Potty Training Shih Tzu

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Potty Training Shih Tzu

This is a discussion on Potty Training Shih Tzu within the Housetraining forums, part of the Dog Training and Behavior category; I cannot get my Shih Tzu to potty train and I am considering getting rid of her. We have been bringing the dog outside and ...

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Old 08-09-2012, 09:22 PM
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Potty Training Shih Tzu

I cannot get my Shih Tzu to potty train and I am considering getting rid of her. We have been bringing the dog outside and telling her to go. Sometimes we can get here to go, especially in the morning which leads us to believe that she "gets it". Then sometimes we are out there for 15-20 minutes with nothing, even after the dog has not gone for hours, then sometimes as soon as 15 minutes later she will crap or pee right in front of me, other times she goes and hides it in a corner. I have shown the dog how much I dislike the inside mess way more than should be necessary. I spank her & scream like I am going to kill her and bring her outside. She KNOWS I am displeased. Then when I CAN get the dog to go out side I give tons of praise and love. I can't be more bipolar than that. I truly think that this dog just doesn't care what I want. She is almost 9 months old and on the 1 year anniversary the dog is gone if I cannot cure this. There is not a room in my house that this dog has not crapped, peed, and chewed the legs off the furniture in. The only reason I am trying to work this out is for my 3 daughters. For their sake please give me some good advice.
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Old 08-09-2012, 09:49 PM
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read this:

http://www.dogforum.com/housebreakin...-how-tos-2135/

determine where you deviate from the stated advice, and change that.

i don't understand why you would want to "get bipolar" with the training? your dog should be able to trust you, always... fear of punishment does not mean that the dog understands what action leads to the punishment, and it certainly doesn't teach the dog what to do to avoid the punishment...

as far as the chewing, and housebreaking being too much, that's what happens when you raise a puppy... it is part of the process... they have to be taught to behave how you want them to, and it takes time and patience, trust me, i know it's frustrating... think of it this way, what were you capable of when you were 9 months old? what could you be trusted with? how about your kids? what do you trust them with? how long did it take you to get to that point?

overall, it sounds like your biggest problem with the dog is that you are giving her too much freedom in the house without enough supervision. she shouldn't have ever had access to all those rooms and an opportunity to toilet in them/chew the furniture... do you have a kennel or an x-pen for her? a dog safe/proof room?
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Old 08-10-2012, 12:19 AM
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We also had problems with our Shih Tzu puppy- mainly because we couldn't tell when she was going the first month (she was only 2 lbs and we couldn't tell the difference between her sits and her peeing :P). Add to that non-housebroken foster dogs, and it was impossible. It was very frustrating. Mom finally replaced all the carpet (half with carpet, half with hardwood floors) to get rid of all traces of pee, and then either crated or confined our pup to non-carpeted areas while we were gone and tied her to a waist if we couldn't watch her while at home. Crating/confining is still in effect, and now mom simply keeps the dog in the same room with her while she's home, and that stopped her accidents. We are also hyper-vigilant about taking her out right after she eats, drinks, plays or wakes up from a nap, since those are the times most likely to lead to accidents.

I've often wondered if litter-box training hard-to-housebreak puppies would help, as it could give them someplace to go inside, but I have no experience with that. But if they're already going inside, it couldn't be worse, right?

And lastly, when we yelled at our puppies for peeing in the house, they learned to hid the messes, making it nearly impossible to get rid of the pee-here scents and making future accidents much more likely. It worked a lot better to give the pups pieces of chicken or other fantastic treats for going outside, interrupting peeing with a loud but friendly "Dang" or "oops! Outside!" and simply cleaning up indoor messes if we couldn't catch them in time. I may have had to a few times place said puppy safely inside her crate, walk out into the garage (opposite end of the house) and throw something soft (like a towel) at the garage wall while I growled in frustration because I could swear, swear that she knew better, but getting mad at the puppy/dog for being a puppy/dog is about as useful at yelling at the sky for raining on my parade. Much as we wish it were different, dogs don't actually know "right" and "wrong", only "this helps me" and "this hurts me".
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Old 08-10-2012, 12:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DogGoneCrazy View Post
I truly think that this dog just doesn't care what I want.
I have found with my own rescue (5 yr old, got her 6 months ago), that she doesn't care what I want either - unless there is something in it for her. I want her to walk by my side on our walks, not lung and growl at other dogs and the occasional person. I want her to silently watch people through the window rather than bark at them. And I want her to cuddle with me on the couch rather than always sleeping next to my feet. She does none of these things consistently without someone sort of reward, and believe me, verbal praise and pets are not her idea of an ideal reward. I am slowly learning to take this less personally.
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Old 08-10-2012, 04:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DogGoneCrazy View Post
I cannot get my Shih Tzu to potty train and I am considering getting rid of her. We have been bringing the dog outside and telling her to go. Sometimes we can get here to go, especially in the morning which leads us to believe that she "gets it". Then sometimes we are out there for 15-20 minutes with nothing, even after the dog has not gone for hours, then sometimes as soon as 15 minutes later she will crap or pee right in front of me, other times she goes and hides it in a corner. I have shown the dog how much I dislike the inside mess way more than should be necessary. I spank her & scream like I am going to kill her and bring her outside. She KNOWS I am displeased. Then when I CAN get the dog to go out side I give tons of praise and love. I can't be more bipolar than that. I truly think that this dog just doesn't care what I want. She is almost 9 months old and on the 1 year anniversary the dog is gone if I cannot cure this. There is not a room in my house that this dog has not crapped, peed, and chewed the legs off the furniture in. The only reason I am trying to work this out is for my 3 daughters. For their sake please give me some good advice.
Oh Dear!
It must be pointed out that this is the dog equivalent of child abuse. Remember your puppy is tiny and you are scaring the be-jesus out of her. Notice that this method also is not working.

