(Closed) Potty-training FAILURE – making me crazy.

posted 7 years ago in Pets
Post # 3
175 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

I had a similar problem with my dog ….. that is, when she seemed to want to go outside I would take her every single time, but she wouldn’t always go outside.  Then, she would come back in and go on the floor. 

I finally had to do some tough love and if she refused to go potty outside after 5 minutes of walking then when we came back in she would be put straight in her crate (she loves her crate and would not use the bathroom in it).  After a while she’d start crying in her crate and I’d take her straight back outside for another 5 minutes.  If she didn’t go potty outside, then I’d put her back in the crate.  I’d repeat this cycle until she went potty outside (within the 5 minute timeframe) then I’d bring her inside, give her a treat, and let her run around inside and play.  It took a few weeks for her to catch on, but eventually she figured it out and we’ve been pretty much accident free ever since!

Also, my dog doesn’t bark/whimper when she had to go potty now.  She either silently stands at the door or she comes and puts her butt on me and looks at me with this “uh-oh” face (weird, I know).  So, I have to be very attentive to her body language.  The only time she has accidents inside now is when I’m not paying attention.

Post # 5
7291 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2011

Does she get out at all for a potty break during the 10:30 to 7 time frame?  Thats a long time for a dog to be in a cage. It can be the source for a lot of behaivoral problems. Could you afford to bring a person to take her out in the late afternoon?

Potty training takes a lot of consistency with time. Since you didn’t have her in the beggining its rough and not your fault. She could probably really use to be taken outside every hour to check for potty. and when she does go, big rewards. ( just till she breaks the habit) 

She is sniffing for everything but the bathroom because she is being flooded by things of interest!  They only think of one thing at a time. She doesn’t get much time out, so Take her for a good long walk before work and after work( she should most likely go on the long walks) and let her play outside not worrying about potty. then after each play session, leash up and take her on a potty walk. The action should stimulate bowel movements.

Instead of relying on the dog to tell you when, just be reliable for the dog. She should know that when she hears the car pull into the drive way at 7, she will be going out and she can do her thing. Or when you wake up, shes getting to go out for a potty, and after meals etc. You must bring out the dog in her. Right now she may be more of like a robot.

Post # 6
842 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

Do you have an idea of how long in between she goes to the bathroom? Because if you know that she needs to go every 3 hours or so, you could try taking her out every 2 hours so she doesn’t have a chance to need to go while she’s inside. My dog doesn’t generally give any signs, we just take her out on a regular schedule. 
A couple other things you could try are #1 leash tethering. Whenever she’s out of the crate you keep her attached to you with the leash (hooked to your belt loop or whatever’s comfortable.) I know you said she’s ok with going next to you, but maybe it would help a little. Like, I know my dog would go on the couch. So if we’re sitting and relaxing she’d never have an opportunity to make a mess.
#2 idea is to bring treats outside with you and start praising as soon as she starts going and once she’s done, treat her. You could also use negative reinforcement. When my dog is really being bad we give her a “timeout” which she really doesn’t like. Basically I put her on the stairs and close the (glass) door. She doesn’t like it because she can’t be near us or sit in her favorite comfy spot on the couch. You could try a similar timeout approach for whenever there’s an accident so she knows it’s not something she wants to do. You just have to get the timing right and make sure she gets the association. 

Post # 7
2606 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2009

When she goes in the house, are you interrupting her and rushing her outside?  Or do you catch her only after the fact?  Ideally, you catch her in the action of peeing or pooping and interrupt her with a loud, “NO!” then rush her outside, let her finish there, and praise while she does.  If you miss it, you’ve missed the opportunity to correct her.  I read somewhere that while you should not directly punish the dog, you should use a stern voice and say “Bad mess!” or “Naughty mess!” while you clean up the accident.  I do this, because I figure it certainly isn’t causing any kind of harm to the dog, (unlike spanking or rubbing their noise in it, which are often counterproductive).  Not sure if it’s helping, but it makes ME feel better if nothing else.  Hehehe.

Also, when you take her out, she should be praised DURING her pottying.  Ideally attach a marker to it.  For example, with our dogs we call pee “potty” and poop is just poop.  So when teaching them, we say, “Go potty!  Good girl!  Good potty!  Go potty!  Good potty!” WHILE they are peeing.  Then either treat IMMEDIATELY after she goes, or don’t treat at all.  Same for pooping.  Once she learns to associate the commands with the action, you will be able to direct her to do what you want, (so when she’s sniffing squirrels instead of pottying, you can give her a reminder of what she’s there to do).  And of course, once she has a firm grasp on where she should be going potty, she will learn how to “ask” you to take her out.  

Make sure she does get plenty of time to sniff and play outside, too, (but AFTER she’s at least peed).  She’s in her crate longer than is ideal, (the suggestion of having someone let her out in the middle of the day is a good one), so you need to make sure she is getting physical and mental stiumlation outside of the crate.  Like Mrs.Argentina said, walks (or playtime) are a good way to “get things moving” so she’ll poop.  Often times, our dog, (who is completely house trained, thankfully), will not always realize he needs to poop right away.  He’ll pee, but then we starting playing fetch, and after a couple minutes, it’s like, “Oh!  I need to go!” and he starts circling.  Give her time to “work things out” so to speak before you go back inside.  Also, don’t go inside right away after she potties.  You don’t want her to associate going potty with having to go back inside.


Post # 8
175 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

@panther: Yes, I felt bad doing this too because my dog stays in her crate from about 8am until 5pm every day (and she’s a small little dog with a tiny bladder!).  BUT, I was at my wits end, had tried everything else, and was ridiculously frustrated with her, which I’m sure was not pleasant for her either.  In the end, this method was the only one that worked for her and me.  I was also sure to take her out on a schedule …. only at 6:30am and then again at 5:30pm.  She always went potty in the morning, but in the evening I would have to use the method I talked about in my first post.  Now she’s on the schedule like clockwork and rarely ever has accidents.

Also, I think it also helps that she LOVES her crate and refuses to potty in it.  She doesn’t seem to get tired of it …. even after being in it all day long, she will grab her stuffed toy and march herself in there at night when she gets tired and is ready to sleep.  So cute.  🙂

Good luck!


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