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Vespertine

Two house training questions

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Vespertine

I have to apologize - I may be posting a few threads over the next few weeks. With a new puppy in the house, I have lots of questions!

We've had our Effie for a week and two challenges have come up with house training that I'd love to get opinions on:

1) She pees outside but poops inside. 

At this point, she's doing amazingly well with her peeing. She's doing all her pees outside when we're with her and on the paper when she's in her confinement area (an empty spare bedroom).

But we can't for the life of us get her to poop outside. No matter how long we stay out or how often we go, she will hold it until she can do it inside. She is pooping consistently in her bedroom, on the paper when she's confined, with some near misses when she's free roaming. 

We've tried planting several poop bombs in her outdoor potty area, which she has completely ignored. Now I'm quietly following her to her bedroom when I know she's going to poop, making sure she's on the paper, and saying the phrase "do your business" when she's in the act with the hope I can use that phrase once she's made the association to get her to do it outdoors. 

Does anyone have any other suggestions? If I could get her to go outside even once, I would throw her such a party I don't think she'd forget it!

2) She's learned how to signal to go outside and is overdoing it. 

She just figured out tonight that if she whines or paws at the door we will take her outside, then decided to do it over and over. 7 times total, with 3 being legitimate bathroom breaks.

We decided to make the trips boring and brief unless she actually peed, and she did give up on the game. I don't want to set up a bad habit, but my ideal long term goal is that she will signal us when she needs to go outside so we can let her into our fenced backyard on her own. That means I don't want her to unlearn signaling. Any thoughts?

Thank you all very much!

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Anonymous

I have a 4 mo and he is doing the same thing with the pooping inside. Argh!

Loves peeing outside, hits the grass, no problem. No accidents, he can even hold it all night.

Poop? No matter how long we are out, he holds it until he gets back in and sneaks off and lets it go. He was doing better when I was more diligent about always supervising closely, whether with my eyes or a tether or the crate. But to be honest, he was still trying to poop inside, I was just catching him a lot and scooping him up to go out. Now if I give him literally one minute of freedom in the house, off he goes.

Hopefully someone has some advice!

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Crinkly

I would say that it looks like both have learned (for whatever reason) that the correct place to poop is inside.

I'm afraid I can't offer much advice except to say that pooping is a vulnerable time, and up until moving in with you, the pups will have always pooed very close to their sleeping den - and Shih Tzu Mum or Human Mum would have cleared it up.  So it is fairly logical to expect that regime to continue...

I'm trying to remember what we did with Cato.  I think it was trips outside every hour, and expected him to go on a puppy pad during the night.  He very quickly learned to hold it all night!  Of course there were still accidents.  Regular ones.

Maybe it is just too early to expect them to 'get it'?

With Tara, Cato did most of the potty training for us.  She followed him around like a shadow, so if he went out, she did too.  Where she fell down was peeing on the carpet cos she was busting, and he didn't take her out.  She didn't like leaving the fun.

Effie sounds like a really bright spark. :roflmao:

@KateBren maybe make sure he goes outside on his own four paws, rather than you carrying him?  I read somewhere that unless dogs walk a route themselves, they can't learn it, and don't know where they are when they are put down, until they have oriented themselves by smell.  So if he knows the way to the poop-zone, and treads it himself, that may help.  But that is just a guess.

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Anonymous

Oh he walks himself out. I was just saying that even when we first got him, I was catching him squatting to poop and then scooping him up quickly to rush him out. The pee came very naturally in contrast.

I agree, I do think there is something comforting about pooping in the house for the Tzu. Maybe because they were bred to be palace dogs? He is turning out to be much harder than my Cairn Terrier was, that dog caught on so fast. 

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Crinkly

Oh, just remembered - there is a fairly predictable poop routine for shih tzu puppies.  Usually a set time after they eat, I think.  Maybe time it a couple of days, and then you see if you can predict it.

If you can work out what your pup's routine is, and then take them outside at the time they are likely to need it.  That might help.

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Anonymous

Good point. I do need to do that. He's been eating often during day because he is such a light eater but I am going to try to get him on a more predictable eating schedule. 

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ParadiseTzu

I have found that a regular routine is a must when starting potty training and then you must stick with it.  My puppy is now 22 months old and hasn't had an accident since he was nine months old. Even so nine months old is a long time to potty train.  My older female was very easy to train.

So this is just how I did it. I only allowed free time on the floor after they had pottied and then for only fifteen minutes.  Otherwise they were tethered to my wrist, if I was too busy to have them tethered, they were in a crate.  As they got older, free time was increased a little at a time.  If any accidents happened, back to the stricter routine.

I think for both of you, your puppies are too young to be trained yet.  But stick with consistent patient training and you will get there.

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Vespertine
7 hours ago, Crinkly said:

up until moving in with you, the pups will have always pooed very close to their sleeping den - and Shih Tzu Mum or Human Mum would have cleared it up.

Good point!

And maybe Effie is still too young to expect this much. My expectations for house training were very low before she arrived, but she's done so well so far maybe I'm overestimating what she's capable of at this stage. 

As for a poop routine, I've read that most puppies poop 5 to 30 minutes after they've eaten, but so far Effie's been doing most of her pooping overnight, long after her food's been taken away. Since our house is a new environment I may have to wait a bit longer before I can figure out her natural schedule. 

She's toned down on asking to go out today. We stopped responding if she had just gone out. Her new trick is peeing twice in one potty break!

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Anonymous
2 hours ago, ParadiseTzu said:

I have found that a regular routine is a must when starting potty training and then you must stick with it.  My puppy is now 22 months old and hasn't had an accident since he was nine months old. Even so nine months old is a long time to potty train.  My older female was very easy to train.

So this is just how I did it. I only allowed free time on the floor after they had pottied and then for only fifteen minutes.  Otherwise they were tethered to my wrist, if I was too busy to have them tethered, they were in a crate.  As they got older, free time was increased a little at a time.  If any accidents happened, back to the stricter routine.

I think for both of you, your puppies are too young to be trained yet.  But stick with consistent patient training and you will get there.

Really good points. I think I am expecting too much. My Cairn was trained by 4-5 months but I think I need to relax my expectations a bit for this guy, as well as put more structure back in, including more tethering. Thanks for the tips :) 

We'll get there!

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Missysmom

The only other thing I can think of is the treats, not sure if either of yours are food motivated but.. Missy still gets treats when she goes, 1 for pee and 2 for poo, and of course the good girl pat on the head! She too over does the asking to go out, still after over 2 years But she only gets treats if she goes potty. That helps a lot as she knows she won't get anything for those 'empty' trips out, except of course when she pretend squats just to get the treat! ;) :hysterical:

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Vespertine
12 minutes ago, Missysmom said:

The only other thing I can think of is the treats

Oh my goodness, yes! This is why Effie has picked up on peeing outside so quickly -- positive, reward-based training really works! I'm using freeze-dried beef liver treats, and she is crazy about them. She watches me like a hawk while she's peeing and then leaps at me for her reward. Today she's totally on track, asking to go out once every 1 or 2 hours and peeing right away.

This is why I say that I wish I could get her to poop outside even once. I would give her so much praise and so many liver treats that I'm sure she'd be keen to do it again. It's just getting over that hump, so to speak.

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