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Gen B.
Gen B., Retired Veterinary Technician
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 2227
Experience:  Lhasa,Shih Tzu Breeder/ B.A.Neurophysiology & Animal Behavior/I use plain English!
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how do I get my dog to stop peeing & pooping on ...

Resolved Question:

how do I get my dog to stop peeing & pooping on the concrete? I want her to go on the grass.
Submitted: 11 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Gen B. replied 11 years ago.

What breed is this?

How old is she?

When did you get her?

Where did she live previously (breeder, shelter, etc)?

Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Gen B.'s Post: She is almost 3yrs, pit bull, we have had her since 8 weeks old. We bought her from a girl who lived in an apartment.

we built onto our house and have a kennel around the house. we built it for her because she had to be kept on a chain due to her jumping the fence and I felt that it was cruel to have her on a chain. We are still working on the fence jumping as well.
Expert:  Gen B. replied 11 years ago.

Hello! This additional information is helpful!

Dogs develop a "Substrate Attachment" in regards XXXXX XXXXX

This means that what she was trained to view as a "potty" place has been imprinted on her brain at a young age. Apartment-dwelling dogs are generally walked on pavement for elimination purposes...this imprints paved surfaces as the place to "go".

***Changing this behavior can take some time since this type of dog is also strongly discouraged during training from using grassed areas that belong to businesses and homeowners!***

It is more difficult to retrain this thought-pattern if she spends the majority of her time outside, isolated from your company. Dogs take their cues from the people they are most attached to...if you are not actively building a new relationship for her, she may be trying to "wait" for her previous owner to come and walk her!

Female dogs can exercise great restraint in keeping their living area clean...if she view the kennel as her "indoor" space, this will compound her confusion about eliminating on the ground.

Re-training outside potty habits in dogs is the same as house-training, so do try the following:

1) Begin regular training sessions for "sit", "down", "stay", etc. This gives you both time together so that she bonds to you and understands your positive language and body cues when she does well.

2) Spend the time you are home keeping her with you...if you are uncertain of her reliability in the house, use a leash and literally take her through your day. When you are doing an activity in a room, teach her to "lie down" in a chosen corner of the room. This activity reinforces your place as the Leader, and teaches her good indoor manners.

3) When you Know she need to go outside, lead her gently around the yard. Let her sniff the ground (it helps if you place some previous BMs on the grass where you want her to go). You may have to go in-and-out several times before she gets the idea. The idea is to teach her that she cannot be off-leash until her bladder is empty! If she doesn't "go" in about 5 minutes, go back inside and try again in 20 minutes.

4) Have a treat ready for her when she does what you want!

Remember: if she is needing to learn to "go" somewhere that she thinks is off-limits, there will be a good deal of anxiety for her to relearn this behavior. Be very patient and understanding!

***You may need to consider getting her a small group of paving stones and create an artificial sidewalk for her (say, 5x5 feet square)...this can be used at one end of her kennel area, for instance. Pavers will allow urine to flow down into the ground and allow you to easily find BMs for cleanup...she can also avoid her eliminations and feel "clean" about her home area.***

I hope these two suggestions give you some ideas about what you can try!

Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Gen B.'s Post: I can get you to BM in the grass, but the urination is the problem. She used to be on grass all the time on our side yard, so I do not understand why now she will not go on the grass int he kennel area. As far as a leash thing, even when I walk her or my other dog, neither one of them will go anywhere but in their own yard.
Expert:  Gen B. replied 11 years ago.

***I suspect that she is trying to keep her "home" area clean...this is very common in female dogs who cannot lift their leg against the fence, and who are genetically programmed to keep their den clean. This is an instinct that may be impossible to bend!***

You may need to walk her on some grass in the yard 3-4 times daily, just as if she were living indoors. You can choose a spot that would be just for this purpose so that it is out of the way of gardening, etc.

I think the kennel area has created a den-identification in her brain, especially since it is close to the house itself.

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