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Hello,

We have an 8 month old female miniature australian shepherd mutt (not pure breed) and we are having a hell of a time with potty training her.

We have owned her and have been training her since she was 8 weeks old. She will go to the door and scratch and whine when she needs out. We always give her praise for going in the yard. And she goes through every night in her kennel from 10 pm to 6:30 am with no accidents now.

The issue we are having though is my husband and I have the same schedule. 8 am to 5 pm we work monday through friday with an hour lunch everyday at 11:30. We kennel her at night and baby gate her into the kitchen/dinning room area with her kennel during work. We are home everyday at lunch to let her out and feed her.

Almost every day she pees in the kitchen in the morning and evening while we are at work. We understand there are accidents but this is no longer accidents. I have put her in her kennel with water for the 4 hours we are at work till we come back and she doesn't have "accidents" and again, she doesn't have accidents in the house while we are here. she knows to let us know she needs out.

She is a mild to high energy dog so i don't want to have to kennel her for 8 more hours out of the day but there is nothing else that i have done that has worked.

We have tried not punishing, we have tried punishing, we have tried potty pads, we have tried bleaching the pee areas and covering any residual pee scent with vanilla extract, we aren't able to keep her in the yard due to digging that we also can't seem to train her out of and we are now on long timeouts and delaying her usual feeding time. But nothing seems to work. I understand accidents, I do. but she has gone multiple times kenneled for the 4 hours we are gone with water and no accidents. not one.

Please help. She is getting past the age of being fully potty trained aside from a few accidents here and there and I am running out of patients since i have been cleaning up pee twice a day every day for the last 6 months.
 

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First, if it's been a while since a vet visit, have her checked out.

Second, dogs sleep mostly while you're gone. If you have to crate her while you're gone I don't think it's a big deal as long as she's getting lots of activity when you're home.

After that, it's just a quirk of the dog. She's gotten in the habit of urinating while you're gone in a certain part of the house. You may have to restrict water while you're gone if you want to minimize the odds of urinating.

Personally, to break the habit (and since you come home at lunch to let her out), I would crate her for a few months. Then give her a trial run of freedom and see what happens. She will be older and have more control.
 
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