Can I train a outdoor potty-trained dog to go potty indoor as well?
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Thread: Can I train a outdoor potty-trained dog to go potty indoor as well?

  1. #1
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    Can I train a outdoor potty-trained dog to go potty indoor as well?

    Hi,

    I have a 1.5 yr old dog who's potty trained outdoor. He's smallish and weighs about 10 pounds.

    Whenever I need to leave him alone at home (usually 4-5 hours tops), I put his crate inside an ex-pen with the crate door opened. So far no accidents in the pen. I think he can easily hold 8-9 hours. I know this because he often doesn't go over 8-9 hours.

    However, occasionally (like once or twice a month), I may need to leave him longer than 8-9 hours due to my erratic work schedule. The last time when it happened, he was home for 13 hours and a friend took him out for potty in the afternoon. The problem is that I don't know when it happens in advance and often it is very difficult to make an arrangement at the very last moment.

    So I am wondering if it would be possible to pee-pad train him at this point so that he can go inside the ex-pen ONLY when he needs to be left alone for an extended period of time. Most of the time there will be no pee-pad inside the pen and he will be taken outside for potty.

    Can this be done? What would be the best way? Any suggestions?

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  3. #2
    Senior Member hanksimon's Avatar
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    Re: Can I train a outdoor potty-trained dog to go potty indoor as well?

    I don't Know the answer. I know that the PetsMart Hotel or daycare has the dogs potty inside. I know my dog can be encouraged to pee (but not poop) inside with the correct scent.

    So I imagine that if you were to dampen a paper towel with his poop, enough to carry the smell... rather than be 'disgusting' ... that might signal an inside place to potty?

    BTW, there are doggie litter boxes ... and you might look into how they work?

  4. #3
    Senior Member Canyx's Avatar
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    Re: Can I train a outdoor potty-trained dog to go potty indoor as well?

    If I were you I would start building an extensive list of contacts in the area, including neighbors you trust. I would tell them that once or twice a month you might call them for some very simple help with your dog and ask if they'd be willing to be a non obligatory contact. And then if I needed to run out of town spontaneously I would have a list of contacts to go down and call. Understandably, since you say this happens with very short notice, most people might not be able to very suddenly help. But the longer your contact list the better chance of finding someone who can.

    As extra backup, I would also purchase one of those indoor grass patch things (example: http://www.entirelypets.com/miniwee....FQaFnQod1TwAww and put it down on in advance, just in case you can't find anyone.

    Soro the lab mutt - approximate birthday: April 22 2006

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    Re: Can I train a outdoor potty-trained dog to go potty indoor as well?

    Thanks. I understand asking someone else for a potty break would be the best, but I work far from home and handing out a key to whoever can help is always an issue. My neighbors are either not home during the day, too old to even come out of her own house, not reliable, etc. And I am not comfortable with too many people having keys to my house.

    Yes, I want him to only pee in the pee-pad/litter/grass patch. He can still poop when I walk him in the morning or at night. I will look into the mentioned indoor potty options.

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    Re: Can I train a outdoor potty-trained dog to go potty indoor as well?

    The thing that makes me say no is this: you only want him to pee inside when you need to be gone for an extra long day, how do you expect a dog to know if it's an extra long day or not, when sometimes you don't know that far in advance either? I'm not trying to sound snippy, honestly. I just mean dogs don't have the ability to reason. So, let's say you are gone....going on 7-8 hours. How is your dog supposed to know if you're on your way home - so he should hold it, or you are going to be gone another hour or so - so he's allowed to pee inside?

    Of course, the human reasoning would be, well, if you left a pad out that day, it would be a pee-inside-day. If you didn't leave a pad, it's not a pee-inside-day. But, asking a dog to think like that might be a bit much.

    So, if you try to teach him to pee inside, it's going to be hard to be specific about how it's ok some days, but not other days.....

  7. #6
    Senior Member Canyx's Avatar
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    Re: Can I train a outdoor potty-trained dog to go potty indoor as well?

