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Subject: How do I stop my dog from sneaking upstairs in the middle of the night to pee? rss

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Antonio Chavez
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So, we used to live in a tiny apartment in a two-story building. We were happy. My dog, a 6 year-old mongrel (but really tiny and cute) already had mastered the art of not peeing inside. He'd ask to be left out early in the morning or during the day. All was happiness.

Then an opportunity presented itself; long story short, we bought the apartment upstairs from us. Then we built a stairwell and turned both apartments into a really kickass house (if I do say so myself). And it all stopped being happiness.

The dog didn't like going upstairs, like he didn't quite understand what had happened. And then he went upstairs one day, sniffed around, peed three times and went back down. I found the puddles later.

I took him upstairs, rubbed his nose in it, shouted "No" at him, and took it outside for a while.

Ever since, he kept doing it. Every time I rub his nose and shout "No", then I hit him with a rolled up newspaper, then I spanked him lightly. Nothing seems to work. The thing is, he knows it's wrong. He sneaks out in the middle of the night to do it. He acts guilty when I see him in the morning and, yes, puddles.

The worst is, he doesn't just pee on the floor. He does it against the wooden furniture, and once nearly on the games' rack. We really cannot afford all new furniture, and certainly not becuase the darn dog wants to use our second floor as his personal boudoir (so to speak). This is getting close to "the dog has to go" territory; nobody wants it, but the situation is untenable.

Anybody has any ideas as to how to make the pooch (who is reasonably intelligent) understand that the second floor is verbotten?

I appreciateany help you can provide.
 
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Billy McBoatface
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I would advise putting a door on the staircase so he can't go up it. If you can't do that, go to a professional trainer for help - I can't think of anything to try that you haven't already. As you point out, the dog knows it's wrong, but is doing it anyway, so there's something deeper going on.

When I was a kid my parents taught our dog not to go to the bathroom in our yard, because we wanted her to go in the woods behind our house. Pretty quickly she caught on, no more poop in the yard. Success! Then we found out that she was pooping in other people's yards.

Edit: It just occurred to me: Did the former tenant upstairs have a dog? Maybe their dog peed inside and your dog is smelling the pee of the former dog. Dogs always like to pee where other dogs have been. That would explain why you have the problem, but doesn't explain how to solve it, so probably not helpful I guess.
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Mark O'Reilly
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Is there room to put a gig kennel outside?. If so have a length of chain from the kennel to the dog collar.

Or - how about toddler stair gate?
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Chapel
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Great Googly Moogly it's
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First of all, please stop hitting your dog. Rubbing his nose in it and hitting him doesn't teach him anything. All he knows is that every time you drag him upstairs you're angry and rubbing his nose in piss and hitting him but he doesn't understand why, it only serves to make him scared and confused.

It sounds to me that he is marking his territory if he's peeing on furniture and doesn't normally pee on things. Another thing to consider is that he may have a bladder infection or some other health problem and just needs to see a vet.

If you've ruled out health problems and he doesn't do it downstairs, I would just have a baby gate or even a built in swing gate put in so he can't go upstairs.

We have baby gates separating our kitchen from our living room because our two dogs will fight if we aren't home. Separating them while we're away prevents the dogs from hurting each other when no one is around. It was also extremely helpful while we potty trained them.


http://www.americanhumane.org/animals/adoption-pet-care/dog-...

This sort of thing doesn't look bad and might keep the peace in your house.


We have one of these:
https://www.amazon.com/Cardinal-Pet-Gates-Duragate-White/dp/...

It's sturdy metal and is screwed into the wall. We've been using it for at least 8 years and it's still in perfect condition.

Here is a link from the Humane Society for help on training not to mark inside the house.
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maf man
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so for the first part of the dogs life it knew only your apartment as the no pee zone and outside that was the pee zone. The dog understands your angry but is not correlating it peeing up there to you mad, at lest not the way you hope. Your negative reinforcement it too late for the dog to correlate with their specific actions.
What I suggest is blocking off the upstairs and only let the dog up there when you can watch it. Anytime he looks like hes gonna pee you stop him. The best way is to kinda push the dog so they don't get comfortable in their pee stance so they never actually pee.

I was in the same situation with my dog and the downstairs when she was a pup first getting trained. They figure its out of the way enough, also the whole marking thing doesn't help.
BTW, how do you have the dog trained now to know when they have to go outside?
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Chris Robbins
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First a disclaimer, we have five dogs and we don't actually do this.

A lot of people seem to manage training their dogs to sleep in a "crate" both night and day. But this does require a lot of dedication to a schedule and going outside when needed.

Our secret? A fenced back yard when someone is here to let them out and back in, pee pads inside, and naturally brown carpet.
 
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Antonio Chavez
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I did think about the toddler door and is not out of the question. But my bedroom is downstairs and the kids are upstairs and sometimes (pretty much every night) the little one (7 years old) kinda sleepwalks into my bedroom, and I'm leery to put any obstacles in the way.

There was no dog upstair at least for the last six years, so it's not that.

