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House Training Help Requested

I am desperate to find some help on housetraining my 4 month old bulldog puppy, Molly.  We also have a 1 year old bulldog male named Bailey.

Molly is having a really hard time with crate training.  If I sleep with her and Bailey in the living room and she sleeps outside the crate, she's fine and can go for 6 hours without needing to go out.  When I put her in her crate and sleep upstairs, waking up to take her out at 12am, 3am, and 6am, she still has accidents in her crate.  The crate is divided off so that she only has a small area to sleep in.  I've tried using a dog bed in the crate, a small pad, and no bed at all and she still has accidents.  We also feed her in her crate, but that doesn't seem to make any difference.  I've been trying to crate train her since we got her at 10 weeks.  Bailey took really well to crate training and never has accidents.

I brought her to the vet, and she doesn't have any health problems.  She does eat her poop if she's in the house and has an accident, and we don't catch it fast enough.  We're using food supplements to make that behavior less appealing.

I think what may be happening is that she gets upset because she feels isolated from the rest of her "pack".  Her crate is in the living room and Bailey sleeps nearby, but she seems to really want to be with him or one of us.  She's anxious in new environments, although at home she is completely confident.  I'm afraid she's become desensitized to going to the bathroom in the house and in her crate.  Even though my husband is home with them during the day, we relied on wee-wee pads at times during the day in the beginning, and now she seems confused about where she's supposed to go to the bathroom. 

I wonder if we should eliminate the crate training altogether to remove the anxiety, and instead let her sleep in the living room with Bailey and take her out a few times during the night.

If you have any thoughts on this, or advice, I would love to hear it.  My husband is loosing his patience but I'm determined to find a solution.  Thank you!

Kathy Chester Newman and Jessa's picture

A 4 month old puppy can only...

hold it for 4 hours.  The rule of thumb is 1 hour for every month old.  It's like asking a human baby to only go every 6 hours, it just doesn't work.  What we used to do is pick up the water dish at 7 pm and then take the pup out several times before bed.  She will eventually get tired of going in the crate when she's able to control herself better.  I can remember taking Chester outside every hour when we first got him and waiting for him to go.  It takes a lot of patience but she will catch on eventually.  Some just take a little longer.

Vern-Rory-Teresa's picture

Question - why can't you put

Question - why can't you put her crate in your bedroom? That's what I've always done w/new puppies. They can hear you sleeping and feel safe and can wake you when they want to go out.

Whatever you do though, you need to be consistent....starting now and that will definitely help her.

Also, remember - anxiety is usually transfered from the owner to the pet - she's picking up on the tension/emotional feelings in the household. She's just a baby and needs your response to appropriate to her age.

Good luck and congrats with your new baby!

Bully's are tough

Took us a year and a hlaf to train our girl. She is just stubborn. We figured out a few things that may help you. Where did you get your dog? Going in the crate might have something to do with that. Let your pup sleep in the room. Also, a retractable leash allowed her to roam enough to do lots of sniffing. So when you walk your dog give it time to sniff everywhere and go. Always use lots of praise and lots of treats. Keep taking her out to go as well. Every few hours as someone else suggested and ditch the wee wee pads too confusing. I found eliminating the crate helped a lot.