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I have 2 golden retrievers, each about 18 months old. I'd like to train them to only go in one area of the backyard. Up to now I've let them go where they want.

Looking for suggestions on how to accomplish this.

Thanks in advance !
 

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Once you find the spot that you would like them to go, leash each of the dogs, and take them to that area. A good time for this, might be before your walk, or any time you know that they will have to go. The secret, is that you take them to the area on leash, and you do not budge an inch until the dog has eliminated. The dog is allowed to walk around you and to the end of his/her leash but must not pull you around the yard. After they do, praise like crazy, and take them for a walk as a reward. You must be very consistent and patient. ALWAYS take them to the same place.
 

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^^What Corteo said above is how my husband and I trained Morgan to do this. :)

The only thing I might add is that you can attach a cue with going to their particular area. With Morgan, his cue is "Go to your spot". We would say this to him right as we walked him (leashed) into his potty area, and it's used as his reminder of what the task at hand is.

Eventually, he started to "go to his spot" without the verbal cue, and nowadays he is very consistent without any reminders. :)

Just be patient! Since they are already used to going wherever they please, it may take them a while to understand the change in the rules.

Good luck! :D
 

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For Luna, the verbal cue was the key. She knows that "Go potty!" means just that, so all I had to do was take her to her spot (and sometimes this meant going as fast as we could to that spot, because I KNEW she had to go badly) and saying "Go potty!" and when she did, tons and tons of praise. :)

It didn't take long for her to figure out. :)
 

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I add a little more to Corteo:

1. Make sure that you clean up the yard very well.
2. Take a small bit of poop and place it where you want them to go.
3. Not necessary, but it might be easier if you separate each dog's area by about 5 feet.
4. Keep the area cleaned up at least twice a week.

Consider that the poop is like a large blinking red light that says, "bathroom is here !" which is why dogs sniff around before they go. But dogs don't like to step in their own mess, so the area has to be comparatively clean.

One other thing. I notice that my dog does NOT pee and poop in the same place.... so I let him pee outside where he wants.

- Hank Simon
 

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I add a little more to Corteo:

1. Make sure that you clean up the yard very well.
2. Take a small bit of poop and place it where you want them to go.
3. Not necessary, but it might be easier if you separate each dog's area by about 5 feet.
4. Keep the area cleaned up at least twice a week.
Very good advice.

One other thing. I notice that my dog does NOT pee and poop in the same place.... so I let him pee outside where he wants.

Hmmm, Sobaka always goes in the same area... Then again, I have a weird dog... She hates peanut butter... LOL
 

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We too have 2 golden retrievers which we got when they were 16 weeks. We've been taking them to their spot for about 6 months now and when they are with us, they use their spot - if we just walk out with them, whether or not they are leashed, they are good about using their spot. However, as soon as we let them out free to play, they almost never user their spot. We are at the end of our ropes and feel that we'll never get them to decide to go where we want them to. Does anyone have any tips? We have followed all of the advice in this thread to no avail. Has anyone ever tried scented bricks?
 

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Although they're big, they're still young. They may think that Go Potty 'to your place' ... really means "when we are there with you to watch.... and admire... :) I don't have a definitive suggestion, but how 'bout some brainstorms...
1. Walk out with them, say "Go potty" and when they get started, walk out... within sight.
2. When they begine to go elsewhere, say "Go Potty" to interrupt them, and guide them to their spot.
3. Make sure the area is cleaned, but with something to smell left by. I notice that my dog needs something to read... He sniffs around, finds something interesting he left last time, and he positions so that nose is over the "reading material" and tail is over the new "target area." ... So, yes, there is a 3/4 dog length between target areas, and "lightning" never strikes the exact same spot twice.
4. Although he may pee anywhere, he usually doesn't poop where he has peed.

TMI ?
 

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Good advice above. And like hanksimon, I let my dog pee wherever he wants, but when it's pooptime I also direct him to one section of the yard and now he knows. I always do bathroom breaks on the leash in the unfenced portion of our yard (so the kids can play in the fenced part with less worry of landmines), but when I let him loose in the fence to run free, he'll poop anywhere and everywhere. This is frustrating, and we've tried to do a "poop corner" in the fence so we can at least know where it might be so we can clean it up, but he doesn't go along with designated spots if he's off leash. It seems like even though he might not even really "have" to go, he'll poop in the fence anyway just b/c it's "free range pooping", a chance he can't pass up, LOL. The only thing I can do at this point is to leash him in the fence, but I hate to do that since that's his free roaming time. I've just gotten used to scouring the fenced yard with our scooper since he won't use the poop corner. Dogs....
 

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I didn't have a fenced yard to start, always leashed my pup to go outside and potty. I'd say "hurry Up" in a pleasant sing song voice and give a treat immediatly after. Then I got wise and mulched the area. Now I have a fenced back yard.... which is still a bit of a work in progress. I need to mulch a spot and potty her there... But until I do that I just leash her and potty her up in the front yard, then as a reward immediatly let her off leash to run in the back yard.... But honasty all I need to do is haul a few bags of multch to the back yard, pick a spot, and leash the dog and potty her there. Loads of praise and she'd eventually get it....
 
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