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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have spoken before about my problems housetraining my chihuahua. He is now 7 months old and things are not much better. He has gone up to 3 weeks without an accident but every time that a) my schedule changes slightly, b) he has an episode of diarrhea or c) I stop giving him treats for going outside, he stops trying to hold it at all. We have now been through several cycles of housetrained/not housetrained.

I work from home and obviously I cannot be watching him the whole time. So, someone suggested crating him while I'm working. But to me, the fact that he has gone weeks without pottying in the house proves that he's capable of it. He just doesn't think that going outside is worth it unless he gets a consistent reward for it. My mom has had about 10 puppies in her life and she says she's never seen anything like this dog. I live in a loft (one room) so it's not like he is ever that far out of my sight either.

I'm not convinced that crating him would do anything except make him hyper later. Has anyone had any success crating in THIS kind of situation?
 

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How long do you wait before phasing out the treats? And have you ruled out a possible health problem with your vet? You mention diarrhea?

I read from a couple other threads on here that a puppy might not have complete bladder control until 6 months, which of course can vary dog to dog, I assume.

Can you tether the dog to you while you're working? A 7 month puppy might still be too young to leave them wandering around by themselves without supervision. If you're not around to watch him, crate him. Don't set him up to make mistakes. Don't worry about the crate making him hyper, just take him out for a long walk and play after he potties outside. :)

Crates are very important when it comes to house training, because dogs naturally don't want to soil their little crate den. So by crating him, you're almost full proofing he won't make a mistake until you get home to take him outside in the proper place.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
He is now in his X-pen right beside me while I'm working. So far so good. I'm disappointed though since I didn't get a dog to keep it in a box. If I didn't work from home, I wouldn't have gotten a dog at all.
 

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He is now in his X-pen right beside me while I'm working. So far so good. I'm disappointed though since I didn't get a dog to keep it in a box. If I didn't work from home, I wouldn't have gotten a dog at all.
Small dog safe some of the hardest to train. Why would you give up giving treats when he goes out side. It is such a simple thing to do to reinforce him.
Go get some yummy treats and give them every time he goes out side. I would be tempted to add a clicker to the training. As soon a he finishes going out side give him a click and a treat. The click tells him he did something right the treat reinforces the action.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QvPiFcG7ROI
 

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Crate training is one of the most efficient ways to housetrain a dog. Yes, you have to keep your dog in a small area, but if you stay on top of it and work it through, it won't be forever. So, yes, your dog will be "in a box," but not always, and isn't a year of that better than a lifetime of potty issues? Once he's fully trained, he can free range through the house. You just weren't quite ready for that step, and took it too fast.

If what you were doing was working, go back to the last situation that worked. If a dog is doing well and then you change something and they screw up, go back to the last situation that was working and give them more time. It just means your dog wasn't quite ready to move forward yet and needed a bit more time.

If your schedule changes frequently, you will have to be diligent in keeping the training at a level he's comfortable at. And, honestly, crate training will probably be the best way to do that.

Here's an excellent summary on the issue from Dr. Ian Dunbar.

Errorless Housetraining | Dog Star Daily

And a quote from that summary: "Once your puppy has learned to eliminate only in appropriate areas and to chew only appropriate objects, she may be given free run of the house and garden for the rest of her life. You will probably find however, that after just a few days your puppy learns to love her crate and will voluntarily rest inside. Your puppy's very own den is a quiet, comfortable, and special doggy place."
 

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Can't say I subscribe to locking a dog in a crate...

What kind of treats are you feeding? something out of a bag or natural? Check the ingredients, maybe there's something you're feeding that's causing diarrhea and other issues. Most of these store bought treats are garbage.
 
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