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reploidphoenix

Potty training vs marking

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My problem child boy is having issues. I think it's more of a marking issue? He was fine for months..now if something new comes into the house he tries to pee on it. I used to take him with when I worked at the petstore down the street with no accidents. I visited yesterday and he wasnt there 5 secs trying to lift his leg on structures. 

Is this more of something that will stop if a neuter him? Hes an anxious dog..could it be related? Any suggestions on what to do to stop it? For now I obviously cant take him over friends houses or to public places since he tries to pee on everything.

Ps. Hes about 10 months old

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Treat it just like house training, because although it's an adolescent male behavior that's still essentially what it is. The difference with normal house training is that you can't take him out preemptively. 

Watch him like a hawk and when you see him getting ready to mark, give him a quick verbal correction such as "no", "knock it off", "ahh ahh" or whatever you choose and immediately take him outside. Praise lavishly when he goes outside.

And you're going to have to take him other places in order to teach him that marking indoors isn't appropriate anywhere. Wait until you've got it down at home and that he understands the interruptor and will respond to it. 

You'll be able to use the interruptor at other times outside when you don't want him to mark someone's flower bed or you just want to walk without having to stop every 15 seconds for him to pee.

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Anything I say to him doesnt stop him. Even trying to pull him away from the structure with a verbal correction doesnt work. Should I bring like a can of pennies or something to startle him?

 

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16 minutes ago, reploidphoenix said:

Anything I say to him doesnt stop him. Even trying to pull him away from the structure with a verbal correction doesnt work. Should I bring like a can of pennies or something to startle him?

 

I would not use a can of pennies to startle a dog that is already anxious. Noise sensitivity can go hand-in-hand with anxiety. You don't want any setbacks.

You say that anything you say doesn't stop him, and even pulling away doesn't stop him. I wonder if this is because you need to get the timing right? I could be wrong, but I suspect you are not catching him in time. So, for example, if you watch him closely for body language that indicates he is going to mark, you can be ready with the "acht" when you see he is beginning to lift his leg to urinate. I wouldn't count on neutering to stop the behavior. My neutered male had to be taught that marking is not appropriate in the house.

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Two words:  Belly band

More words: They are available from Chewy.com among other places

I'm not suggesting this as a permanent solution, but it may help you get past the stage where your little boy his just discovered the novelty of writing his name in the snow, so to speak.  This is one behavioral issue that I think is actually helped by neutering if it's not allowed to become a habit in the meantime.  I prefer not to neuter dogs until they are around 2,  so you want to work on not letting the pattern get ingrained in the meantime if you delay neutering until your dog is fully mature. That means vigilance and training, but belly bands can be a useful stop-gap tool.

 

 

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No jar of pennies. That will make things worse. What you need to do, since you know this behavior happens under certain circumstances, is watch him very closely in those situations. Don't take your eyes off him!  Read his body language. I can tell with my male dogs when they start to think about peeing, well before they lift a leg. You need to be able to tell this as well, and that takes close observation of your dog.  Then when you see that "tell" sign, that is when you calmly and quietly say No or uh-uh to the dog and put him outside, just as you would with a puppy. Please be sure you don't yell, stomp, or take him harshly by the collar. Do not express anger to the dog; just take him gently and firmly outside as if he were a baby who did not know better. I don't personally think a belly band is a good idea because it will not address the behavior at all, and that is what you need to take care of asap. It doesn't matter what the source of this is: marking or losing training or what. The solution is the same and that is what you need to focus on.

best of luck and let us know how it goes.

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Agreed with what everyone else has said.  I will also add that I have found having 'go pee' as a command enormously useful, too, in limiting marking behavior.   Seems like he quickly, when combined with being watched/stopped, realized that a-) I would give the command and he could pee o things sometimes and b-) took some of the fun out of it for him.


Bonus: It works for actually peeing too, which means I can make sure he's 'empty' before going in places he needs to not pee in.

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Agree w/ no to the penny can and I forgot in my first reply to say that neutering probably won't help. It's a training issue, not simply a hormone issue. I had a spayed female who was the most prodigious marker. My current neutered male marks anywhere I allow him to but will stop if I tell him to because I trained him to and didn't give up in the first 5 minutes.

