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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I got my Labrador retriever mix when she was about 3 months, they fixed her before I was allowed to adopt her from the shelter (I hate getting animals fixed that young but that was not a call in my hands..). She has been doing better about using the potty outside but she still uses the potty in her crate, in the house and doesn't whine or make any attempt to let me know she may have to go. Even with taking her out every hour or someday more frequent than that and she still either uses the potty outside halfway and finises her business indoors. Mostly my fight is with getting her to poop outside. I have tried putting her on a timer to take her outside, she gets fed twice a day so I know when she should roughly need to go (then she proceeds to hold it all day and either poop outside and again once she's inside).

I'm at my wits end with trying to train her. It's crossed my mind maybe she's just not meant to be a indoor dog but I've had indoor labs all my life and haven't had this many issues with getting one trained for the bathroom. I have been trying reward systems, picking her poop up when she goes inside and taking it outside with her to show her where it needs to go. I don't scold her for her mistakes and reward when she does do her business..

I've even been trying my friend's suggestion of leaving her in the crate unless she is being walked, played with or eating. I dislike this method because as I said I grew up with dogs being around and no issues.. I even tether her to my desk so when she is out she can only go so far as when she was being allowed to even just walk the bedroom she would go under the bed or around corners to do her business... as much as I want to let her have roam of the house like the cats.. I can't afford to keep cleaning the floors and having to hunt down every spot she may have pottied in.

Any help is welcome. I want to do what I can to help her in this process, maybe I'm doing something that is confusing her or my other thought is she may have been from a puppy mill as the shelter didn't really give details on the litter of 7. I dunno really. I'm just trying to figure out why she wants to continue to potty indoors when she gets praises and treats when she goes outside. She'll even walk to her kennel and sit there when she goes potty in the house so somewhere in her mind she knows it's wrong.. I'm just so lost on what to do with her to help this along.
 

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Keep her outside longer and be with her. If she comes back in and poops again, she probably had more to poop when she was outdoors with you. Longer time outdoors might produce that second poop where you want it.

The object, as you seem to understand, is to set her up for success. You have to give her no opportunity to be away from you and ABLE to go indoors so you may have to tie her to you and keep her with you and one eye on her all of the time.

Is there anything that stresses her inside OR outside that makes her nervous in either place? Stress can make a disaster of potty training.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
There is I think a pack of wild dogs that runs around, not near our house but you can hear them during the night. I think there is a few strays that come in the yard as she seems to be in high alert sniff mode every time we step out the front door and she gets a fixation to try and lead us towards crossing the road for some reason. I don't think she's stressed in the house at all.. the cats don't bother her and the only time she gets in trouble indoors is when she tries to sneak past the doorway leading to a side bathroom where the litter box and cat food is at. Even then it's just me raising my voice to tell her no or clapping my hands once to get her attention.

Even with watching her she'll potty in the house. I thought maybe it was because I wasn't watching her enough but she's done her squats right next to the chairs while me or my husband are watching her.. heh. Any idea how long I should keep her outside? I've been doing 10-15 minute times if she doesn't do anything she comes in and goes in her kennel and I take her back out 20 minutes later to try again. Should I try to train her to a bell of some sort? I had read somewhere about training dogs to ring a bell tie to a doorknob to let you know they need out. Where she doesn't whimper till after she's done her business (or if I leave the room/out of sight but given her background I can't fault her insecurities) I need to figure some middle ground I can meet her on so she can help me know what she needs. I don't want to have to take her out every 20-30 minutes after she's a year plus old if she's refusing to give me other cues.
 

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Have you done a urinalysis to rule out a UTI?
 

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Like Canyx said, go to the vet and have her checked for a UTI. Sometimes that makes it impossible for them to hold it, especially when they are already so young and still don't have the best control of their bladder. If she's clear, then you may just have to strengthen your training regimen.

First, is her crate the correct size? It should only be big enough for her to stand, lay down, and turn around. Your crate should have come with a divider to make it the correct size as she grows. If it's too big, she can potty on one side and lay down on the other.

Is she on leash when you take her outside? Sometimes puppies get so excited to be outside that they forget to finish doing their business. Standing around and being boring helps the pup remember what they are supposed to be doing, and of course praise and reward for going potty after. Also, try taking her out more frequently, even. I mean, at this age I think most larger puppies should be able to hold it an hour, but if she doesn't have a UTI she may just be one of those dogs that has a slow to develop bladder. Try every 30 minutes, or even less, for a while.

When you bring her inside after a potty break, try crating her for 5 minutes, and then going outside again to finish. Like I said before, sometimes they forget.

Also, like your friend suggested, put the pup in a crate when you can't 100% supervise. This isn't forever, just until the pup is potty trained. The less accidents she has in the house, the better, because every time she pees in the house she is reinforcing that habit. The crate is an excellent tool for potty training, and lots of puppies spend a good portion of their young lives in there to teach them house manners. Your pup will be fine. They sleep 20+ hours a day, anyway, lol.

Most likely, training her to ring a bell won't help because it sounds like she doesn't know she has to go until moments before she's going. Focus on teaching her that outside is the place to go, for now. You can do that when she is older and fully potty trained.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
thanks all for the advice thus far! we're still working with her and i've gotten a few tips on getting a longer leash or lead and it may help as well.
 
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