I need help - Potty Training!! Please!! - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-16-2010, 11:02 PM Thread Starter
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Exclamation I need help - Potty Training!! Please!!

My 8 week old puppy Sarge loves peeing in our apartment!!

I have no idea what to do. We have a crate, and we have started crate training him. He goes in there when we are asleep and when we both are at work. When I wake up at 7am, I take him out to pee and poop immediately but soon after I have to go to work so I put him back in the crate, well my Fiance wakes up about 9am and get him out and does the same thing, he doesn't go to work until 130pm so he can feed him, play with him, and take him out more often. Well I get off work around 6pm and get home about 7pm and as SOON as I get home I take him out! I feed him play with him and take him out again! But between the times that my fiance has him from 9am-1230pm and 7pm-12am he like to randomly pee in the house! We will take him outside numerous times, stay with him out there for 20 min or more just letting him run around but as soon as we bring him in not 5 min later he pee's. He VERY RARELY potty's in the crate, there have only been a few accidents.

We have no idea what to do.
I have the XL crate for him to grow into, but I have not tried the "divider" yet. Does this really work??

We praise him and give him a treat while he is outside after he pee's or poops. And we always tell him a firm "No!" or "Bad!" when he pee's in the apt. We almost always catch him doing it.

Please give me some advice on what we can do! I know a trainer can help but that's more money that we don't really have..
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-17-2010, 07:52 AM Thread Starter
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bump! any info on what to do!??
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-17-2010, 08:21 AM
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Puppies are small badders and can't hold much or for long. It is very normal for them to go frequently. He is just being a normal puppy. As he grows he will be able to hold it longer. It is up to the owner to take the puppy out ALOT. Every time he wakes up and while awake about every half hour. It's more difficult for apartment dwealers but it is a responsiblity that comes with owning a puppy/dog.
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-17-2010, 08:25 AM
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Are you making sure he pottys outside before you bring him back in?

When he goes outside, make a big deal out of it. Lots of praise and a treat or too and tell him "Good potty".

Honestly, it sounds like your fiance isn't watching him close enough during the times when the dog is loose in the house. If you can't supervise, he goes in the crate.

Also, don't tell him "No!" or "Bad!" when he pees in the house. Even if you are saying it to him WHILE he is going in the house, all you are teaching him is to not go potty in front of you. If you say it to him even 3 seconds after he's finished going, then he has no idea why you are telling him "No" or "Bad". If you are catching him go, give a quick "eh!" to make him stop and pick him up and take him outside to finish going followed by PRAISE!

Lastly, he's just 8 weeks old. He's a baby. Give him a break and get him on a schedule. Outside every hour when you have him home, on leash if you have to so that he doesn't play too much and forget why you went outside. Lots of praise for going potty outside.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-17-2010, 08:25 AM
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I agree with taking your puppy out every 30 minutes or so for a pee break. Its a PIA but necessary since they have such small bladders at that age. Like GSDAlphamom said....it comes with owning a puppy!
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-17-2010, 08:32 AM
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I would def. use the divider for the crate, you can use old milk crates if you have any. I IMO, would tell your fiance to keep a leash on him in the house so he can keep an eye on him at all times or limit the space the pup has in the house, baby gates work great for this. Once the pup does his business he should be good for 2 hours or so, after that I would take him back out weather he ate,drank or not. If you do see him going in the house, don't get mad at the little guy, just pick him up and tell him outside or whatever key word you are going to use and bring him to that spot, when he goes, praise, praise, praise. It will happen just be patient.
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-17-2010, 08:35 AM
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Puppies and potty training are all about us the owner teaching our puppies to potty outside so when they pee in the house it is our fault period. Your puppy is 8 weeks old and needs to be taught what you want from he so you MUST bring him out every 30 minutes and praise and reward him when he goes outside. The other thing is a puppy period that can not be trusted should never be out of your sight so when they all of sudden walk away or start to sniff you come in scoop them up and bring them outside with LOTS of praise and a good treat.

It is very simple actually it just takes patients, diligence, and repetition and you have to get use to repetition if you want to be a good leader.
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-17-2010, 09:13 AM
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Originally Posted by ZAYDA View Post
Puppies and potty training are all about us the owner teaching our puppies to potty outside so when they pee in the house it is our fault period. Your puppy is 8 weeks old and needs to be taught what you want from he so you MUST bring him out every 30 minutes and praise and reward him when he goes outside. The other thing is a puppy period that can not be trusted should never be out of your sight so when they all of sudden walk away or start to sniff you come in scoop them up and bring them outside with LOTS of praise and a good treat.

It is very simple actually it just takes patients, diligence, and repetition and you have to get use to repetition if you want to be a good leader.
RAISING PUPPIES IS HARD and takes alot of time....

so you are not crazy along with your puppy is NORMAL! It's like kind of saying 'I have a 1 year old human baby and still have to use diapers... HELP!'. All 1 year olds would still be in diapers, it's not you .

Closed doors and baby gates keep the puppy in the room with your so you can see if they have to go out and take them outdoors.

I put a Home Depot/Loews waterproof tarp on the floor if I have to so it's easy cleanup (yes, my family room was 'carpeted' with a tarp with one puppy...

Monitor water for the puppy after about 8 pm and NO WATER in the crate ever.

Puppy House breaking - Housebreak Your German Shepherd Puppy

House Breaking Your German Shepherd Puppy

Leerburg | How to Housebreak A Puppy

I personally go outside about every hour for the first few weeks when I'm home so I have tons of opportunities to PRAISE when they poo/pee outdoors and it limits the accidents in the house.

