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Melissa
19th November 2007, 11:15 PM
So my 8 month old keeps deciding that pooing on the back of the couch in front of the window is ok.... It seems to be the only place he poos indoors. He also peed on that couch last night too... right in front of us. I'm shocked and my husband wants to get rid of the dog. I now have him leashed to me.

Jen
20th November 2007, 08:05 PM
Limit his access to that area---he won't do it if he's not allowed there. Also, use a good pet cleaner (Simple Solution works great) that works to break the enzymes down and gets the area really clean...and hopefully makes it so he's not able to pick up his scent.

It sounds like he need some reminders on house training. How are you currently training him?

Caraline
21st November 2007, 12:16 AM
So my 8 month old keeps deciding that pooing on the back of the couch in front of the window is ok.... It seems to be the only place he poos indoors.

He is still a youngster. Very few dogs can be 100% reliable at this age. You need to go back to square 1 re toilet training. In a nutshell that means limiting the dogs access to areas inside the house, taking him out for potty breaks very regularly etc.


He also peed on that couch last night too... right in front of us.

If the couch is fabric then this could be & ongoing problem for a while because it is very difficult to remove the smell. All those bottles of stuff that promise to do it, rarely do. You need to stop the dog from getting near the lounge for a while. Clean it as best you can, with an enzymatic cleaner. A laundry powder with an enzymatic cleaner in it will work just fine.


I'm shocked

Dont be! Your dog is still a youngster, and in the age bracket where accidents can happen.


and my husband wants to get rid of the dog.

That is just plain sad. Sorry to be so blunt, but if a person is so grossed out about some accidents happening in a young dog, that person probably should not have a dog in the first place.


I now have him leashed to me.

Well that's a start but you will soon get sick of this. Put him in his crate or in an x-pen. If you don't have these items already, then this is part of the problem.

Good luck! :flwr:

Karlin
21st November 2007, 05:23 AM
Caraline makes some very good points here.

I know it can seem to us owners, in our frustration, that the dog is to blame -- but remember, a dog relies totally on his owners to teach him consistently and carefully what they want from him. If he does not understand what he is supposed to be doing, it is because the teaching has fallen short -- either the message wasn't received clearly and/or there wasn't enough follow through over time to make sure the message was always followed. In other words, it isn't the dog's fault when we have failed to be consistent enough in training to always set the dog up for success that can be rewarded. That means never ever allowing the dog to be in a situation where our lack of supervision causes him to fail.

When it comes to the all-important area of housetraining, a dog needs you to follow a nonstop, consistent programme over many weeks of never letting him out of your sight or out of reach unless crated until you KNOW the dog is housetrained. Most people mistakenly think their dog is housetrained after a very short period of success. But this generally takes a full year to reach a point where there won't be occasional accidents. At 8 months he is still well within the framework to be having accidents, and simply cannot be left to get up and down on furniture by himself without someone within arm's reach. I know he may look grown up, but he's still just a baby.

Setting aside illness, housetraining problems happen because after some initial success, people slack off too soon and leave the dog to roam around out of sight and stop taking the dog out themselves, supervising every job outside, and rewarding. If he is consistently going on the sofa there are only going to be two possible reasons, and maybe both apply:

1) people didn't watch him carefully enough, and he has been peeing and defecating there consistently, and no one has used proper enzymatic cleaners to totally remove the scent that tells him it is the right place to go, he thinks that is where he is supposed to go. The very fact that he has done this numerous times in such a prominent place before anyone can stop him or even sees him going, indicates he isn't being watched enough.

2) He has been punished for going inside -- which means he now probably thinks the wrong place to go is in front of you -- not that the wrong place to go is inside. So by punishment he has learned to find someplace where he isn't being watched and smells like his poo place because of previous accidents... and go there.

So what now? If you don't have it I recommend immediately ordering Shirlee Kalstone's book on housetraining and following its instructions precisely. :thmbsup: I'd have your husband read it cover to cover. He needs to be part of the housetraining team (he needed to be watching the pup through its housetraining too, of course!).

Housetraining takes a LOT of hard work and time. So does obedience training, to have a good canine citizen. You have many things before you with your dog and he will need constant commitment and training -- really your relationship with him is only just starting -- hence you need to think what all of this means to that longer term commitment.

