Need to housebreak three dogs

Posted by swickl
Nov 23, 2010
My dog, Cogi, is so well trained he would go to any length to avoid soiling in the house. Unfortunately, my sister and her 3 large dogs just moved in with us and I don't know if it was because she was lazy about letting them out, or that they never were trained but they are using the dining room as their potty. They don't even signal that they need to go out. She's been taking them out every 2 hours, but it hasn't helped. Today 1 of her dogs stood looking right at me and peed on the rug. I guess I'm going to have to start training from scratch. Can you do 3 at once? I just bought the ebook but have been unable to download it yet-- link doesn't seem to work. Any tips would help. Should I start with getting crates for the 3 and keeping them in the attached garage? Do they have to be confined to crates? Can they come in and sleep in her room at night? HELP!
Posted by MaxHollyNoah
Nov 23, 2010
Hi swickl:

First thing you want do is to ask your sister how she was doing with their potty schedule before she moved in your house. Maybe she had a doggy door that they can go in and out as they needed? Also, how old are the doggies, are they males or females? Male dogs tend to mark new areas so they need to be worked differently.

What I would do is to use crates or confined area so that the 3 dogs will get a sense of their dwelling. They usually don't like to soil their dwelling.

Next, use your Cogi as the model dog. When you take him out for potty, bring all the other 3 along. It will help the other dogs to figure out what they are expected to do when they are let outside. If you are lucky, all the other dogs will pee over your Cogi's pee. When I am potty training my foster dog, I usually go outside with the foster dog and my own dogs (they are totally trained) and tell them to "Go Shih Shih" in a happy voice. When my foster dog sniff around and start peeing, I will wait to praise until he completes it. Then, I praise and give him a treat and tell him how good boy he is.

Adult dogs can hold up to several hours so once you make this as a routine, they can hold it. If they still pee inside, you might want to have the vet check for UTI. You should be able to train them within a week or so if it is not a marking problem.

Good luck
Posted by KOPCaroline
Nov 24, 2010
Hey swickl,

I agree with MaxHollyNoah, I think the best way to handle the situation is to basically start from scratch, confining the three to a small area, or to their crates if they have them, and keeping them there until its time for a toilet break, then gradually upping the amount of the house they have access to. Going out with Cogi is a great idea as well, as MHN said, the new dogs are likely to smell his urine and go where he goes.

I'd advise against the new dogs sleeping with your sister until they are fully house trained; even though adult dogs can hold it overnight, the behaviour they are showing now makes me think the chances of nighttime accidents could be high.

I would train them how you did Cogi, with your sisters help; it shouldn't take too long, adult dogs usually catch on quickly, and as its been said, dogs dont generally like to go where they live regularly.

Hope it works out, good luck!!
Posted by kjd
Feb 7, 2011

Could we have an update on your sister's dogs?