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Adelaide is 18 weeks old today and she pooped and peed in the house today. She has her AKC Star Puppy award and we train several days a week. She comes, stays, sits, downs and is a joy in every way except she isn't showing any signs at all of being house broken. I am with her 24/7 and know her habits. I understand her behavior when she wants to go out. I take her out once, sometimes twice a night. She only whimpers in her kennel (beside my bed) at night when she needs to potty. Most of the time she sleeps for 6 - 8 hours now without needing to go outside. I have only scolded her a few times in the past 3 months for doing business in the house and that was during the few times when I caught her. I know the rules about taking her outside and I follow them practically religiously. But she will go outside for twenty minutes, do business one and two and come back inside for five minutes and do business again. Yes she poops twice and pees twice normally. Outside. And on the rare occasion she will come right back inside and do it again - like today. Or she will give me zero sign that she needs to go, but she goes where I can't see her so I think she understands I don't like the behavior. I asked the trainer how she ever learns that its not allowed to do business inside and she said "they just do." The trainer also recommended keeping her in a crate during the day as well as at night. She is a companion to my 3 year old dog and to me so I do not want to keep her in the crate during the day. I am soliciting suggestions but really don't want her in the crate all day and I am following the flow chart so need some new ideas. Thank you. And love this forum and the patient people who are willing to help. She is my second GSD but my first puppy.
 

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Yes, you should crate her when you aren't able to watch her. if you know her pattern, then take her out to go, then put her right in the crate. Wait 15 minutes and take her out again.

Leaving her loose has now created a habit you'll have to break and the crate will be the easiest way to do it.
 

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The usefulness of the crate surprised me. I had thought of it as doggy jail. Now, my six-month puppy is either in my direct line of sight. I use baby gates to make one area 'the dog area.' or, he is hanging out in his crate content as could be.
 

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Does the pup see you clean up after her? You should crate her just long enough to clean up so she doesn’t start to think you are the maid. After it is cleaned up take her outside.
 

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Yes, you should crate her when you aren't able to watch her. if you know her pattern, then take her out to go, then put her right in the crate. Wait 15 minutes and take her out again.

Leaving her loose has now created a habit you'll have to break and the crate will be the easiest way to do it.
Thank you - I see what you mean and I do not mind crating her for a short while. Here's hoping.
 

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Thank you - I see what you mean and I do not mind crating her for a short while. Here's hoping.
Humans are the ones that view crates as a jail. Dogs view them as a den. My 6 year old goes in the varikennel to sleep all the time even though there are soft beds throughout the house.
 

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If you don't want to crate you could tether your pup to you. Keep her on a leash with you as you move about or next to you while sitting. If she starts to squat to potty quickly rush her outside. Don't scold her. I have always repeated potty outside, potty outside as we ran to the door to go potty outside. Then when they are going I say good potty and throw a silly party of excitement over it.
Also if you are not doing so be sure to use an enzyme cleaner to clean up accidents. If the smell isn't completely gone they will know and think it's ok to potty in the house.
 

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I also wouldn't scold much. Maybe say a quick no-no while picking her up running her outside. I've seen cases where after scolding the dog will just hide to do its business inside so it's harder to prevent it then, sounds like that's what you've done and they may not want to potty outside around you either then. I wouldn't crate a puppy all day but I would 100% not leave them unsupervised and left to roam free. It's safer for her to be in a crate or confined area when not supervised so she can't get into anything. As she gets older and is trustworthy not to chew anything up or go potty it's safer to leave them out.
 

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If you don't want to crate you could tether your pup to you. Keep her on a leash with you as you move about or next to you while sitting. If she starts to squat to potty quickly rush her outside. Don't scold her. I have always repeated potty outside, potty outside as we ran to the door to go potty outside. Then when they are going I say good potty and throw a silly party of excitement over it.
Also if you are not doing so be sure to use an enzyme cleaner to clean up accidents. If the smell isn't completely gone they will know and think it's ok to potty in the house.
Thank you. That is also a good idea. I too use the word "outside." She doesn't go in the house often. I'm just wondering how many other people have puppies that are 4 months old that aren't house broken. I have no experience with puppies but this seems like a long time for a dog not to learn she's not supposed to go in the house. Unlike other forms of training - I do nothing to show her that's not acceptable behavior. I reward her outside for doing business and she does business outside when I say "business." I just cant figure how shes supposed to understand she's not to do it in the house. She has picked up all other training quickly but oblivious to this.
 

