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Hi everyone, I've been a lurker here for a couple of months, ever since we reserved our 11 week old apricot male 'Doodle Hurley from his breeder. You have no idea how helpful this forum is. My name is Gabe, and me and my wife are so HAPPY with Hurley.

We got him 2.5 weeks ago and since the first night he has spent 7-8 hours in his crate, which is in our bedroom, without a fuss, at night and 2 hours during the day... NO FUSS. We're very very grateful for this, however, from day 1 he has hated being confined in in his XPen. In fact, when we gate him up in the living room and then run out of the room to answer a phone, get a drink, etc. he freaks out and if left alone long enough he will poop. Even if we had just taken him out.

He is nearly house broken, the only thing left is for him to signal us that he NEEDS to go. We're so confused and concerned that he gets so worked up when we are not in the same room. I am currently off work until January, but once I go back he will be spending long chunks alone. Anyone have any suggestions?

Thanks in advance for all your help. And I will post pictures soon!
 
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The only thing I can say is that when you are home you "practice" leaving him alone. Block him in a room without you and don't go back to him until he is quiet. and then praise(treat) him. (I know it may drive you crazy but hopefully he will get it fast)Try making it longer periods that you are away over time. If you spend all the time with him til Jan he is not gonna like being left all day
 

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Can you give him a treat or toy when you leave the room to distract him? I would try a kong type toy. Don't do this when the phone rings but practice when you have 10-15 minutes to spend in the kitchen, laundry room, etc.

Deb
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the quick responses!

We have been practicing, unfortunately when he quiets down is usually when he poops and then he goes back to crying. Also, and I cannot believe this myself he doesn't like the Kong or peanut butter. Very strange Doodle :)

Why do you guys think pooping and not peeing is his response to being nervous about being left alone?
 

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The pooping could be a nervous reaction. Charlie used to poop about 10 times a day.

Is there some other type of toy or treat that he does like? I still think a distraction is in order.

We never used an xpen so I'm not sure what the deal is about him staying in it alone. When you go back to work, are you planning on leaving him in it all day or will he be in his crate? Charlie was always crated when he were gone and always right by my side when I was home. I did give him short crate times during the day so that he would be used to it. He still likes to be with me if he has a choice. Occasionally I have to gate him in the kitchen and he sits by the gate and mopes.

Deb
 

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Annabelle hated her crate - ok at night sometimes but would cry - she didnt sleep in it for more than 4 or 5 hrs at a time.

if we tried to go out and put her in crate - she immediately pooed in her crate I was home 98 % of the time so those times in crate were not often but annoying since she could sleep in her crate for 4 hrs without pooing ( it was next to our bed)

I think she just didnt want to be left alone and freaked and her response was to poo and/or pee :( at about 4 or 5 months I stopped crating when I left and she was fine
 

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Firstly, I want to know what's your secret for getting your doodle to stay in his crate quietly for up to 8 hours. During the day, I've been crating my doodle in one hour on/one hour off rotations in a different room. I figured that this will help him to learn to be by himself as I go back to work next week. The problem with this is methinks that he is starting to actually work out when his hour in the crate is up and will start crying for attention. I was warned that doodles are very smart. At night, he has slept fine in his crate for about 3 hour stretches before stirring. 8 hours would be grate as that means I can crate him while I'm at work. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
 

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I guess all doodles are different :) Kirby is fine in his crate alone, but freeked out when we left him confined in the basement alone. Dex would freek in a crate, but is fine confined to a room or an x-pen.

In regards to Hurley, I agree that the pooping is probably a response to being afraid. I just think you have to keep working at it. As he gets older, his ability to hold it will improve. I would just continue to leave him for very short periods of time alone (maybe even 2-3 minutes) and then come back and reward. I would also find that something that he just loves...for some it's a toy and for some it's a kong. Then use that toy just for when he's left alone so that he associates being alone with the happy toy/treat. Good luck :)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks everyone... I'm going to try to today to leave him in little spurts. We know he can be left alone... 9 hours last night without a peep! So I am going to try 3 mins and then give him a treat, so hopefully that works I will keep you posted. He also played with his Kong for a 2min stretch this morning. That broke his previous record of 30 seconds. :)

Will keep everyone posted!
 

