Dog Forum banner

1 - 8 of 8 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
:ponder:Hello everyone!! My name is Chelsea and I am the proud owner of a 3 year old Yorkie named Ollie. Although I love him to pieces, he is starting to wear me thin and I am at a loss for how to handle this.

1) Ollie pees on EVERYTHING. He is not neutered (but hopefully will be soon). He goes on the garbage cans, garbage bags that sit on the floor while i put my shoes on to take it out, clothes, purses, YOU NAME IT! How can I break this bad habit even before he is neutured because that may or may not stop it.

2) Ollie does not listen. At all. He passed obedience class and everything. How do I gain control I never really had?

3) Ollie gets bored very easily. While my boyfriend and I work during the day is when Ollie does most of his peeing and distruction. I have tried kongs with peanut butter, kongs with bacon cheddar cheese wiz and nothing. He wants nothing to do with them. Does anyone know of any safe alternatives to keep him occupied while we are at work?

Thank you in advance for all of your help and I look forward to everyone's suggestions!

Talk to you soon-HOPEFULLY!

Chelsea
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,877 Posts
First off, welcome to the forum!
Second of all, crating him is really the only way to keep him from peeing on everything while you're gone.
How much mental and physical stimulation is he getting when you're home? (The reason I ask is because you mention this is related to boredom)
Honestly, there's a chance this won't stop after he's been neutered. We had one dog he marked even after being neutered at about 6 months. The other male dog never marked at all, even before he was neutered.
Chances are, he'll still lift his leg to pee after he's been neutered because that's what he's always done.
You may need to start housetraining all over again as if he's never gone through it before. Pick up anything and everything you don't want him peeing on. Get a good enzymatic cleaner to clean the places he's already peed on.
You may need to talk to a behaviorist about this. Maybe he or she can help you get to the bottom of why he doesn't seem to be listening to you. Plus, I bet the other members on here who are much more experienced with training than I am can help you out and give you some advice. : )
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,025 Posts
Hi Chelsea, welcome to the forum!

It sounds like you really have your hands full with Ollie. How long have you had him? What have you tried so far?

Potty training:
Neutering does make a huge difference in marking, but at the end of the day, marking is a potty training problem. Re-teach potty training from the beginning. Assume your dog has a two-hour bladder and walk him at those intervals, even if you "know" that he can hold it longer than that. The potty training stage is the worst time to gamble on anything -- if you catch yourself using the word "probably" (as in "he probably won't pee"), you're gambling. Potty training is a game of habit formation. You want it to become so firmly entrenched that it's almost superstitious: the BEST place to go potty is outside, and therefore the ONLY place to go potty is outside. Every time he is allowed to go inside, that habit is weakened.

If your eyes aren't on him, he needs to be crated (contained somewhere he would never pee, not even once). In the beginning, it means a lot of restriction on the dog's freedom and frequent potty walks, but it's worth it in a few weeks when your house doesn't smell like urine anymore and it ultimately improves his quality of life.

Investing in a belly band/male diaper is worth the $15 to keep the urine off your objects during the training process. An enzymatic cleaner like Nature's Miracle will help to get the smell out so that it doesn't keep triggering him to pee in the places where he has already peed.

You'll also want to get some type of treat container to store near the door you exit for potty walks. Grab some treats on your way out the door and always have them in your pocket when you and Ollie are outside. If he potties outside, make it very exciting and happy, hand him several of his favorite treats all in a row (I'm talking good stinky meaty treats, not just milkbones), make it like winning the puppy lottery every time he pees outside.

If he pees inside, don't fuss at him. You run the risk of him associating you watching him pee with punishment which makes leash training unnecessarily complicated, and it doesn't actually teach him what to do. So it doesn't help, and it may hurt.

It's hard to keep a level head when the dog has just peed on your belongings, and it's very human to feel frustrated about it. It's natural to want to shout or fuss or scold the dog for peeing inside, to show him what he did wrong and to vent your frustration. I've been a dog trainer for years and I still struggle with that with my own dogs (although not with clients' dogs). Personally, I've found that making a deal with myself is really helpful. As long as I don't ever lie to myself that I'm "teaching" the dog anything with it, I'm allowed to yell. Which means that before I open my mouth, I have to consciously acknowledge that I am just yelling at my dog because I'm upset, not because I'm training him or because it's his fault -- that I'm just shouting at him because I can't contain my anger, and it won't accomplish anything except making me feel less angry. And nobody wants to be the mom who shouts at her kids/dogs for no reason when she gets frustrated. So, even when I desperately want to shout, that's how I trick myself into not doing it. Might help if you are also the easily-frustrated sort.

The big secret to potty training is that it's actually pretty easy if you follow the rules all the time, and it's almost impossible if you don't. The rules are:
1. Prevent accidents indoors before they happen, and
2. Give plenty of chances to potty in the right place, and
3. Heavily reward potty in the right place

That's the whole thing. The rest of it is just tips and tricks to make that process go more smoothly.

