About two weeks ago my husband and I adopted an American bulldog mix from a shelter. The vet thinks he's about 7 months old; he has no health conditions and was neutered last week. It's clear that he lived with people at some point--he's well taken care of and knows how to sit on command--but 9 days in the shelter with no access to the outdoors have wreaked havoc with any house training he may have had. We set up a small, empty room in our house as his and have not left him alone in it for more than four hours at a stretch. We take him outside about once an hour when we're home and he gets treats for going to the bathroom. He has a bush that he uses as his restroom and we clean up the area around it frequently. The problem is that although he understands that it's a good thing to "go" outside, he doesn't get that it's a bad thing to go in his room. If we catch him at it we startle him and take him right outside; we clean up the messes with an enzymatic cleaner and don't scold him. But when he's left alone he'll go in the room, almost guaranteed. We tried putting him in a crate that's appropriate for his size, but he pooped in it. He doesn't go anywhere else in the house, nor does he mark. He just seems to think of his room like his kennel at the shelter--where he was forced to toilet--and we're not sure how to change that.View Thread
Thanks so much for getting back to me! His stool was tested and is clean. He's usually in his room for 4-5 hours at a stretch on weekdays. I think we may need to find him a smaller crate because the kennel we used is big enough for him to do more than turn around in; twice in one day he pooped inside and stepped in it--lots of fun cleaning between his toes! I think he may also not like the wire mesh because he's a cuddler and likes to sleep curled up against something. A plastic crate may be better. We'll keep trying!View Thread
The opinions expressed in WebMD Communities are solely those of the User, who may or may not have medical or scientific training. These opinions do not represent the opinions of WebMD. Communities are not reviewed by a WebMD physician or any member of the WebMD editorial staff for accuracy, balance, objectivity, or any other reason except for compliance with our Terms and Conditions. Some of these opinions may contain information about treatments or uses of drug products that have not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. WebMD does not endorse any specific product, service or treatment.
Do not consider Communities as medical advice. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your care plan or treatment. WebMD understands that reading individual, real-life experiences can be a helpful resource, but it is never a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from a qualified health care provider. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or dial 911 immediately.