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HELP! anxiety pee
  • SakuSaku
    Posts: 372
    It's been five weeks since Minako, our 12 month old female shiba joined our family.

    Her previous owner used to train her peeing on the puppy pad, so she is used to peeing in the house and she would pee in the kitchen whever she feels like it. It was such a headache, luckily, we got that resolved by housebreaking her like a puppy.

    Now, it's her anxiety issue. When she is anxious and it is usually when she's alone or one of the pack member is missing, she would pee herself but she would only pee herself when she's crated, she wouldn't do it if it's in the car or anywhere else, only in the crate. Her separation anxiety issue is so strange, it doesn't make any sense to me!

    I understand the part that she is scared and alone in the crate, the fear makes her to pee. But lately she has peed herself so frequently for random reasons, I don't even know if it's due to anxiety anymore.

    She is usually okay if she is crated and Saku is crated and they're both in the same room. She has done that several times without any accidents for as long as 8 hrs.

    But sometimes, when they're both crated and I just left for 5 minutes, she would pee in the crate.

    Tonight, again, she was crated and Saku was crated in the same room, even my husband is in the same room. I just left for 5 minutes then I heard her cry and she peed herself again!

    It doesn't make any sense to me! Is it lack of bladder control (she just went 3 hrs ago) or anxiety or combination of both or bad bladder?????? I am really at the end of my wits and desparate needs help!

    My husband believes in old school aversive method - rubbing the dog's nose in the pee to make them stop peeing in the wrong places. I don't feel comfortable with this method but is there any other ways to stop her peeing herself in the crate?

    [mod edit: re-categorized due to addition of new category]
    Post edited by sunyata at 2013-06-06 14:30:09
  • Post edited by shibamistress at 2011-09-11 23:32:44
  • Ditto on the above....

    I am sorry your dog is suffering with this, it can be really frustrating. There is an adjustment time frame after a dog enters a new home.

    Remaining calm about it is best to prevent making things mentally worse for your dog. I certainly would NOT rub the dogs nose it, as this will more than likely make the anxiety escalate.

    Have you taken a urine sample in for testing and had a medical check on your Shiba? This would be the first thing to do to rule out any medical problems.

    If you dog is young and has not been spayed there will be hormone changes that can cause bladder issues. Again a discussion with your vet is a good start.

    Here is something to investigate... Nichole Wilde has written several books in regard to shy dogs and anxiety ....

    Post edited by StaticNfuzz at 2011-09-11 23:38:49
  • SakuSaku
    Posts: 372
    I think I will schedule a vet appointment today to see if it's a medical issue or not.

    She only pees in the crate when she is alone, anxious or one of the pack member is missing (mostly me).

    We usually take both shiba out in the morning so they can eliminate themselves. If my husband is not available. I would take her out first to pee, then I crate her and I take Saku out. When Saku and I return, she would pee herself in the crate even she just empty herself like 5 minutes ago. This is defintely an anxiety pee because she is all alone in the crate and in the house.

    She is doing much better if Saku is crated side by side in the same room wtih her. When we have to leave them during the day we crate both dogs so they have company of each other; and she has done that many times without any accidents for as long as 8 hrs.

    The accident usually happens at night before we go to bed. After I crate both of them and just leave the room for a few minutes, she cries and pees in the crate.

    If it's not medical issues, the only reasons I can think of is...

    1) The previous owner used to crate her a long period of time (day and night). She told me sometimes they can't make it home in time to take her out to pee, so she would pee in the crate. But I don't think she wants to pee in the crate if she has a choice. She hates soiling herself and usually cries after she pees herself in the crate.

    2) Mina never likes her crate and hates being crated. Perhaps the way we put her in the crate causes her anxiety. I usually just pick her up, pet her a little and send her in her crate. She would resist a little and go in. Perhaps I should stay with her a little bit before I leave the room to calm her down?

