:30pm. I take them to the same patch of grass and always say ,"Hurry up, pee" and usually there's a dribble. Often, I don't even have the words out of my mouth before the fountains flow:D
Even so, there is the odd accident. It happens. They’re puppies and do not have very much bladder control.

luckypenny
October 6th, 2010, 12:22 PM
It's also to your puppies benefit if it happens immediatley after she finishes going and she's still standing outside on the grass; not afterwards when she comes in the house.

I agree. By rewarding her at the door, you're reinforcing just that, her coming to the door. House training goes much faster if you accompany a puppy outside and mark/reinforce the behavior immediately.


or maybe try startling her my a noise bottle eve throwing the bottle at her direction when she is just about to pee. but DO NOT HIT HER! just startle her though.

Startling her may only teach her to associate the act with something negative, not the location.

Mogsmum
October 13th, 2010, 01:53 PM
Unfortunately just time and persistence and patience will do it.

This is exactly why I won't "do" puppy, little puppy....I've got 3 kids, I don't have the time or patience to house train a dog :)

I have heard that their age determines how long they should be able to hold themsleves for, which means 4 mths old should be able to "hold it" for approx 4 hours.

The only other thing I can think of is it's submissive peeing or a medical issue. But I'd hold off on freeaking out with an emerg trip to the vet for a while and give her some more time to learn where she should go.