potty training & obsession help!

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lilalmond2011
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potty training & obsession help!

Post by lilalmond2011 » Sat Oct 08, 2011 8:08 pm

Hello,

My Name is Tabitha. I'm 20 years ld & i'm new to the site. I have had dogs my whole life growing up but never an actually puppy. I just got a 15 week old Rat Terrier. Her name is Almond & I love her so much. It has been a week today that I have had her. Just wondering if i could get some advice on a couple of things.

Like I said, I love her to death but I have noticed that she has an obsession about trying to chew her tag on her collar & I cant get her to stop no matter how many times I tell her "No".

Also one more thing, Any advice you could give me on house breaking? She is slowly learning to pee outside but she seems to refuse to poop outside. I do yell at her and stick her nose into it & clean it up & then take her outside...am I doing this all wrong....? =/ I don't want to resort to puppy pads.

Thanks so much,
Tabitha

emmabeth
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Re: potty training & obsession help!

Post by emmabeth » Sun Oct 09, 2011 1:55 am

Erm, if you are shouting at her and pushing her nose in it, yes, thats very very wrong.

What that will do is teach her not to trust you AT ALL, she will not understand what you are trying to do, if she learns anything asides from that you are unpredictable and scary, it will be that IF there is poo around, hide it or hide herself.

To potty train a pup you MUST take her outside frequently and reward her well when she goes with you watching - if you punish her when you catch her indoors you just teach her not to go when you are watching.

So, focus on teaching her that outside is rewarding, it always happens outside and the side effect of that will be that she eventually stops going indoors, because you never give her the chance, and because outside is rewarding!

A collar and tag around her neck is totally unnatural to her so she plays with it, tries to remove it etc. Provide her with plenty of appropriate things to chew and play with, and keep distracting her from it with fun, rewarding stuff to do.
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Nettle
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Re: potty training & obsession help!

Post by Nettle » Sun Oct 09, 2011 4:39 am

Hi Tabitha :)

Check out our pinned thread on potty-training which will tell you all you need to know, and come back with your questions, because you will surely have some.

Tape up the tag on the collar so puppy can't reach it and it doesn't jingle.
A dog is never bad or naughty - it is simply being a dog

SET YOURSELF UP FOR SUCCESS

lilalmond2011
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Re: potty training & obsession help!

Post by lilalmond2011 » Sun Oct 09, 2011 6:12 am

emmabeth wrote:Erm, if you are shouting at her and pushing her nose in it, yes, thats very very wrong.

What that will do is teach her not to trust you AT ALL, she will not understand what you are trying to do, if she learns anything asides from that you are unpredictable and scary, it will be that IF there is poo around, hide it or hide herself.

To potty train a pup you MUST take her outside frequently and reward her well when she goes with you watching - if you punish her when you catch her indoors you just teach her not to go when you are watching.

So, focus on teaching her that outside is rewarding, it always happens outside and the side effect of that will be that she eventually stops going indoors, because you never give her the chance, and because outside is rewarding!

A collar and tag around her neck is totally unnatural to her so she plays with it, tries to remove it etc. Provide her with plenty of appropriate things to chew and play with, and keep distracting her from it with fun, rewarding stuff to do.
When I take her outside & she pees I give her a treat & tell her how much of a good girl she is for going outside & get all excited.
So your saying I shouldn't scold her at all for pooping in the house? This morning she did it again but I didn't say anything to her. All I did was picked her up put her leash on & brought her outside. She didn't do anything though. Is that what i'm supposed to do...?

Yea every time she starts chewing her tag i just distract her with her toys & it works for a couple of mins then she oges back to the tag. just wanted to make sure i was doing it right.

Thanks,
Tabitha

Suzette
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Re: potty training & obsession help!

Post by Suzette » Sun Oct 09, 2011 7:42 am

lilalmond2011 wrote:When I take her outside & she pees I give her a treat & tell her how much of a good girl she is for going outside & get all excited.
So your saying I shouldn't scold her at all for pooping in the house? This morning she did it again but I didn't say anything to her. All I did was picked her up put her leash on & brought her outside. She didn't do anything though. Is that what i'm supposed to do...?

Yea every time she starts chewing her tag i just distract her with her toys & it works for a couple of mins then she oges back to the tag. just wanted to make sure i was doing it right.

