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My dog will not poop in the yard. She started refusing to go…

Customer Question
My dog will not...

My dog will not poop in the yard. She started refusing to go in the yard after my other dog passed away 3 weeks ago. She will pee but not poop.

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'm sorry to hear that. What is the dog's name?

Cali--she is a 2 year old poodle mix we adopted 4 months ago for a companion to our 9 year old !eonberger mix, Abby. They loved each other. Cali relied on Abby for confidence, etc. Abby died suddenly of hemangioma sarcoma in her liver. It's been awful

Submitted: 10 months ago.Category: Dog Training
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9/30/2017
Dog Trainer: PitRottMommy, Veterinary Nurse replied 10 months ago
PitRottMommy
PitRottMommy, Veterinary Nurse
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 12,562
Experience: 15 yrs experience in vet med, 8 in emergency med. Founder of a non-profit animal rescue
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Hello, JACustomer. I have been a Veterinary Nurse for over 15 years and would be happy to help you today. I'm reviewing your question right now.

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Dog Trainer: PitRottMommy, Veterinary Nurse replied 10 months ago

Have you attempted changing her routine such as having her defecate in the front yard or side yard for a short period of time?

Where is she defecating now?

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Customer reply replied 10 months ago
we have to walk her in the front yard and she will poop. Last week I took care of a friends
dog and the days that dog was here, Cali pooped in the fenced back yard. Now the dog went home and she is back to not pooping in the yard. I do not want to keep walking her in the front yard. She had no problems in the back yard when my other dog was alive. She also won't eat in the morning. She always ate 2x a day . Now she won't , although she did when friends dog was here . Now she isn't.
Dog Trainer: PitRottMommy, Veterinary Nurse replied 10 months ago

Is your front yard connected to the back yard through a fence, by chance?

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Customer reply replied 10 months ago
No. On,y the back yard is fenced.
Dog Trainer: PitRottMommy, Veterinary Nurse replied 10 months ago

To clarify, is there a gate that connects the fenced back yard to the front yard?

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Customer reply replied 10 months ago
No. Completely separated. Only back yard is fenced. No fate to the front.
Dog Trainer: PitRottMommy, Veterinary Nurse replied 10 months ago

Thank you for the clarification.

Typically in these situations, what we recommend is starting in the front yard and slowly making it closer and closer into the back yard until the dog is using the bathroom in the intended area. It sounds like she is lacking confidence in going in this area now that her companion is gone and when she had a fellow companion recently she was still willing to use the area. It may be of some usage to have your friend's over again and leaving some stool in the back yard from this dog, which may give Cali the desire to defecate there, as well.

If there is consideration for fostering or adopting another dog as company for Cali, this may help her confidence level faster than training alone.

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Customer reply replied 10 months ago
I have kept the poop in the yard. No luck. As far as lacking confidence, I am sure that is part of it, as she did everything my other dog did. But---she doesn't seem to have a confidence problem escaping the yard and running the neighborhood. She isn't afraid to do that.
My husband just walked her in the front yard to poop because it is 7pm and she hasn't done it yet. I just came in from being in the fenced back yard playing with her, throwing a ball to make her run, thinking she would poop. Nope ! She led but no poop. Just did it in the front yard.
Dog Trainer: PitRottMommy, Veterinary Nurse replied 10 months ago

The action of escaping the yard and running the neighborhood may be linked to anxiety of being in the yard without companionship. Many dogs are apt to seek out what is more comfortable for them, so if she can run the neighborhood where she finds other people, kids, other dogs, etc. she would likely be an escape artist when left alone with no companionship.

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Customer reply replied 10 months ago
She just pooped in the front yard after being in the back yard running and playing with me. She peed but would not poop--there is poop out there. She was brought out front and pooped immediately.
Dog Trainer: PitRottMommy, Veterinary Nurse replied 10 months ago

I'll opt out and see if any of our other Experts have other ideas which may help.

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Customer reply replied 10 months ago
There is no companionship when she runs out of the yard. She has not encountered people, kids and dogs. I have been out with her and she got out.
Customer reply replied 10 months ago
Thank you. I am really very frustrated. All was well until she lost her best friend . People tell me she needs another dog, and I know that. Emotionally I am so heartbroken over the sudden loss I don't know if I am ready for another dog right now.
Dog Trainer: Sally G., Animal Behaviorist replied 10 months ago
Sally G.
Sally G., Animal Behaviorist
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 10,174
Experience: Service /assistance dog trainer,Therapy dog evaluator and trainer, AKC evaluator, pet first aide and member of PAS Animal Response Team.
Verified

Hello. The expert above made some very good points.

Can you tell me please, do you use a potty command for the dog or do you just take her out and wait for her to go?

If you use a command, what happens after she has gone?

