(Closed) Housebreaking issues… ideas desperately needed

posted 7 years ago in Pets
Post # 3
7587 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2010

One of the first things you’ll want to do is effectively remove all
odors from areas where she has had an accident.  A dog may be
triggered to urinate indoors by the smell of the spot where he
previously went.  A dog’s sense of smell is 200 times greater than a
human nose!

Two well known products that are good odor neutralizers are Nature’s
Miracle Stain & Odor Remover, and Un-Duz-It.  Vets can also recommend
efficient products.

When cleaning up accidents in your home, Do not use ammonia-based
products, as their odor resembles urine and may draw your dog back to
urinate in the same spot again.

When outside choose the spot were you want her to do her business
carefully and she should be taken out on leash to the same designated
spot each time.

This is not walk time or play time; stand in approximately the same
spot and wait for your dog to eliminate. If she does, praise her
enthusiastically. Don?t immediately rush back into the house with her.
Because she will learn to hold on and not eliminate so that she can
get more time outdoors. Instead walk a few minutes or give her a
minute or two of playtime.

When she has successfully peed and pooped outside, don?t fully clean
up the spot, but leave a trace of urine or feces to provide a scent
that will remind her what she is supposed to do there.

There may be an occasional accident in the house. If there is one
don?t hit, don’t yell, and don’t rub her nose in it.

Dogs cannot make a connection between your punishment and earlier behavior.

The result of hitting, yelling and punishment will eventually lead to
her being afraid of you.  Just clean up the mess without making a
fuss, and apply one of the odor eliminators/neutralizers.

If you actually catch your dog in the act of eliminating inside the
house, interrupt her and take her outside to the proper place (without
harsh words or punishment). If she eliminates outside, praise her.
Remember to be patient, some dogs take longer than others to

Learn to use the same simple words for accidents and for praise.

“Nah nah” or “No”, for accidents. 

“GOOD GIRL” or “GOOD DOG” or “GOOD (name)”  Praise with joy and
enthusiasm in your voice.  Smile!

Eventually you can get her to go on demand, by teaching her simple
words for elimination. “Go Potty”, “Go Poop”, “Make Pee”.

If you are consistent, watchful, and use the crate, a dog can usually
be housebroken in couple of weeks.

Post # 4
7587 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2010

I meant to put before my post that I had the same issue with a rescue and this is what my vet sent me. It was so frustrating to stand there at times, but eventually she was fully housebroken.

Post # 6
7587 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2010

@canthugallcats: We didn’t have any other pets and our carpets were throw rugs. I also bought this Arm and Hammer plus oxi-clean powder and put it all over the carpets, to neutralize any odors.

Post # 7
90 posts
Worker bee

My dog is recovering from kidney stones, so we have dealt with constant urination in the house, which has been horrible because we don’t want to get mad at her about it since she was straining to urinate and in pain.  Finally, she is feeling better and is back to her normal housebroken habits thank godness.  One suggestion I have is using a training spray.  When we were pad training the dog it worked very well, and we have a great spot outside that we would spray and she started knowing that it was her spot.  The spray reaks to high heavens, but seems to help in having the dog understand where to pee. 


Here is a link to a similar product:




Good luck!

Post # 10
1956 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2010 - Tannery Pond at the Darrow School

How old is your dog?? I remember feeling really frustrated (just like you) with ours in the beginning bc it felt like she just. wasn’t. getting. it…And then, one day, she did! But the meantime is really hard bc you don’t see much progress.It sounds like you’re doing everything right but if she’s really a puppy, it just takes time!

I have heard that using the crate can be a good training tool, since dogs instinctively won’t go where they sleep…Could you get a dog walker for a month or two and then have her crated for like, 4 or 5 hours at a time? That’s what we did…

I hope it works out for you, good luck!! 


Post # 12
4824 posts
Honey bee

We had to treat our dog. Give her treats when she when outside helped a lot.

We had similar problems with our puppy and the breeder recommended to not let the dog unattended (ours is small so we carried her) or put her in her crate until she went the bathroom when we knew she had to go. dont give her a chance to have an accident.  and then treat her when she goes.  It was a pain in the ass, but it worked after a couple of days.

We also have to bring our down out about every 1.5 hours when we are home to prevent accidents.


Post # 14
1701 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

Good luck.  Great advice there with the cleaning. 

I’ve just had a litter of puppies…they are 7 weeks old now. 

Dogs naturally do not want to pee where they sleep…I can attest to this, as the puppies have never ‘done their business’ in their bed since they were old enough to crawl (and couldn’t even see yet!). 

I would suggest crate training. As soon as you take the dog out of the crate, go walking outside and let them do the business. 

Have you tried puppy pads?  These 7 week old pups are too much for me to handle actually crate training them, but we put out puppy pads for them and most of the puppies only pee and poo on the pads.  One of the boys pees a little more here, there, and everywhere, but even he uses the pads about 50 percent of the time.  

Good luck!  I feel for you with the carpets. We only have carpets upstairs and our big dog went up to pee there when she had a bladder infection.  Now we have a gate to prevent her from ever going upstairs again.  Carpets are so hard to clean.  We rented a steam cleaner and used the ‘nature’s miracle’ stuff to get the pee smell out, but we still do not trust her. 

Good luck lady.

Post # 15
478 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

I have to strongly endorse crate training too! It doesn’t hurt their feelings to keep them in there or in the laundry room – as long as you give them plenty of attention and playtime at other points in the day, dogs want and need their own “den” where they can go to sleep and eat.

We have two crates for my 8 month old puppy – one in the mudroom and one in the bedroom. I take her outside first thing in the morning and first thing when we get home from work, and she knows the sooner she “goes potty” the sooner she’ll get her breakfast or dinner! It didn’t take her long to catch on when food was involved.

I was very, very firmly opposed to any kind of verbal punishment for accidents and practiced several months of positive reinforcement (treats and “good girls!” when she went outside), but she still had a few at 7 months and one day, when she was caught in the act, my fiance just yelled at her and then we ignored her for a bit. She hasn’t had an accident since!

Crate training, associating going potty outside with being fed, and the ocassional scolding when you catch her doing it seem to work wonders! Good luck!!

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