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Hey guys-

I joined this forum to seek your help. My wife and I have 2 frenchies. Tank is 2.5 years old, and Lily is 7 months. Lily is the topic of discussion today. We lover her to death. Here is a picture for reference:



Lily pees in her crate. There's a lot of information that surrounds this scenario, so I'm going to try to sum it up quickly, but it might be hard.

To start - we got her at four months and immediately started crate training. The crate we use is adjustable, so we made sure it was small enough so she didn't have room to pee. We always monitored her water intake, limiting her water before crate times, and always took her out to pee before she was going to be in her crate.

In the beginning, she was occasionally peeing in her crate. Maybe once every few days. We felt this was normal and didn't think much of it.

But about three weeks into this things got worse. She began to pee more often. We started leaving her without any bedding in the crate so she would have to lay in her mess which didn't work. She would still pee. So I took her to the vet to find out she had a bladder infection. After two weeks of Clavamox, things got better. I think we had a couple weeks after that of no peeing in the crate. Awesome.

Then all of the sudden, like a switch was flipped, she started peeing in her crate EVERY TIME we would leave her, and no matter how long. One hour, pee. Four hours, pee. We tried different bedding, a different crate, no bedding (she will drink her pee if she pees in the crate with no bedding...no joke), limited water, etc. We even took her in for more tests to see if she had a UTI, but these came back negative.

One thing I will add is she is fully house trained. She uses a doggy door and always goes outside to pee. We have no issues with this. It's just the peeing in the crate thing.

Does ANYONE have wisdom they could throw our way? Any tips or hints? We feel we have exhausted all options and don't know what to do at this point. Someone told us to use an expen with pee pads. We tried this, but she ripped the pee pad to shreds. We then realized we were going to have to train her to use the pads, thus going in the house, so we decided against it.

HELP!
 

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The crate has become her toilet. Get rid of it. Try an ex-pen with no pad since you say she can hold it or a puppy proofed room. One other explanation might be some seperation anxiety issues.
 

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The crate has become her toilet. Get rid of it. Try an ex-pen with no pad since you say she can hold it or a puppy proofed room. One other explanation might be some seperation anxiety issues.
Well the catch to this is I don't know if she CAN hold it. When we are home with her, she goes outside whenever she needs to pee. This is good. But this doesn't necessarily mean she can HOLD it, you know?

On occasion she's been known to pee on a bed or two as well. So my concerns with the expen is she will either pee on the bed we leave inside it, or she will pee on the ground, then lick it up.

I guess we will never know until we try though...
 

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Well the catch to this is I don't know if she CAN hold it. When we are home with her, she goes outside whenever she needs to pee. This is good. But this doesn't necessarily mean she can HOLD it, you know?

On occasion she's been known to pee on a bed or two as well. So my concerns with the expen is she will either pee on the bed we leave inside it, or she will pee on the ground, then lick it up.

I guess we will never know until we try though...
My dog started doing this around 5 months old too. Housebreaking was going along and then all of a sudden he started peeing in his crate every single time I left him no matter how short the time was. I knew he could hold it but he was going for some reason.

I wrote here for advice and I think I got a lot of comments telling me I must be crate training wrong because crate training just works. But I am finding not every single thing that works for one dog works for every dog. I spoke to the breeder I had gotten him from and she has had this issue with my breed too. She recommended doing what west highlander said and putting him in another space with a pad. I did do that and my dog was fine. He used the pad occasionally. He is still housebroken and never goes in the home otherwise. You might just try it without the pad if you don't want to add that element. Just try to take her out enough so she won't be tempted to go.

Like you said you never know till you try but at this point the crate is her toilet.
 

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I would try what both of the above posts said.. put her in a ex pen instead of the crate. Zoey had some problems with going potty in her crate while we were gone also. She has something like what I would call "separation anxiety peeing".. So pretty much any time we leave her alone in her crate she freaks and pees... :-/ It was like you said.. it didn't matter how long we were gone.. there would be pee. We have been putting her in the bathroom now with her toys and her crate and she does great :) I don't know if she was just freaking out because she was being locked in a small space or what... She didn't view her crate as her toilet though.. It sits open here in the living room (with the door removed) for her to go in and out of as she pleases, and she never goes potty in it, nor does she potty in it when we leave her in the bathroom with it. It was just being locked inside...
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Thanks for the responses guys. I guess at this point the only thing we can do is completely switch up her situation. I think we will try the expen again and see what happens.

My next question is this - what did you guys do with your dogs at night? Did you leave them in the same place? Right now we move her crate from the downstairs when we are gone, to our bedroom when we sleep.

Binkalette - did you close the door to the bathroom when you left Zoey, or did you use a baby gate?

They last thing I should bring up is our two year old gets to roam the house as he pleases. Would this influence Lily's behavior while she is crated?
 

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The other dog could be part of the problem. I think one thing you need to determine is if your dog is doing this because of some anxiety issues. If it is then maybe addressing that would alleviate your crate problem. Training a dog to be alone could be your solution.
 

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The other dog could be part of the problem. I think one thing you need to determine is if your dog is doing this because of some anxiety issues. If it is then maybe addressing that would alleviate your crate problem. Training a dog to be alone could be your solution.
Could you elaborate on this a bit? How would I train her to be alone? I know with crating you start slow and work your way up to longer periods of being away. This builds trust with the dog so they are at ease when you're gone, knowing it's OK and you will be back. But obviously there is another angle with a second dog.
 