    3) At night, they are both crated in the bedroom not in the kitchen. Perhaps it's the location of crate e.g. bedroom causes her anxiety and she pees herself.

    She always has that "sorry" look after she pees herself. She would try to clean up the evidence by licking up the pee or cover it up with bedding. It's heartbreaking. I don't blame her for anxiety pee because I know she didn't do it on purpose. I just want to find out how I can preven this from happening.

    PS. I will convince my hubby not to use aversive method on her.
    Post edited by Saku at 2011-09-12 07:21:45
  • Anxiety peeing you describe and submissive urination are very similar if not the same response at least at its core.

    to add real quick based on your response......

    It appears she may be confused, may have been crate trained improperly, the crate was used as punishment or maybe she merely sees the crate as punishment. Whatever the case the crate is a source of concern for her. Location can also be an issue if the previous owners locked her in or punished the dog in a specific area.

    Often a dog, due to bad associations, will worry themselves sick they might have an accident and therefore will have anxiety with the whole process of crating in general. More of a mental block than anything. Understand that sensitive dogs will key in on an owner's concern or frustration so again do what you can to keep things low key in regard to the issue.

    You could try using an ex-pen instead (with protective mat underneath with pee pad on top) and moving a dog bed into the area for down time. You will have to test some things out and see what works. But never punish.

    Since you have a sensitive dog it might also help to boost her confidence in other areas of life with some non aversive training and fun things as you go along.

    Take it step by step....the vet is good starting point begin discussions to make sure there is not a medical issue.

    Here are the books I was talking about for shy dogs.

    Wild, Nichole. Help for your Fearful Dog: A Step by Step Guide to help your dog Conquer his fears.

    Wood, Debora. Help for your Shy Dog: Turning Your Terrified Dog into a Terrific Pet.

    It is good that you have compassion for the issue, it will help your family to work through it.

    Good luck and please keep us posted
    Post edited by StaticNfuzz at 2011-09-12 09:55:48
  • SakuSaku
    Posts: 372
    Thank you guys for the feedback. I agree with Snf about buidling up her confidence. When she first came here, she only knows how to sit. Now she knows how to sit, down, stay, give a paw, leave it and come. We're amazed how willing she is to learn and she learns everything fast. She is a real sweet girl and sometimes it's heartbreaking to see how hard she tries to please us.

    Her pervious owner didn't housebreak her properly. They put puppy pad in the house for her to pee and she was rarely walked (only out for a pee walk). They don't have enough time to train her and to take care of her because another dog (also shiba inu) in the house did not accept her and tried to kill/attack her all the time. The safest way and the only way is to crate her. It is really sad and given her background, we're surprised how well she is getting along with our dog - Saku.

    She doesn't pee in the house anymore (no accidents for about a week). We set up baby gate to separate the kitchen area from the rest of house. She spends most of time there except for walk and playtime.

    I think the crate is definitely an issue for her. She probably had some very bad experience with crate before. We leave her crate in the kitchen with open door all the time and she would never go in her crate unless we put her in. I try to leave treats everytime I pass her crate, she would sneak in quick to get the treat and come out.

    I don't know if leaving her in the kitchen would be a good idea. We all know how agile shiba is. I am sure it's not a problem for her to jump over the gate or on the counter and get herself in trouble and I don't want any accidents happened to her while we're away/ asleep. I am taking her to see the vet tomorrow. Hopefully he will give us some advice.

    Thank you for your helpful advice. I will keep everyone updated.
    Post edited by Saku at 2011-09-12 21:04:11
  • I would also worry about how safe a baby gate would keep her and so I would probably keep trying to build positive associations with the gate as you are now by putting treats in it and I would try to find some sort of covered ex pen (that way hopefully she could both not escape as well as see it as different than the crate).
  • You can always try gating her in a room for only a couple hours to see how she does. I personally don't crate or even gate in my 12 month old and he does fine now. I have to puppy proof the house, but at 12 months he is a lot better now and probably sleeps most of the day when I'm gone.

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