I am temporarily a two cavalier household, my daughter's Belle has been staying with me for about three weeks while they are staying with my mom and hunting for an apartment. I have a small backyard and usually keep the door open so the dogs can freely go in and out. There's a patio surrounded by earth, ivy and some bushes and trees. Zack always goes poop in the dirt. Belle will often go on the patio. It's much harder to clean up, and she will tend to leave a trail of it over the whole patio, not all in one pile.
Are there ways of teaching her to use the dirt instead of the patio, in a situation where their toileting is not structured and i am not always watching when they go? Belle is used to being walked on a leash, and Lisa and Joe say she prefers to go on sidewalks more than grass, although when i was visiting their house for a few days and walked them, she always went on the grass--maybe because that's where i took them to walk?
They never discouraged her from going on the sidewalk because they are always just so happy that she is going outside at all. It's frustrating for them when they need to leave for work in the morning or they come home at night and they're tired, and they take belle for a walk and she doesn't go. Then, they leave her in the house and sometimes she goes in the house. Because of this, she's not as sure as she might be about the necessity of going outside. But at my place, she always chooses to go out when the backdoor is open. I'm not sure if she scratches on the door to go out when it's closed. I haven't been paying attention. Zack will scratch to go out.
I usually watch her when she goes outside but not always. Sometimes they are playing and i don't watch, and later i find poops that i didn't witness. I haven't corrected her when i've caught her in the act because i was caught off guard by this and didn't want to interrupt her and cause her to stop and lose the urge to go, i have been anxious about wanting to give clear messages about inside v. outside, but didn't want to confuse the issue by acting as if something was not OK when she went outside. So then when she goes on the patio, i feel like saying "good girl" because she is outside, but that goes against my wanting her to just use the dirt areas, not the cement.
i was furious at Lisa and Joe the other day. Usually i come home during the day to let Zack and now Belle outside. On Wednesday, they said they were going to my place, so i thought i didn't need to let the dogs out. Later when i got home, they were out getting some take out for dinner and i walked in the door and smelled poop. There were pieces of poop from the entry hall, across the living room, to the back door, and a pee next to the backdoor, it must've been belle, it was her kind of 'trail,' and zack can wait a whole day to pee if necessary. I could tell that they hadn't let the dogs out, they'd been in all day.
When Lisa and Joe got back, at least they didn't lie about it. They both said "We were only here for 10 minutes." ???????????????? hello? couldn't they just open the back door and let the dogs out, it would take one second? But they are into a mentality where they need to pay attention to whether belle goes or not, and to them, taking out the dog is a big time consuming project, and they were not able to make the mental adjustment that at my place, all they have to do is open the door, and anyway, the dogs have to go. HELLO??
it wasn't the mess i was so mad about. It was giving the dogs the message that they are not expected to go outside, they are expected to go inside if they really have to.
The previous morning, i found a big pee in the kitchen and i knew that when Joe got up to go to work (they were staying with me for a couple of days) he must've been late and didn't bother to let the dogs out. Lisa acknowledged that he had forgotten to set the alarm.
So, last night, i was sitting here relaxing after a long hard week, it was really late, i dont' remember if the back door was open or not, but it had been for much of the night. I heard the sound of a small waterfall, and turned to see ZACK lifting his leg by an office chair with my down jacket on it, a little pee on the sleeve, a lot of pee on the floor. Right in the path where Belle's trail of poop had been. I used the natures miracle, but this is bigger than natures miracle. This is about wrong messages.
He was a perfectly housetrained dog. Now he is confused. I am so bummed out about this.