Marking in house

Posted by clivedene
Jan 27, 2010
I have a 6 year old Golden Retriever and a 4 year old cocker spaniel (both males). The cocker spaniel continually marks in the house - including beds - I have never had trouble with the retriever. The cocker will cry to be let out to go to the toilet and I have only ever caught him marking once. He seems to do it either at night or when I am out. I am at my wits end. Any suggestions.
Posted by kjd
Jan 27, 2010
Hi, clivedene,

Are your males neutered? Marking is usually done by intact males.

Please remember that you must get all the odor out or a dog will continue to pee in that area. You cannot depend upon your own nose because the dog's is far superior.

If the marking is done at night or when you are gone, you might try crating him during those times.

Posted by crazycrayonmom
Jan 28, 2010
My suggestion would be to limit your dog's movements when you are not there or are sleeping. Have you considered crate training him? The problem is if you can't catch him at it you can't correct the behavior. So the first thing you can do is eliminate all traces of his marking. As kjd said, your nose won't detect all the spots, neither will your eyes. To help you find all the spots your dog has marked, there is a black light kit they sell at Petco. Then you can neutralize all those areas. That may help too.

I wish I could be more help but I don't have any experience with a dog marking. None of mine have done it. (I spay or neuter my furkids.)
Posted by MaxHollyNoah
Jan 29, 2010
Hi clivedene,

Are you sure your cocker is marking, or maybe just making accidents?
How much is he peeing each time? Is he trying to mark rather high on furniture or walls, or just on the floor or on the beds?

If it IS in fact marking, I think neutering will help as the other people said.
You might also want to check if he has Urinary Tract Infection.

Because he knows how to tell you he needs to go out when you are around, I assume he is potty trained. How often does he need to go when you are at home?

How is your cocker getting along with your GR? Are they competitive with each other? When you take them for walk, does your cocker pee over every time your GR pees?

I am sorry for asking so many questions but I kind of doubt your cocker is actually marking in your house, unless:

- he is very competitive or jealous with your GR
- he is rather dominant and pees over GR's pee
- he is a marker on his walks and tries to mark as high spot as possible
- he also marks when you are home as well

Anyway, I am very curious about the relationship between your cocker and your GR, because it might be the key if he is really marking inside the house since there is no other dogs that he needs to mark his territory against.:confused:
Posted by dmboozeryahoocom
Sep 14, 2010
I have a 4 yo male black lab who does the exact same thing, except it has only been really recently (to my knowledge), and only to my couch.

Prince definately is a marker when he is out of the house, but he is my only pet, so why would he need to mark in the house? It's baffling to me. Last night I noticed he marked the couch cushion, and again this morning. He is thoroughly potty trained, and has been for years. I don't think crating is a good option for him, though, because he has access for the house for years and I think it would upset him to go back to a crate now.

But I sincerely don't know what to do. I will try the odor nuetralizer and a black light kit, but what's the cause? What is he thinking?
Posted by kjd
Sep 14, 2010

Have you taken Prince to his vet? Anytime an animal (or person, for that matter) starts to act out of character, and you see no reason for it, it is a good idea to check for a medical reason.

Posted by KOPCaroline
Sep 16, 2010
Hey there,

Eliminating or marking in the house can be a sign of anxiety. How is your spaniel otherwise? Does he show any signs of social timidness, or maybe seperation anxiety, since the marking only happens when you are gone? Is he otherwise destructive when alone?

Removing the smell, as has been emphasized by others, is very important. If he can tell he's marked in a spot before, he'll more likely do it again.

Neutering really does decrease this behaviour, its a testosterone driven action, and removing the hormonal influence usually solves these problems.

Just to be sure, he's never poo'd indoors right? And the spots are not large puddles you find later? These would be indicative of a falling out with his house training, and training him up again would be necessary.

If you don't want to neuter, I can only be an echo here and recommend crate training while you're away. Dogs do really well with it, just try and make it easy as possible - start out with short trips away and having him overnight in it.
Posted by KOPCaroline
Sep 17, 2010
To dmboozer,

I would recommend a vet visit for your dog. 4 years old, sudden onset is unlikely a marking behaviour. It could just be a UTI or kidney stones, or some sort of muscle incompetance, but a vet who can look at the dog in person can give you a better idea. If you see signs of straining or pain during urination, or if the urine is an off colour (red, brown), its definitely time for a vet visit asap!

Let us know if you can get there, and what they say!