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Aggression and wetting

September 23rd, 2012, 03:37 PM
I have a new dog, Iris. She was adopted. She is about 2 and is part Schnauzer, part ???? My husband and I work, so we are trying to crate train her. It is for about 4 or 5 hours. She wets all the time in the crate. Is this normal for a new dog? Our other dogs never messed in their crates. Also, she is very afraid of men. She has finally warmed up to my husband. We are an older couple and not around a lot of people. My sister and her husband came over to see her and she was shaking and growling towards him. She even wet while I was holding her. She follows me everywhere and clings to me. Am I babying her too much? Please help as we are very fond of her and she really is sweet.
Thanks, iowagal.

Loki Love
September 23rd, 2012, 03:44 PM
Was she crate trained previously? You have to work up to leaving her for 4-5 hours :) Also, are you providing a fun toy or kong to keep her busy while she's in there? It needs to be a fun, positive place - but it sometimes takes a bit of time to turn it into that. I would work on keeping the crate door open and lots of praise if she goes near it, start feeding her meals in there, practice having her in there with the door closed for small periods of time while you're home, etc.

Re: issues with men. Given you don't know her past life experiences, it may take some time to work on that and she may never be 100% comfortable with strange men. The next time your sister and husband are over, load her husband up with some yummy treats and have him completely ignore your dog but just drop the yummy treats whenever he is near her. Work up to him giving them to her by hand. That will help :)

Good luck!

September 23rd, 2012, 09:42 PM
Another thought about the wetting--have you had a urinalysis done on her since you adopted her? I wonder if she might have a urinary tract infection?

September 24th, 2012, 07:23 AM
Did your sister and BIL approach her while she was in the crate? Some dogs see the crate as a trap. Something frightening is approaching them and all they know is they're stuck and can't get away. Don't let people do that to her. This could partly explain her wetting in the crate when you are away as well.

When you hold her are you picking her up? Don't pick her up then. Many dogs don't like it and if she is new to you it must be scary to her.

She sounds a bit like our rescue ESS. She was also afraid of men and also had submissive urination when approached by strange people, especially men. She got over it but it took a good year. We tried to be kind but firm. No coddling but no scolding either, she wasn't doing any of this on purpose. I don't mean to suggest you are scolding but we found some people's advice indicated they thought "firm" necessarily included old outdated stuff like rubbing noses in pee and a good whupping.

September 24th, 2012, 09:16 AM
To me this also sounds like submissive urination ( which has nothing to do with housetraining and is associuated with a lack of confidence.

To be safe though, a urine test sounds prudent.