My Dog is marking in the house

Why has my dog suddenly marking in the house when he didn’t do it before?

Usually it is because of feelings of insecurity or a perceived threat. This perceived threat, for example, can be an introduction of a new baby, a new pet, a visitor or even a new piece of furniture. The smell of other animals on your footwear or clothing can also trigger a dog to feel the need to mark his territory.

For example, a son or daughter goes to college. This cause the loss of sounds, smells, and people, as well as changes in routine. Your dog may not be getting as much attention as previously. Changes cause him to feel anxious, which may cause him to mark.

Some dogs feel the need to lift their leg and pee on all new things that enter your house, shopping bags, visitor’s belongings, new furniture, children’s toys etc. Many of these dogs are lacking in confidence and training, so by marking new objects it makes them feel more secure having deposited their own scent on these objects.

Some dogs will never mark in their own house but will embarrass you by marking if you visit a friend or relative’s home. Your dog feels less secure there and feels the need to make it more comfortable to him by laying down a few of his own familiar scents.

How to stop your dog marking urine in the house

Neuter: For pet dogs, early neutering will stop marking behavior in the majority of dogs. Neutering at an early age can prevent the habit forming.

For older dogs, neutering may still have the desired effect but marking in the house may have become a habit that you will have to break.  It can’t be guaranteed that neutering a dog is going to magically cure this problem but if you don’t neuter a male dog, your chances of breaking the habit are greatly reduced. 

Supervise and Break the Habit: Catch him in the act! DOGS LEARN QUICKLY FROM THIS!

Close supervision is necessary. You must be dedicated to stop the marking behavior of your dog and you must be consistent. A couple of weeks or often much less time of intense supervision and correction can save you a lifetime of tearing your hair out trying to find a quick fix for the problem. Some people have reported that it has only taken a day or two using the intense supervision method.

Confine your dog to one area of the house where you can watch him. Shut doors to other areas of the house or barricade them off with baby gates or improvise with whatever is at hand.

If barricading is not possible another option is to put your dog on a retractable lead while he is in the house with you and for you to have total control at all times.

Housebreaking Tea Cup or Small Breeds

As professional dog trainer and behaviorist, I am always searching for innovative was to train. And I currently have the opportunity to train a Morkie. Morkie’s are purebred Yorkshire terrier mixed with a purebred Maltese. This little girl is only 5 pounds but thinks she’s 35 pounds. Even though she is a lap dog, most of the time, she is still a dog and dogs need leadership and basic manners. You need to be the Pack Leader.

One behavior problem has been housebreaking. She is an inside dog and has been learning to go “Potty” on pee pads on the floor. I am now transferring this to a little box. She has been inconsistent with urinating or defecating on the pads. So, I am using confinement, exercise, frequent trips to the potty zone and regular feeding schedule to get her housebroken. I found by cutting the pads into halves and placing one half in the litter box, saves on pad usage and it fits nicely in the litter box.

Mindy has been urinating regularly for a few days. But she hasn’t figured out when and how to defecate in the litter box. So, first thing in the AM, after she has eaten or any time I get her out of the kennel, I walk her around. In just a few seconds to minutes she has to go (movement creates “movement”). I rush her back to the litter box where she defecates. Then Mindy receives lots of praise (favorite toy, food, physical and verbal).

One other note when training small breeds or toy breeds, walk the dog on a table top (ping pong table, dinning, etc.) and teach them to sit/stay. This really saves on your back and can be less intimidating to the dog. You may want to place a table cloth or blanket over the surface for protection and better footing for the dog. Also keep a short leash and be very aware of the edges.

Let me know your thoughts!