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We adopted our sheltie mix at about 1.5 yrs old. He had severe separation anxiety and we began to crate him. Upon crating he began to defecate in the crate, eat it and then vomit (gross I know). It got so bad he came down with acute hepatitis. After that we never crated again. He never had accidents accept when we were gone. At first we were in an apartment and thought maybe he just needed a yard to go to freely for eliminations. Now that we are in a house he still has accidents inside and he takes forever to go potty in the yard. We began crating again and this time he is doing really well, but now if we are home and he wonders away he will potty in the house while we aren't watching. I just don't know what to do anymore. My vet says dogs don't know spite...but sometimes I wonder. Any suggestions?

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We adopted our sheltie mix at about 1.5 yrs old. He had severe separation anxiety and we began to crate him. Upon crating he began to defecate in the crate, eat it and then vomit (gross I know). It got so bad he came down with acute hepatitis. After that we never crated again. He never had accidents accept when we were gone. At first we were in an apartment and thought maybe he just needed a yard to go to freely for eliminations. Now that we are in a house he still has accidents inside and he takes forever to go potty in the yard. We began crating again and this time he is doing really well, but now if we are home and he wonders away he will potty in the house while we aren't watching. I just don't know what to do anymore. My vet says dogs don't know spite...but sometimes I wonder. Any suggestions?

Thanks
Sounds like the poor guy has had a traumatizing life before you. I have a chihuahua who goes potty inside my house a lot and its always out of my site. What I have begun doing is immediately when she comes out of her crate she goes outside UNTIL she potties. If its been too long and she does not go, she goes back in her crate or she is restricted to the room I am in (I use baby gates) This way I can see her and what she does and the second she starts to sniff around I pick her up and put her back outside.

Also do you feed him in his crate? This helps dogs see their crate as positive. Again, after she eats in her crate I leave her in there for about 5-10 mins then put her outside. Its been working, less accidents, also use a command like "go potty" when he is outside and when he goes give him tons of treats and praise. It takes time and its difficult to potty train an older dog but does work. :)
 

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Is the dog ever punished for eliminating in front of you?


If he is doing it when your not around, you now need to always be around. Supervise, or confine him. Tether him to you.

He needs to not have the chance to repeat the behavior, everytime he repeats it, its is reinforced, and you take a step backwards.

He needs to be taken out A LOT and you need to throw a party every time he goes outside.



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If he is doing it when your not around, you now need to always be around. Supervise, or confine him. Tether him to you.

He needs to not have the chance to repeat the behavior, everytime he repeats it, its is reinforced, and you take a step backwards.

He needs to be taken out A LOT and you need to throw a party every time he goes outside.
Exactly, go back to potty training basics.
 
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