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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
OK I know I've been posting here a lot lately with questions about my new doggo (new to me; she's 3). I was told when I got her that she was housetrained, and she appears to be--she has not peed in the house yet, but I keep her crated when I'm gone.

I'm finding that the thing I'm getting most frustrated about is that she refuses to pee in the evenings. We usually walk/run sometime between 3:30-5:30 for about 45 minutes, and she pees on the walk, then she's inside for the rest of the evening. I go to bed around 10pm but because she's been so bad at this, I start taking her outside around 8:30-9pm to try to get her to pee one last time before bed.

SHE WILL NOT.

OK, well, sometimes she will. On a good night, I'll only have to stand out there waiting for 5 minutes while she wanders around, scratches herself, lies down for a bit, then goes off and pees. I carry treats and make sure I reward her BIG TIME when she does this because I want her to get the friggin message.

On a bad night I will wait for 30 minutes, start getting frustrated, she'll realize I'm getting frustrated, and then she'll be absolutely useless--hiding from me, cringing, cowering, following me around, hiding in her outside crate. Tonight I got *really* frustrated, walked back inside, leashed her up, and walked her down the street. Sure enough, within 5 minutes of the walk, she peed.

WHY WILL SHE NOT PEE IN THE YARD?? I really, really don't want to have to take her for a walk every night to get her to pee. I've heard of dogs who will squat and only a tiny bit of pee will come out because they're really empty but they know what you want. I feel like I finally have a house with a fenced backyard so I don't have to go out in public in my bathrobe and slippers, and yet...here we are.

Am I being too control freaky here? I don't want her to wake up in the middle of the night because she has to pee. I don't want her to soil her crate (or the house, because I'm hoping not to have to crate her all the time eventually). I also don't want to give her a pee complex because I get mad every time I take her out and she doesn't pee. I think she's getting a negative association with "go potty" because that's what I'm trying to use to train her, but she just won't get it and now probably thinks it's a scolding.

(Incidentally, I was trying to teach her "peekaboo" as a fun trick to get her to put her paw up over her face, and it was working, then all of a sudden she decided the word "peekaboo" meant she needed to run away and hide in her crate. I never once got even a little bit frustrated teaching her this, I thought we were having fun!)

Is it just possible she has mondo bladder and can easily go 12-16 hours without peeing? I've had her for over a month and she has never once "asked" to go outside and has also never peed immediately after being let out in the mornings or after being crated in the day. There have been times where I know the last time she peed was like 3pm the day before, and the next morning she *still* doesn't have to pee. I'll let her out and she'll just wander around a bit and then come back to the door and wait for me to let her back in. It's like she never has to go. It's like all she needs are her 2 walks per day--like she's saving it up for her walks, even (we do a morning walk and she does pee then). I just don't buy that.

Sorry....this forum has ended up being a great place not only for me to hear from lots of experienced GSD owners but for me to vent about how frustrating this new dog process can be. Thanks for putting up with me.
 

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This dog hasn't been with you very long, and she obviously doesn't yet trust you. I think you are expecting way too much too soon. You have no idea what her background is and what she has been taught in the past. She may not have been allowed to pee in her previous owner's yard.

News flash--dogs are inconvenient. We all have to make allowances for them and it changes our entire lives and schedules to work around and with them. You might want to seriously think about whether or not that is a problem for you. And you need to stop being so frustrated with her. She's doing her best to conform to an entirely new situation that she has no idea what is expected of her. Her entire life has been turned upside down. Try to look at things from her perspective instead of your own.

Relax and give her time and let her figure things out. Let her learn to trust you and she can't do that if you are constantly irritated with her.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yeah I know getting frustrated isn't helping anything, and no matter how hard I tell myself not to get frustrated, I still do. So that's something I need to work on.

But yes all good points, just need to give it some time. Every day she seems a little bit better (less anxious, more comfortable) so we're making progress. The evening pee thing is sort of the final thing that's driving me crazy.
 

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Try this.

When you're out and about with her and she does pee, then say 'good pee' give her some praise, a friendly pat so she'll learn what the word means.

Eventually she'll learn the word and will pee if she has too.
 

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If you find yourself starting to get frustrated, do something different. Forget about having a time clock and a certain amount of time to do a particular thing.

Try engaging her in something fun. Play with her, chase her if that doesn't scare her. Pick up a toy and play tug if she will, play fetch, do some obedience work, anything to keep this from being a chore. You will both feel better if you aren't standing there patting your foot waiting for her to do something. Give her a chance to relax and enjoy herself. Take the pressure off of both of you.
 

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From your description of the dog's reaction to your "frustration" -- well I really feel bad for the dog. However you express your frustration, it is horrible for the dog. So stop.



If you want her to pee right before bedtime, take her for a walk. And as others have suggested, when she does pee "name that act" and reward it.
 

