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Puppy Peed in Crate!
  • The weirdest thing just happened:

    Holly has not had an accident in the house for over a month now. I leave her in an x-pen during the day when I'm at work and she's even gotten to a point where she can hold it from 8AM to 6PM! But today, I was watching TV while she was sleeping in her crate (with the door open). She's half awake and looks at me, then walks out of the crate, sniffs the floor around her, gets back in her crate, paws at the towel a bit as if she's making her bed (nothing she hasn't done before), then sticks her butt out the crate and pees!!!!

    All the while I was watching her. Of course I ran to her immediately and picked her up to stop her midstream. But the damage was already done. She peed on the towel, the grate, and the floor. I took her outside quickly and she peed and pooped in her usual spots like normal.

    I know accidents can happen but it was just such weird behavior. She's 6 months old and has NEVER peed in her crate. It was almost like she was sleep walking.... anyway, I've just changed her towel, cleaned everything with Urine-Off. The towel may have been one that she peed on before (washed of course). She sniffed at the new towel and whined a little, but would not go in. I'm a bit paranoid that she will pee on that towel because she might be able to smell the old pee....

    Any similar experience or advice to share?
    Holly's Human
  • BootzBootz
    Posts: 3495
    Before the pee incident, how long ago did you walk her?

    Just curious...Why do you have a towel in her crate?
  • Probably 3-4 hours ago.

    I've always put a towel down in her crate just because she seemed to prefer having something soft in there. She lies on a towel in her x-pen too and has never had an accident there.

    I've gotten her shammie cushions and stuff before (outside the crate). But she's peed on those so I've stopped using them. I figured she thinks that's like a grass-like surface.

    Oh and I forgot to mention that generally when she needs to go and I'm in the house, she comes to me and starts nipping and barking/whining/howling at me to let me know she needs to go. Nothing like that this time.
    Holly's Human
  • Probably 3-4 hours ago.

    I've always put a towel down in her crate just because she seemed to prefer having something soft in there. She lies on a towel in her x-pen too and has never had an accident there.

    I've gotten her shammie cushions and stuff before (outside the crate). But she's peed on those so I've stopped using them. I figured she thinks that's like a grass-like surface.
    Holly's Human
  • BootzBootz
    Posts: 3495
    Have you tried a blanket instead of a towel?

    Also, I know you mentioned she's held it for 10 hours before...but that doesn't mean she should hold it for long hours. It is not good for their bladders and will cause issues down the line.

    Your dog shouldn't have to tell YOU they have to go. You should already have a schedule for them in terms of potty and walks. That probably explains why she had accidents before and decided to go on the towels.
  • It is odd that she just suddenly did this and hasn't done it before, especially at 6 months, but even though we think they're housetrained around this age, they aren't always, and letting her go 8-6 is really too long. Usually when there are housetraining problems, the idea is to go back to puppy training: make a schedule, and get them in and out more often, and praise when outside. So I'd do that.

    However, I will say I understand your frustration, because I've been blessed with easy to housetrain dogs, and suddenly have an Akita puppy who is not easy at all. It is very frustrating (and sometimes more frustrating to get well meaning advice that does not work at all! :) ) My girl has soiled her crate from day one. She simply doesn't care! She'll pee in her crate whether there is a towel in there, a blanket, a pee pad--none of it matters to her (and honestly, I don't think a blanket vs. towel makes much difference to any dog). I had to keep putting pads in her crate because it was so annoying to constantly be cleaning up the pee, but then, she decided that anything on the floor was meant to be peed on, so she started peeing on dog beds, etc. So I took all those up and put down towels (easier to wash), which, of course, she peed on.

    None of this was from lack of a schedule. She often peed 10 minutes after having been out. She also did not have a bladder infection. She just had no sense of impulse control.

    Now she's 5 months, and we were relieved to see she hadn't peed in the house for three weeks, but this week she started again. It's very clear to see what is going on in Zora's case: she "forgets" to pee outside, then has to go, and thinks this is as good a place as any. And yes, yesterday as she was in her crate having dinner, she stopped eating middinner, peed in her crate, then continued with her dinner. It is frustrating!

    But it will work out for us, just like it will for you. We're back to being more rigorous with our schedule and take her out more frequently. As she grows, she'll have better impulse control, too.

    So will your dog. Take her out more often. Be more vigilant with her while she's inside. Go back to basic housetraining, be prepared for some more frustration, but know that time is on your side, and she will improve.

    But if she keeps peeing a lot, it's worth checking to make sure it is not a bladder infection.
  • Thanks @shibamistress and @bootz. The encouragement is really helpful! Good to know that peeing in a crate is not the end of the world! And to be fair, Holly did stick her butt out of the crate and would've missed the towel if she had slightly better aim! ;-) I do think it is a fluke and like I said, it was as if she just forgot where she was or something and sleep walking (which is interesting in its own right).

    We are generally on a schedule when I am working and I was coming home for lunch to walk her. In the last couple of weeks I "tested" her holding abilities and came home a little later each day to see how long she could hold it for. 2 of those days she held it till 5 or 6. It was amazing and she wasn't at all agitated when i got home. I think it's because she lounges around or sleeps mostly when I am not home so less activities less bowel movements. It's all different after I get home though :-)

    We have been on a holiday break the last 5 days here in China so I have been home. Our schedule changed in that I no longer have her in her x-pen since I am home. We've been out together a lot more often playing at least for a couple of hours a day outside. I noticed that when she plays she has to go a lot more often and of course drinks a lot more. So sticking to my regular work schedule isn't really practical. She's still a puppy so she can't control things as much as we'd probably like her to yet so a combination of schedule and reacting to when she wants to go is good especially when I am with her all day.

    She definitely has a predilection for grass-like surfaces so carpet, towels, blankets, fuzzy wooly things meant to be dog beds. She chews up pee pads though. Thinks it's just paper to be torn up and played with.

    I think also the "close to midnight" potty break is where the key is. The last accident was at night too. She was settling down for the night, took a couple of naps already, then just got up and walked to the foot of the bed and peed! No warning sign that time either. So I think this might be her thing - a midnight pee. I should probably take her out at 9 or 10 pm always as a last walk regardless of the fact we have been out already say 3 times that evening (just kidding, not always that bad) to make sure she's emptied her bladder for the night.
    Holly's Human

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