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My next question is this - what did you guys do with your dogs at night? Did you leave them in the same place? Right now we move her crate from the downstairs when we are gone, to our bedroom when we sleep.

Binkalette - did you close the door to the bathroom when you left Zoey, or did you use a baby gate?

We close the door. We used to have the kitchen gated off, but she started climbing over the gate :-/

I'm not much help on the 'what to do with her at night' part.. We only had Zoey crated for the first two nights she was home.. and then we decided we wanted her to be a bed dog. :) She sleeps with us in our bed now. She actually sleeps on my pillow..lol.. We have a king size bed and pillows, so my pillow is like.. way too big for just my head anyway. :)

Could you elaborate on this a bit? How would I train her to be alone? I know with crating you start slow and work your way up to longer periods of being away. This builds trust with the dog so they are at ease when you're gone, knowing it's OK and you will be back. But obviously there is another angle with a second dog.
Is leaving both dogs in the pen together an option?
 

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Yeah I am not sure how the other dog might be affecting her, I only have one dog. Just fyi I use a baby gate because I thought closing the door might make dogs more anxious but I don't know.

My dog started doing this around 5 months old. I had been crating him at night but by then he could hold his bladder all night so I bought him a bed. He loves his bed and took to it right away. I also found he slept a lot later in the morning being in his bed rather than the crate. I still use the crate for travel and have it open with his toys in it. He will go in it to get stuff but prefers his bed to everything else for resting and sleep. I am not sure how that would work for you at night though. If you clean the crate out really well she might still be okay in it at night.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Is leaving both dogs in the pen together an option?
Yes this is an option. Our male hasn't been confined for quite some time year. Definitely over a year. I know for a fact all he does is sleep in the same spot on the couch the entire time we are gone. So I'm not sure how much of him she sees when they are alone.
 

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Could you elaborate on this a bit? How would I train her to be alone? I know with crating you start slow and work your way up to longer periods of being away. This builds trust with the dog so they are at ease when you're gone, knowing it's OK and you will be back. But obviously there is another angle with a second dog.
Have you practiced coming and going out of the house? Does she always pee in her crate when you leave or just after a certain amount of time? If she doesn't pee for let's say 20 minutes then come back at 19 and reward her, work your way up from there. Also, my dog is alone for most weekdays, on the weekends I still let her be alone for a few hours just because it is part of her routine. Dogs thrive on schedules. She also sleeps in her own room which I think helps them to learn that they won't die if they are alone. You can gradually do this. When I first got her, I sleep in a bed in her room. I didn't sleep with her though, she slept in her crate. Then over the course of 2 weeks, I left her by herself. If you sleep with your dog, that could potentially lead to a very clingy dog.
 

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Have you practiced coming and going out of the house? Does she always pee in her crate when you leave or just after a certain amount of time?
No we haven't practiced coming and going. In the beginning she was fine. It wasn't until later this problem developed. Although we ALWAYS praise the heck out of her when she doesn't pee, and if she does, we try to ignore her.

She doesn't ALWAYS pee. She's usually good for about two hours. Anything after that she'll usually pee.


If she doesn't pee for let's say 20 minutes then come back at 19 and reward her, work your way up from there. Also, my dog is alone for most weekdays, on the weekends I still let her be alone for a few hours just because it is part of her routine. Dogs thrive on schedules. She also sleeps in her own room which I think helps them to learn that they won't die if they are alone. You can gradually do this. When I first got her, I sleep in a bed in her room. I didn't sleep with her though, she slept in her crate. Then over the course of 2 weeks, I left her by herself. If you sleep with your dog, that could potentially lead to a very clingy dog.
We never sleep with our dogs. That's one rule that still stands. But she does sleep in our room. Just like our male did until he decided the couch was more comfortable :)
 

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Maybe she just can't hold it longer than 2 hours. At night she can because she is sleeping. But she might not be sleeping during the day when you are gone.
 

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Maybe she just can't hold it longer than 2 hours. At night she can because she is sleeping. But she might not be sleeping during the day when you are gone.
That might be. Guess what? She just peed in her bed as she was sitting next to me while I'm working on my computer! :eek:
 

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I would just start housebreaking her all over. At 7 months, maybe she just hasn't gotten it yet - that's actually good news. Much better than seperation anxiety.
 

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Yep. She's never done that before. At least in this bed...

Sounds like its time to go back to house training 101 and start over.....if she really has not medical issues.

so will she lay in her pee in the crate?....or I think you may have said she "cleans it up"

I would also maybe try the ex pen....can hurt.:)
 

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Sounds like its time to go back to house training 101 and start over.....if she really has not medical issues.

so will she lay in her pee in the crate?....or I think you may have said she "cleans it up"

I would also maybe try the ex pen....can hurt.:)
Housetraining 101 is all well and good...but what our are choices when we leave her alone you know? She's going to pee. It's almost like we need to be with her 24/7 to solve the problem.

She "cleans it up". She will bunch up the towel or push it aside so she doesn't have to lay in it. But as mentioned earlier, we tried no bedding, but she would pee and drink it up.
 
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