View Full Version : Using the bathroom in crate :(

31st October 2008, 11:49 AM
I am getting pretty frustrated! We've had our 6 mo puppy for 2 weeks now. We were told he was crate trained and for the first week he did just fine sleeping in his crate with no accidents.
Starting monday night we got him a larger wire crate (the previous one was too small, he couldnt stand up) and he deficated in it that night. So, I thought it was too large and started putting in the divider.....same thing the next night. Last night I gave up and put him in the small first crate, thinking that he'd never gone to the bathroom in there so....no luck; now he's just a big mess from going to the bathroom in a place that is too small.
What could be going on? I am so tired of having to clean up a smeared stinking crate AND dog first thing every morning. I know there are accidents, but the idea that this will be every morning from here on out is daunting.
Why is he doing this??? I've tried limiting his food in the evening, even changed dog food thinking the first may have been upsetting his stomach. Is he getting mad from being locked in teh crate at night and going to the bathroom out because he's sad/mad? I'm at a loss....
any advice would really help!

31st October 2008, 02:23 PM
Hi, I know it's frustrating, and not a fun thing to wake up to in the morning ;) Are you letting him out during the night to go to the bathroom? When mine were 6 months old they had the occassional accident at night. They weren't sleeping in a crate but I would find a little surprise by the door every so often. You've only had him for 2 weeks, he could be stressed, or just not used to your routines. It takes time for them to settle in to a new home. You need to give him more time, and try letting him out once or twice during the night. Are you sure he's not sick? Switching dog food suddenly could have upset his stomach. Dogs would never want to go to the bathroom where they sleep, so it sounds like either he's just slow at housebreaking or maybe he's sick. Has he been to the vet since you got him?

Good luck, keep us posted on his progress :flwr:

31st October 2008, 02:53 PM
Is he getting a good walk in the evenings before going to the crate? Usually that will help too:)

31st October 2008, 09:04 PM
First off, it is very common for dogs to have accidents when their environment changes. This could mean simply moving house but he will have gone through a very stressful transition from a home her has known for months to new people, a new crate, a new house. Adults and rescues almost always have a few inside mistakes. He is having to totally relearn everything right now.

Also -- dogs of any age will have accidents all during their life -- it is simply part of having a dog for the owner though through rewards based training you can minimise problems. :) So there will be times when your dog has the runs for three days straight and needs to be cleaned up several times a day and goes on your best carpet or the bedspread... because these are living animals. Think more of what you'd accept with a toddelr and you have a good idea of the kind ofbodily fluids and semifluids you WILL have to clean up from time to time. :) Just be sure that this broader picture of long term dog ownership is what you accept and expect as these kinds of things are better thought through at the start rather than to cause serious frustration over time. Believe me, you will be cleaning up a stinking dog many, many times. :lol: I have two that will roll in anything disgusting on a regular basis and another that gets the runs regularly. :rolleyes:

On your own dog- - first, as others have noted, he needs a full walk last thing at night as a great opportunity to reinforce housetraining and to make sure he pees AND poops last thing at night before you go to bed. Also he should not be fed anything after about 6pm and no treats in the evening. Are people playing with him in the evening? He needs to go out after that play and he needs to be given time to poop. This can mean waiting a while outside with the dog on a lead or on a walk. A common mistake is to give up and assume the dog doesn't have to go. But young pups and dogs in particular can take a long time to go.

It is quite unusual for a dog to have to have bowel movements at night -- a 6 month old should have no problems holding himself IF he isn't going to bed with a full bowel or stomach and IF he isn't being overfed during the day with lots of treats.

If this continues I'd get him to a vet to rule out any physical problem.

And finally -- please remember he is only a little puppy still -- the equivalent of a very young child. Small children have accidents. He is still just learning and everything he knew has gone topsy turvy. He may well have an upset tummy as well due to a lot of attention -- most new puppies get a pretty stressful time initially as everyone wants to touch and hold and play with them. Like small kids, bladder and bowel can be hard to control. It isn;t his fault he is having accidents -- to him, he is just relieving himself when he cannot hold himself. If he is doing this at a time and place that is inappropriate hen it is our job to kindly and gently teach him what to do -- and to manage the situation to make sure he isn't under pressure to have to go in the first place. :)

31st October 2008, 09:22 PM
. A common mistake is to give up and assume the dog doesn't have to go. But young pups and dogs in particular can take a long time to go.

That's Abigail, It can take four or five trips to the garden at night to convince her that she needs to go. Sometimes I give up and let her go to bed only to have her howling the house down at 3am to be let out :D

1st November 2008, 01:30 PM
We had an accident-free night! Henry has sort of designated a corner of the kitchen as 'his' place and I moved the crate there and gave him a small space in the crate to sleep in and he did great. I knew he could do it!
Also-- I do have a toddler and I know that all animals have accidents ;) I was just concerned that he was doing the same thing all week, I was just worried that it was a sign he was unhappy (I know that cats will use going to the bathroom as a way of 'getting back at' their owner) or sick. Just like a small toddler, puppies cant tell you "mom I dont feel good, this is where I hurt" so I was just worried I was overlooking something.
Thanks for your advice everyone!~

3rd November 2008, 05:37 PM
I am glad he had a great night. Just think of all those changes. Keep consistent and be careful to not change his food too abruptly. Good advice already given and make sure that you are keeping him on a schedule for eating. This will allow you to know when he should have to go and spend more time outside until the job is done.

Good luck on your new puppy.