Belly bands just contain the urine; they rarely do anything to curb the behavior and like any other self rewarding behavior it will just make actual training slower each time he pees in the belly band.

Training requires patience and good timing. Your best bet it to practice patience, learn to predict the marking before it happens and be consistent. It will probably take longer now because this wasn't nipped in the bud, so you need to be 100% consistent in learning that tell and never letting him do it again if you want it to stop.

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I don't want to be overly pushy about the belly band, since I'm basing my suggestion on my vast experience of having used it with exactly one dog who was an exceptionally obnoxious/obsessive marker.  Obsessive though he was, that dog most definitely did not like wearing a wet diaper, and pretty quickly curbed himself from marking.  For him, marking into a diaper was the opposite of self rewarding.   I don't doubt that many, maybe most, dogs would just learn not to mark when they were wearing the band, and would regress without the band.  But, for the marking-obsessive young dog I tried it with,  the band taught him self control, and once he established the ability to walk with me without hoisting his leg every few steps, that transferred over to a bandless existence.  May not work for all dogs, but it's cheap and easy to try, and if nothing else, would allow you (general you) to take your dog places for socialization that you might not otherwise be able to if he's leaving his calling card everywhere. Not a permanent fix, but a tool to help you past a difficult and frustrating point in your dog's maturation.

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I'm basing my caution against it from having the exact opposite experience. And knowing other foster dogs that it didn't help with either. ;)

OP can try it, but it'll just set her back more if it doesn't work.

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2 hours ago, GentleLake said:

I'm basing my caution against it from having the exact opposite experience. And knowing other foster dogs that it didn't help with either. ;)

OP can try it, but it'll just set her back more if it doesn't work.

I have had similar  not-helpful experience with the belly band with a foster dog. I don't doubt it has worked with some dogs, though, and clearly it worked for Hooper2 in that one situation, which is interesting to learn. I would recommend against it, though, for the very reason that GL gives above: if it doesn't work, it will only set the training back even farther. Better not to risk that, and start out with the training instead.

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4 hours ago, Hooper2 said:

May not work for all dogs, but it's cheap and easy to try, and if nothing else, would allow you (general you) to take your dog places for socialization that you might not otherwise be able to if he's leaving his calling card everywhere. Not a permanent fix, but a tool to help you past a difficult and frustrating point in your dog's maturation.

I made very limited use of a belly band for my male Chihuahua. However, I used it strictly for my own convenience in the very beginning. I got him as an intact two year old who had likely been allowed to develop the habit of marking.

Ultimately, I had to deal with the problem without the belly band, though.

So, I can see where a belly band might be either a help or an impediment, depending on the circumstances. I think if you have the time, it’s best to train without one. But if you feel the need to use one, just be aware that it could very well turn out to be an impediment to training.

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Is the marking in inappropriate places something I should be expecting, or is it only some dogs that do it?

Our boy has just started lifting his leg and yesterday was about to do a third pee in the space of a couple of minutes on our walk when I put an end to sniffing in the bushes and made him walk in more open space. I don't mind if he wants to run around and pee on everything when we are in the woods off lead, but I really don't want to stop every thirty seconds so he can pee on peoples gate posts and plants. And it's likely he'll receive a very loud verbal reprimand if he does it indoors. 

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My intact boy is a few months shy of 2. 


He has inappropriately marked TWICE - once on an agility tunnel and once inside.  I screamed in horror both times and that was very much the end o that (It was more than a year ago).  

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Hes only done it about 4 times. My husband bought a new jacket and he peed on that. Then he peed on our fake Christmas tree. I put a chair back in the Christmas trees place and he started to lift his leg and I caught him. This week is the first time I had him out in a public place not outside in a couple weeks(and a place he knew well!) And tried to mark.

I also forgot to mention it could be partially due to my bitch in the same house being in heat?

I'll try the belly band in public places incase I dont catch him in time with a correction before he piddles on something.  Luckily, after I caught him trying to pee on the chair hes hasnt had any other accidents inside the house.

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