So, on a very serious note: if your husband truly feels accidents during housetraining are grounds to get rid of the dog, then you probably do need a very serious conversation about whether having a dog fits both of your expectations and is the right choice to have made. Dogs have all the flaws that people do (and a few more that we manage to teach them through our own ignorance of the best way to communicate with them!). Dogs are always going to have the occasional accident especially when ill, are going to chew or destroy, or vomit inside. In this they are no different than children, who will do all the same things. No one expects small children to be perfect and we can actually talk in the same language to them! But we recognise a child is only going to ever be the product of its upbring. The same with a dog. The dog we get is the dog we train or fail to train. If the will isn't there on all sides, by all family members, to take the time and the effort or it is too hard for whatever reason to make that time, then the dog is not going to improve.

Hence you have a decision to make and that will require some honest soul searching. If this is really going to be an issue permanently and one key member of the family wants to rehome the dog, then 50% of the will to train is not going to be there. If the dog is only there on tolerance, it also will not be a joyful experience for the dog or for the owners, and the dog will only likely cause further strain between the humans. This isn't uncommon -- I see this all the time in rescue -- and generally if one person already has real doubts, eventually the decision will be made to get rid of the dog. Rehoming a dog gets more and more difficult the older the dog gets and can become more traumatic for the dog.

So for your dog's sake and for your sake, have a good, long, honest talk and see where you both stand... and if this isn't the right time to have a dog, consider contacting breed rescue. BruceH and his wife Kris are involved with rescue in your region so you might PM him to further discuss the issue and get some advice. :thmbsup:

Incidentally at this point you may need to get rid of the couch to successfully complete housetraining with him -- it may now be deeply penetrated by urine smell that keeps indicating this is where he should go. Once or twice you can use a cleaner but if this has actually happened many, many times, the couch will be permeated with this scent. I'd at least consult with a professional cleaners capable of handling deep urine stains to see if it can be salvaged.

Matte
22nd November 2007, 02:55 PM
Put him in his crate or in an x-pen. If you don't have these items already, then this is part of the problem.

With all due respect, I couldn't disagree more. Crates are absolutely not necessary for housetraining. We never used a crate, our dog got the basics within a week. Using crates for housetraining is illegal in Sweden, and no one I know has ever had problems housetraining their dogs apart from the normal issues.

In any event, good luck Melissa.

Karlin
22nd November 2007, 10:49 PM
Are they actually illegal? That would seem to impose conditions that would make showing dogs very difficult, or transporting them in a safe way, as so many people use crates very judiciously for safe management and transport, and as part of crate training does involve acclimating a dog to a crate for periods of time, housetraining at the same time works very well together. As crates are definitely the safest way to transport dogs, I would always recommend crate training and consider housetraining to be a welcome joint training opportunity. An Xpen as Caraline notes is a valid alternative for people who do not wish to crate train -- and does basically the same job of confining a dog down to a smaller space it is a lot less likely to foul.

I think the issue here though is not to have the dog roaming, rather than whether one uses a crate or chooses to keep the dog constantly at arm's reach. :thmbsup:

Also if people work all day this is often a key factor too in housetraing problems that go on and on -- it takes ages to housetrain a dog or pup if no one is home to reinforce housetraining all day long. I never recommend puppies under 10 months or so for anyone who works full time because it tends to cause more problems than many feel able for as puppies are demanding enough! Fun, and cute, but very demanding.

Matte
23rd November 2007, 07:44 AM
Yes, like I said for housetraining purposes. First, the minimum size of the containment area for a dog the size of a cavalier is 2 square metres (there is an exception for transport purposes). You must have your dog in a crate in your car, but that's it, and the crate has to be secured so that it doesn't bounce around in case of an accident. Even if you transport your dog by car, you must stop every so often and take the dog out to give it exercise and a chance to toilet. The law says that a dog cannot be confined for longer than necessary, which has been interpreted in case law to mean one hour or so under normal circumstances, and under no circumstances, except during transport, can the dog's natural movement be restricted--in other words, it must be able to stretch out to its full length and walk around.

If you go to a dog show in Sweden, you'll certainly see crates since they must be used for transport, but you never see a closed crate with a dog in it except at arrival and departure.

Matte
23rd November 2007, 07:57 AM
By the way, the way that we acclimated our dog to her travel carrier was just to leave it open in the house for a few days so that it became part of the furniture to her. Although she never went into in when we had it inside, she never minds going in it when we need to take her to the vet.