I also give my pups tons of exercise so they tend to be quieter and calmer (sleep more ) when I am in the house. This is a typical hike for my puppy at a fairly young age. Slower and shorter at the start but it's amazing how fast/far they can quickly go.





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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-17-2010, 12:56 PM
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Originally Posted by kerrisaysss View Post
But between the times that my fiance has him from 9am-1230pm and 7pm-12am he like to randomly pee in the house! We will take him outside numerous times, stay with him out there for 20 min or more just letting him run around but as soon as we bring him in not 5 min later he pee's. He VERY RARELY potty's in the crate, there have only been a few accidents.
I'm guessing you must have gotten him pretty young since he's just now 8 weeks old and you're already so frustrated with him not being housebroken yet? I would never expect an 8 week old puppy to be fully housebroken, it's just not realistic.

A couple things I see that other people have already addressed - at his age he has very little bladder and bowel control. When he has to go, he has to go NOW! It's way too early to expect him to know far enough in advance that he needs to pee/poop so you can get him outside, and he's also not going to know how to alert you to the fact that he needs to go, even if he did have that kind of advance warning.

Plus, it can take weeks or months of reinforcement for doing his business outside before that little lightbulb goes off in his head, the "aha!" moment where he realizes that this is what he's supposed to be doing, every time. You're probably having fewer poop accidents because puppies usually have to pee several times for each time they poop, so maybe 2 or 3 poops a day, but 5 or 6 or more pees. I found that my pups were having pee accidents long after we had the poop thing under control, and also that they seemed to figure out where they should be going before they figured out the other part of the equation, where they should NOT.

The more opportunities you have for positive reinforcement for going outside (big party, lots of happy praise, yummy treat), and the fewer opportunities he has to make a mistake in the house, the faster he's going to learn, so it's up to you and your fiance to make that happen. Also - are you cleaning up his accidents with an enzyme cleaner to completely eliminate the odor? If not, he will be attracted back to those places he's already pee because they smell like the right place to go.

What I learned with my hubby, and this may also be true of your fiance - "watching" the puppy meant something entirely different to him than it did to me. For me, if I couldn't actually see the puppy, if I didn't have eyes on, if the puppy was just in the same room with me but my back was turned and my attention elsewhere, or worse, somewhere else in the house, that's not WATCHING!!!

If I'm too busy (cooking dinner, cleaning house...) puppy goes in the crate. When puppy is out of the crate s/he's closed into a small space with me, and unless s/he's sleeping (in which case I may not be actually looking at the puppy the entire time, but I'm listening, and I'll turn my head and check on it every couple of minutes. If you need to move around the house, you can keep him close by tethering him to you with a leash. And take him out very often, every half hour to hour until he does his business, and then you'll know you have a little time to relax and take a breath.

He should need to go out after playing, eating, drinking, and napping, so if you take him out and nothing happens, bring him back inside and confine him in the crate for a short time and then try again. Over and over again, if necessary. Are you using words like "hurry up" or "go potty" to associate them with the act of going pee/poop outside? Having a dog that will pee or poop on cue is a great thing, so consider doing this if you're not already.

Have you figured out how you'd like him to let you know he needs to go out once he's capable of doing so? A lot of us use bells hung over the door (BTW - do you always take him outside through the same door?). At first I ring the bells as I'm opening the door, and I say "outside!", to associate the sound of the bells with the door opening and us going out. You can also teach him to target the bells by bumping them with his nose, but mine have always eventually figured out on their own to bump the bells so they make noise in order to alert me that they need to go out. But it can take awhile and lots of repetitions of "outside" and ringing the bells to create that association, and with a puppy that young who can't hold it very long you don't want to slow down the process of getting him outside, so I might not worry about trying to teach him to ring the bells himself for the time being. Now my dogs will run to the back door if I ask them "do you have to go outside?" because they know that that word means the door will open.

Good luck! Especially with your fiance. You may have some resistance to the idea of watching the puppy that closely, but try to explain to him that this will all be over sooner, that the accidents will slow down and stop sooner, if you're both on the same page and extremely diligent. My hubby was astounded when he realized I actually expected him to stare at the puppy the entire time, lol! Um, yeah - that's what watching means!!!

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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-17-2010, 05:59 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the tips, a few pointers on what everyone was saying.

Justin - my fiance ALWAYS has eyes on him. Its just we can not tell any signs when he wants to pee. If he needs to poop he goes to the door or he starts whining a lot.

I do not what so ever to expect him to understand instantly because my family and i have always had dogs and always got them at puppies. But he just doesn't seem to get it at all, but like I said I'm not expecting him to totally understand at 8 weeks.
We got him at 6 weeks old btw..

About the bell thing yes I do have some but he just thinks they're there for him to chew on lol. Again I know a puppy thing. Also I do tell him to "go potty" "go pee" "go poop" just small phrases like that so he'll understand. We only have one door that goes to the yard and that's the front. To make training a little easier I even got astro-turf to go on the deck (we're on the 3rd floor mind you) so we can get him out quicker.. he's pee'd on it twice. He just goes out there for 10-15 min and sits on it.

The only place is is allowed is in the living room, where we always are. He goes into the kitchen when we do and when he needs to be fed and to drink.

That's another thing, it seems like he is dehydrated because he is constantly drinking water, idk if that's a GS thing or a puppy thing but none of mine/my parents puppys/dogs have ever drank so much water at one time.

When we are outside I reward him with treats when he does go potty and tell him good boy/job.
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