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Hey everyone,
I have a 4 month old boxer female puppy. For some reason she will urinate in her crate almost every other day. We put her in the crate at night from about 12am to 7am. However, we get up in the middle of the night to let her out as I understand as a puppy she does not have the bladder control needed to last through the night.

We take her water away at 9pm and she will urinate outdoors roughly 3-4 times before bed. She still somehow will wet her crate before I let her out at 4am. It's getting to the point where I am beyond frustrated because I know she can hold it. If we fall asleep in the family room and she spends the night on her doggy bed (outside of the crate) and I fall asleep on the couch, she will sleep through the night without any accidents, however, put her in the crate and she pees.

What is wrong? How can I fix this? I need help.
 

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Ah, housetraining! It's why I don't do puppies. Here's what's going on: any time a dog pees someplace and gets away with it, they learn that's a good place to pee. It's called reinforcement. More than likely, your boxer can smell her pee from the last time and that makes her think the crate is a good place to pee. Just because she can hold it, doesn't mean it's comfortable or natural to her yet.

You need to clean up with an enzymatic cleaner. Soap and water aren't enough. Also, walk her before 4am. If she's already peed every night by 4am, keep waking up earlier until you hit a time when she hasn't peed yet.

Also, if she's okay on the doggy bed, why crate her? Crating isn't a way of life, it's a training tool. If she's not peeing everywhere or destroying your house, you don't have to use the crate.
 

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Ok, I will try a different cleaning product. I will throw out the mat that I have in there which I have been constantly cleaning and get her a new one. I cannot keep purchasing a new crate bed every time she pees though.

The thing is, she does not pee every night before 4am. Sometimes she doesn't, sometimes she does. Sometimes there's no accident when I take her out at 4 but then when I let her out again at 7 there's pee.

She's good on the doggy bed in the family room but the problem is I'm in there with her on the couch. If she gets up one night when I'm not there and goes exploring who knows what she may do. Still too young to leave unattended over night I think. I'd hate to wake up to a puddle of pee, a mountain of poo and a torn up couch. The ultimate goal is to leave her out of the crate overnight of course, but just too early now.
 

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That's fair enough. I suppose you can't keep her in your bedroom with you?

Definitely throw away the mat. It's probably soaked through.

At four months, puppies are still growing and developing the control necessary to hold in pee for longer periods of time. It could be a while before she can physically be fully housetrained. Just stick with it.

ETA: You're disobeying the board rules by continuing failure to provide adorable boxer puppy pics, you know.
 

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Ugh, housetraining. My whole opinion of this topic has changed in the past year.

I got my first dog almost 5 years ago. 8 week old golden retriever. This guy had ONE "accident" in the house...EVER. I thought "Housebreaking is easy!!"

Then we got our second dog this past summer. 8 week old malamute. Thus began a housebreaking ordeal that I was not prepared for. We did things exactly the same way that we did with our golden, but we were wiping up pee for a good 3 months before she finally "got it". It was nothing for her to pee in the house 6 or 7 times in a day. This with us taking her out 2-3 times an hour all day long. She's 7 months old now and hasn't peed inside for maybe 2 months or so. I believe we're finally over the hump.
 

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I've been throwing the mat in the washing machine just about every other day. I will buy a new one and clean out the bottom with the cleaner you recommended. I know she will eventually get over this because she's absolutely an amazing puppy, just frustrating. I guess if her only flaw is she pees in her crate for a bit, I should count my blessings.

Sorry about disobeying the rules. Here are a few shots of her. Don't blame her for cheering for the Maple Leafs (I hate dog clothes but on game days she wears it)



 

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I've been throwing the mat in the washing machine just about every other day. I will buy a new one and clean out the bottom with the cleaner you recommended. I know she will eventually get over this because she's absolutely an amazing puppy, just frustrating. I guess if her only flaw is she pees in her crate for a bit, I should count my blessings.

Sorry about disobeying the rules. Here are a few shots of her. Don't blame her for cheering for the Maple Leafs (I hate dog clothes but on game days she wears it)



She doesn't need a mat - mine just sleeps on the floor pan of the crate. I threw away about 4 beds before coming to this realization.
 

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Oh my gosh! She is the cutest thing!

Yes, throw the mat out. If you've been using laundry detergent, or any other regular household cleaning product, it may actually have "set" the stains, so they won't really come out. Of course, it may seem like the stains are gone to humans, but dogs have way stronger senses of smell, so they can tell.

If she pees on the new mat, just throw some enzyme cleaner, maybe 1/4-1/2 cup, in with the laundry. OR, you can use white vinegar, it will also work, because it's very acidic, and it causes a chemical reaction similar to the enzyme cleaner.

As Amaryllis said, if she gets used to peeing in her crate, she will start to think it's an acceptable place to potty. So, maybe using the dog bed, but putting it in your room could help.

And, dogs don't gain complete control of their bladders til 6 months of age, give or take. So, she just isn't used to judging how long she can wait before it's too late and she has an accident.
 
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