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I also wouldn't scold much. Maybe say a quick no-no while picking her up running her outside. I've seen cases where after scolding the dog will just hide to do its business inside so it's harder to prevent it then, sounds like that's what you've done and they may not want to potty outside around you either then. I wouldn't crate a puppy all day but I would 100% not leave them unsupervised and left to roam free. It's safer for her to be in a crate or confined area when not supervised so she can't get into anything. As she gets older and is trustworthy not to chew anything up or go potty it's safer to leave them out.
Thank you. I dont scold her unless I catch her which hasn't happened often. And my scolds aren't lengthy or mean. She plays constantly with my other dog and sometimes when they are occupied with each other I take my eyes off of her - that's when it happens. And it's not often - really not often at all. As I put in another reply I am surprised that a 4 month old puppy isn't house trained yet. Is that unusual? She does business outside when I tell her to and I reward her.
 

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The usefulness of the crate surprised me. I had thought of it as doggy jail. Now, my six-month puppy is either in my direct line of sight. I use baby gates to make one area 'the dog area.' or, he is hanging out in his crate content as could be.
She is used to her crate and likes it but she doesnt like seeing the other dog walk around free when she has to be crated during the day. I thought of baby gates but she hangs tightly with my other dog and so it's hard to separate them without her kicking up a bit of a fuss. Now I close off most of the house to both of them so I can see them practically all the time. I have asked this question in other posts- is it unusual for an 18 week old dog to not be completely house broken? When dogs have come into my life they have been adults and all house broken. I am used to cats. Show them the box. Done :)
 

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Does the pup see you clean up after her? You should crate her just long enough to clean up so she doesn’t start to think you are the maid. After it is cleaned up take her outside.
Yes she does. I will correct that. Thank you.
 

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*but she doesnt like seeing the other dog walk around free when she has to be crated during the day. *

umm...welll...err....did she tell you that or did she send you a text? She can easily learn to "like" being in her crate while the other dog is out.

The bottom line is that she is making mistakes while you are not paying attention to her. You say that you are following the flow chart, but you really aren't. She must either be in your line of site or she must be in the crate (or tethered). If you set up your routine so that there is no chance of a mistake, there will not be a mistake. Time and consistency will absolutely fix this problem.

You are allowing the circumstances that are allowing for mistakes to happen.
 

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You might want to start from the beginning as if she isn’t potty trained at all

  • Crate when you’re unable to watch her and try to steel your heart. Crate training is such a useful tool to have in the bag. Puppies need a lot of naps anyway so it’s not as if she couldn’t use the down time. I believe at this age, I had mine on a three crate nap a day schedule. At 6 months, my pup still has two crate naps: one for his mental state and one so I can cook dinner and not give him an opportunity to make mistakes.
  • Take her out before she goes in the crate and when she comes out of the crate
  • Tether her to you when out of the crate. I used a long line that dragged the floor so my pup was always in reach. The puppy should earn her freedom from the leash in house.
  • Set a timer and take her out every 20, 30, or 60 minutes
  • Use bells on the door, ring them every time she goes out and she’ll pick up quick on it
Good luck. I don’t think you are alone not having an 18 week old potty trained. But it’s totally doable, especially if you are with your puppy all the time.
 

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*but she doesnt like seeing the other dog walk around free when she has to be crated during the day. *

umm...welll...err....did she tell you that or did she send you a text? She can easily learn to "like" being in her crate while the other dog is out.

The bottom line is that she is making mistakes while you are not paying attention to her. You say that you are following the flow chart, but you really aren't. She must either be in your line of site or she must be in the crate (or tethered). If you set up your routine so that there is no chance of a mistake, there will not be a mistake. Time and consistency will absolutely fix this problem.

You are allowing the circumstances that are allowing for mistakes to happen.
Wow - you people are tough! Actually we had to stop texting after I took her phone away for peeing in the house. Ok - seriously, I see the error of my ways which is why I asked for help. I am going to be more conscientious. It seems obvious what should be done but when you are in the middle of living it it's not as obvious as it is to more experienced, objective people. At the risk of being thoroughly eviscerated I will ask another question. If done right are GSD's usually house trained by 4 months of age?
 

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Well, that depends on what you mean by house trained. If you mean, they don't make mistakes anymore while you are watching and you stick to a schedule, the answer is yes. If on the other hand you mean that you could go out for 8 hours and give the pup free run of the house, then the answer will usually be no.

All along it is about preventing errors, and very slowly allowing more freedom. It really doesn't matter what age your pup is at this point. Mistakes are happening and that behavior has been somewhat reinforced (pup feels better after going in the house).

