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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My pup is a 6 month pit mix (I think with doberman) and her name is princess. I got her from the shelter about a month ago and she pretty much became potty trained within the first week and adopted the habit of holding it, and telling us when she needs to go very quickly. Before two days ago the only accident she had was of not holding it, but she definitely told me that she needed to go so I knew it was my fault and I didn't do anything but clean it. But the other night she pooped in the room and it shocked me because she never just poops in the house. I was upset so I did sternly told her no, not quite a yell but it was on the louder side. And also the poop was very soft, but I thought it was because of the food change. But then a couple minutes or maybe an hour later she pooped again and it was softer and at this point I was upset but starting to be a bit worried, and then she pooped again, the poop was extremely soft almost liquidy at this point and by this point I was definitely worried. So any help with that situation would be great because I think something could be wrong. Now that you have backstory, we fasted her for 24 hours and gave her less food afterwards because I saw online that's what you should do for diarrhea. This morning after the fast she had a solid poop and I celebrated because I thought everything was over, I was wrong...it was not :)
Within the last two hours she's pooped 3 times, one time being in her crate (which she ate sadly) which I put her after her first poop which brings us to the discipline part (Sorry for the long beginning I wanted to make sure and include anything that could affect her behavior) because the first poop wasn't as soft as the next two, and I thought she was better because of the earlier hard poo, I got very upset because she always tells us when she needs to go but in this case she simply got off her bed and squatted. And I feel so bad because I did hit her twice, not very hard I've done it twice before but it was always the lightest tap that didn't even phased her. This time I think it did hurt and after she pooped twice more I felt even worse because I realized it was still more diarrhea. I don't want a hand shy dog and after the hit she flinched when I was moving my hand, which is what brought me here. The two questions I have are 1 how should I discipline her the best because I see many mixed opinions and I would like a more fact based answer. Two is everywhere I look I always see that a stern "no" it's a good way to discipline them to know the behavior is wrong but hitting and yelling are unhelpful and usually have a negative affect because the dog doesn't know why you're hitting them or yelling. But this statement seems to contradict itself because if they don't know why you're hitting and yelling how would they know why you're sternly talking to them saying no and stop the behavior because of it. I just wants what's best for her but I honestly don't know what way is really the right way. Anything is welcome I just want to do right by my princess, and ill be completely accepting if I am wrong.
 

