Getting in the House SOS!

Posted by Risa
Aug 6, 2011
Unlike in the US, my dog has to sleep outside. I think its cruel because rainy season is approaching. Worse of all, it also contributes to his seperation anxiety. I am away from home most of the time, going to school on 5 and arriving and 3.

I have very little time to do my homework, so basically I'm all squeezed in, my beagle, Oscar is just a mess. The only thing standing in the way of him and my house, is if he could just chill, and not number 1/2 anywhere in the house or go into the bedroom. How do I stop that???

And one more thing is that he is a beagle, how am I supposed to walk him when he keeps sniffing the ground and dragging me off street!!! Also not to try to attract other dogs...

*REMEMBER: my dog is one of the ones who need rehabilitation, so don't randomly send out your usual information, he is way stubborn :confused:
Posted by KOPCaroline
Aug 7, 2011
Hey Risa,

Sounds a bit frustrating! Hopefully we can sort things out enough for Oscar to calm down and be happy at home again! Its upsetting when moves set a dog back behaviourally, but lets see if we can make a start

Problem 1 - Upset Oscar!

Seperation anxiety is a common problem, especially with rescue dogs - after all, theyve been traumatized once by owners, why not expect it again? When you come home, don't make a big deal of Oscar. It sounds a bit counterproductive - but by making a big deal over him when you're back, you're kind of reinforcing his upset behaviour by rewarding it with attention. Instead, ignore him for the first while you're home - even try going outside to where he is and just walk around without interacting directly with him. Once he's started calming down, then you can say hi - but only when he approaches you without being too stressed, don't seek him out.

Its the same when you leave - don't make an issue of it. Just get your things and go. Baby talking or reassuring him heaps that you'll be back can lead to winding him up even more. So just say goodbye, and leave quietly. When he does start to respond (it will take time, unfortunately) and calming down, give him lots of "good boys" and pats to assure him that its the correct behaviour to have at home.

When you bring him in to try things out, if he gets worked up and whines, or runs around too much, or acts in a way you don't want him to inside, put him out immediately for a time out, 10 minutes or so. Then try again. If you let him stay inside even when he's acting up, he'll only understand that its ok to behave that way inside, because there are no repercussions.

Problem 2 - toilet training:
When you were in the States, was Oscar house trained? I'll assume yes, because you indicated these were new problems he was having now that you've moved. The best advice (slash only good advice) I can give is just to re-house train him in the exact way you did the first time. He'll pick back up on it easily, and it should be easy enough to incorporate it into training him to be more calm inside the house too. Dogs generally remember things they have been previously trained to, so toilet training shouldn't be a big deal in a new house.

You could also consider crate training him for the toilet. This would also help keep him out of rooms he's not allowed in, obviously, and may help with seperation anxiety as well. Crates can function as a dogs safe place, especially if you put his favorite toy and shirt or pillowcase or something that smells like you in it. The more I think about it, the more I think crate training could be a really good thing for him!

Problem 3 - staying out of the bedroom

The easiest way to prevent this is to shut the door, all the time when Oscar is in the house. If he goes to the door to try and explore, say "no" and call him away. Keep on him about not trying to see whats behind the door - call him away from it, tell him "out" and "no" if he tries to go in when you do, etc. Its pretty standard training, but its the best bet, in my opinion.

I know he's a rehab doggie, so things will take some time, but as long as you are persistant with him and keep training the same way with everything, he will get used to it in a short time! I'm so glad you're still having a good time together, hopefully my advice, and more advice from other users, will help you. Please keep us posted on how things go!

Posted by Risa
Aug 7, 2011
Hi KOPcaroline,

I've seen a little information you need to know about myself...

1. Where I live
To be honest I never came to the US before. I am from Indonesia, probably one of the busy cities. It is extremely corruptive, I don't live in a 'neighborhood'. Just a house, and my family is always worried if the will be any muggers across the street.

2. My Life
I am still a 12 year old girl, and I don't even have time to stop for TV in the morning, I go to school at 5 in the morning. I am not allowed to play with Oscar until I finish my HW and my after school lessons. So the average time I play with him is on 9 at night. To be honest, if he went in the house, everything could be all better

3. Poo
How does crate training work exactly?????????? :confused:
Posted by KOPCaroline
Aug 9, 2011
Eep! Sorry, when I read "unlike in the US...." in your first post, I just assumed you meant you had lived there before, and now were finding your living situation a bit different in that you had moved! Didn't mean to cause confusion

Also - you're doing an awesome job with Oscar so far - its amazing that you are so dedicated to the little guy, even with such a busy lifestyle. I'm so happy that you love him so much to make such efforts for him

As far as crate training, its relatively straightforward - the idea is to use the crate to keep your pup confined while you're not around to supervise him. The crate becomes Oscars safe, happy place in the house - so don't use it as a punishment (if he's bad, try putting him/tying him up outside instead). His crate needs to be big enough that he can stand up and turn around fully inside it - but not big enough that he can bounce/run around in it - too much room encourages bathroom accidents in the crate!

To get Oscar introduced to the crate - make a game of it. Be really happy about the crate, because you want Oscar to enjoy it and be comfortable with it. Get a comfy bed for it, put an old shirt of yours inside or something that smells strongly of you to help him feel safe. Chuck a toy inside and try to encourage Oscar to go in after it - but never force Oscar into the crate. Once he goes in, reach in an pat and rub him all over, giving lots of praise! Yay he's in the crate! Keep him happy in there!

Build up to closing him in - wait until he's happy to go in the crate on his own. Once he's ok, wait for him to go in, chuck a few treats in, or his favorite toy, and shut the door behind him. Keep him in for just a few minutes at first - and try not to let him out unless he is quiet and calm. If he whines and scratches to be let out - leave him to calm down before you open the door - otherwise he will think that whining/getting worked up = being let out. Leave him in there for longer and longer.

Crate training is easy to incorporate into house training - let Oscar out and make sure he uses the bathroom outside, then go into the house and into the crate! He'll need to be let out of the crate every few hours - I'd say you can leave him there a maximum of 8 hours (like overnight), but try to let him out every 4 hours or so during the day, if you can. I know if you're at school and your parents are at work this might not work - so be sure to let him out last thing before you leave in the morning - then immediately into the crate, and letting him out is the first thing you do when you get home.

As I said before, crate training for toilet training works exactly the same as house training in that you use it as confinement in the house during the day so there are no accidents in the house - but this comes with the fact that you have to let Oscar out to pee/poo as soon as you're home and right before you leave! Again, adult dogs can go all night with no accidents, so 8 hours is usually manageable for most dogs but its nice if you can lessen this time in the crate.

The crate is also great for overnights in the house, because he can't get up to mischief! You can cover the crate with a towel or blanket to make him feel safer if he's a bit nervous at first, but most dogs do fine without this. You can even train him to go in the crate at night with a "go to bed!" or "bedtime!" command

Hope this makes sense, other members may have further suggestions or tips on crate training. Let us know if you have anymore questions!