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-   -   Potty Training and Submissive Urinating and Eating Poop! (http://www.germanshepherds.com/forum/training-our-puppy-basic/446530-potty-training-submissive-urinating-eating-poop.html)

Gem 05-05-2014 04:43 PM

Potty Training and Submissive Urinating and Eating Poop!
 
Hi. We bought a German Shepherd puppy at 8 weeks old. He is now 11 weeks old. He's great, but for some reason he just won't get the hang of paper training (we live in an apartment, so it needs to be done this way until we move in 2 months). I have had puppies before (I fostered a lot of them, and my parents bred Siberian Huskies) who have taken up paper training instantly. I know he's still young, and we haven't had him very long, but my husband and I have been on the ball with it, and he still doesn't seem to get it. Any advice? His paper is on a huge pan. We take him to it often, when we think he's about to go, etc. He'll go on it sometimes, but majority of the time he won't! We've praised him loads when we notice him going on the paper. I've left a patch of pee, a piece of poop, etc. so he knows that's where he goes, but that's not helping. He also submissively pees ANY time my husband walks up to him, pets him, picks him up, etc. He just started this 4 days ago. He doesn't do it to me. He has not treated him any differently than I have. I have read The Art of Raising a Puppy, and we're following the guidelines in that book, but it doesn't seem to be helping. Please help! :) Oh, AND he eats poop. His poop. If he goes and I am not RIGHT THERE to pick it up IMMEDIATELY he will scarf it down. He's had his vaccines, wellness exam, and is on a grain free high quality puppy/dog food... Why is he eating his poop? Like I said, I've had puppies before, I have been around MANY dogs, but he has been the hardest so far. He came from a very reputable breeder. What are we doing wrong? Does he just need a lot more time than I'm used to puppies needing? :) I'm home all day, so I can work with him as much as I need to.

my boy diesel 05-05-2014 04:53 PM

does that book still recommend pinning or rolling a puppy?

ask your breeder about the poop eating and all
it is fairly normal for pups to do that

Pax8 05-05-2014 05:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Gem (Post 5475034)
Hi. We bought a German Shepherd puppy at 8 weeks old. He is now 11 weeks old. He's great, but for some reason he just won't get the hang of paper training (we live in an apartment, so it needs to be done this way until we move in 2 months). I have had puppies before (I fostered a lot of them, and my parents bred Siberian Huskies) who have taken up paper training instantly. I know he's still young, and we haven't had him very long, but my husband and I have been on the ball with it, and he still doesn't seem to get it. Any advice? His paper is on a huge pan. We take him to it often, when we think he's about to go, etc. He'll go on it sometimes, but majority of the time he won't! We've praised him loads when we notice him going on the paper. I've left a patch of pee, a piece of poop, etc. so he knows that's where he goes, but that's not helping. He also submissively pees ANY time my husband walks up to him, pets him, picks him up, etc. He just started this 4 days ago. He doesn't do it to me. He has not treated him any differently than I have. I have read The Art of Raising a Puppy, and we're following the guidelines in that book, but it doesn't seem to be helping. Please help! :) Oh, AND he eats poop. His poop. If he goes and I am not RIGHT THERE to pick it up IMMEDIATELY he will scarf it down. He's had his vaccines, wellness exam, and is on a grain free high quality puppy/dog food... Why is he eating his poop? Like I said, I've had puppies before, I have been around MANY dogs, but he has been the hardest so far. He came from a very reputable breeder. What are we doing wrong? Does he just need a lot more time than I'm used to puppies needing? :) I'm home all day, so I can work with him as much as I need to.

If he's still going off the pad, then he doesn't know where he's supposed to go. Does he have the run of the house, do you crate him, do you tether him, do you baby gate him? He definitely needs more restriction if he's able to go in the house with you around. If he has a certain area of the house he is gated in, like a bathroom, paper the entire bathroom and let him go wherever for a few days (if the entire area is covered, there's no chance of him going off the pad). Just replace any individual pads he soils. Then start taking away a pad or two a day, making the area smaller and smaller, working towards the one ad you want him to go on (ideally on the opposite side of the room you feed him on. If he starts going off the pads when you're decreasing the area, you've gone too fast and need to take a step back. The idea is he will become used to pottying on the pads and will follow that area as it gradually shrinks away instead of having to choose from the get-go between a tiny little pad and a huge space that he sees no reason not to potty on.

Coprophagia (poop-eating) is behavioral and breaking him of that consists of teaching him a very strong leave it and managing him so he doesn't get the chance to eat it. Adding things like pineapple to his food to make the stool taste bad can also help.