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Have you spoken to or taken her to see your vet about the diarrhea? That's what you should be thinking about or doing right now... I'm not sure why you would be more worried about disciplining her than helping her feel better. You don't discipline a dog for getting sick.
And, NO. Hitting a dog is never, ever, ever a good idea. You help her learn what you do want her to do & reinforce/reward that, while preventing her from performing behaviors that you don't want. So, for regular housetraining, you would take her outside very often (before she had the need or opportunity to have an accident) and reward her heavily for taking care of business there. BUT! Your situation in this case has nothing to do with that. If she's got diarrhea & can't physically hold it, getting mad at her certainly isn't going to help. Get her to the vet!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Have you spoken to or taken her to see your vet about the diarrhea? That's what you should be thinking about or doing right now... I'm not sure why you would be more worried about disciplining her than helping her feel better. You don't discipline a dog for getting sick.
And, NO. Hitting a dog is never, ever, ever a good idea. You help her learn what you do want her to do & reinforce/reward that, while preventing her from performing behaviors that you don't want. So, for regular housetraining, you would take her outside very often (before she had the need or opportunity to have an accident) and reward her heavily for taking care of business there. BUT! Your situation in this case has nothing to do with that. If she's got diarrhea & can't physically hold it, getting mad at her certainly isn't going to help. Get her to the vet!
I didn't think I needed to mention that Im taking her to a vet today. I also didn't think I needed to mention that my car broke down and my friends and family do not like dogs so its not easy to be able to get a ride. I also thought that the fact that I spent majority of the PARAGRAPH on her health made it clear that was the biggest concern. I also wanted to at least wait a full day to see if it would pass because YES I talked to a vet, and she told me she most likely ate something bad, and it will pass. But if it persisted for more than a day or 2 THEN come see her. So please, do not assume. Everyone makes mistakes and I thought I made it clear I should not have hit her and regret it almost immediately. There are not many vets open at 3 am in the morning and obviously that's what im thinking about if im here telling this situation and I have class @8 am. I haven't been to sleep all night researching what I can. I mentioned behavior not because she did something bad, because she did not. I mentioned behavior because its a question I had while reading other posts when I originally came for the health issue. I didn't know people gave medical advice on here because I didn't see many others ask about it. She is house and potty trained as I mentioned. I only asked what the best way to discipline her was because I became confused by something someone said, and I see so many mixed opinions, like I also said. No offense to you, I appreciate the advice, but I can't allow you to believe I care more about what she does wrong than her health. Don't you think I would have mentioned some actual behavior issues if that's what I was trying to correct? Everything just flew right over your head
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I didn't think I needed to mention that Im taking her to a vet today. I also didn't think I needed to mention that my car broke down and my friends and family do not like dogs so its not easy to be able to get a ride. I also thought that the fact that I spent majority of the PARAGRAPH on her health made it clear that was the biggest concern. I also wanted to at least wait a full day to see if it would pass because YES I talked to a vet, and she told me she most likely ate something bad, and it will pass. But if it persisted for more than a day or 2 THEN come see her. So please, do not assume. Everyone makes mistakes and I thought I made it clear I should not have hit her and regret it almost immediately. There are not many vets open at 3 am in the morning and obviously that's what im thinking about if im here telling this situation and I have class @8 am. I haven't been to sleep all night researching what I can. I mentioned behavior not because she did something bad, because she did not. I mentioned behavior because its a question I had while reading other posts when I originally came for the health issue. I didn't know people gave medical advice on here because I didn't see many others ask about it. She is house and potty trained as I mentioned. I only asked what the best way to discipline her was because I became confused by something someone said, and I see so many mixed opinions, like I also said. No offense to you, I appreciate the advice, but I can't allow you to believe I care more about what she does wrong than her health. Don't you think I would have mentioned some actual behavior issues if that's what I was trying to correct? Everything just flew right over your head
And in addition, also came here because of the flinch which I stated I DO NOT WANT. Im here to learn the best way because I am also worried about her being afraid of me or my hands which I don't want. I was hoping for health advice but once here it didn't seem to be the place for that so I asked for help, but shifted my focus for the post to something I thought people here could definitely help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I just don't understand how you missed this "I thought she was better because of the earlier hard poo, I got very upset because she always tells us when she needs to go but in this case she simply got off her bed and squatted. And I feel so bad because I did hit her twice" ohh yea and this too "I felt even worse because I realized it was still more diarrhea" meaning, if u didn't understand I thought she was pooping in the room just too poop and I knew she knew better but once I realized it was the diarrhea again I felt even worse because she's actually sick. Maybe you should reread and actually answer questions I had.
 

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Well, I apologize if I misunderstood what you were after. Your title asking about how to discipline your pup, then you going on & on about her diarrhea & pooping in the house (which made you very angry) obviously confused me as to what you were looking for. So - first off, asking for health advice is against forum rules. We can not offer any suggestions beyond "see a vet" because even under the most well meaning of situations, people on the internet can't possibly be able to correctly diagnose what's going on & might inadvertently offer suggestions which would delay in an owner seeking actual veterinary attention, which could exacerbate a problem.

As to answering what I believe is your question? I did write this:

You help her learn what you do want her to do & reinforce/reward that, while preventing her from performing behaviors that you don't want. So, for regular housetraining, you would take her outside very often (before she had the need or opportunity to have an accident) and reward her heavily for taking care of business there

If there are other behavior problems you are having outside of housetraining (which, actually you don't seem to be asking about?) perhaps more details of what you really need help with & forum members could offer more specific suggestions.