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Sometimes my dogs won't pee during the last walk of the night. I don't worry about it. I just make sure to get up early and make sure they get a chance to relieve themselves in the morning.

Think about it this way. If someone decided to take you to the bathroom and told you to pee on command could you? How many of us make sure to have a big glass of water before going to the doctor's for our yearly check-up?

My female will often pee when I tell her to pee. My male won't. I think it involves the need to mark and not just empty his bladder. So long as he doesn't pee indoors or get a UTI, I don't worry about it.
 

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You need to practice some breathing exercises when you're out with the dog. Breathe in through your nose for 5, hold for 2, out through pursed lips for 7, hold for 2. Repeat. Breathe out your frustration, and breathe in patience.
 

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Yikes. If anything I was doing with a foster or rescue was making them cower and slink away, i would stop doing that thing immediately. The cower and slink with head down means the dog is frightened, and I never want to get to that point. All my dogs will hang their heads when they hear me say naughty, but they don’t cower or slink away. I use naughty for unwanted behaviors, I’ve found this to help them learn from verbal corrections what isn’t acceptable. And I use good when they display good behaviors. Stop whatever it is that you are doing to make the dog cower and slink to his crate. If your backyard is secured, can you watch her through a window on the sly instead of standing out there putting pressure on her? My senior will NOT poop if anyone is watching her. If she catches someone’s eye while pooping, she will suck it back up, or pinch it and go someplace else where she can’t be seen. I didn’t force her to get used to me watching her, I got used to having a poop shy dog.

Also, if she readily pees on a leash, why not leash her and walk the perimeter of your backyard with her leashed rather than waiting on the deck/patio for her to “hurry up and go.”

Most dogs can go 8-12 hours holding it once they reach maturity. She may just not need to go. I force myself to pee before bedtime because I hate getting into bed, getting comfortable, start to drift off, and then need to pee, but I know what and why I’m doing it. Dogs don’t think like humans. Why would she force herself to pee on your command if she didn’t feel the need to pee?

Take her out on leash in your backyard, walk around with her, and if she doesn’t go, she doesn’t go. Crate her and go to sleep. She shouldn’t have a problem holding it until morning. I still get woken up with my adults when they have an emergency (my rotten kids sneaking them human food) in the middle of the night. I’d rather wake up and take them out than clean up explosive diarrhea the next day! You’ll never have a dog that’s doesn’t wake you occasionally, no matter the age. Just something you will have to get used to if you want to own a dog.
 

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Even if she's completely housebroken, she may never have been taught to pee on cue. If she's not peeing when you take her out in the evening before bed, and also not soiling her crate during the night, I wouldn't worry about it. Keefer would sometimes pee before bed, sometimes not. On weekends when I didn't have to get up at the crack of dawn I'd sleep in until 8 or 8:30, sometimes even 9, which was often 12 or more hours since he last peed if he wouldn't go right before bed. I always took him out and gave him the opportunity, but I didn't stress if he didn't show an interest and just wanted to come back in the house. We used to joke that he had an iron bladder. At 3 years old, your dog can probably hold it much longer than you expect. While MAKING a dog hold their pee for 12 hours is not good, if she won't go maybe she just doesn't need to yet.

I agree with what everyone else is saying, you stressing out over it is probably making it worse. Keep it light and happy, use a verbal cue, and if she doesn't go, don't make a big deal about it. If she does, praise her and give her a small treat. Cava will be 2 in January and she still gets paid for poop! If she goes out on her own and poops she'll come get us and show us where it is so we can scoop it up and give her a liver treat. Look mama, I pooped! :rofl: And then she sits in the garage and waits for her reward before she'll come back in the house.

We teach a "go outside" cue (do you need to go outside?) and an all purpose "go potty" cue. Halo's breeder used "hurry up", so for her I'd combine the two into "hurry up, go potty". If she peed and I knew it was around the time she'd need to poop too but hadn't yet, I called that "other potty". As in, she peed - "good girl, other potty", and wait for her to do the rest. If Cava is excited and trying to get us to follow her outside I'll ask "did you poop?", so she does know that word too.
 

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I think your making a big deal out of something that doesn't matter. If shes not peeing somewhere shes not supposed too, then when shes actually goes shouldn't be too much of a concern. I guess I don't see why peeing on command is such a big deal to you. It has nothing to do with being house trained. I've never needed that for any dog I've owned.
 

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Both of my dogs know the pee command, though sometimes they choose not to do it. My female, 5 year old, will squat for a second and do nothing to let me know she doesn't have to go. My male (19 mos) will sometimes just sit and stare at me if he doesn't need to go. You have to learn to read their body language. I always put them on a leash at night and take them to a spot where they have peed before. Then I get them to circle while saying "pee pee" and usually this works to get the desired response. It helps to establish a schedule for this. This is done by paying attention to their needs, amount of water drunk, etc. If I take them out too often at night, they will come to see it as an opportunity to just sniff around. If they don't pee when I take them out, I put them back in the house and don't worry about it. The younger dog will frequently skip the last opportunity and then may even skip the morning pee making it easily more than 12 hours between times.
 

