Help! She just isn't getting it (house breaking)

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Help! She just isn't getting it (house breaking)

Postby Doglover4000 » Mon Aug 06, 2018 7:56 am

Hi, I have crate trained tons of rescue dogs over the years but this Brittany is pushing every button. I took her in at 5 months after the owner didnt want her after only 2 weeks. Not sure I believe this woman. She is now almost 9 months and is still going pee and poop in the house and sometimes her crate. We have a dog door so she is able to go outside when ever she wants with my 3 other's dogs ( all mutts). Except when I have to run out I put her in her crate. I find she wont go outside to pee or poop unless I go with her and walk around on the grass with her. She will be laying on the sofa get up and go down the walkout basement and pee and poop right in Front of the dog door. She has no problem going in and out the dog door to bark at birds or to play. I am starting to think this is more of a separation issue then house breaking. She is very shy and totally a submissive pee girl. So we never scold her only reward her with treats. She has even jumped up on the sofa and peed and walk o er to the steps and peeped on my steps. I have never had a dog like this before. Pee was checked by vet and came back normal.
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Re: Help! She just isn't getting it (house breaking)

Postby Barb Wright » Mon Aug 06, 2018 12:02 pm

Curious/interesting dilemma, though from what you say it does sound mostly attention seeking. I assume the treats are only when she pees/poops outside....inside she gets ignored, clean-up done in absolute silence, not even looking at her ?? Dealing with submissive urination and her not "getting it" on the house breaking is a tough training issue to tackle, no question. In theory, the submissive urination should be about over by the time she gets to a year or there abouts….so a ways to go for that if even by then. The time frame usually depends upon how much they gain confidence and become secure in their world. If she has been "moved" around a bit during the previous months of her life she may be a long time getting confident about anything.

I think if separation anxiety were part of this you would have more dramatic evidence as SA is really a "panic" state and they tend to be quite destructive and/or noisy when left alone. If there is some SA the other dogs may be keeping that at a very low level of presentation. What is she like when you return after she has been left alone in her crate? If it is the normal excitement like barking and wiggling, etc. with no other evidence like damage to the crate then you can probably rule out SA. just taking a stab at this with what little you have described.

Since the vet has ruled out a UTI it seems you are pretty much dealing with a training issue.....I wish I had some magic answer but I think that you just have to try to pre-empt the activity and get her outside. Impossible of course when you leave her crated....the only suggestion I have there would be to leave her outside with an open crate door, preferably with the other dogs out there too. If that doesn't work or is not possible then I'm out of ideas other than trying to stay ahead of her. Hopefully someone else here will have some light to shine on your problem. Again, I think a big part of this is just attention seeking.
RIP Sweet Cassie 4/98 - 3/13
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Re: Help! She just isn't getting it (house breaking)

Postby gagesbarb » Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:03 am

I agree with what Barb said. I would think that this dog is confused and I would suggest going back to the beginning. She probably had to pee/poop in her crate before you got her and so doesn't have that aversion anymore. Also, submissive peeing is not a housebreaking problem, and just takes patience, structure and consistency until, as Barb suggested, she becomes more confident. To me, adds evidence that she is confused about what is expected, what is happening, etc. I would pretend she is a young puppy, go out with her on a regular and frequent schedule, have her on a leash, take her to her potty spot and treat after she goes. Like a puppy, don't assume she empties her bladder completely, but walk around a little more. Then let her go play. I would guess you are cleaning up accidents with an enzyme cleaner so as to get rid of the smell. When she is out of the crate, I might have her tethered to you so you can provide supervision, just like a baby puppy...
Thank you for taking this girl in...let us know how things go...
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Re: Help! She just isn't getting it (house breaking)

Postby MaggieRocks » Tue Aug 07, 2018 9:34 pm

Doglover4000 wrote: I find she wont go outside to pee or poop unless I go with her and walk around on the grass with her.


Why don't you just go out with her?
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Re: Help! She just isn't getting it (house breaking)

Postby Barb Wright » Wed Aug 08, 2018 8:33 pm

Just wanted to reiterate a few facts about Submissive Urination. It is something that occurs with young puppies and even older dogs that are "submissive" for whatever reason, (insecurity, fear, not knowing how to act in a variety of instances/interactions with other dogs, people, events, etc.) and that they are totally unaware of doing it !!! It is a deeply instinctive reaction which goes back millenniums as an inherent part of living with and being part a pack. In modern day humans have often become their only "pack" so this display is a non-threatening act and thus "submissive". If it is brought to their attention they are probably just as surprised to see the puddle of evidence as you are. As GagesBarb pointed out, It has absolutely nothing to do with the need to urinate or the issue of "housebreaking", but rather is a submissive display to a dominant "other". This can be another dog, and also a human being, either a stranger or a familiar figure. So, when dealing with housebreaking one needs to be sure to separate the two presentations and be sure to ignore SU, but follow through on housebreaking training methods for what is obviously a departure from performing their eliminations outside. For shy and spooky dogs/puppies whose world has been turned upside down and inside out (rescues, young puppies just taken from their litter mates, other traumatic upheavals) the need for routine, calm regularity in their lives, feeling secure and understanding what is expected from them, which means consistent training methods and many repetitions, these are what will eventually get them to do what we wish and expect of them as being a part of a human/dog living together situation. With some dogs it goes fast and easy, with others you are looking at longer time periods that require patience, patience, patience, and above all, consistency in the methods used.

Pretty much preaching to the choir, I know, but just wanted to put some emphasis on this issue for anyone who may be fairly new to having a young or insecure dog to deal with. I am sure other informative input/experiences with SU will be appreciated. This is where there can never be "too much information" :)
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