Most commonly used phrase in our house: “do you have to go potty?”

by statia on November 13, 2005

One of the things that no one ever told me before we bought Miss M. home was that Chihuahuas are hard to housebreak and most of them never get housebroken 100%. I probably could have researched this, but I’m betting that the books don’t tell you these sorts of things. The thought of not having a dog that’s 99.9% housebroken is pretty depressing. She’s just about five months and I’d say she’s about 90% housebroken, which isn’t too bad. She has her days where we go accident free and she hits the wee wee pad right on the mark. Then there are the more frustrating days where she’ll go on the carpet multiple times in a day, in random spots, for no reason other than she’s either lazy or pissed off that we’re not paying 100% of our attention to her.

My issue: is getting her to let us know when she needs to go out. For Miss M, this just simply won’t do. “Tell you? Oh heavens no, I’m just MUCH too busy for that. You should know when I need to go out.” She’s definitely a prima donna, but I’m trying to be persistent. She WILL tell us somehow. Even if it kills me.

First I tried hanging a little cat ball with a bell to the door.

She was afraid of it. Until I took it off the string and then she loved it.

Then I tried a small stuffed baby toy with a bell like thing on it.

She barely even acknowledged it.

So now I’m onto my next thing. I bought a service bell and have been working with her to try to get her to ring the bell to get treats. Eventually, when she rings the bell, I’ll start taking her outside. It worked for Pavolov. She somewhat gets it, but I just happen to have two of the most ADD dogs ever when it comes to treats. Eye on the prize and everything else out the window. I’m hoping this is something she learns relatively quickly, rather than when she’s 12. Because I’m running out of ideas with her. G-man was just so easy. With both of my labs, they just woke up one morning and it was like they “got it”. After that, they would sit by the door and whine, or bark.

I’m wondering who’ll break first in this little experiment.

P.S. My dog tote comes tomorrow. Which will mark the official first day that I become one of THOSE people.

{ 5 comments }

Pete November 13, 2005 at 6:37 pm

Good to know when I should start blocking you. :P

Lisa November 13, 2005 at 7:09 pm

I don’t recall if my former co-worker’s dog has potty problems. They do keep the dogs in the sunroom when they’re at work though so who knows.

Donna November 13, 2005 at 7:39 pm

I’ve only had big dogs, maybe there’s a difference? Once they figured out the dog door they were both fine. Good luck with that! Oh, and sometimes I wish I had a dog small enough to carry around in a lovely tote, I hate leaving my boys in the car when I go into a store.

Kathy November 14, 2005 at 5:56 am

I had this problem with Isabelle… though I never came up with a clever trick to teach her to let us know. Instead she came up with her own. She sits in front of you and growls. That means.. “I gotta pee now bitch.”

Kevin Donahue November 14, 2005 at 11:41 am

First the Vulva and now the doggie bag?! That CA sun is baking your brain, sister.

What if you taught the dog to use a litter box? Or you could just go with a cement floor and hose it down.

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