My brother who lived in California passed away and now I have his two 4 year old Westies living at my home in Boston. I know it is a huge adjustment for them especially, because I have a 2 year old Shepherd/Great Pyrenees mix, but we leave them down in our family room during the day and they continually urinate, etc. on the rug. Many times it is just minutes after we bring them in from going outside.
In general they are adjusting well, but I am not sure how to stop them from going in the house when we are away from them for extended periods of time or immediately when they come in from outside. Any help you can give me is appreciated.
By Maria from Boston
Sorry for the loss of your brother. You may be right and it could just be an adjustment for them.
Other things to keep in mind would be are all the critters, yours and his spayed and neutered? If not someone may be marking the territory or trying to establish his/her presence to the others in competition with another dog or to establish dominance. This would more than likely disappear when/if all the dogs are fixed.
Also, small dogs have small bladders. You have large dogs and are used to their routine and schedule and they can indeed go for hours without relief.
Smaller dogs on the other hand can't hold it quite as long. This may be further complicated them drinking more than usual if they are under stress. Are you crating them when you are gone or sleeping?
If not - you may want to consider it. It not only provides them with a sense of security being in the crate but they will try harder to to hold themselves until you let them out. If they continue to mess the crate then perhaps the clue is to you that the length of time is too long for them.
The bit about them peeing as soon as they come in from being outside - do they pee outside as well and then pee again inside? Or are they trying to tell you that they need more time outside?
I have several dogs and even as puppies they never peed in the house. It might be because I have a doggy door. When a new puppy comes in it sees the bigger dogs go out the dog door and it just seems to follow and does it's job outside. Are you in the climate where you can get a doggy door? It would also require a fenced yard or at least a fenced area for the dogs.
I'm sure those Westies are grieving and nervous, so that might account for them peeing inside at this time. Also, are they afraid of your big dog? Dogs pee from fright. A shepherd/pyrenees has to be a huge dog compared to a westie. Shepherds are usually very good with little dogs, but I don't know about mixed shepherds. Good luck!
I teach my dogs the command "Go pee pee". That way, when we go outside and they don't know exactly why we are there, I can say "Go pee pee", using the same tone every time, and they know what they are supposed to do. After a while, you can usually just tell them to "Go pee pee" and send them outside by themselves. It's also helpful so you can ask them "Do you need to go pee pee?" If they get excited, then yes, of course, by all means let's go outside and go pee pee. If they don't get excited, then it can usually wait.
The crating thing is also very helpful.
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