I hope she's feeling better soon. Good luck at the vet (and, yes, you really should have mentioned that you had an appointment scheduled)
 

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I don't think I told my pup "no" for the 1st year of his life. I have yet to say "no" in a stern voice.

For toileting inside, I simply pick up the pup and take him outside. Big praise for pottying outside.

If he goes for my shoes, I pretend the shoes are really boring, and what he really wants is the toy I'm waving.

Distraction, showing the pup what you want, and big praise/excitement for making the right decision.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Its OK, a lot was said so I understand how it could’ve been confusing. But was asking ahead of the problems and that is why I didn’t focus on the health issues for that very reason. I was looking for any advice that could possibly help her health wise, as well as a good effective way to discipline because she is a puppy and she does do things they’re just not huge issues. I was also asking about the contradictory sentence which I stated at the end. I will admit trying to ask for help when you’re stressed out and worried at 3 AM And tired, isn’t the best idea as I was very worried and confused but I was basically trying to get help on all three aspects. I definitely agree I shouldn’t of put my frustration out on her for sure, Because it wasn’t her I was mad at, I Had just become stressed of the situation and regretting thinking she was better because of the solid poop she had. I appreciate your help, and thank you for the good wishes. I didn’t mean to come off rude but the idea of someone thinking I don’t care about my dog definitely drives me crazy 😭
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I don't think I told my pup "no" for the 1st year of his life. I have yet to say "no" in a stern voice.

For toileting inside, I simply pick up the pup and take him outside. Big praise for pottying outside.

If he goes for my shoes, I pretend the shoes are really boring, and what he really wants is the toy I'm waving.

Distraction, showing the pup what you want, and big praise/excitement for making the right decision.
I def agree with that because when I first got her I didn’t tell her no much either, The first couple accidents she had I simply clean them up and tried to get her next time and that definitely got her potty trained quick. I was actually on the side of no hitting or yelling, but some misleading information told me otherwise and I think fear of messing up with the first puppy had me second-guessing things. I hate the feeling of yellin at her and i think ill def be going back to how i started. When i say light hit, i really do mean light. Like really a pat. And it was never a “NO!” w a hit. It was more of a “princess!!! no no, dont do that silly dog!” n a pat on the butt n she’d be waggin her tail and lickin me. So this diarrhea situation really just put me out of wack. And w the many stressors of life, i think it was just icing. But she does great and learn so quickly. I also think because of how well behaved she was i was very shocked to see her poo in here. She would wake me up to do her business so it was jus so out of character. I also just realized k9luv this was meant to be a general post, not a reply to u😭 sorry still tryna work this thing
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I don't think I told my pup "no" for the 1st year of his life. I have yet to say "no" in a stern voice.

For toileting inside, I simply pick up the pup and take him outside. Big praise for pottying outside.

If he goes for my shoes, I pretend the shoes are really boring, and what he really wants is the toy I'm waving.

Distraction, showing the pup what you want, and big praise/excitement for making the right decision.
But yes as i said in the begining of that last post, i agree, i some how blended your reply w my general post and idk how, i think i need to go to bed… but anywho i will def try the distract thing!! She loves food n toys so ik that will work. She has learned Sit, Stay, Leave it, Come, No Bite, and Place (Which i usually say lay down for) so she picks up veryy fast, she respects me and i respect her. She does some times get stubborn tho so the distract will surely help. Any advice w biting other people? I taught her no bike to combat that and she doesn’t bite me anymore, but she still bites strangers and friends.
 

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The two questions I have are 1 how should I discipline her the best because I see many mixed opinions and I would like a more fact based answer. Two is everywhere I look I always see that a stern "no" it's a good way to discipline them to know the behavior is wrong but hitting and yelling are unhelpful and usually have a negative affect because the dog doesn't know why you're hitting them or yelling.
You don't "discipline" her. You praise and encourage her to do the right thing:

For example, if she is jumping on you, you have her sit. When she does, you praise her or give her a treat. If she doesn't, you ignore her. This teaches her that being polite (sitting) gets her good things (attention, treats) and jumping gets her nothing. She will figure it out pretty quickly.

