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Hi all. I have a 3 year old border collie/blue healer mix. He's 100 pounds so we don't know what he's mixed with. The past several months our loveable Bullet has become a handfull. I'm not sure what to do so I am hoping for ideas.

True Bullet is an indoor dog now, and always has been. We go for LONG walks every day about 3 or 4 miles stopping to play in the park. He's good and tired when we return home. Still he has developed a bad habit. We live in a tri-level home, and because I work form home I spend quite a bit of time on the computer. He's fine as long as I don't turn on music, or voice chat on the net. For some reason he doesn't respond the same way to a phone call.

Soon as I turn on music, or start talking he runs up to the bedrooms and gets into so much trouble. He either pees all over the floor, or he gets into things.

I shouldn't have to block up the stairs to prevent him from going up, but that is what I decided I'd do. He's been this way since last fall, but is doing it much more often. I am 5 months pregnant so I am not sure that has anythign to do with it. He normally doesn't go upstairs unless my husband or I are there, and has never peed in the house since we trained him.
 

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Relapses in housetraining do happen. The good news is that it doesn't take alot of effort to get back on track after a short refresher course. Just go back to housetraining 101...no unsupervised freedom, clean up any accidents with an enzyme cleaner and praise for going in the right potty area.
For the reactivity to music and voice chat, try feeding him at a good distance from the sound ie; something good happens (lunch) when the music comes on.
 

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In reading this, I cannot be sure he is reacting to the music/voice etc. with fear OR if he has related the music and chat with 'Oh boy! She's busy and I can go have fun!'

I have 5 cats and a dog who all know when I am on the puter or on the phone and the things they do when I am thus occupied is pretty entertaining.. sometimes for me too.

If the pee etc. is out of fear, then I wonder what happened simultaneous to both those things causing your dog to react like this. If it is 'ooh boy she is busy and the party is ON' then that is a whole 'nother thing.

Agree with Tooney if it is a simple house breaking lapse. Retrain like a puppy and, maybe, get him out just before you chat on line or paly music so you know the tank has been emptied (or at least has less volume in it).

If it is fear reaction, the rest is good too.

I would be tempted to Crate the dog when I was going to engage in either the music playing or the voice chat on the 'net. I would try giving him a Kong filled with Peanut butter (frozen) or plain Yogurt (also frozen). The object here is to have the dog associate a safe place and the kong with your activities.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I am not so sure it is simple house training as he is trained to ring a bell when he needs to go out. He still rings the bell and we take him out within 2 minutes (can't always drop a call) He knows he gets his way when he rings the bell. I do try to take him out if I know I'm going to be a while like in a meeting. He doesn't always pee however, he sometimes just gets into things. Like dragging a bag of clean baby cloths out and slobbering over all of them, or pulling covers off the bed. Not sure what causes this. He doesn't do it when we're away from home.

I do, however, like the treat idea. I'll try a stuffed kong next time I'm in a meeting and see if that has a positive effect. If he still acts up he not only gets a time out, but his treat gets taken away.

Thanks:)
 

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This started a couple of months ago and you're five months pregnant? (congratulations by the way). It could also be that his schedule/amount of attention given has changed drastically as you get ready for the baby, not to mention that YOU have changed, both physically and chemically/hormonally. Changes in the household can often trigger stress related urination/marking and chewing habits.
I agree that giving him an appropriate outlet for chewing and restricting his access to the rest of the house when you are busy will help to manage the behaviour but you should probably also take a look at what changes are going on in the house in relation to Bullet and whether you can adjust some things so that his acceptance of the changes is more positive. This includes GRADUALLY changing up his schedule and attention times in anticipation of the chaos that may ensue once the babelet is born and also making sure that there is Bullet time with you and the DH.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Well this started before I got pregnant, but it has been getting worse lately so I thought there is a chance it is related.

As of now we don't have many changes in the house. We do plan on painting the room and getting some furniture, but nothing has happened yet. The biggest change is me, although I always spend time with Bullet throughout the day and so does hubby. I know that will change once the baby comes. So will how we walk as I will have to take the little one with us in a stroller.

So for now I will just have to give him treat balls when I am most busy and go from there. Meantime if anyone has advice on how to get Bullet ready for the baby about to come I'd welcome it too.

Thanks guys
 
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