Obedience:
1. Make your idea pay off better than his idea.
2. Teach him what you want in the least-distracting, smallest-length-of-time, easiest way you possibly can. Then reward like crazy as soon as he does it. For teaching "stay," this means one-second stays in a completely silent boring room (bathrooms are great for this) and he gets a fantastic treat every time he does it.
3. Reward generously, often, and as close to immediately after the behavior as possible. If you haven't already, looking into clicker training would be a good idea.

While at work:
1. Put him in a crate.

It sounds like you would really benefit from a book on dog training. Dr. Sophia Yin's "Perfect Puppy in Seven Days" would be a great place to start -- it answers all of these questions in much more detail than I've given you and it gives you a really good foundation in dog training. It's written conversationally and it's a pleasant read.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,899 Posts
how much exercise is he getting? yorkies are energetic and intelligent dogs and that could partially explain his destructive behaviour. You need to exercise his brain and body, with physical exercise such as playtime and trick training, food puzzles and such. A long with the above suggestions about crate training.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,819 Posts
You've been given some terrific tips!

Do you clicker, or marker word, train Ollie? If you don't you might want to try it, it's a great way to teach a dog.

When you are training don't keep the treats where Ollie can see them, put them in your pocket, in a treat pouch, in a small container on the table, that way you won't have a dog that needs to see that you have a treat to obey the command.

When you first start training him he should get a treat every time he does the command till he is 100% reliable with it. So if clicker training it should be command, obey, click (marker word), treat, and that should be every time. Once he's 100% reliable you'll start slowly taking away the click and treat and replace it with praise, play, pets, etc. When fading out the click and treat you need to go slow, and make it random. So if you give a command 10x it might be click and treat 4x in a row, praise and pet 1x, then click and treat 5x. As you progress that might chance to praise and pet 1x, click and treat 2x, praise and pet 1x, click and treat 1x... ect. The idea is to keep the dog guessing, is this the time I'll get the treat, but to always reward him in some way.

This thread explains more about what I'm saying http://www.dogforum.com/training-behavior-stickies/thoughts-training-food-1219/
 
  • Like
Reactions: doggirlmadi568

·
Registered
Joined
·
811 Posts
Welcome to the forum. I can certainly relate as I had a Yorkie with a lot of the same issues. He was as smart as a whip and learned commands quickly but knew the minute the last treat was gone from my pocket and was off to do his own thing! LoL!! Anyway, I lost Wally last year and despite the massive amount of frustration the dog caused me, I would love to still have him with me. So take heart, do the best you can with the good advice everyone on the forum gives you, and love him like crazy!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,885 Posts
You came to the right place! Thankfully, pretty much all bad habits can be broken or significantly improved with correct training, even in adult dogs (and on the flip-side, a well-trained dog is very capable of developing bad habits-- if his behaviour is reinforced).

1) The potty-training… is perfectly workable but you will want to start over from scratch and supervise him as you would a puppy (crating him when you can't keep an eye on him) until he's really solid and is reliably peeing outside. With all the misinformation out there I think that a lot of potty-training goes to the wayside because it's punishment-based: Therefore, as Inkii said, they become stealth potty-ers. The key to successful potty training is:

a) Prevent them from going in the house at all costs. Every potty episode in the house reinforces old, undesired behaviour by the principle of practice.
b) Motivate him to go outside with rewards: This gives him a reason to 'save it up' for outdoors whether you're there to supervise him or not.

2) Obedience… it really is about making 'your way pay'. Dogs know a bad deal when they see one! They are not dumb animals… Well-trained dogs obey because they are anticipating a better reward that they get from doing their own thing. The way to a dog's brain is through their stomach. If you want to work on obedience in a really foolproof fashion, I would recommend purchasing a clicker, some low-budget treats. I use large-breed puppy kibbles because they are cheaper and fattier (read: TASTIER) than average adult dog fare. Many things will work as a treat, keep in mind that you only need a pea-sized amount to adequately reward the dog for a behaviour. Next, check out some of the Dr. Sophia Yin resources and the Kikopup videos on youtube: They are truly great tools for the home dog-trainer.

3) Kongs are great, don't get me wrong, but they are simply one tool in a world of 'puzzle-toys'. There are hundreds on the market: The Buster Ball, The Twist-N-Treat, the Dial-A-Treat, wobbly food dispensers. Pretty much all puzzle toys can be identified by one common trait: You can put grub inside them! Expand your horizons. Dogs do get bored of the same toy over and over again. Invest in a few, and try rotating them daily to keep things fresh for your dog.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
556 Posts
If he's causing all those problems I would crate him until he's under control and you can trust him again.Sometimes they act out too to something that's bothering them,a sudden change in their routine,health problems etc.
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Top