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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A couple of months ago, my roommate and I came across an abandoned chihuahua and have decided to keep her. She has warmed up to us and is very obedient and loving. Our only problem thus far has been the housebreaking.

Every once in a while, she will sneak into the bathroom (one of the only rooms with carpet flooring) and release. When I catch her in the act, I immediately shout, "Ah! Ah! Ah!" Then I hold her nose close to it and firmly tell her, "no." My first thought was that we weren't taking her out enough so the two of us created a schedule for her that best fit our own work and class schedule. This worked for a while but on one condition: she would only go to the bathroom outside if we took her for a walk. She refused to release if we simply let her outside in the backyard and stood with her.

Winter is coming soon and I know there will be instances where we will not have the time to take her for a walk or the temperature will be too cold to walk around the block. For this reason, we've essentially started the training process over. Every hour or two, I'll take her in the backyard, stand still, and give her the command to "go potty." Instead of sniffing for a spot, she will either eat the grass, bite at bugs, or just lay in the sun. Sometimes she goes up to 24 hours without using the bathroom despite my roommate and I taking her our multiple times a day. On the occasion that she does go outside, I repeat the command during the action and I immediately praise her with a treat and petting. Despite this, she still acts as if going out in the backyard is a chore.

Just the other day, my roommate and I were home all day and took her out several times. She refused to release in the backyard. Then, around dinner time, her and I left to pick up fast food. We were gone for less than fifteen minutes but, when we returned, we found an accident in the bathroom carpet. I had also tried taking her out right before we left but she refused.

I don't understand why she hasn't picked up the training yet as we've been at it for several weeks. She doesn't have overnight accidents and she has never gone in her crate, which we use only when no one is home. I wondered if her previous owners might have trained her to go indoors but that simply won't work for us. I've followed several guides and have tried various methods but nothing changes.

We've been fairly patient with her until now but I'm worried about this becoming a serious problem in the winter. Thank you for your advice!
 

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ok first of all do not put her little nose on her pee, it's not her fault she pees there it's yours and plus It's mean!!!!!
Why is it your fault? well she is not potty trained and she has free access around the flat, what about a play pen? have you considered pad training her?


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Unfortunately it sounds like she was pee pad trained before. I have mine housebroken, I refuse to use pads in my home. Go back to step 1 with the crate training. Put her in the crate when she is unsupervised. Take her outside immediately whenever you get home. Allow her only a few minutes outside to do her business, if she doesn't go, back in the crate for 30 minutes. Repeat until she goes. Also make sure she has water in the crate to drink. Also pull up the bathroom rugs when she is out. Then she won't be as inclined to pee in there. Candi was pee pad trained when she came to us at 6 months old. Using the crate training, she was housebroken in less than 2 weeks.


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I would shut the door to the bathroom for awhile. Unfortunately, I DO use pads. I use the human grade washable ones. It will be SO much easier when the nasty weather, rain, snow and ice comes! Put it in the bathroom, where she is going now. Easy.
 

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Just a thought. How long is the grass in the yard? My guy won't go there if there's any grass touching his belly. Fortunately, Daddy is now with the program and keeps the grass cut low. lol
 

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I would shut the door to the bathroom for awhile. Unfortunately, I DO use pads. I use the human grade washable ones. It will be SO much easier when the nasty weather, rain, snow and ice comes! Put it in the bathroom, where she is going now. Easy.
That's good that you use the washable pads. Much better for the environment. I just can't tolerate allowing anything to potty in the house. The sanitary aspect is what grosses me out. Especially since I do have children. Winter is pretty easy for me, they go out and do their business ASAP. No cleanup necessary. Easy.


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Please do not rub her nose it in. That is not going to help the situation. She knows she peed. It's not like rubbing her nose in it makes her suddenly realized she just peed.

If she keeps peeing in the bathroom, why don't you just close the door?

Are you completely opposed to pad training? That may work well for her since she's going in the same spot over and over.

Also, why don't you leash her just like you were going on a walk and take a walk around the backyard. See if that helps any since she seems to only want to go on walks.
 

