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Jane Lefler
Jane Lefler, Animal Behaviorist
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 19832
Experience:  Behaviorist /Trainer and Dog breeder 18+ years
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What do I do to help Earl, my dog to stop wetting in the

Customer Question

What do I do to help Earl, my dog to stop wetting in the house. We go out at least 6 times a day.
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Dog Training
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 9 months ago.

Hi Mary,

My name is ***** ***** I’ve been involved professionally with dogs in the health and behavioral fields for over 18 years. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.

The easiest way of house training a dog is crate training. Let me give you a site that describes crate training. What crate training does is teach a dog how to hold their bladder and not just go as soon as they feel they need to go. Below you will find the way I crate train dogs, which has worked consistently for 15 years. If you have other dogs you will need to separate them when taking them out to go to the bathroom, as they will want to play rather than potty.

I would also always take your dog outside on a leash. An unleashed dog can run into the street and get hit by a car, or get into a fight with another dog and be seriously injured. Do this even if you have a fenced yard. No playing with your puppy during potty time either.

During crate training, you will be having your dog confined either in a crate or confined to a very small area which optimally will only allow the dog room to lay down in. Dogs will generally not soil an area where they sleep.

When you feed or give your dog water, take the dog immediately outside to go to the bathroom. Also take the dog out first thing in the morning, last thing at night and after extended play times and when they wake up after a nap. Take your dog to an area where you want your dog to go and preferably one that has been used previously. Allow your dog approximately 10-15 minutes to go to the bathroom. If your dog doesn't produce, take your dog inside and cage them again. If your dog does produce results allow her some uncrated time as a reward before crating or containing the dog again.

If your dog didn't go to the bathroom, take your dog out again about 30 minutes later and repeat this until your dog goes. Praise your dog profusely when your dog succeeds and is on the leash. This will teach your dog that it needs to go when you take your dog out and not play around first.

Some dogs learn quicker than others do, but once you have your dog going when it is on the leash and each time you take your dog out, you should be able to stop containing your dog. It is a lot of work, but pays off in the long run. Remember no playing or praise until your dog succeeds in going outside on a leash.

The key is no time outside of the crate unless you can have your eye on them constantly to pick them up and take them out if you see the classic sign of impending bowel movement or urination. Also, scolding a dog for going in the house does no good unless you catch them in the act. If you do catch them, a firm NO and trip outside should be done. Remember to clean any area inside they have gone with a good pet deodorizing cleaner. Here is a site with more information on crate training.

This is how I house train all my dogs. Since he may not have a way of letting you know he has to eliminate, put a bell or other noise maker on the door low enough for the dog to reach. Each time you take the dog out, ring the bell. The dog will associate ringing the bell with going out and one day ring the bell to signal to you that he needs to go out. The only way this works is if the first time and every time he rings it, you immediately take him out. No waiting for a commercial or for you to finish a chore, etc.

A second option is to leash him to you when he is in the house. If he is leashed to you, you will know when he starts to squat or lift his leg, then you will give a short tug on his leash which will bring his attention on you and you can then give the verbal reprimand of a low toned "NO". Then you take him out immediately and wait for him to go. It may take him a few more minutes than normal as you just reprimanded him, but when he goes, you need to give him nice calm praise and a tasty treat the minute he starts eliminating. I like paper thin hot dog slivers as treats since dogs love them.

Dogs normally have to eliminate first thing upon waking even if they sleep 3-4 times a day, after they eat or drink, after playing and before bed. Initially this will likely be more than 6 times a day, but once he is trained it will likely be 4 times that he HAS to eliminate and a couple of walks a day.

One suggestion would be to start feeding and watering him on a schedule. Keep a log of when you feed him and give him water. also keep a log of when he defecates or urinates. Soon you will see a pattern develop as to how long after eating or drinking he eliminates. This will allow you to either be sure he is outside when he needs to eliminate or move his meal time so the time he would need to eliminate is more convenient for you.

Other owners of small dogs or apartment dwellers create a sod patch. You take a large pan like a kitty litter pan or even a baby swimming pool. You create a platform frame with wire on top. Place newspaper or other absorbent material such as wood shavings under the platform and place sod on top of the wire frame. Since it is grass, your dog will go on it. You can remove solids and can spray the urine so it moves through and down into the absorbent material underneath. This lets you use the same piece of sod for a while before needing to replace it. You do need to replace the material under the platform.

I hope this information is helpful to you. If you would like any additional information or have more questions please don’t hesitate to press the reply to expert or continue conversation button so I can address any issues you still have . If you do find this helpful, please take this opportunity to rate my answer positively so I am compensated for my time.

Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 9 months ago.
Hi Mary,
I'm just following up on our conversation about Mary Mackin. How is everything going?
Jane Lefler
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
I read your response and I am going to try what you suggested. I also met with the Vet on Wednesday and talked to her also.Mary
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 9 months ago.

Great, please let me know if you found it helpful.