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Crate training/house training

707 Views 5 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Jack Naylor
We have a 6 month old Texas Heeler for 3 months now. He does great in the crate. Fantastic. He will go to the door to go out - most of the time. But he goes out to pee every 30-40 minutes! And if I don't know he's there (he doesn't bark), he'll pee right there. Or walk off and pee wherever. He can last for hours in the crate, even all night. But less than an hour outside the crate. What am I missing?
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That's pretty normal for puppies. Think of it how you don't (usually) have to get up to use the restroom during the night while you're sleeping, but when you're awake and active you have to use the restroom more often. This is especially true for puppies who don't have full control of their bladder yet. You can't expect a dog to be fully, 100% house trained until they're around a year old because they simply don't have the brain to bladder connection.

At this age you can't depend on the dog to let you know he has to go out. Sure, he'll probably alert sometimes, but he might not realize he has to go until he's going. They're still easily distracted. At this time he still needs careful supervision for any signs of needing to go. Keep potty breaks frequent when he's active, and make sure to reward heavily for going outside. He's not a baby anymore and likely has the idea of going potty outside, but he still needs your guidance to really cement the behavior and help him be successful.

I think if the time he can go between potty breaks isn't increasing, though, and you feel his urination is excessive, I would take him to a vet to check for a UTI. Doesn't hurt, and if that's ruled out you know it's simply that he's still developing his bladder.
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Hi there. I can relate…I have 8 month old puppy lagotto romagnolo. She does great during the day and she asks to go out by barking. But afternoons! She goes for walk around 4p.m. comes home, eats and rest for bit, she asks again…if I dont take her she pees a little bit just like he is saying to me looook I can’t hold it woman!
Today, I decided to tell her NO NO and put her in “her room” corridor. I think she can hold ot until 8 p.m.
Someone with experience…please HELP!
As mentioned above, I would first rule out an infection with the vet.

For @0691jj - I recommend using baby gates to confine him to the room you are in. You need to watch him and as soon as you see any sign that he might have to potty, take him outside. You might even keep him outside longer so he pees twice on each trip

At his age, not only is the brain to bladder connection not there, but the bladder is small and the muscles are not fully developed. So be patient and be consistent. Don't give him free reign of the home - limit his access to the room you are in. And make sure to give him plenty of exercise.

For @Amila - stop thinking "she can hold it until 8 pm". She is telling you she can't. Having to take a dog out to potty shortly after eating, playing, waking up, is normal. Even as an adult dog, she should be taken out to potty at the least when she wakes, after she eats, and right before bed - at the least. Listen to your dog.
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@0691jj Are you going out with your pup still and throwing him a treat party when he potties in the right place? It's really important to teach a dog that pottying outside is waaay more rewarding than pottying inside, so they're motivated to hold it until you can let them out. Otherwise he might not understand why pottying outdoors is any better than pottying inside. Definitely keep him confined to an area where you can watch him when he's outside the crate, so you notice when he starts asking to go out and he can't sneak off and pee elsewhere - the more often he pees in the house, the more he builds that habit. Clean up any accidents really well with an enzymatic cleaner meant for pet messes - these break down the smell so that even a dog's nose can't detect it, so it no longer smells like a potty spot to them. You can even get a small blacklight to help you find pee spots that need cleaning.

And yes, if he doesn't seem to be able to hold it longer, it's worth getting a vet exam to rule out a urinary tract infection or any other problem.

@Amila I wouldn't expect my 2.5 year old Lagotto to not have to pee for four hours after a walk, especially if he's eaten and drunk water in the meantime! He might empty himself really well when he's outside, but having a drink and a meal often gets those systems moving again. If you're worried she's going to start demanding to go out because she wants to play or explore, than take her out on-leash and keep things very boring. Go to a boring spot, wait until she pees or poos, quick reward, then right back inside. All business, no fun, so she learns that asking for a potty break at that time means that all she gets is a potty break, not a fun walk or playtime.
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As for the timing ... big yes on the vet thing.

And the gates .... we have 1 up all the time, separating the cat level from the rest of the house. It's a steel one with hinged door for easy Yooman passage. The main reason is I sleep below the cats and dogs will run back and forth and it sounds like the Budweiser Clydesdales at 3 am. We have others that "come outta the closet" when needed to keep all the animals (ours and guests) out from underfoot. When needed, as in puppies or new arrivals (when old and new start soiling), these come out. Since I work from home, when there's an issue we'll do 6:00, 9:00, 13:00 pm, 17:00, 20:30, 24:00 ... shortening the intervals if that doesn't work and eventually aiming for 7:30, 14:00, 17:30, 21:00 and 0:30
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