My Dog Keeps Making Accidents
If you have a dog, chances are at some point you're going to take an unfortunate step in something wet and weird. If this is the case for your dog, don't be upset, with some corrective behavior and due diligence, any dog can be taught to go outside.
Managing Your Expectation With Your Dogs Bladder
Fortunately, not all dogs are exactly the same. There are going to be different problems for every dog and how they manage their own bladder and peeing situation. There are a few key questions you need to answer before attempting any corrective behaviors.
How large is your dog?
How old is your dog?
Has your dog had a previous owner who housebroke them inside?
Are there external circumstances that are forcing your dog to pee?
Basically, we are trying to track behavior and tendencies. If your dog has a small bladder, peeing in the house might be an immediate thing for them. If your dog is older, they might be having bladder problems. You can learn more about the differences between marking and peeing indoors here.
But if you have a dog that was housebroken from a previous home or if your dog is breaking their rhythm by suddenly peeing indoors, there might be something else going on.
Be sure to check outside in your yard in case there are any pests, markings of other animals, or situations that might poop your dog.
Positive Reinforcements for Training Your Dog to Pee Outside
First of all, we are going to teach positive reinforcement to get your dog to pee outside. Negative teaching can work, but it creates a dynamic in the relationship that you might not want in the long run.
The first step you're going to have to make is time management. If you work during the day, there's little you can do to reinforce your dog at that moment. But when you get back, taking your dog out to pee should be your full-time job.
Try to set timers and alarms for every hour you're home until you go to sleep in order to monitor what your dog is doing and if they are making any signs to go outside.
Next, you want to start integrating pavlovian cues. What worked for me and my dog was hanging a bell by the door.
Every time I took my dog out I would take her paw and ring the bell before we exited. It didn't even take a week of consistently doing this before my dog realized they could ring the bell and be let outside.
This gives your dog a way to communicate with you that they want to go outside, not necessarily that they want to go pee, it's up to you to reinforce that behavior.
Treats and Praise
When your dog pees outside there are three things you should be doing.
Priming the Dog, if you want. Tell the dog to do their stuff or go pee, and your dog will start associating those words with making.
Praising the Dog, letting them know they are doing a great job of peeing out here and not in there.
Treating the Dog, Once the dog has finished everything they are doing, then you will want to give them a treat. Whatever you usually give will work fine.
We hope this little guide has helped you. The steps are easy and clear and it's all about opening up communication with your dog. They are pack animals and want to have as many outlets to connect with you as possible.
If you suspect your dog might be having bladder problems instead of just trouble distinguishing pee places, be sure to investigate some of our belly bands, they might help your dog become comfortable with peeing where they want, and it's a stylish way to not have to clean the floor!
Abbey is the owner of Coddled Canine and her dog, Riley. Join us on our crazy adventures as we journey through this awesome life together!
Want an email when we post a new blog?