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Hi all,

Sorry for the nondescriptive title, as I have a number of questions to ask and would be really thankful for some advice :) I'm the proud, first-time owner/mommy of a cocker spaniel female puppy, named Miko, who's around 2 months now.

1. Apartment potty training - I think Miko's natural tendency to not go potty in her sleeping and eating areas are thankfully very strong. She has no problems going potty about 10 meters away (inside the apartment, anywhere) though. She never pees or poos on anything (carpets, paper, etc.) and waits until she's standing on naked laminate flooring or cement outside (weirdly never grass), which is good. If shes in the car with us, she signals us to let her out and then goes potty.

Now the problem I have is that, I'm getting a new job with more hours and even though I'll have a dog walker and someone to look in on her, I can't expect her to hold it in more than 2 or 3 hours for now, so she'll need to be potty trained apartment style. I bought her a potty thingy where you can secure the piddle pads but she just won't pee on anything other than just the floor. I hoist her up and she'll just come down and try to pee a few steps away. When I put her back on it, she'll just be confused and try for the floor again. I've never seen her pee on anything so I didn't negatively reinforce her or anything. Is there anyting I can do about this? I'm pretty sure newspaper will have the same effect, and I would prefer the piddle pad secured since she has a tendency to play with them.

I've tried treats, but since she's young she'll forget all about peeing and just stare and try for my hands.

I know I'll be told that she's too young to be trained in anything, but I don't think thats true. She's learned a lot of things already through positive reinforcement.

2. Dental chew treats for puppies? I've read somewhere that Miko is too young for treats but her teeth are growing in fast and the chewing habits have started. All the toys we've tried are too hard for her to chew on, but I found these milk-flavored dental chew treats from pedigree that seemed nice and soft but not too soft either. She goes through 1 in a matter of 5 minutes and then I notice just less than half of what is already a pretty short stick is left (I didn't think they were this easy?) so I had to remove it from her mouth (despite strong opposition) or she might've choked. I thought these were supposed to last longer? And I also believed she was younger than the recommended age (but half her teeth are already there) for these treats so she should've had a harder time. What treats chew toys can I give her? Is she really too young? Right now she's pretty much trying to chew on everything but its not amounting to much damage yet.

Oh and she also growls pretty aggressively when she's fighting one of our slippers :eek:


These are the more urgent ones. I'll be adding more. Thanks a lott in advance.
 

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If you need to use the potty pads for now I'd try taking them out onto the cement where she is peeling and see if she'll pee on them from there. If she does reward highly and throw a party, make a massive deal about peeing on the pads. She won't pee on the pads just now cause she doesn't know that's where she's supposed to as it hasn't been reinforced enough.

Unless you aren't there to watch her I'd still be taking her outside to pee as that is the main objective. Are you crating her or do you have an x pen to put her in if she's unsupervised?

What are you cleaning up her accidents with?

Just keep taking her out every hour, as well as after eating, drinking and playing.

I wouldn't say she's too young for treats at all, but I'd suggest some higher quality ones for sure. Ones with real meat content, Pedigree foods have very low meat content and are full of unnecessary carbs and fillers that are no use to dogs.

Kongs are good for chewing, you can fill them with her food and she has to work to get them out. There are also Kong teething chews for pups.

Many pups are fed raw and have bones in there diet and I hear chicken necks are the most appropriately sized for their age.

Dogs often growl when playing, my Border Collie growls pretty intensely when playing tug with me and people would see that as aggression but he's just playing.
 

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My Aussie growls so hard when he's playing that's it's almost comical, and sometimes people at the dog park have flipped on me thinking he's being aggressive with their dog! It's honestly normal, I usually growl back when we're playing tug :)
 
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