For the submissive urination, petting, talking to him, and picking him up rewards that. When he starts getting excited about hubby's attention, hubby needs to ignore him completely and preferably walk away so as not to encourage the puppy to urinate.

If you haven't already, I would definitely suggest tethering your pup to you on a 6 foot lead anytime he is out of his playpen, gated room, crate, etc. It gives you more control, helps you manage potty time and interaction, and completely stops him from getting himself into trouble so you head off a lot of puppy behaviors like chewing and trash diving before they can even start.

Good luck! :)

Pax8 05-05-2014 05:13 PM

I would also highly recommend Patricia McConnell's "The Other End of the Leash" instead of the "Art of" book.

Gem 05-05-2014 05:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Pax8 (Post 5475146)
If he's still going off the pad, then he doesn't know where he's supposed to go. Does he have the run of the house, do you crate him, do you tether him, do you baby gate him? He definitely needs more restriction if he's able to go in the house with you around. If he has a certain area of the house he is gated in, like a bathroom, paper the entire bathroom and let him go wherever for a few days (if the entire area is covered, there's no chance of him going off the pad). Just replace any individual pads he soils. Then start taking away a pad or two a day, making the area smaller and smaller, working towards the one ad you want him to go on (ideally on the opposite side of the room you feed him on. If he starts going off the pads when you're decreasing the area, you've gone too fast and need to take a step back. The idea is he will become used to pottying on the pads and will follow that area as it gradually shrinks away instead of having to choose from the get-go between a tiny little pad and a huge space that he sees no reason not to potty on.

Coprophagia (poop-eating) is behavioral and breaking him of that consists of teaching him a very strong leave it and managing him so he doesn't get the chance to eat it. Adding things like pineapple to his food to make the stool taste bad can also help.

For the submissive urination, petting, talking to him, and picking him up rewards that. When he starts getting excited about hubby's attention, hubby needs to ignore him completely and preferably walk away so as not to encourage the puppy to urinate.

If you haven't already, I would definitely suggest tethering your pup to you on a 6 foot lead anytime he is out of his playpen, gated room, crate, etc. It gives you more control, helps you manage potty time and interaction, and completely stops him from getting himself into trouble so you head off a lot of puppy behaviors like chewing and trash diving before they can even start.

Good luck! :)


When I said "so he knows that's where he should go" I didn't mean he KNOWS he should go there, I meant I was doing that so he would begin to associate that area with the area he should be going pee and poop. Sorry for not being clearer. :-)

He does not have run of the house. He is gated in the bathroom with his pan and paper when I can't keep a constant eye on him. When he's let out, I normally close all of the doors and keep him in the same area I am. Sometimes when my husband lets him out he'll let him run off for a minute without being by his side, and that's when he'll take the chance to pee somewhere. I was papering the entire bathroom but he seemed to be going on only the paper so I made the area smaller, but now he's going anywhere in there. I guess I went too fast, and I'll start over again! :)

He's not peeing when he's excited, he's peeing every single time my husband touches him. No matter what. Even if he tries to let him out of his crate in the night or morning to pee he'll pee as soon as he sees him. :confused:

Thanks a lot for the advice! I think it will help!

Pax8 05-05-2014 06:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Gem (Post 5475362)
He's not peeing when he's excited, he's peeing every single time my husband touches him. No matter what. Even if he tries to let him out of his crate in the night or morning to pee he'll pee as soon as he sees him. :confused:

Thanks a lot for the advice! I think it will help!

I'd be interested to know what hubby's interactions with your pup are like. Usually urination in a pup like that happens because they are overwhelmed or overstimulated and that is their natural signal to try to tell you "I'm no threat!" When your husband is interacting with the puppy, does your husband tend to be very excitable, loud, make big fast movements, or lean far over the puppy? If his body language seems too overwhelming or threatening, the puppy may have started doing the submissive urination because he's trying to communicate that he's nervous or overwhelmed. I'd also watch his body language very closely as hubby approaches and see if there is any body language that will indicate when he might urinate (there almost always is) - ears pinned back, eyes wide, extreme tail wag, rolling the head or the entire body to the side, lifting the back legs, etc. Often if you can figure out what his "tell" is, it'll let you know when he is feeling overwhelmed enough to want to urinate. That way you can both watch for it and back off and ignore him when he's giving you the appeasing behavior to show that the urination is not needed.

