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"I purchased the Sit/Stay/Fetch after I acquired a second puppy that was seven weeks old. My first puppy a male then 14 months old was a little bit aggressive with her. Now my puppies eat, sunbake and play together very happily. I would recommend it to anyone who cares about their animals."
-- Lyn Spain (Fortitude Valley, QLD, Australia)
We have a MALE 3 year old Corgi mix. Our son has a MALE 8 year old Chihuahua mix. We had our dog for 10 months when our son visited with his dog at Christmas 2005. It was a pee fest..........I hadn't realized the extent until after we took down the tree and other decorations. Obviously it’s too late to solve the problem. My dog has not been a good visitor to homes of other dogs without leaving his signature. He does have play dates with a couple of other male dogs but always outside. He plays well with other dogs, but again, always outside.
My son is coming for Thanksgiving and has to bring his dog. Other visits have been dog-less but they will be here in 3 days. Is there anything I can do to make this painless and pee-less??????? I want to make it work because the dogs play nicely and I don't want this to interfere with family visits. Do I need to keep them both outside for the duration?
I'm sorry for the frantic "help, help me now" but I just now was told the 2 dogs will be together again. I appreciate any advice you can offer. Your books have been incredibly helpful. Thanks so much,
Hi there Patsy,
Thank you for your email regarding your young male Corgi mix and your son's 8 year old Chihuahua and the toileting problems that seem to go on when the two come together! As you probably realize, this is typical male marking behavior and is usually a sign that one of the two dogs is insecure around the other and hence this dog feels the need to mark the territory around it to try and "stamp it's mark on the it's". Help is at hand, but it is impossible to expect an immediate result from either dog particularly since this behavior is probably well ingrained by now. The best immediate solution is to keep the two dogs outside or at least in an area with an easily cleanable floor. Have the dogs indoors if you are going to be present at all times and ready to reprimand one of the two should you see one of them go to cock their leg.
Because dogs are rather territorial by instinct (meaning they naturally want to guard the area they live in), they often let their owners and other animals know by eliminating on different areas of their territory. Unluckily for some owners, often this marking of territory occurs within their home and even, on their furniture. This particular problem can be hard to distinguish from a dog simply toileting accidentally in the house, or that hasn't been trained to toilet outside. The best way to tell if this is the cause is by observing your animal for the behavioral signs that are a part of territorial marking.
What To Look For
You will need to try and catch your dog in the act of urinating indoors. The distinct difference between a dog urine marking and simply 'accidentally' eliminating indoors include:
A dog urine marking will often urinate on objects you have recently added to your home, including belongings of a visiting friend or relative.
There will often be dominance behavior displayed by the dog, including occasional aggressive interactions with another dog in your house or by reacting poorly to your commands. In your case it is one of the two dogs urinating due to the presence of the other dog. It will be up to you and your family to ascertain which of the two dogs (or perhaps even both!) is doing the marking.
A dog may feel insecure about his 'position in the pack' and feel the need to find dominance. This is often achieved by expressing itself via urine marking .
The dog urinates in small amounts, and usually on vertical surfaces. A male dog will usually lift his leg and spray maybe 2-3 mls of urine on to an object.
If your dog has not been de-sexed there is a higher chance of this behavior occurring. If you have a house trained intact dog urinating in side now and then, it is more than likely it is urine marking .
How To Fix It
Neutering your pet generally stops urine marking altogether. If your Corgi has not yet been neutered, doing so will not doubt greatly help your problem. I definitely recommend you get your dog neutered as soon as possible if he has not already been. Doing so can dramatically reduce this problem, however if it has been going on for some time (as it seems to have been in your particular case) it may be a well ingrained behavior by this stage.
Resolve conflicts between animals in your home. This may mean that you reinforce one of the two dogs as alpha over the other, so that whenever the two interact there are no feelings of insecurity in either dog since they will both hopefully know and remember their dominance status relative to each other.
Clean soiled areas thoroughly. Don't use strong smelling cleaners as these may cause your pet to "over-mark" the spot. Be sure to use a pet odor neutralizer to help rid the spot of any smell.
Make previously soiled areas inaccessible or unattractive. Using an aversive substance such as Bitter Apple, vinegar or chili powder can be useful here.
If making soiled areas inaccessible or unattractive isn't possible, try to change the significance of those areas. Feed, treat and play with your pet in the areas he is inclined to mark as you have been beginning to do.
Keep objects likely to cause marking out of reach. Guests' belongings, new purchases and so forth, should be placed in a closet or cabinet.
It is possible that urine marking is not the problem here and that one of the dogs is just having a lapse in toilet training memory, however this is very unlikely due to the nature of the problem you have described.
Remember to only have the two dogs in the household together if you or someone else in the family is present and at the ready to reprimand them should they attempt to toilet indoors. If they do go to toilet indoors, it is important that the supervisor quickly and appropriately reprimands them during the act of urination. Doing so after the event will only worsen the situation, as will rubbing a dogs nose in it's urine or feces. In stead quickly give a guttural growl of "AAAAH!" rather than "NO!" combined with a clap of the hands, a squirt of water from a water pistol or by shaking a tin can filled with pebbles in the offending dog's direction. Be sure to clean any accidents as described above.
Other options for your household when these two dogs come together is to utilize the Veterinary product DAP or Dog Appeasing Pheromone, which can be very useful in situations like these. This simply plugs into a power outlet and lets out small amounts of pheromone that calms dogs nerves, relieves anxiety and lowers the chance of anxiety related marking. Humans cannot smell the chemical so it is completely un-noticeable. Please consult with your local Veterinarian for more information on this particular product.
The best solution to this program is to get both dogs neutered if they haven't already been, as this has been shown to be the most successful method in preventing or eliminating urine marking. If this has already been done, you will need to rely on a change in the manner in which you keep the two dogs together in situations when they are both within the same household as well as reprimanding upon catching the offending dog in the act of urinating inappropriately.
Best of luck with this situation. With a little bit of close supervision and appropriate reprimanding you will be able to overcome this problem relatively quickly. Not within three days though I'm sorry! In the immediate future use the other techniques I have described above to avoid wet carpet! Please let us know how you get on.
Daniel Stevens and the Secrets to Dog Training Team
I've been a professional dog trainer for well over 20 years, and in that time I've helped thousands of dog owners just like you to get the friendly, well behaved, slipper fetching, best pal they always wanted.
But it didn't start out that way. I've always loved dogs, some things never change. But when I first started my professional dog training career I relied on the so-called 'best practices' when it came to dog behavior training. It was only when I heard people tell me over and over again that they just weren't seeing results that I started to question the old accepted wisdom. So I started a journey, a quest to search out the best, most effective, techniques, tips, and tricks that really work.
And that's how I came up with Secrets to Dog Training. Year after year I found new techniques that achieved the results I wanted. Eventually I had a whole book worth of great resources: Secrets to Dog training...
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