Or you distract her from the "bad behavior":

For example, if she is barking at the window, you encourage her to play with a toy instead. When she plays with the toy and stops barking, you praise her.

Or you make a trade:

For example, if she's chewing on your shoe, you say a command ("let me see it" or "drop it" are popular) and when she does, you give her a treat or favorite toy. Then you remove the shoe from her sight and reach.

Dogs pick up on these things very quickly and will start connecting the desired behavior with the positive results and will continue to do so.
 

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I think you need to focus on her health and figuring out the diarrhea situation first and foremost. Make sure the vet does a fecal test for parasites. Since it seems like she can't physically hold it right now because she's not feeling well, make sure to take her out frequently so she has plenty of chances to eliminate. If you have to leave, I would try to confine her to a spot with hard floors or lay down puppy pads (if she doesn't eat them) for easy cleanup.

If she does have an accident, don't scold her or in any way show you're upset. Disciplining a dog for having an accident teaches them that going potty in front of YOU is bad, not that going potty in the house is bad. Simply clean it up with a enzymatic cleaner like Nature's Miracle to eliminate the scent. And if she's ill, you're going to have a few accidents because sometimes it's just very sudden and she won't be able to make it outside. When my dog had some digestive upset, I just made sure he was on the hard floors and picked up any rugs so accidents were easy to clean up. I was also fortunate that I was able to stay home with him to let him out every fifteen minutes!

You've also got quite a few questions in one post! :) Try breaking them up into separate threads so your question doesn't get lost, and you'll be less likely to confuse people if you're asking one concise question and explaining one situation per thread. I have to admit, I wasn't quite sure what you were asking, either! We have some very experienced and helpful dog owners here, and they can answer your questions as long as they know what you're asking!
 

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But yes as i said in the begining of that last post, i agree, i some how blended your reply w my general post and idk how, i think i need to go to bed… but anywho i will def try the distract thing!! She loves food n toys so ik that will work. She has learned Sit, Stay, Leave it, Come, No Bite, and Place (Which i usually say lay down for) so she picks up veryy fast, she respects me and i respect her. She does some times get stubborn tho so the distract will surely help. Any advice w biting other people? I taught her no bike to combat that and she doesn’t bite me anymore, but she still bites strangers and friends.
I'm not a good person to help with biting because my pup play bites (we wrestle). The only thing I taught him was bite inhibition. But I'm sure you'll get help once the questions are all sorted out.

But a quick answer, maybe try getting other people to do a few training exercises (tricks) with your dog (distract and let your dog know what they want him to do) when he is biting.
 

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oh gosh, is this one of those forums where telling a dog "no" is considered negative reinforcement and I can get booted for even suggesting it?
 

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This forum seems pretty good about allowing different viewpoints.

As for saying "no", it's not bad, it just doesn't always make things clear to the dog. If the dog is eating and growls, and you say no, what are you saying no to: the eating or the growling?

'No' rarely has any more meaning than "I don't like what you are doing". Thay just doesn't really teach the dog anything.

That said, many folks still use it out of habit. I catch myself saying it. But as soon as I do, I correct myself and use a more effective training tool.
 
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@huntfishcamp This forum has no rules about what kind of training can be discussed, so long as everyone remains respectful and refrains from personal insults or offensive language.
 

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oh gosh, is this one of those forums where telling a dog "no" is considered negative reinforcement and I can get booted for even suggesting it?
I'm kinda new here but I do tell my pup "no" sometimes now that he knows what it means and knows an alternative good behaviour that I want. But "no" is always followed by a cue or incompadible distraction to show him what I DO want him to do and how I want him to act. But I never see a reason to scream it, if he ever bolts out the front door, I use the recall cue in the same tone we practiced with. Just how we do it.
 
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