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Customer reply replied 10 months ago
I use "hurry up, go wwe wee". When she goes I praise her. This problem has all just started 3 weeks ago when my other dog, her best friend, suddenly died. Before that there were no issues.
Customer reply replied 10 months ago
Hello ?? Any response?
Dog Trainer: Sally G., Animal Behaviorist replied 10 months ago

Thank you for that information. By the time you responded my shift was over last night.

Because she will not go in the back yard alone, but will when other dogs or humans are there it tells me she is feeling vulnerable in that area. The reasons may not be clear to you, but they are to her.

When a dog is pooping, they are in a vulnerable position. Because of this, some dogs may try to move as they poop or they may move their head from side to side.

Generally shy or fearful personalities will do this.

What I would suggest is to brighten up her potty routine with more than just praise. Have a special treat on hand such as chicken or hot dog. Take her out on leash to a variety of places, not just the yard so she gets used to going on cue everywhere you take her. Give the command, as usual, praise and then give the special treat. This treat should not be given to her at any other time.

If there is something in the back yard she is fearing , after you have taken her to a few different areas and she is trying to go when you have given the potty cue then take her back to that portion of the yard .

Another possibility to try is to block off an area in the back yard, make something that does not allow her to see around the whole yard. If you can block off the stimuli she may do better. If you do this, then I would would begin using a cue such as go to the pen, and when she's in there use the go potty. This establishes a safe destination for her with a cue and then tells her what you want her to do when there.

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Customer reply replied 10 months ago
Why is it that she will go in the yard to pee, but not poop. I have tried walking her on leash and still nothing. But she will use the yard to pee.
Dog Trainer: Sally G., Animal Behaviorist replied 10 months ago

Going potty does not take the same time , effort and position that pooping does and the dog does not feel they are in as vulnerable of a position.

Something may have happened to her in that area. Sometimes dogs are outside and there is a loud bang, or they are walking and step on a bee which causes pain. Then they associate any buzzing sound with that pain, which can include flies in the area.

I had a dog that refused to go out in the yard at certain times of day, then I realized it was due to bees. So she would only go out when it was dark, very early morning or after the sun set in the evening. If she had to urinate very badly she would run out , urinate and run back in.

Your pup could have had something frighten it at the moment is was pooping so then it identifies that act with a bad thing. We want to change the way she looks at that.

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Customer reply replied 10 months ago
Ok. Will try it. Thank you.
Dog Trainer: Sally G., Animal Behaviorist replied 10 months ago

You are welcome.

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Customer reply replied 10 months ago
How long do I let my dog go without pooping ? I have been walking her all over the fenced back yard, I give her the "hurry up" signals. I have chicken . She hasn't gone. It's been since 8 pm last night. She can't keep Holding it. I know if I bring her to the front yard she will go immediately. I'm afraid she will go in the house. She did that last week. I cannot crate her, she is terrified of the crate. Won't be in the same room with it. I have put steak in the crate and she will not go near it. She was a rescue from CA.--she was crated in the cargo hold of a plane and flown across country. Before my dog died there were no issues. Now this. She cannot go 24 hours without pooping.
Dog Trainer: Sally G., Animal Behaviorist replied 10 months ago

You were to bring her everywhere else other than the back yard to start and have her go on the potty command, in those areas, then gradually bring her to the back once she was fine going in many other areas , not just the front.

And no, do not make her wait 24 hours, if you know she has not gone bring her to a place you know she will go.

Right now you are taking her to the back too soon she has not gotten over her fear of the area. Fear issues have to be taken slowly.

And yes she will do a better job at going in the back when there is another dog there because the excitement of that dog being there will over shadow the fear. Dogs lean on each other, and when there is a fearful dog with a confident dog, the fearful dog gets enough confidence to remain in most cases, but not all.

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Dog Trainer: Sally G., Animal Behaviorist replied 10 months ago

Fearful dogs gain strength through confident dogs and that is why she likely is fine if there is another dog in the area.

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Customer reply replied 10 months ago
I have been taking her to other places, she goes immediately. That is what I have been doing for 3 weeks.
Dog Trainer: Jane Lefler, Animal Behaviorist replied 10 months ago
Jane Lefler
Jane Lefler, Animal Behaviorist
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 20,452
Experience: Behaviorist /Trainer and Dog breeder 18+ years
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Hi. Welcome to Just Answer. My name is Jane. I have been involved professionally with dogs in the healthcare and behavioral fields for over 20 years. I’ve worked as a Vet Assistant and Behaviorist and have extensive experience in dog reproduction, as a breeder, for even longer than that.. Canine behavioral issues and training are also my specialties. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.