Thanks,
Tabitha
That's correct Tabitha - praise and treat for going outside, ignore if she goes in the house. If she does go in the house, calmly take her outside and give her a chance to go there. It doesn't matter if she doesn't go, just give her that opportunity.

Sounds like you're already off to a good start taking the advice given! :D Here is the link that Nettle suggested on potty training: viewtopic.php?f=20&t=6125 I used this method myself recently and it worked wonderfully.

I also really like Nettle's suggestion of taping up the tag on your pup's collar. It will make your life infinitely easier if it's not dangling down, constantly getting her attention. If there's one thing I learned from raising my puppy it's that it is sooo much easier (whenever possible) to manage a situation rather than constantly have to distract and redirect Piper. (For instance, she was chewing at my area rugs, so I just pulled them all up. She can't chew what isn't there! :D I'll put them back down when she's older, but for now it's saving me and her a ton of frustration.)
My avatar is Piper, my sweet Pembroke Corgi. b. 5/11/11

emmabeth
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Re: potty training & obsession help!

Post by emmabeth » Sun Oct 09, 2011 12:28 pm

Yep, thats right.

It sounds odd that you don't tell them off for going in the house, but because they don't understand yet WHERE they should go, telling them off won't help.

Imagine you came here and asked for help, not knowing what you should do, as you have...

And we JUST yelled at you for doing the wrong things. Wouldn't be particularly helpful, even if you did understand what was wrong and why (which your dog doesn't because she cant speak english!).

So, we focus on teaching them what we DO want them to do, by preventing them from making mistakes (ie, dont leave her unsupervised anywhere!) and giving them lots of opportunities to do the right thing (ie, taking her outside frequently).

What then happens is, with patience, you find its quite difficult for the dog to make a mistake, its very easy for her to do things right, and she learns what you wanted her to learn, without you having to be mean.

Do not bother trying to teach a dog that it is 'wrong' to do a thing - dogs do not understand the same rights and wrongs as humans. You CAN teach her that some things won't be rewarded, but for a dog, it is not 'wrong' to toilet when they need to. They do as puppies come sort of pre-programmed to want to toilet as far away from where they eat and sleep as possible, but in our homes, that would still allow a LOT of places as 'ok to toilet here'.

So the best thing to do is form a habit, 'you always toilet HERE', and make sure 'here' is outdoors, rather than spend forever trying to explain 'no not here, or there, or over there or back here or there or there or there', because that is a LOT of no's, a lot of negativity and punishment and no real explaination as to what you DO want.
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minkee
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Re: potty training & obsession help!

Post by minkee » Sun Oct 09, 2011 4:24 pm

Just to add, you could always leave the collar off indoors. I only have a collar on my pup when I take her out for a walk :) She'll probably be far too excited by the outside world to bother with her collar then.

Also, you've done a brilliant thing by arriving here for help! I was clueless when I first brought my pup home, but the boys and girls here really know their stuff, and can help with every hiccup :)
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Ari_RR
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Re: potty training & obsession help!

Post by Ari_RR » Sun Oct 09, 2011 10:49 pm

Hi there!

When we got our puppy ridgeback, for the first month I slept downstairs on the sofa, next to the crate where he slept. We had an alarm clock set to go off every 4 hrs or so, and I would wake up and take him outside, even if he was just sleeping... Then we stopped the alarm clock, but I still slept on the sofa, so I could wake up and take him out on every suspicious noise he made... Same thing during the day - frequent trips to the back yard. This was rather painful, especially considering that we got the puppy in December and those first couple of months were winter months (snow, wind, cold outside, going out in the middle of the night was less then a joy). But I must say that it was well worth it. He is 12 months old now, and since we got him, he probably peed no more then 5 times inside the house, and we had no more then 2 or 3 pooping accidents, and all those were during the first month. After that - not once.
There probably are smarter ways of house breaking a puppy... But we picked what we thought was the most effective approach, and although it interfered with my sleeping habits for a couple of month, it worked great for us and for the dog.

As for the collar - we do sometimes take it off inside, but mostly for the night. We are reluctant to keep it off during the day because there is always a chance of him escaping (someone leaves the door open, for example... there are lots of rabbits where we live, and he can't resist chasing them), and if that happens - he and us will be much better off if he has his collar and all his tags on.

Cheers
Eugene
Ari, Rhodesian Ridgeback, Sept 2010 - Dec 2018.
Miles, Rhodesian Ridgeback, b. Nov 2018

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