I will have to agree with you, that re-homing this dog could be the best thing for both of you, unless you are willing and able to completely reverse course on how you handle your dog and start over with the house training using the concepts Fawkese linked you to.

I will guarantee you that the methods you have tried up to now to house train the dog will never, ever, ever, work. Its not that she needs a few more months of trying this, she needs a whole other method. House training done by Fawkese's method, takes only a few weeks, although in this case, because of 7 months of confusion, it will probably take 2 or 3 months to re-train this puppy. Stick to the method in that link strictly for several months.

Think of your dog more like you think of your children... that is when you potty trained your three girls, there was probably not spanking and yelling involved.... I hope...

This thread breaks my heart.

Last edited by Tess; 08-10-2012 at 04:07 AM.
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Old 08-10-2012, 06:37 AM
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^^^ totally agree Also she does not know you are displeased she just knows it that you have scared her and may do it again. She is just getting prepared for it by cowering.
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Old 08-10-2012, 08:33 AM
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I also have Shih Tzus. My girl trained in 3 days and never had an accident. On the other hand my boy trained quick to poop outside but always peed in the house. I also felt frustrated and wanted to rehome my boy if by age 1 he wasn't house trained. My vet who raises shih tzus told me they are one of the hardest dogs to potty train. My girl was the exception and that I should just be patient. So I would take him out immediately after eating, waking up, playing, and about 10 times in between. I watched him like a hawk and if I saw him starting to pee inside the house I would say "NO" and pick him up and put him outside. When he would pee outside it was like we were having a party. If I didn't see him pee in the house I would just clean it up and say nothing. It took about a year but he finally trained. He very rarely has an accident in the house. ANd then it is usually because he doen't feel well. Patience is what you need. Screaming at the poor dog wont help either, it will just make him afraid of you. Love and patience, two very important things to have when raising a puppy. Good luck
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Old 08-10-2012, 08:57 AM
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Change of course.

I am going to follow the advice given here. It is obvious to me that what I am doing is not working. I am realizing that these dogs are not of the same personality or loyalty as, say a lab. A lab learns to obey your commands and not to go in the house because he wants to please you. It seems to me that these dogs, (although lovable and great with kids), only do what you want if you make it worthwhile for them. My vet has basically said the same thing in different words. I will do the positive reward thing and nothing more than a yell from here out. I need to try what is working for other people. I think these dogs are kind of like a cat. They do what they want because they want to, not because you want them to. Like how a cat will pee on your shoes if they are upset, I think this dog is pooping/peeing inside on purpose sometimes. I gotta make this work so I am willing to try anything.
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Old 08-10-2012, 09:21 AM
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Yay for being able to see that what you're doing is not working and being willing to change!

And yes, she's going to the bathroom in the house "on purpose"--because you have, inadvertently, trained her to go to the bathroom inside.

She will do what you want eventually, provided your training is consistent, kind (positive reinforcement-based), and firm. You just have to teach her that doing what you want gets her what *she* wants (generally, food). Using a "No Free Lunch" approach has worked well for my dog. She has to sit, down, dance etc on command before, well, just about anything exciting, including going for a walk, getting in the car, getting a meal, and so forth.
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Old 08-10-2012, 09:27 AM
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It is highly unlikely the pup is "doing it on purpose". Although, I occasionally wondered when ours stared straight into out eyes and then peed on the carpet. We later learned that was her "cue" for "I need to pee". And having just read Marley and Me, I wouldn't assume all labs are perfect But it's true, some does are motivated by praise and petting and attention alone (and boy, do I wish I had one of those!), and we do often call our Shih Tzu the eternal teenager, what with her selective hearing/obeying. Still, she is well worth the hassles and frustrations, and really, so long as we're looking for a companion and not a star sports performer, she does perfectly.
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