Believe me, I take no pleasure in screaming or hitting a dog. But I can't let it go on (my kids sleep upstairs, and sometimes the smell is unbearable). I keep shouting at him in hopes he'll understand, because I truly don't know what else to do and I refuse to let him think it's acceptable.

The thing is, he's a really good dog; I'm baffled as to why this is the one thing he refuses to understand (rubbing his nose and shouting is how he learned not to pee downstairs, and that took no more that two days).
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Antonio Chavez
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I forgot to add; I put pee pads upstairs. He won't use them. I'm at the end of my tether here.
 
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Johnny O aka Johnny Soul
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First, I would google dog training instead of asking here. As others have said, the dog is not connecting his act with your punishment. So check out his health and block access to the upstairs and google dog training.
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Bryan Thunkd
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Mr.Baggins wrote:
There was no dog upstair at least for the last six years, so it's not that.
But there were people. People who smell different than you. Your dog doesn't realize that the upstairs is his territory now. He's trying to mark his territory.
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Great Googly Moogly it's
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Mr.Baggins wrote:
I did think about the toddler door and is not out of the question. But my bedroom is downstairs and the kids are upstairs and sometimes (pretty much every night) the little one (7 years old) kinda sleepwalks into my bedroom, and I'm leery to put any obstacles in the way.



So let me get this straight, your kid sleepwalks down a flight of stairs every night and you don't want to block him with a built in safety gate that he can't fall over and would also prevent a dog from peeing upstairs?



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You also need to clean the bejesus anywhere the dog peed. They can smell urine down to the parts per million.

I'm a fan of Natures Miracle (most pet shops carry it. Saturate the area and then mop it up.

Also DO NOT use ammonia to clean the messes. Ammonia is a byproduct up urate which is a big component of pee.
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Paul DeStefano
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My dog is 6.

Same problem.
 
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Jon M
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If you don't want to block the stairs then what about locking the dog in the kitchen (or somewhere similar). My dog sleeps in the kitchen because otherwise he would just come and jump on the bed in the middle of the night.

There is no way I could put up with a seven year old waking me up every night either!
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stephen
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stop hitting your dog, it upsets him, it upsets you and it won't do any good. All the dog knows is that for some reason the people who are normally kind to him suddenly go bat shit crazy and beat him up, he doesn't associate peeing upstairs with the beating he gets.

Look at this from his side, in the day he can ask to be let out and go for a pee and he knows peeing downstairs is not allowed. In the night there is no one around to let him out, so he goes to a place he thinks it's okay to pee.

Maybe the solution is to set up a place where he can pee at night, a sort of litter tray like you might have for cats, train him to pee on that and that alone and he may use it during the night.

I would suggest the following, build the place you want him to pee and put it outside. When he asks to go out, take him out to the place you have made and encourage him to do his business, when he starts peeing give a command word that he will come to associate with peeing and will allow you get him to do his business on command. When he is happy peeing in his new pee zone, you can think of moving it indoors for night use.
 
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emmersonpoole wrote:
stop hitting your dog, it upsets him, it upsets you and it won't do any good. All the dog knows is that for some reason the people who are normally kind to him suddenly go bat shit crazy and beat him up, he doesn't associate peeing upstairs with the beating he gets.

Rubbing a dog's nose in their pee, then punishment (which can be saying "no", as Antonio tried at first, or light spanking), is a standard and usually successful way to train dogs not to go to the bathroom somewhere. Dogs are smarter than you're giving them credit for. They make the connection.
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M C
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We have three dogs that are getting older and are left home alone for hours on end at times. We bought potty pads for them so they know where to go if they can't do it outside. We have a very nice new rug next two the area their potty pad is in, for two months now they'll play on the rug or sleep there, then they use the potty pad for other things. Rubbing your dogs nose in it does nothing other than confuse and scare the heck out of your dog. Even if its been years, the dog could be smelling something in that carpet. Also, dogs if they have to pee will generally do so in something that is going to absorb it. Potty pads are cheap, they absorb the pee, are scented for dogs to go to them. It is a lot cheaper than new carpets or dealing with urinary infections.
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Great Googly Moogly it's
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Antonio, I apologize for my snarky second comment. I hope you are able to find a solution that works for your family.
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Melissa
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We used to have six dogs, so I've been there. It sucks smelling dog pee in the house. If you don't want to gate things off, there's a few other things you can try.

Crate train. In the crate when you're not around to supervise the dog. Crate training is not mean (assuming you're not leaving them crated over 8.5 hours a day, dogs will sleep most/all of the day anyways).

Put the dog on a leash tied to your belt. See him getting ready? Catch him in the act, take him outside, and praise the hell out of him when he goes. Treats also help.

Also clean the area he's peed with something like Nature's Miracle. Pee pads do nothing but teach a dog to pee on soft/papery surfaces in my experience.