Someone said to go back to the beginning, and that is good advice. Stick to the crate. When the pup is out of the crate, it needs 100% attention.

The good news is that this is 100% fixable. Don't get hung up on what should be at a certain age, just focus on achieving the outcome that you desire. It will happen as soon as it can happen....then you can give her phone back :cool:
 

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Well, that depends on what you mean by house trained. If you mean, they don't make mistakes anymore while you are watching and you stick to a schedule, the answer is yes. If on the other hand you mean that you could go out for 8 hours and give the pup free run of the house, then the answer will usually be no.

All along it is about preventing errors, and very slowly allowing more freedom. It really doesn't matter what age your pup is at this point. Mistakes are happening and that behavior has been somewhat reinforced (pup feels better after going in the house).

Someone said to go back to the beginning, and that is good advice. Stick to the crate. When the pup is out of the crate, it needs 100% attention.

The good news is that this is 100% fixable. Don't get hung up on what should be at a certain age, just focus on achieving the outcome that you desire. It will happen as soon as it can happen....then you can give her phone back :cool:
Got it. Thank you for your time and advice.
 

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You might want to start from the beginning as if she isn’t potty trained at all

  • Crate when you’re unable to watch her and try to steel your heart. Crate training is such a useful tool to have in the bag. Puppies need a lot of naps anyway so it’s not as if she couldn’t use the down time. I believe at this age, I had mine on a three crate nap a day schedule. At 6 months, my pup still has two crate naps: one for his mental state and one so I can cook dinner and not give him an opportunity to make mistakes.
  • Take her out before she goes in the crate and when she comes out of the crate
  • Tether her to you when out of the crate. I used a long line that dragged the floor so my pup was always in reach. The puppy should earn her freedom from the leash in house.
  • Set a timer and take her out every 20, 30, or 60 minutes
  • Use bells on the door, ring them every time she goes out and she’ll pick up quick on it
Good luck. I don’t think you are alone not having an 18 week old potty trained. But it’s totally doable, especially if you are with your puppy all the time.
This is great advice. I am definitely going to turn this around. Thank you so much.
 

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I too use the word "outside." She doesn't go in the house often. I'm just wondering how many other people have puppies that are 4 months old that aren't house broken. I have no experience with puppies but this seems like a long time for a dog not to learn she's not supposed to go in the house. Unlike other forms of training - I do nothing to show her that's not acceptable behavior. I reward her outside for doing business and she does business outside when I say "business." I just cant figure how shes supposed to understand she's not to do it in the house. She has picked up all other training quickly but oblivious to this.

I think it's common for them to not be housebroken at this age when they are not crated, or otherwise supervised, and have started to go in the house. For puppies who have been crated and/or tethered, 4 months would be when they are starting to go to the door and let the owners know. My puppies may have started to go in the house just once or twice, they were stopped and taken out.

But that's really irrelevant for you. We can sit here all day and tell say you did it wrong but that's not helpful to you. You just need to start over. She's either crated or tethered to you. Your eyes are on her always when she's out of the crate. When you see her squat to potty, make a sharp noise to stop her and get her outside. Don't scold her. She doesn't know. Just a noise or a "No" and out the door. I do say "let's go out" so they start to associate "go out" with out to potty and going out the door. If you are super consistent, you'll have this under control in a few weeks. I know they understand when they go to the door to be let out on their own.

Clean all spots she's gone with an enzyme cleaner for 50/50 vinegar.
 

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I think it's common for them to not be housebroken at this age when they are not crated, or otherwise supervised, and have started to go in the house. For puppies who have been crated and/or tethered, 4 months would be when they are starting to go to the door and let the owners know. My puppies may have started to go in the house just once or twice, they were stopped and taken out.

But that's really irrelevant for you. We can sit here all day and tell say you did it wrong but that's not helpful to you. You just need to start over. She's either crated or tethered to you. Your eyes are on her always when she's out of the crate. When you see her squat to potty, make a sharp noise to stop her and get her outside. Don't scold her. She doesn't know. Just a noise or a "No" and out the door. I do say "let's go out" so they start to associate "go out" with out to potty and going out the door. If you are super consistent, you'll have this under control in a few weeks. I know they understand when they go to the door to be let out on their own.

Clean all spots she's gone with an enzyme cleaner for 50/50 vinegar.
Thank you - you aren't so mean after all ;-) I am re-energized and will be consistent.
 
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