You have been given quite a few ideas though eventually if none of those work, you will just need to keep her in the back yard which brings up the point of her being an escape artist. Now that is something I can help with. If she is an escape digger then a method I’ve used with great success for escape diggers (digging at bottom of fence) is to bury chicken wire along the edge of the fence and cover it with a layer of dirt. Dogs don’t like the feel of it on their nails and stop digging. This would work if you want to stop the digging in specific places.

For dogs that may be going over or climbing, you can use angle bars that fit on the fence posts and angle them toward the inside of the yard. You can then run foot wide chicken wire or matching fence material along the braces. With it angled inward, the dog can not climb or jump over normally.

A more practical and nicer looking solution in my opinion is installing an electric wire around the perimeter of the property similar to what they use for horses and cows but a much smaller voltage. They make plastic holders for the wire that attach to chain link. You can run one close to the top of the fence if a dog is jumping over and / or one about 6 inches or so from the bottom. One controller should power both wires. They do shock, but I can assure you that it is not a bad shock as I personally touched it and got shocked before I would allow it to be used for my rotties. It only took my dogs getting shocked once each to learn to stay away from the wire. My dogs would pull the chain link off the bottom rail of their kennel and fencing too. I used this and it solved the problem.. The following site has the main unit though the next site sells complete kits. Lowes and tractor supply stores sell these as should any feed type store.

http://www.zarebasystems.com/store/electric-fence-accessories/kits

http://www.nextag.com/electric-pet-fence/search-html

Of course you could also use shock collars and underground fence as well. These work pretty well for a dog where there is already a containment fence in place as they can not run through the field.

Now if the dog only climbs over or touches the top bar to propel herself over the fence, there is another option to prevent the dog from escaping. You run a high strength wire from post to post with two pieces of PVC piping on the wire. When the dog's paws hit the pvc pipe it spins and the dog can not get a grip and falls back to the ground. See this here:

http://yoursassyself.com/roll-bar-fence-diy-keep-your-pets-in-others-out/

If you leave her outside for an extended period of time, she should eventually eliminate. It isn't the best solution but if the others do not work, she will eventually eliminate.

I hope I've given you great service. If so, I'd appreciate a 5 star rating. The rating should be based on my answer and not any site issue. Experts are not compensated until a rating is done. If you have any other questions at all, please reply here and I'll be happy to follow up with you even after you have rated. .

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Customer reply replied 10 months ago
Escaping the yard was not my issue . I don't know why I was given this information. She is not pooping in the yard after the recent death of my other dog . She will on,y poop in the front yard and has to be walked to do that. I want her in the fenced back yard. I walk her back there, sit with her, she won't poop. Take her in the front yard and she poops. This behavior started after the other dog passed . She has escaped a few times, but she is not an escape artist. This isn't the problem.
Dog Trainer: Jane Lefler, Animal Behaviorist replied 10 months ago

I gave you this information because you did state this in one of your posts.... "-she doesn't seem to have a confidence problem escaping the yard and running the neighborhood. " That led me to believe that you could not leave her for any significant amount of time in the back yard or she would escape the yard and run the neighborhood. Preventing her escape from the back yard would allow you to leave her in the back yard until she eliminated. Once she eliminates a few times in the back yard, she should get over the issue.

The other potential situation is that she has learned that if she avoids defecating in the back yard, you or your husband will take her for a leashed walk in the front yard or elsewhere.

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Customer reply replied 10 months ago
I can leave her in the yard. She just sits at the door. Does not venture into the yard. I have walked her in the yard over and over all day long. I have sat in the yard with her. She will not poop. I have tried to " wait it out" for over 10 hours She will not go. Then I heave to take her in the front yard because I do not want to have her go 24 hours without pooping. She does it immediately. She will on,y go in the fenced yard when she has another dog with her.
Dog Trainer: Jane Lefler, Animal Behaviorist replied 10 months ago

Other experts have given you the best advice on how to "train" her to go in the area where you instruct her to. You really can't force her to go with training..

Now there is a couple of ways that will encourage her to eliminate immediately. One way would be to take her temperature. This frequently will cause a dog to eliminate within 5-10 minutes. Another way would be to take a nasal bulb syringe (aspirator), and put warm water in it and gently squeeze a small amount into the rectum and see if this doesn't help move the fecal matter.

You can use a children’s glycerin suppository depending on the size of your dog but the other methods are what I recommend you try first.

Once she goes once, she should be less frightened of eliminating in the back yard. Of course, you do have to use my suggestions in the back yard.

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Customer reply replied 10 months ago
No thanks---that's not happening.
Dog Trainer: Jane Lefler, Animal Behaviorist replied 10 months ago

We can only make suggestions that we know will help with specific situations. It is up to the owner to follow through on the recommendations and techniques suggested. Since all the suggestions that three different experts have suggested have been dismissed, I'll opt out as well. Good luck with your girl.

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