Don't ever rub their nose in their urine/feces, it accomplishes nothing, and urine is basically ammonia, which is painful enough for a human to smell, never mind an animal whose sense of smell is approximately 3000x stronger.
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stephen
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wmshub wrote:
emmersonpoole wrote:
stop hitting your dog, it upsets him, it upsets you and it won't do any good. All the dog knows is that for some reason the people who are normally kind to him suddenly go bat shit crazy and beat him up, he doesn't associate peeing upstairs with the beating he gets.

Rubbing a dog's nose in their pee, then punishment (which can be saying "no", as Antonio tried at first, or light spanking), is a standard and usually successful way to train dogs not to go to the bathroom somewhere. Dogs are smarter than you're giving them credit for. They make the connection.


As witnessed by the OP it doesn't work very well, it's an old wives tale of dog training, repeated so often as to be taken as fact. The best way of training is positive reinforcement of good behaviour. Just as we don't beat kids or wives these days, we don't need to beat dogs, there are better stress free ways to achieve the results.
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galad2003 wrote:
sunkencheerio wrote:
Mr.Baggins wrote:
I did think about the toddler door and is not out of the question. But my bedroom is downstairs and the kids are upstairs and sometimes (pretty much every night) the little one (7 years old) kinda sleepwalks into my bedroom, and I'm leery to put any obstacles in the way.



So let me get this straight, your kid sleepwalks down a flight of stairs every night and you don't want to block him with a built in safety gate that he can't fall over and would also prevent a dog from peeing upstairs?





A seven year old is way too old for a baby gate to work and certainly old enough to go up and down stairs. They might try to climb over the gate and make it worse.


huh? No way a 7 year old is going to able to step over a baby gate. I have one, am 6' tall and can barely straddle it. Hell, even one of my cats can't jump over it.

Here's one similar to what I use. https://www.amazon.com/Regalo-Stairs-Expandable-Metal-Mounti...
 
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emmersonpoole wrote:
Just as we don't beat kids or wives these days...


Well, maybe YOU don't...


OK, yes, just kidding. But on a serious note, I do think there's a huge gulf between a light swat with a rolled up newspaper or something similar, and beating an animal.
 
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Great Googly Moogly it's
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jeffreyac wrote:
emmersonpoole wrote:
Just as we don't beat kids or wives these days...


Well, maybe YOU don't...


OK, yes, just kidding. But on a serious note, I do think there's a huge gulf between a light swat with a rolled up newspaper or something similar, and beating an animal.


Back in the 80s, my sister's dog was trained by lightly swatting him with a rolled up newspaper. Seemed pretty innocent at the time until one day he tried to bite a passerby who happened to be carrying a newspaper. He had never tried to bite anyone before and was usually a very friendly dog even to strangers, but the sight of that newspaper set him off towards this guy. I was still a kid at the time, but it was that event that made me question the way my parents taught us to train dogs. Years later when I was out of my mom's house, I adopted my own dog. I did some extensive research on positive reinforcement dog training and can say that I've successfully raised two dogs without ever spanking them or rubbing their noses in anything. Potty training came very quickly using a watchful eye, crate training, treats and praise for going in the right place. When accidents happened, I silently cleaned them up with Nature's Miracle and reflected how that accident could have been prevented. Did I miss a signal? Did I wait too long in between outings? Now I can get both dogs to pee and poop on command (if they have to go) and there's only been one accident in the house since potty training and that was because I didn't let her out when she asked (I was busy and thought she was faking it.) She didn't get yelled at or spanked when it happened, instead I just cleaned the area well while thinking to myself how I screwed up by not listening to her in the first place.

When I was 13, my mom got us a puppy and she literally forced me to use her techniques of spanking and nose rubbing. I hated it and nearly cried every time I had to do it. But if I didn't do it, I'd get in trouble, she would threaten to get rid of the dog and she'd do the punishment herself, harder than I would. And you know what? That dog was never really trained 100%, she had accidents at least once a week and when she did, she would hide under the bed, afraid of us when we got home. It made me sick to see her scared. So yeah, I get it. For generations, people have trained their kids to raise dogs by spanking them and rubbing their noses in poop. It's probably what your parents did, it's what your grandparents did, and maybe you've raised some of your own dogs that way but the truth is there are other ways of getting the same results that don't involve punishment. And if you can achieve the same training results with love and patience instead of anger, violence, and frustration, why wouldn't you?? It's a simple matter of being open minded and researching and retraining yourself. I did it, and wouldn't dream of ever going back to those old ways I was taught when I was a kid.

Admittedly, I got a little hostile with OP when he said he was going to continue to do it because, deep down, part of me is still that sad kid who had to look into her best buddy's scared eyes and damage the trust she had for me because it's the only way my mom knew how to train a dog. That snarky comment was a defense mechanism and I'm sorry, OP. It was uncalled for and not helpful for anyone.

Please check out this link that specifically targets the problem of scent marking inside the house, which is what it sounds like your dog is doing.
http://thebark.com/content/talking-training-scent-marking-ho...

Ugh this thread is bringing up so many repressed memories! Yuck. Think I'm done here, best of luck to all of you with puppy potty problems!
 
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