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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-11-2005, 02:05 AM Thread Starter
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Question Dog pees on her own dog bed - barks in crate. Fixable?

How do I stop my 4 yr old female cocker spaniel from peeing on her own dog bed? I should first say we have no kids and she has 1 human at home with her all day with lots of exercise and potty breaks. She's had lots of dog school and 2 humans who love her enought to try anything to help. She is a cuttlebug but on her own terms or she gets nippy and she NEVER rough houses. But she is fetch addicted. We can't and don't ever allow her on the bed with the humans because she will pee on the bed adventually. So, we confine her with a gate or crate her. She of course barks excessively until she is covered in drool when we confine her in anyway. And she won't acknowledge toys or food until we let her out. But, after years of this, we found she will give up panic attacks after quite a while and sleep. This is a seperate issue from the peeing.
So, about the peeing on her dog bed...If we crate her with ANYTHING absorbant she will pee on it and if we confine her in the laundry room (with toys etc) she will poop or pee on her bean bag, blankets or anythign she can get her paws on. HELP!!! We take her out to potty and make sure she goes and she gets plenty of exercise. She HATES being crated at bed time and barks non stop. We never give in at bedtime but neither does she. She wakes us up frantically barking as soon as day light comes. We have resorted to confining her to the laundry room or crate to sleep on a hard surface with nothing absorbant to pee on. This has made huge change but she still occasionally goes and when she does she smears it everywhere. Its a large room so its strange that she chooses to smear it around when she has so much space. If we crate her, its in a smal crate just enough for her to turn around in. But, the outcome is the same with marking. We feel so aweful that her little dog bones are now left to sleep on a hard tile floor or crate without cusion. What do we do? We scented tried pee pads on the floor and she sleeps on them! Sometimes she uses them. However, we decided to put her bed back in there along with the pee pads in hopes she wouldn't pee on her bed....and she choose to pee on her bed and sleep on the pee pad! Its a lot of pee not just little marking spots. We're at witts end and any adivice is appreciated. We do have a 2nd cocker spaniel, perfectly behaved male and never challenges her for dominance. He sleeps on the humans bed with no probs. However, she would mark our bed if given the chance. Hence the crate or room separation at bed time. Thanks for any suggestions! Joie Fairfield, Ca
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-11-2005, 09:49 AM
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hmmm, that's a complicated situation. It sounds like it may be seperation anxiety. Even if you are present, they can still have it if they aren't with you. If you've allowed the problem to go on for this long it may be hard to fix, but it can be done I believe with the right time and patience.

First, I would get a full vet exam to make sure all systems are working properly. Then I would recommend consulting a behaviorist.

Also, if she barks in her crate and you eventually let her out that is only showing her you accept her bad behavior. It is important to not let her out until she doesn't bark anymore. Maybe try working with her when you have time. Put her in the crate and sit and talk to her, gradually moving away little by little until you are where she can't see you and is accepting it. It may take a few weeks or more, but its worth a shot.

Last edited by Chrisanne; 04-11-2005 at 09:51 AM.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-11-2005, 11:44 AM
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first of all - i would do the vet ck first. explain it to him/her just how you did to us. maybe it's a UTI and she is trying to get your attention by peeing in her bed. ??? could be something else.

i agree with chrisanne that you should try crate training her slowing again. maybe even get another crate (if you can afford it). and just completely start over. also - i'm not sure if she is upset because she knows that your other dog sleeps with you. i have two dogs and i know that if one is allowed somewhere and the other isn't, the one that's left out starts to bark or whine. do you think it would help if you tried crating the boy dog and putting their crates near each other so they can see each other? maybe it would help calm down the girl dog.

i hope something works for you! you sound very dedicated! good job with keeping up with the crate training.

and remember what chrisanne said - don't let her out until she stops barking completely.

oh...and you can always share pics of your lil boogers with us!

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-11-2005, 01:18 PM
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When working at the shelter Cockers were my worst nightmare!
Most dogs wont pee on themselves and their, food, crate, bedding etc. But it seemed cockers had no problems with doing so, lol. As lovey and cuddley as they were, they were extreemly gross and messy in their kennel. I wonder if its a breed trait?

I would limit the space available in her crate. Just enought for her to stand and turn around, with no bedding. Leaving a corner for her to pee in and enough space for her to get away from it, is usually the problem.

CONSISTENCY is another huge problem, I know its heart breaking and reeeaalllly annoying to listen to her in the crate, but in the end its a better reward. Stick her in the crate every night and at scheduled times throughout the day. Set a schedule for yourself and her, and stick to it. I found taking up the water 3 hours before bed time really helps as well. Also make a huge deal of her pottying outside, even if shes just crate peeing Ive noticed this helps some dogs want to hold it.

My dog was crated the first year and a half, it was alot of work and hard planning. Some dogs adjust quick and have no problems, but your little girl (like my dobe) needs a lot of work. Now my Dobe is crate free, doesnt mark, and never barks when he is rarely put behind the child gate.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-11-2005, 08:06 PM
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Originally Posted by janabors
When working at the shelter Cockers were my worst nightmare!
Most dogs wont pee on themselves and their, food, crate, bedding etc. But it seemed cockers had no problems with doing so, lol. As lovey and cuddley as they were, they were extreemly gross and messy in their kennel. I wonder if its a breed trait?
It is, but isn't a breed trait with cockers. It never was, or is with a top quality dog. The problem is all the "bad breeders".
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-11-2005, 08:53 PM Thread Starter
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You all gave us many ideas to try with Lucy. I will first try the food on her bed idea in hope of curbing the marking. Curently, she has no soft bed and her poor little bones are on the hard floor or crate. I can hardly sleep at night knowing she's squished in her small crate so I hope it works.
The vet said she was very healthy so incontinence is not it.
We got our first cocker spaniel from a great breeder. However, Lucy came from a strange family who raised them unsocialised in a box away from their mom. The breeders treatment of their pups broke our hearts so we thought buying her would save her from going back home with this lady. . We didn't think (at the time...lesson learned!) that Lucy would grow with these issues due to her breeding. It has been a rough road but I hope some of your ideas will smooth out some of her issues. We have tried slowly introducing her to the crate but not moving away slowly.
Has anyone heard of the sleep pee time bed? I found it online here: but wonder if it would encourage her to continue going on her bed. We did find it strange that when she had an option to go on a pee pad or her bed she chose her bed and slept on the pee pad. She does enjoy dog company and behaves better when they sleep together. Janabors suggested we put the water up a few hours before bed. We'll try this as night time but what do we do if (rarely) we are away during the day? Anyone know how great dog litter boxes are? Thanks for all of your helpful advice! Now we have some ideas to work on with her. Here is a photo of the fur balls....Lucy with Henry.
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cocker spaniel, crate training, dog bed, litter box, litter boxes

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