19th December 2010, 08:32 PM
Hi I'm new to all of this I have a 16 week old king Charles and even tho ben is a house dog I was thinking of buying an outdoor kennel so I can leave him out side when I go out rather than leave him locked in the utility room the only room in the house he won't have an accident in is this a good idea?? And while I'm on can someone tell my why ben will pee or poop in the living room but won't do it when he's in the utility??? Glad I found this site
19th December 2010, 09:24 PM
Hi and welcome! We are glad you found us!
The easy and short answer is: no, please do not build a kennel outside -- it would be better to rehome a cavalier than force one out into an outdoor kennel even for short periods of time. They are prone to becoming deeply unhappy and suffer behaviour problems if left outside. Your fellow also is still way too young and has too little coat or body mass to be able to keep himself warm, even if outside for a short while, and of course, never overnight. Cavaliers -- even in a kennel -- remain one of the most stolen breeds too. A home kennel is pretty easy to access with simple bolt cutters. It is safer and nicer and more comforting for him to be inside.
A utility room is fine for now, if you can make it cosy and leave water, toys and a nice bed for him. If the room is really small, why not consider a puppy pen in the kitchen, with a crate (door open) inside a his 'dog house' for when no one is home? (there's a pic in Ian Dunbar's book on a setup for this -- see link below).
Any dog cannot however spend an entire day home alone -- so you will need to arrange to come home at lunch to give him a toilet break and some exercise, or consider a dog walker or a few days at least a week at doggie daycare. This is a breed that does not do well left home alone all day and which thrives on interaction so it is important that he have more time with his owners or other people than a few hours at the end of the day when owners are tired, and some time on weekends (it's like having a child in some ways -- not quite as intense and consuming, but people do need to rearrange their life to accommodate the responsibility and time commitments of a dog). :)
One reason he is going in some rooms other than the utility room is that dogs generally will keep what they see as their 'den' clean. Housetraining gradually, and with kindness (NEVER punishment!), slowly (and I do mean slowly!) expands the puppy's understanding of 'den' to mean the house. For most puppies this will be mostly learned by about 6 months IF -- and this is a big IF -- people are there during the day to constantly reinforce housetraining and make sure the pup rarely ever has the chance to have an accident inside. If people work all day, expect this process to take u to a year or more as the lesson is far harder to learn if there's no consistency and reward for a job done well by the pup and no one gets him outside every couple of hours.
Here are some good guides to housetraining:
I'd highly recommend downloading this free copy of trainer Ian Dunbar's well known training and behaviour handbook on raising a puppy:
There's also tons of advice and videos and podcasts on dog training on his website: http://www.dogstardaily.com/
Good luck! It sounds like you are off to a very good start if he isn't toileting in the utility room :) -- that is step one and a good achievement for a 16 week old! :thmbsup:
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