Something else that I've done with puppies that want to urinate like that is had a small handful of food with me. As I start approaching (from a far distance where I know they're not going to urinate) I'll start chucking a kibble piece with every step or two. He can't try to appease and search for food at the same time. It gives him a more positive focused approach to your husband, builds a good association, and gives him something to do besides peeing.

Pax8 05-05-2014 06:07 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Gem (Post 5475362)
Sometimes when my husband lets him out he'll let him run off for a minute without being by his side, and that's when he'll take the chance to pee somewhere.

And definitely need to crack down on hubby about giving your pup the chance to make a mistake - potty training needs to be CONSISTENT with all parties! :)

Gem 05-06-2014 04:04 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Pax8 (Post 5475434)
I'd be interested to know what hubby's interactions with your pup are like. Usually urination in a pup like that happens because they are overwhelmed or overstimulated and that is their natural signal to try to tell you "I'm no threat!" When your husband is interacting with the puppy, does your husband tend to be very excitable, loud, make big fast movements, or lean far over the puppy? If his body language seems too overwhelming or threatening, the puppy may have started doing the submissive urination because he's trying to communicate that he's nervous or overwhelmed. I'd also watch his body language very closely as hubby approaches and see if there is any body language that will indicate when he might urinate (there almost always is) - ears pinned back, eyes wide, extreme tail wag, rolling the head or the entire body to the side, lifting the back legs, etc. Often if you can figure out what his "tell" is, it'll let you know when he is feeling overwhelmed enough to want to urinate. That way you can both watch for it and back off and ignore him when he's giving you the appeasing behavior to show that the urination is not needed.

Something else that I've done with puppies that want to urinate like that is had a small handful of food with me. As I start approaching (from a far distance where I know they're not going to urinate) I'll start chucking a kibble piece with every step or two. He can't try to appease and search for food at the same time. It gives him a more positive focused approach to your husband, builds a good association, and gives him something to do besides peeing.

He probably has overwhelmed him a bit. He picked him up a lot and tried cuddling him and petting/rubbing him a lot. He is usually excitable and leans over him. Yesterday we noticed he does it shortly after pinning his ears down, so hopefully we're in the right track now and he can just walk away and ignore him when he sees him doing that. :) We're also going to try the food tossing when he approaches him. I've been cruising the forum and noticed a lot of people were against paper/pee pad training a puppy! Are we doomed once we start wanting him to/training him to go outside? We're in an apartment right now with no balcony, but will be moving to a house with a yard very soon.

Pax8 05-06-2014 04:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Gem (Post 5480682)
He probably has overwhelmed him a bit. He picked him up a lot and tried cuddling him and petting/rubbing him a lot. He is usually excitable and leans over him. Yesterday we noticed he does it shortly after pinning his ears down, so hopefully we're in the right track now and he can just walk away and ignore him when he sees him doing that. :) We're also going to try the food tossing when he approaches him. I've been cruising the forum and noticed a lot of people were against paper/pee pad training a puppy! Are we doomed once we start wanting him to/training him to go outside? We're in an apartment right now with no balcony, but will be moving to a house with a yard very soon.

I pad trained my puppy when he was younger. While I normally would rather just train my dogs to alert me when they need to go outside, I can understand there are circumstances like yours where it may be more difficult. An apartment doesn't give you as much freedom and with a puppy who often needs to go very suddenly, it can be hard to catch him quickly enough to walk him down to the grass without an accident. I had work to go to, so there was no choice - my puppy either pad trained the first couple months I had him or he sat in pee. And I'm not a fan of giving a full bath after every shift.

I really only have a problem with pad training when it is used as the primary potty spot and is used continuously into later months (say 5-6) when the puppy should just be going outside. Even though it is less convenient than just letting him out into the backyard, I would commit to taking him out for potty breaks if you haven't already. The pads are a nice backup for him to know should he suddenly need to go, but if you have a well-maintained schedule, his use of the pads should actually be rather minimal. For mine, they go out immediately after waking up, after eating, after playing, and after they haven't gone for a certain amount of time (about an hour for every month). If I'm still having trouble with accidents, then I shorten the amount of time between potty breaks. If the pup is doing very well, I can try lengthening that time to build up bladder muscle.

For the most part, my pup used exactly one pad per day - the one I put down in his playpen while I was at work. When I was home, I just never put any down. He was tethered to me so he was never out of my supervision or he was crated, and he was on a consistent schedule where I was anticipating every time he would need to go to the bathroom. For young pups, I like to keep the pad a safe place for them to use only if I absolutely cannot be there to take them out.

So I guess long post short, no, you're not doomed as long as you don't make the pad his primary potty area. :)


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