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It sounds like the previous owner put her on a leash always to go potty. I would try taking her just in your yard on a leash. It sucks to go out in the cold but if she understands going potty outside on a leash I would work with it. She will probably do her business faster when it is cold too so you probably won't have to walk her long.
If you are not cleaning the spot she is peeing on with a good enzymatic cleaner, like Natures Miracle, she will keep going back to those spots.
If you catch her peeing don't scold her or rub her nose in it. That will just teach her to find a place you won't notice to pee on. Just make a noise like saying no. This will interrupt her peeing then take her outside.
I would take her back to basics. We want these cute cuddly babies with us but until she is house trained she needs constant supervision or be confined in a crate or pen.
Good luck!



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Like some other people said, you should keep the bathroom door shut. You need to limit her access around the house, especially to rooms she tends to have accidents in, until she is potty trained.

My Lilo has been very easy to potty train and always cries to let me know she wants to go outside. However she used to pee in the bathroom if she had the chance instead of crying to go out. Solution: shut the bathroom door. Now that she's better trained we can leave it open without problems.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the advice. I had a relative suggest pointing her nose towards her mess makes her associate it better, but I know now that it was the wrong way to handle it. She's gotten much better lately, after I've started shutting the bathroom door. I've also tried a different treat to reward her, which seems to be a little more incentivizing. I'm still considering the pros and cons of using pads in the winter, but I have roommates that don't seem open to the idea. I'll have to prepare for winter some other way.
 

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I agree with the others, do NOT put her nose in it..poor thing, she just don't know what to do and is confused. Play with her outside and be outside until she does it. Bring treats!
 

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Thanks for the advice. I had a relative suggest pointing her nose towards her mess makes her associate it better, but I know now that it was the wrong way to handle it. She's gotten much better lately, after I've started shutting the bathroom door. I've also tried a different treat to reward her, which seems to be a little more incentivizing. I'm still considering the pros and cons of using pads in the winter, but I have roommates that don't seem open to the idea. I'll have to prepare for winter some other way.
Good to hear that you don't use pads Baby says ;) and I'm glad she is getting better. We have hard, long winters in Norway..the way we prepare is with thermal underwear, wool sweathers and paw socks sometimes :) and only short walks to do the business :)
 

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I don't know much about training dogs, being on my first one so this advice that may not be worth much. If she's not crated are you sure she's really going 24 hrs. or is she "stealth peeing"? When we got Mickey he was 2 yrs. and always had a doggie door. At first he would only go sometimes when walked. I was walking him all hours of day and night. Using a black light we discovered the truth. Then started using a doggie diaper and crating him at night which worked and then eventually got him to potty on command, then told him to go in the yard. All is well now and we're reintroducing pee pads since our winter storms can be brutal and we are occasionally away longer than he can always hold his poo. He uses the pads only when we're not home even though one's always available.
 

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Prince still has a few problems when it comes to going to the toilet, if you leave him to roam on his own he tends to go into the bathroom and pee. The backdoor is constantly open and he gets walked in average twice a day. He know he's doing wrong because he puts his head down and runs off. We did start with Crete training him but he was pooing in it and flicking it everywhere, so we stopped with that and tried the training pads, these were ok at first but now he's started cocking his leg up and not squatting, he stopped weeing on the mats and only pooing on them. In the end we decided to just try encourage him to go outside and every time we caught him doing potty we rewarded him with a treat. He still occasionally wee's in the bathroom but since we started rewarding him he's not too bad. Hope you get her housebroken soon. Good luck :)
 

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Also remember to cleanup the accidents thoroughly and with an enzymatic leaner made to remove dog urine odors. They will tend to go back to the same spot if it is not cleaned up well. If Nature's Miracle is available in your area, that is a good cleaner!
 

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I really want to start training Lubu to go outside.. But it is so cold. The minute the cold air hits him he just freezes in place and shivers! Can't wait until its warm enough that we can start walking outside and learning to potty outdoors. Pads will probably always be a part of the potty process for us, I will have to look into the washable ones (they are for humans?). One thing I noticed about pads is he sometimes thinks other flat things are potty pads (like a reusable grocery bag) So I have to really watch what I leave on the floor.
 
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