Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
twiceblessed....nacole

Dog behavior question...

Recommended Posts

My folks have a Shih Tzu/Maltese mix, male/neutered.  He's 4-5 years old.  Sweet dog, but very anxious when it comes to noises (i.e. he has to be drugged for thunder storms).  He has never had a potty training issue... until now.  Over the past 5 days, he's pottied/pooped in the house 3x.  Nothing has changed with respect to my parents or anything in/at the house.  Nothing (that they know of) is new outside.  They've lived in this house, his entire life.  No other behavior issues.  They've stared crated him at night and when they leave (they have a doggie door so he use to be out and could use that door whenever he needed to go outside).  The last potty accident, was when my mom was outside cutting the grass... she wonders if the mower scared him, but that seems odd as she cuts the grass every week.  They have one other dog (Shih Tzu), no changes in her behavior or the two dogs relationship; they get along well.

They are at a loss.  I suggested maybe a vet visit to make sure he doesn't have some sore of urinary tract infection?  I don't know...

Any thoughts/suggestions?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Vet first,  to look for a UTI or other problems.   If nothing physical is found,  a 3 week 'retraining' course should help. 

First of all, they should go back to a puppy style housebreaking system.  The dog must not be allowed free run of the house any more until he is re-potty trained.   He should always be on leash,  or crated.   The next step is to make going outside fun again.  Regularly scheduled outside visits,  every 3 to 4 hours,  where the human goes with the dog, and every stop to pee or poo is rewarded with great praise and a few REALLY GOOD treats.   Like Turkey, Cheese or Bacon.    Stop giving the dog any other treats not related to eliminating outside, during this time.

do that for 5 days at least,  a week is better.   Then, if the dog is doing well,  change to a more normal schedule of going out, whatever that time frame might be.   The dog should still not be allowed free run of the house.  If the dog shows a willingness to go outside at any point,  the humans should be observant and encourage any movement toward the doggy door.   They can also change the treating to more praise outside,  and a treat when the dog comes inside.  Do this for another week.

On the third week,  take the dog off leash when the humans can watch him.  Block the area so the dog is confined to the room where the dog door is,  or maybe one room beyond.  Humans need to pay attention to when the dog chooses to go out, and if he eliminates outside,  praise and treat when the dog comes back inside. 

If all goes well, the humans can give full run of the house on the 4th week,  but they should pay attention to when the dog goes in and out, and remember to praise and treat at least every other time for this week.. then they can move away from such frequent treats and move just to praising the dog when he comes in.   Treats can be given randomly, and can be regular dog treats or kibble.

If possible,  they should make sure they have regular play times set up where they go out to play with the dog, or play with him inside.  The entire problem could be being caused by the dog wanting more attention, and not getting it.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, ThemeParkCommando said:

Vet first,  to look for a UTI or other problems.   If nothing physical is found,  a 3 week 'retraining' course should help. 

First of all, they should go back to a puppy style housebreaking system.  The dog must not be allowed free run of the house any more until he is re-potty trained.   He should always be on leash,  or crated.   The next step is to make going outside fun again.  Regularly scheduled outside visits,  every 3 to 4 hours,  where the human goes with the dog, and every stop to pee or poo is rewarded with great praise and a few REALLY GOOD treats.   Like Turkey, Cheese or Bacon.    Stop giving the dog any other treats not related to eliminating outside, during this time.

do that for 5 days at least,  a week is better.   Then, if the dog is doing well,  change to a more normal schedule of going out, whatever that time frame might be.   The dog should still not be allowed free run of the house.  If the dog shows a willingness to go outside at any point,  the humans should be observant and encourage any movement toward the doggy door.   They can also change the treating to more praise outside,  and a treat when the dog comes inside.  Do this for another week.

On the third week,  take the dog off leash when the humans can watch him.  Block the area so the dog is confined to the room where the dog door is,  or maybe one room beyond.  Humans need to pay attention to when the dog chooses to go out, and if he eliminates outside,  praise and treat when the dog comes back inside. 

If all goes well, the humans can give full run of the house on the 4th week,  but they should pay attention to when the dog goes in and out, and remember to praise and treat at least every other time for this week.. then they can move away from such frequent treats and move just to praising the dog when he comes in.   Treats can be given randomly, and can be regular dog treats or kibble.

If possible,  they should make sure they have regular play times set up where they go out to play with the dog, or play with him inside.  The entire problem could be being caused by the dog wanting more attention, and not getting it.  

Thank you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good advice already re: vet and retraining if necessary.

If nothing has changed in the dog's environment (same people, places, daily routine), what about diet?  Any changes in food of any kind? Meds/supplements?  

I could see a dog with sound sensitivity possibly having a pee accident when startled, but I'd expect it to be more of a quick thing only, and unlikely repeated other times. 

You mention meds for storms - have they had to give them more often recently or around the time of the accidents? (thinking possibly side effect)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, BradyBzLyn...Mo said:

Good advice already re: vet and retraining if necessary.

If nothing has changed in the dog's environment (same people, places, daily routine), what about diet?  Any changes in food of any kind? Meds/supplements?  

I could see a dog with sound sensitivity possibly having a pee accident when startled, but I'd expect it to be more of a quick thing only, and unlikely repeated other times. 

You mention meds for storms - have they had to give them more often recently or around the time of the accidents? (thinking possibly side effect)

Thanks Mo.  No changes to environment and they hadn't given him any new food or any meds.  Mom thinks that Meshach may have been spooked by the sprinklers.  Again, he's lived in this house his entire life but... he's a bit neurotic already.  They are guessing that maybe he was going potty, when the sprinklers came on and nabbed him.  They have a vet visit for Monday (just in case) and are back to potty training 101, to see if they can correct the behavior.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/19/2017 at 7:24 AM, twiceblessed....nacole said:

...Mom thinks that Meshach may have been spooked by the sprinklers.  Again, he's lived in this house his entire life but... he's a bit neurotic already.  They are guessing that maybe he was going potty, when the sprinklers came on and nabbed him.  

Ah... that could make sense!  And not so unusual for a dog to develop new quirks as they get older, especially the ones that were already quirky to begin with (speaking from experience here!)    Hoping everything checks out ok at the vet and potty re-training goes well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×