Potty training troubles... Behaviour

Discussion in 'Terrier Forum' started by Judy/Ron Squires, Aug 11, 2021.

  1. Judy/Ron Squires

    Judy/Ron Squires New Member

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    Potty training troubles...

    Ron and I adopted a little terrier mix from our local shelter on June 2 of this year. I've had experience with several different breeds in training but she's the first JRT mix I've encountered. She's a sweet loving little creature except when it comes to her potty training. Our vet estimates her age at about 8 - 10 months old. For some reason she gets upset when one of us leaves the house for a few minutes to go outside to get the mail or do something outside when she can't come along. She goes into a frenzy and will bark and whine and piddle on the floor... We let her out at frequent intervals so she has ample times to relieve herself but seems to forget about being clean in the house when one of us leaves. Most of the time we do take her with us when we have something to do in our fully fenced back yard and she will piddle immediately upon being let out but if she is put back inside right after her piddling so we can use the weed eater or something that we don't want her around she will immediately piddle on the floor in the house. We tried to crate her when we have to go outside without her and she will piddle in the crate too... I'm at a loss. We are working on training but her attention span is so short and she doesn't always work for treats. In fact, she doesn't always eat all of her food allotment when she's fed. It's been an enigma.. I sure could use some JRT advise here. We love her and she's a permanent part of our household now so we want her to be happy with us and we want to be happy with her...
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  3. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Member

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    Ah the joys of a JRT!

    It sounds like it is "excitement peeing". It usually goes away with age. Basically when she gets excited or stressed, she loses control and piddles. As she grows, her muscles will get stronger and she will handle excitement/stress better.

    How is she when you actually go away? My Tornado-dog will go nuts if I am separated from him by a door or gate, but he's fine if I actually leave. That's less about separation anxiety and more about wanting to be with you.

    For times like weeding, could you set up an exercise pen in the backyard and let her stay there while you work? If she does piddle, it's outside.

    For going out the front door to get mail, etc, do some build up. Walk just out the door and then return right away. If she doesn't go nuts, give her a treat or tons of affection. If she goes nuts, ignore her. After several successful tries, go just a bit further away from the door and return right away. Again treat/praise for good behavior, ignore the bad. Once you can walk to your mailbox without a fuss, start waiting a moment before returning. Build up the time spent before returning. If she reacts, go back to shorter/closer points until she behaves and then slowly increase it again.

    Another trick is to teach her commands to differentiate between leaving and stepping outside. I use "be good" for leaving and "just a minute" for mailbox trips. Never make a fuss over her when you go out. Be very casual about it. You can try giving her a treat when you leave - have her sit for it. Give it to her just as you leave the house and say "be good", etc. Or a favorite toy.

    She may always get excited when you leave her, but her bladder control will get better and the accidents will stop. Just remember to NEVER punish her for it. She's not doing it on purpose.
  4. Judy/Ron Squires

    Judy/Ron Squires New Member

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    Actually she does very well when we leave the house. We crate her with a treat and her favorite toy. She will whine and cry for a few minutes then settle down and sleep until she hears us coming back. We then greet her but not enthusiastically so she doesn't go into a frenzy and she is walked outside for a piddle. Her training is at a stand still as well. She doesn't respond to clicker loading or the use of the collar and leash for training. All she wants to do is chew the leash and she blows off the clicker loading sessions by walking away or fighting to get away from the leash. Will this change also with maturity or is she just trying to "train" me? I've titled three of my four shelties in obedience and taught basic obedience classes for over 10 years and haven't had this much difficulty finding a way to get my point across with any of my other dogs...
  5. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Member

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    JRTs are known for their tenacity. The usual "distract or redirect" doesn't work well because they remember how much fun that other thing was and will go back to it hours later.

    Their biggest reward is fun. They want it more than anything else and if you don't provide it, they will find it for themselves.

    And yes, they do train you.

    With the leash, she is most likely feeling frustrated because she can't do what she wants. Rather than using the collar and leash to direct her, use praise. You need to convince her that letting you lead will be more fun than if she leads. You might try a halti - by turning her nose first, she follows the leash rather than feeling a pull on her neck.

    What I have learned with Tornado-dog is that JRTs hate to be ignored. As I write this, he is pestering me because my attention is not on him. He rolls his Rs at me (that gutteral talk), he climbs between me and the tablet, he licks, he pokes - basically he annoys me until he gets what he wants - my attention.

    He does learn and he will listen most of the time, but sometimes that JRT brain just can't bother with rules when there is something they want.

    But their absolute love for life is hard to fight. It's contagious.
  6. Judy/Ron Squires

    Judy/Ron Squires New Member

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    Interesting.... I just tried redirecting her frustration with Ron going outside to feed the goats... Maggie did well with my attention for about two minutes then she went back to the slider and whined. I managed to call her back and she loved the continued attention until he came in the house. Win!! no piddle!! She loves to chase the goats and when it's feeding time they don't appreciate her interference with meal time. She will chase them away from the feeder and eat their food so we don't allow her out when they get their grain. Otherwise she is free to play in the goat pen as well as the rest of the back yard. We cannot restrict her from the pen as the goats have free roam of the fenced area (about a quarter acre)... They do not fear her and tend to play with her when she is out. They are disbudded so no horns for injury to anyone but they weigh about 60 lbs to her 18 lbs.....
  7. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Member

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    Great! Attention is the biggest reward in life for a JRT. :038:

    Tornado-dog is jealous of her goats. He only has his sister, Cat-dog, and The Twooney (cats) to chase.
  8. Matt Carter

    Matt Carter New Member

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    potty training for dog is very hard for everyone i am also facing this problem today i have download this Dog Training 101 FREE Ebook Now let see what i learn from this book for by pet.
  9. CaroleC

    CaroleC Member

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    There is no substitute for establishing a habit by taking your puppy at regular intervals to the place you want him to wee - and then staying there with him, come rain or shine, until he has obliged. When he does a wee, really let him know that you are pleased, - reward him with a treat, use a silly voice or dance a jig. As long as the puppy knows that he has pleased you, anything goes. As he grows, the intervals between the times that he needs to go will gradually extend.
    Inside the house, you should be watching your puppy for subtle signs that he is looking for a place to wee. If you see him sniffing in quiet corners or around furniture legs, pop him outside straight away. Also, when he wakes from a sleep, and after every playtime, meal or drink.
    Never shout at or punish a puppy for making mistakes. It is exhausting but dogs will soon learn a new habit provided that the behaviour is taught with kindness and their success is well rewarded.

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