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Samantha is 5 months old. She is crate trained and does very well in her crate-she will not potty in it, will hold it overnight without any trouble, for 6 hours during the day no trouble, etc. She doesn't have accidents in her crate.

Anytime we take her out of the crate, we take her straight outside and wait for her to pee and poop before bringing her back inside. We take her out every 1-2 hours during the day.

Lately, when I'm in my office working on my computer, I'll go into the living room and see that Samantha has pooped. It's not that she doesn't consider it "living space"-the most recent accident was RIGHT in front of her bed that she spends several hours a day playing and sleeping in.

It's just getting SO frustrating. She doesn't give us ANY indication that she needs to go-she just starts sniffing around and goes. When we are paying attention, we always take her outside to potty when we see her sniff.

So what is the answer? Only let her out of the crate if we can pay 100% attention to her? Keep her on a leash attached to me? I simply hate the thought of making her stay in her crate the majority of the day, but I can't keep cleaning up after her like this!!!
 

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I wish I could give you a great answer...but all I can say is our pup, 4 months old on Wednesday, did that very thing this afternoon. He is usually sooooo good, rings a bell to go out, but today he had been in his kennel while DH was working out of the house...DH took him out...he pooped and peed...came back in all happy and proceeded to poop again. He just never does that..
 

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Aah the "adventures" of puppyhood. I'm so looking forward to starting this again in two weeks.

I think the part of this is that the puppies still need to be under observation by you so you can catch the indications that they still need to go out. If you can't keep watch you need to crate/use ex-pen to keep them confined to a specific area.

After you feel that they have reach the right for that freedom? Watch for a few days longer. It is easy to become complacent when they do so well for a while, but you still need to be vigilant for a while longer. They are afteralll still young.

SamsMom, you indicted one of the indications, the sniffing around. Everytime she starts sniffing? Out she goes and start using the command word you've selected for telling them to go potty. If you haven't selected one, do it now and start using it everytime. You'll find that later down the road, it will come in handy when you want(need) them to potty quickly or in a certain area.

How long? It varies with each puppy.

Now I need to print this and put it on my doors!
 

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Sometimes I feel as if I spend much of my waking life talking about poop – dogs, horses, goats, cats, etc.! LOL This is what works for me and my dogs: The puppy is in a comfortable size crate with bedding and toys. Here she stays when indoors, unless we are right in the room and can supervise her play. During the first couple of weeks the pup goes outside every 2-3 hours during the day. I work at home so this is possible. Every time she pees or poops outside she gets a huge “good girl, good hurry up” (that’s our word for what we want them to do outside). The pup immediately comes back inside and into her crate. This is so she associates going outside on leash as “hurry up time” not play time. She is given a treat and once again told “good girl”. At night she goes out just before I actually go to sleep – last thing before lights out. She goes through the night without trouble and is taken out as soon as we get up in the morning following the same routine. That’s the outside part. Now for the most important part (IMO): lots and lots of exercise and a bit of teaching. She plays with other dogs, puppies and gets a lot of outside time. We work about 15 minutes four times a day on obedience. Everything we do is upbeat and fun – even the things she doesn’t always want to learn such as sitting and staying. We feed pups around 5pm and they get their last water around 7pm – just a little bit of water. We try to challenge our pups to think and pay attention, something that GSD’s really need IMO. Personally, I think of potty training the same way I think of everything else I ask of my dogs; it is part of teaching them to live with people and abide by human rules. My 10-year old GSD female was tough to completely housebreak, but she finally got it for good when she was about 5 months. My male 11 year old took almost 4 months; but, my new 15week female has already become reliable. Obviously, every dog is different. Patience is really the key to all of this. Good luck
 

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do you ever praise her when she goes out side? I mean just make a big deal out of it. Throw a party. if she poops in the house, take her and the poop out side to the designated area, put the poop there, and praise her for "going outside."
 

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Quote: So what is the answer? Only let her out of the crate if we can pay 100% attention to her? Keep her on a leash attached to me?
Yes.

Both of those are good options.

Every time she poops or pees in the house is a setback on housebreaking.

Conversely--every time she does it right outside you're that much closer to it sticking for good.

So it's up to you to set her up to succeed. Whatever it takes. Watch her like a hawk, take her outside every hour, close her in the office with you when you're in there, etc.

At 5 months old, I can promise you one thing---if she's not within your sight, and she's not in her crate, she's doing something you don't want her to.

It gets better soon!
 

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Agreed - a five month old pup still needs constant supervision. She should never be in a room alone for any length of time, for many reasons. House accidents are one, but there are also considerations for her safety and damage to your posessions.

Give high praise when she goes outdoors, every single time, like she just made you SO proud. Also, when you see signs that she needs to go out, start soliciting "signs" by asking her "do you need to go outside?", "have to go pee?" whatever... this helps them to understand that you want to know and that you are more than happy to take them to the appropriate location.

This should lead to her letting you know (which, BTW she already is by sniffing around) in a more overt way. You have to be super attentive to the subtle signs. My pup will either come get us and "scratch" at us or go sit by the door. It would be nice if they would bark, but they don't always.

Be sure you don't scold unless you catch her in the act (then you should).

Good luck. It takes so much patience!
 

