Originally Posted by jjski6
i am not sure if this is the problem because sometimes he will give me that guilty look before i even find the pee and that is how i know it has happened. Additionally there was a good 8 year period where this never happened however i will look into it
thanks for the input
I read about this experiment once where a dog was left alone in his house and a human dumped the trash all over the floor. When the owner returned, the dog cringed, even though he had not been the cause of the mess.
I would bet that your dog gives you that look not out of guilt, but because he knows if there is pee on the floor, you won't be happy, so he's anticipating your reaction. I'm not sure a dog can feel "guilt" per say like we humans do. I'm not sure they know "right and wrong" like we do. What they do know is that owners will be unhappy in certain contexts. And when we are unhappy, they are unhappy.
If he was housetrained for 8 years, and is now 11 years old, then it appears something has changed in his physical health or emotional well being. Can you think of any factors in his life that might be the cause of this change?
You have a bit of a challenge going on if the floor is now soaked in pee, as it is now marked from his perspective as a "potty." If he can negotiate the stairs OK, maybe take him upstairs with you on a leash, then he can't make a mistake while you are gone. He would also be with you, thus not having separation anxiety. Ditto what Crio said about implementing a housetraining program to get him back on track. The key to that is preventing mistakes, and rewarding the correct behaviors.
He's now a geriatric boy, and what we can do at this point is take care of them and love them like a cherished elder in our family. See if you can figure out what's going on "behind the scenes" for your old fella, and maybe try to make some adjustments to his life routine. He may need just some more regular time one on one with you, even 10 minutes a day of clicker training of fun games, or time on the floor with him playing, or time on the couch with you... Sometimes it does not take much to help a dog feel happier, more secure and loved.
Well, let us know if there is anything we can discuss with you!