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I found this forum while searching the net looking for some helpful solutions to our new problem.
Bella is our 2.5 yr old yellow lab and a great dog all around. She is for the most part very well behaved, loved by everyone that meets her, and very loving to both people and other animals in her life.
After 2.5 yrs we've come to realize that Bella is not a very adaptable dog and hates change. We haven't had many changes in her life until recently, so didn't realize how badly she would react to them. Our other 2 dogs are pretty mellow and go with the flow....she is having big problems though. Over the past 2 months we have painted our whole house, put in new carpetting throughout, built a new back deck (also making somewhat of a mess of the back yard in the process) - all of these things have thrown our regular routine out the door
She has been great at going to the washroom since a pup (although always refuses to "go" when out on a walk, at the park etc)....quickly house trained and accidents were very rare (only a handful I can remember). We've always used our backyard as our "main" washroom area, and always used the same words or phrases when we wanted any of our dogs to "go". We had noticed once we brought Bella home over 2 yrs ago there was suddenly poop showing up under our back deck. It seemed to coincide with bad weather days and we actually figured it was our pug that HATES water/wet/rain. We would keep under the deck cleaned up as best we could crawl under there and clean up...and deterred the dogs from going under whenever we could supervise their outdoor time. It seemed to slow down after a while but has again recently become the toilet for Bella.
Well we just put up a brand new deck and once the old one was ripped down we realized that at least one of our dogs had been using it far more than we had realized. Anyhow, new deck went up, and we skirted it so no more dogs could go to the washroom under there...Bella went 4 days holding in her poop...finally caved on the 5th and went twice in the yard. Apparently that was jsut the tip of the iceberg because she then came inside and had diarrhea all over the house and our less than a month old new carpetting :/ I was happy that she had at least gone...but worried now was this going to become a habit.
That was about 4 days ago and she still hasn't pooped since that we have seen...and also now seems to be holding in her pee as well. I'm worried for her and nervous for my carpetting. She seems miserable (as would I holding in poop for 4 days!!!) and doesn't even seem to enjoy going out into the yard anymore...any suggestions to get her to just get over it and poop on the grass like the other dogs?!
P.S. I have seen her both pee and poop in the yard on many many occasions over the last couple of years. But after pulling out the old deck it's obvious that had become her main toilet area
I say give it time. When its a true emergency they would have to go.
I babysat my mom's friend dog and did not pee or poop for a day, so I called the owner and she told us where she usually goes to the bathroom. I had to walk the dog to her poop/pee area. She wouldn't pee or poop anywhere I lived. Thankfully, they lived close by.
Do you still have parts of your old deck? Maybe you could leave it at the grass area until she gets her scent out on the grass and later remove the old deck wood.