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maybe you should check in on your dog more often when you're working. 5 months is young to have full run of the house without being checked on. why don't you bring her in the office with you while you're working?? you said she doesn't give you any indication that she has to go, she just sniffs around. well that sniffing is an indication that she has to go. i think you need to watch her more closely and take her out more often. her going in the house tells me she's not completely house broken.
Originally Posted By: SamsMomSamantha is 5 months old. She is crate trained and does very well in her crate-she will not potty in it, will hold it overnight without any trouble, for 6 hours during the day no trouble, etc. She doesn't have accidents in her crate.

Anytime we take her out of the crate, we take her straight outside and wait for her to pee and poop before bringing her back inside. We take her out every 1-2 hours during the day.

Lately, when I'm in my office working on my computer, I'll go into the living room and see that Samantha has pooped. It's not that she doesn't consider it "living space"-the most recent accident was RIGHT in front of her bed that she spends several hours a day playing and sleeping in.

It's just getting SO frustrating. She doesn't give us ANY indication that she needs to go-she just starts sniffing around and goes. When we are paying attention, we always take her outside to potty when we see her sniff.

So what is the answer? Only let her out of the crate if we can pay 100% attention to her? Keep her on a leash attached to me? I simply hate the thought of making her stay in her crate the majority of the day, but I can't keep cleaning up after her like this!!!
 

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I agree with doggiedad. If you can't watch her, then she should be in a crate or kenel. Bogart is 5.5 months old and he is always in the room that we are in. We go in the kitchen, he comes with us, we go in the living room he comes with us. When we leave the house, he either comes with us or in his crate or kenel. He must earn the freedom in the house. He has never pooped in the house and his last pee accident was when he was 3 months old.

You have to watch them like a hawk.

Good luck!

Bogarts Dad
 

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I am having a similar issue with my 7 month old GSD female. She is in her crate during the day while I am out working, and does not soil in it. After I get home she is allowed complete freedom with success. During the night I keep her loose, and she will then go into the "doggie" room and poop or pee if she feels like it. I think the post above is right. It is my fault that she has an accident. Crate, crate, crate... until they can earn the run of the house. I find that I suffer from guilt of being a working dog owner.
 

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your dog is house broken. at 7 months i think it should be outside only potty. think about getting a sitter to come in and let your dog out and spend a 1/2 hour or hour with your dog during the day or whenever you're going to be away for awhile. at 7 months my boy would wake one of us up in the middle of the night to go out. we didn't discourage it. our boy is 1 yr. old and he hasn't gotten us up in the middle of the night in a long time. you said "crate, crate, crate untill they earn the run of the house", i think it's "crate, crate, crate untill they <span style="color: #FF0000"> </span> learn <span style="color: #000000"> </span> to have the run of the house".
Originally Posted By: Ranger1I am having a similar issue with my 7 month old GSD female. She is in her crate during the day while I am out working, and does not soil in it. After I get home she is allowed complete freedom with success. During the night I keep her loose, and she will then go into the "doggie" room and poop or pee if she feels like it. I think the post above is right. It is my fault that she has an accident. Crate, crate, crate... until they can earn the run of the house. I find that I suffer from guilt of being a working dog owner.
 

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Onyx wanted out at around 4:30am til she was 1 1/2 yr old. I let her out, she had freedom at night, but crated during the day. She has finally not woken me up in the middle of the night to go out. She would go pee down in the lower level now and then, during her out of crate time(daytime), if I wasn't keeping an eye on her. I caught her when I was doing laundry(not sure if it was her or 14 yr. clover til I saw Onyx actually peeing), shoo'd her outside while telling her "outside potty!" In the past couple of months we have had no problems....knock on wood
 

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One more thing I would add is to make sure you go over the areas she has had an accident with a good enzyme cleaning solution. Vinegar works too. Dogs have awesome noses and can smell where they have gone before and will consider acceptable in the future. I agree if you cant give her 100% attention, put her in the crate. Eliminate her opportunity to make mistakes. Good luck!
 

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Originally Posted By: Luca_stl
Every time she poops or pees in the house is a setback on housebreaking.

Conversely--every time she does it right outside you're that much closer to it sticking for good.

So it's up to you to set her up to succeed. Whatever it takes. Watch her like a hawk, take her outside every hour, close her in the office with you when you're in there, etc.

At 5 months old, I can promise you one thing---if she's not within your sight, and she's not in her crate, she's doing something you don't want her to.

It gets better soon!
What Tracy said.

My puppy is always either in a crate (she has a couple in different rooms of the house), in a small x-pen in the kitchen, tethered to me (and I'm paying close attention to her, more than I am the task at hand, which explains the weird things I sometimes type in posts these days), on the big dog bed tethered while Dh and/or I play toys with her (so she can't dash off faster than we can get up and get her), or outside, with us supervising. That actually gives us lots of options, and gives her lots of opportunities to explore the world safely. She doesn't need to be roaming the house unsupervised. She's still young, but she won't have full freedom of either the house or the yard for a LONG time.

Heck, my adult dogs still have me checking on them constantly them in the back yard and they're never left alone in our (fenced) front yard. There's just a lot of stuff dogs can get themselves into. Forget about the damage to your carpet or your home. There's a lot of stuff that can hurt my pup even in my most carefully puppy-proofed house. It's not worth it.
 

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They very quickly learn it is ok to potty in the house when nobody is watching. Just like they learn to steal food, or other forbidden items when nobody is watching. Make sure you throughly clean the area with a product designed to remove all the odor. And YES, 100% constant supervision. If she cannot make mistakes, she cannot learn bad habits.

I use a baby gate to keep them in the room with me, or constantly get up to see where they are and what they doing. If I get distracted or the phone rings, or someone comes to the door, pup gets crated.
 
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