    I see what you're saying doxie. Honestly if it were my dog and I left a pad out, he would still probably hold it until I got back. Especially since I've seen him hold it for over 24 hours.
    If I was pacman I would first prefer that the dog just hold it for however long (I know it's not good for their UT but once a month probably won't hurt I think?). The next best thing is if someone could take the dog out in the middle of the day. But if all else fails and the dog absolutely has to go, better for it to have an appropriate spot to do its business.

    Soro the lab mutt - approximate birthday: April 22 2006

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    Re: Can I train a outdoor potty-trained dog to go potty indoor as well?

    Thanks, Doxiemommy and Canyx. I also see Doxiemom's points. I forgot to mention that since my work is far I work from home 3 days/week and go to work 2 days/week. So the potty will be placed in the pen 2 days/week. On those days when I am working from home or weekends, I won't use the potty even if I need to step out for a few hours.

    I was also thinking about having him just hold it for however long, but I don't feel good about it since he's a small dog (mini poodle mix).

    What if I train him to use the same potty outside as well? Then maybe he gets a better idea?

    BTW, those indoor potties with fake grass are a lot more expensive than I thought and there are so many...

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    Senior Member CptJack's Avatar
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    Re: Can I train a outdoor potty-trained dog to go potty indoor as well?

    We have one of those indoor, fake grass, potty things. I despise it, but it's gotten me through a couple of weird spots with Kylie. (Visiting friends/relatives with unfenced yards when she was tiny/not entirely vaccinated, flooding making outside impossible.) She will still use it if it's down/out and she's bursting, but otherwise she much prefers outside.

    So I don't think the confusion thing is necessarily as big a problem as people may think, at least not for all dogs. Or maybe it's just having that, very specific, contraption available makes her more inclined to go. She definitely doesn't go elsewhere when it's not available.

    (That said, the two adults regularly choose to hold it for 13 + hours, and they're NOT big dogs. They just opt out of going out for the 7:30 a.m potty trip and continue to hold it until 11 a.m. Because, apparently, they'd rather sleep. This is, however, mostly overnight time.)

    From left to right: Jack: DOB 12-27-2006, Kylie: DOB 5-13-20012, Bug: DOB 3-23-2007, Thud: DOB 11-28-2012, and Frost: DOB 5-26-2009

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    Senior Member Laurelin's Avatar
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    Re: Can I train a outdoor potty-trained dog to go potty indoor as well?

    Here are my thoughts.

    I leave my dogs in an x-pen and have a potty pad for them just in case. It works for us. My older dog never goes on the pad (she holds it always). My younger dog 98% of the time never goes. There are occasions that she does though and I much prefer it happen on the pad than on the floor. When I have to be gone a long time or when she's sick she'll use that. She never goes anywhere else in the house.

    For me, it was a leap of faith and I just put it in there when she was about 3. She was potty pad trained by her breeder until she was 16 weeks old. Then I got her and did not use pee pads for years as I didn't want her to. Now that the work schedule changed and it can sometimes be long, I like giving them an option. It was amazing to me that she went right back to knowing she could potty on the potty pad.

    However, I do not think my older dog understands the potty pad at all.

    A few things though- I leave it in all the time. I think it would be confusing for it to be there sometimes but not all the time. she never goes to use it when I'm home. She obviously prefers outside. I also don't know that you can have it be a 'pee only' pad. I don't know if a dog understands the difference. Mia will do either on her potty pad.
    Mia CGC (5 year old papillon) and Summer (9.5 year old papillon)

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    Re: Can I train a outdoor potty-trained dog to go potty indoor as well?

    Thanks again. Glad to hear that some people are doing this as well.

    He's a rescue and I don't know if he was pee-pad or any kind of indoor potty trained before. I think I'll need to introduce him to use the potty outside first.

    I am also thinking about getting a large absorbent pad and place it under the pen in addition to the potty just in case. Will this be a good/bad idea? My gut feeling is that he'll try to hold it as long as he can though.

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