How to house break a puppy? Crate training not working.

We recently adopted (about 3-4 weeks ago)a 6 month old Chinese Shar-pei mix, Tucker, from our local Humane Society. He was a rescue from Puerto Rico and had only been at the shelter for a few days before we picked him up. He's 20lbs and a bit timid, but has a great disposition, minus some nipping. The problem is he refuses to use the bathroom outside. The vet suggested crate training since we are out of the house from 6:30-3pm on weekdays, but it's just not working.

He has to be bathed everyday because he poops and pees in his crate. I know that usually happens when the crate is too big for the dog, but all he has room for is to lay flat and turn around. He doesn't hate the crate, even plays in it. We take him out before we leave, when we get home, and after meals. We bring treats, we tried keywords, even pads. He uses the puppy pads and goes in his cage, but that seems to be the only places he'll go.

What do we do? How can we train him better? Nothing seems to be getting through!

Asked by Member 1145487 on Dec 16th 2012 Tagged cratetraining, housebreaking, puppy, sharpei, bathroom, walking, training, puppypads in Methods of Training
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Maggie Mae

It sounds to me like he was in a puppy mill before he found your way to your house via shelter. Puppy mill dogs learn the behavior to relieve in the crate and lay in it. That's all they can do. I can't answer you any better than this. 1. Use the small crate for when you are gone no longer than 4 hours. 2. If you are going to be longer than 4 hours find a place in your home that is a somewhat larger confinement (usually a tiled area) In this way you are teaching him how good it feels to be clean and stay clean. S/he will be able to eliminate and not lay in it. 3. Make sure when he is on free roam of the house that you have STRICT supervision. Put him/her on a feeding schedule. Same time day in day out. 4. Other than that, follow through with the positives. Frequent trips to the bathroom area
Rewards for eliminating in the right place
Interrupting mistakes. You'll see improvement in no time, then you can start to confine to solely the small crate for the working hours.

Maggie Mae answered on 12/16/12. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 2 Report this answer


How often do you feed/ water him? If he has free access to food and water all day then thats the first thing you should stop doing until he's potty trained and regularly going outside.
When you have a dog on a consistent feeding and drinking schedule you will notice that his pooping/peeing patterns start to be consistent as well. You never really know when a dog will have to use the bathroom if you let them have access to food/water all day. Now water is something that they should be getting enough of so use your best judgement when giving him some (after play time, during meals, if he's panting, etc) but for the sake of potty training- only give him water when you know he NEEDS it- and then play close attention to his bathroom patterns. A dog can't empty his bladder if its empty- so make sure its EMPTY before you leave. 9 hours is a pretty long time to keep a 6 month pup without a potty break. Is there any way you can stop by on a lunch break?

Bailey answered on 12/20/12. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer