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Theresa, A Voice for Your Pet
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 8007
Experience:  19+ years experience in small animal medicine
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Facing problems toilet training a Dachshund terrier mix.

Customer Question

I have a Dachshund/Rat terrier mix and he is a year and a half old. I am having problems with him pooping and peeing in the house. I take him outside and he barks to come in, but he will not bark to go out.

He will be outside for quite a while and then he comes in a minutes later I find pee on the floor or I will catch him in the act. What do I do about this problem? Please help me.

Submitted: 10 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Theresa replied 10 years ago.

I have a few questions to help assist you with potty issues:

1) When was he neutered?

2) Can you describe his routine a bit?

3) How much time does he spend outdoors and do you go out with him?

4) How was he initially potty trained? Crate? Enclosed area? Potty pads?

5) Does he go to the same spot? What do you clean it with?

Customer: replied 10 years ago.

My dog was neutered on the 17th of May. He will get up when we get up and I take him outside, and he will stay out there until he barks, I figure he is ready to come back in when he barks. I take him out about every hour an a half to two hours unless we leave the house, then he goes to the kennel until we get back, and then he goes straight outside for a potty break.

Now that he is neutered he has mellowed out so his routine is what I described, the signs I look for to let me know he needs to go out are sniffing around the house or standing by the door. That is what he does, he does not bark to let us know he needs to go out. He just looks at us eye to eye contact. He spends about anywhere between 10 to 20 minutes and I do not go outside with him. He was potty trained the crate way, but I will admit when he was a puppy we let the crate slide and let him roam around the house while we were home.

We were not that familiar with the crate training. So I do believe some it is our fault. He does not go in the same spot he will poop either in my son't room or downstairs where he will poop and pee. He has been mostly peeing by the front door on the laminate flooring, but he will do even if he just came in from outside and had for 20 minutes. I did catch him in the act the other day right in front of my stairs that go to the downstairs by the door. I usually clean the urine up with water then I will put vinegar on it to get rid of the smell.

Should I be doing something else, will he grow out of this or am I doomed?

Expert:  Theresa replied 10 years ago.

Your not doomed. We just have to take a few steps backwards again. This will entail you taking him out on lead or going outside with him and staying there until you see that he has gone. If he hasn't he will need to go back into the crate until you take him out again later, etc. If he doesn't eliminate outside then he doesn't get to roam around in the house. It is a must that you take him out and stay with him until you have seen him go.

This will not only help to prevent accidents in the home but it will also help you figure out a routine that works for the both of you. Eventually, this will become a habit. In the house he isn't to be out of your sight for not even one minute. If you have to keep him on a lead then so be it but gates usually help to keep him in your sight. If he has an accident and you did not see him do it there is no sense in reprimanding him, only you. We are starting from the beginning. However, if you do catch him in the act you can yell NO, pick him up and take him straight outdoors.

To clean up the messes you will need an enzymatic cleaner like Equalizer or Nature's miracle. Vinegar will not remove the odor that he can still detect. As to giving out clues. Try a bell hanging from the door knob. Make it low enough so that he can reach it. Every time you take him out to potty you need to ring the bell. Many dogs pick this up rather quickly and will ring that same bell when they need to go potty.

Thank you for using Just Answer. Let me know if you need further assistance.