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OK I know I've been posting here a lot lately with questions about my new doggo (new to me; she's 3). I was told when I got her that she was housetrained, and she appears to be--she has not peed in the house yet, but I keep her crated when I'm gone.

I'm finding that the thing I'm getting most frustrated about is that she refuses to pee in the evenings. We usually walk/run sometime between 3:30-5:30 for about 45 minutes, and she pees on the walk, then she's inside for the rest of the evening. I go to bed around 10pm but because she's been so bad at this, I start taking her outside around 8:30-9pm to try to get her to pee one last time before bed.

SHE WILL NOT.

OK, well, sometimes she will. On a good night, I'll only have to stand out there waiting for 5 minutes while she wanders around, scratches herself, lies down for a bit, then goes off and pees. I carry treats and make sure I reward her BIG TIME when she does this because I want her to get the friggin message.

On a bad night I will wait for 30 minutes, start getting frustrated, she'll realize I'm getting frustrated, and then she'll be absolutely useless--hiding from me, cringing, cowering, following me around, hiding in her outside crate. Tonight I got *really* frustrated, walked back inside, leashed her up, and walked her down the street. Sure enough, within 5 minutes of the walk, she peed.

WHY WILL SHE NOT PEE IN THE YARD?? I really, really don't want to have to take her for a walk every night to get her to pee. I've heard of dogs who will squat and only a tiny bit of pee will come out because they're really empty but they know what you want. I feel like I finally have a house with a fenced backyard so I don't have to go out in public in my bathrobe and slippers, and yet...here we are.

Am I being too control freaky here? I don't want her to wake up in the middle of the night because she has to pee. I don't want her to soil her crate (or the house, because I'm hoping not to have to crate her all the time eventually). I also don't want to give her a pee complex because I get mad every time I take her out and she doesn't pee. I think she's getting a negative association with "go potty" because that's what I'm trying to use to train her, but she just won't get it and now probably thinks it's a scolding.

(Incidentally, I was trying to teach her "peekaboo" as a fun trick to get her to put her paw up over her face, and it was working, then all of a sudden she decided the word "peekaboo" meant she needed to run away and hide in her crate. I never once got even a little bit frustrated teaching her this, I thought we were having fun!)

Is it just possible she has mondo bladder and can easily go 12-16 hours without peeing? I've had her for over a month and she has never once "asked" to go outside and has also never peed immediately after being let out in the mornings or after being crated in the day. There have been times where I know the last time she peed was like 3pm the day before, and the next morning she *still* doesn't have to pee. I'll let her out and she'll just wander around a bit and then come back to the door and wait for me to let her back in. It's like she never has to go. It's like all she needs are her 2 walks per day--like she's saving it up for her walks, even (we do a morning walk and she does pee then). I just don't buy that.

Sorry....this forum has ended up being a great place not only for me to hear from lots of experienced GSD owners but for me to vent about how frustrating this new dog process can be. Thanks for putting up with me.
Cowering is a bad thing. Shadow only pees when no one is watching. And even when camping she will ask to leave the site to relieve herself. I wouldn't worry about it. She pees when she needs to obviously. You need to relax.
 

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I tell Pepper to pee, sometimes she does and sometimes not, at least I gave her a chance, usually I get up to pee around 2:30am anyway so she goes out then. Never a mess in the house tho.
 

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I've had a lot of dogs in my life and none of them would pee on command. That's nothing I'm really concerned about. If my dogs need to pee, they will when given the opportunity. If the don't need to, they won't.

Most dogs are never taught that and I don't understand why you would expect a new dog to know that command. To me, it's not a normal part of house training.
 

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I've had a lot of dogs in my life and none of them would pee on command. That's nothing I'm really concerned about. If my dogs need to pee, they will when given the opportunity. If the don't need to, they won't.

Most dogs are never taught that and I don't understand why you would expect a new dog to know that command. To me, it's not a normal part of house training.
Totally agree. We taught the patrol dogs to relieve themselves when and where we needed on command because it was necessary. Folks who travel often with pets should teach it, many don't. For the average pet it need never be taught and most would never think to do so.
 

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All of my dogs pee on command. It’s especially helpful at a dog show, when I need them to pee (and poop) before going in the ring. I use the command “hurry up, go pee”. All of them were taught this as puppies. And all of them have been taught to pee and poop on a leash as well.

I remember a zillion years ago when I had my Dobe Tess. The vet tech needed to get a urine sample from her. We took her outside, I said “go pee”. She immediately squatted and peed in the ladle the tech stuck under her. The tech was impressed, lol.

Nothing wrong with teaching a go pee command, but getting frustrated and mad with a new adult dog that has no clue what you want? Take it slow. Build a relationship with the dog. Scaring her is not the way to go.
 
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