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nervous wetting

Posted: Tue Jan 20, 2009 2:28 pm
by kansas foster mom
There is a resuce who has been terribly neglected, chained out 24/7 not always fed, etc. Brit and a min-pin, neighbor took them in and they started wetting in their crates and are getting better, but when she brings them back in after potty, they are still coming in and wetting just standing there. I told her to check and make sure it wasn't a medical problem, but both dogs are doing it. She does have several other dogs, could be territorial behavior (?), but does anyone have any other ideas?

Isolation is one thing, but I don't know if she has the floor plan to support it. Thanks is advance!

Posted: Tue Jan 20, 2009 2:53 pm
by NancyH
Are these two used to being together? Are they being crated together?

Posted: Tue Jan 20, 2009 3:10 pm
by Barb Wright
Right off the bat I'd say this is Submissive Urination. Here is some info from some of our previous discussions on Submissive Urination:

"Speaking specifically to submissive urination, one of the most important things to understand about submissive urination is that is a very common, normal behavior in dogdom, especially with puppies that are very young and learning to adapt to "superior" beings that control them, but also with adult dogs who are fearful, insecure, or under stress. THE MOST IMPORTANT THING to keep in mind is that *they do not know that they are doing it* is the result of pure unadulterated instinct and reflex. It has no connection to potty training whatsoever. Therefore, it is essential that you do not react to it either vocally, facially, or physically in a negative manner....they are very tuned into the vibes that you send out and anger, irritation, and impatience radiate right to them, and just increase their feeling of insecurity and lack of confidence, plus, they will not understand what they did that caused you to suddenly react badly toward them. SU is not something you can control with any form of discipline. You MUST just accept it, contain your displeasure, control your reaction, clean it up and move on. As the dog matures, learns the ropes of living with humans, other dogs, all the complications of life, etc. as long as they are worked with patiently, compassionately, justly and consistently, they will become increasingly more confident and secure, learn what is expected of them ( via training, socialization, etc.) and , voila, the unpleasant (to us) behavior will begin to diminish and then end."

And here is a whole discussion on the subject:


If any of the information seems to apply to the situation then following the suggestions for dealing with it will probably help....but she should plan on weeks or even months before the problem actually ends. Rescue dogs have had their world turned upside down, and even dogs from a less than optimal circumstance still are faced with a different life albeit a far better life that they have come to. Patience, understanding, kindness, all play a huge part in helping these dogs finally feel safe and secure, plus understanding that it will all take time, sometimes LOTS of time, to finally resolve these kinds of problems.

Thank you for joining our discussions :) Keep us posted on how things progress :)

Posted: Tue Jan 20, 2009 4:02 pm
by kansas foster mom
Great stuff, I will continue to check back, thanks so much! Joyce :D

Posted: Fri Jan 30, 2009 6:22 pm
by tntmom
I was the original poster in the discussion that Barb referred to...

And I am happy to report that Miss Dew is 99% cured of her SU.

It really came down to us changing our behavior. We completely changed how we great the dogs when we come home for the day, and our basic posture with them in general. Dew could not handle any kind of dominant body posture or body language from my husband. If he bent over her, even to pet and praise her, she would become a fountain. Even if she was in his lap getting loves and he changed his body language, she would let loose.

It has taken patience on all our part, but now the ONLY time she will let loose is if she is over excited, and my husband forgets and bends over her.

She has even been known to check herself (and the floor) if he has spoken to her while standing over her. Of course that gets major praise!!!

The biggest trick is to NOT react AT ALL to the SU. And realizing that your behavior or body posture may be the whole reason for the behavior of the dog. or in this case, the posture of your neighbor. Keep in mind that even if the human doesn't think they are taking a dominant posture, it very well could seem that way to the dog.