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We just got Samantha, our doodle, about 2 months ago. She's 2 years old and was being rehomed. She had quite a bit of trouble with the poop issue, as well. She's never peed in the house, never. But she has no issues with pooping on the living room rug. She still does not have a signal asking to go out, not even a really subtle one. So, I upped the walking and put her on a very strict eating and walking routine. And it worked! Of course, even on weekends, I have to get up at 4:30 a.m., take the dogs out, feed them, and then finally I can go back to bed for some additional shut-eye.

So, I would advise a routine. Samantha thrives on it. Maybe Hurley would, too.

Also, Samantha loves basically any toy that her terrier brother has. But, one thing she always goes for is a frozen marrow bone. That keeps her occupied for hours when new, and when the marrow's all eaten away, she will still gnaw on it for a long time.

She also gave us a lot of issues when crated. But, her terrier brother taught her that she needed to behave when crated. She's learned proper behavior more from him than us, I'm afraid.

Now, she's crated about 8 hours while we're at work, no toys, no nothing. Just public radio. And she does very well.
 

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Thanks Samantha's Mom... We have Hurley on a strict schedule of food and walking, but for some reason he poops just when left alone anywhere except the crate. He doesn't have a clear "I have to go out" signal yet, but I am hoping at only 11 weeks that will develop. (fingers crossed)

We walk him every two hours, and feed him at 7:30am, noon (half), and then at 5pm.

We're going to start stretching the time between walks as, as soon as we go outside he pee's no problem, but sometimes it takes up to a half an hour for him to poop. He poops first thing in the morning, and then sometimes at 3pm and then sometimes at 5pm and then again at 9pm. We can't figure out why it changes from 5pm to 9pm since we feed him at the same times every day and pick up the food.

In other news I got him into the Kong a little bit, I froze it with peanut butter in it. Baby steps. :)
 

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when we first got Annabelle, we took her outside about 1/2 hr, when we went out we'd tell her to go pee, and when she did we praised her big time, now she pees on command which is a good thing if you are getting ready to go out and taking your dood in the car, all our dogs have been trained like that.

Not sure on the pooing - guess the food is just digesting at a different rate, hopefully it will get better soon !
 

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I did the same thing that Annabelle did....when Abby was 8 weeks old I took her outside religiously ever 1/2 hour and if she piddled or did a dooty I would praise her to high heavens :D As Abby got older I would take her out every hour because I didn't want her to fail :oops: I am fortunate I work from home so I was able to take the time to do this routine with her and had her trained to go to the door within a week - yeah, smart :lol: I can tell you she did poo alot when she was a young pup - yikes :shock: Hurley will get it and you just have to stick to a routine.

I only used a crate with Abby when I had to leave for short periods, had a conference call and at night. She never cried and if she did it was because she had to go potty!! Boy she would race to the door once I opened the crate up :p Whenever I was home she stayed with me in my office so I could keep an eye on her, plus being a pack animal if I got up to go anywhere she follows me. Now at 10 months she is free to roam the house and try sneaking off with a sock :shock:
 

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Can we "train" our doodles to give us a toilet signal? I've been doing the hour on/hour off crating and it seems to be working. I take Sam out and he piddles most times. As for poos, I never realised a little 8 week old puppy can poop so much! Last night was his third night at home and he was quiet for the whole night. I woke at 3 and took him out for a piddle. When I put him back in the crate, he cried a little and just went back to sleep and didn't stir till I woke at 6.

My next question is how come my doodle can hold on for 3 - 4 hours at night but piddles and/or poos hourly during the day. I'm going back to work next week and am still undecided whether I will confine him to his crate or his playroom. I don't really want him to potty in his playroom but am not sure that I can always get home at lunch time to let him potty.
 

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Hi Gabe, it sounds to me like Hurley has separation anxiety - just like babies do. Our pup, Pixie, is 5 months. When we first got her she was very clingy, she's a little better now but still likes to be with me most of the time. Have you considered tethering Hurley, instead of using the X-pen? That way, if you need to leave the room you're in, he can come along and won't be so upset.

I have no advice for you on housebreaking. We have been working with Pixie since day one with a bell on the door, a spot outside (we have a wee-wee pad on our terrace, because we live in an apartment building), a command, and lots of praise/treats when she performs. She's good about going when we take her out to her pad, and I ring the bell and give the command every time as I open the door. I have even taken her nose or paw and brushed the bells, hoping she would get the idea that she can ring them. No go. She gives no signal to us that she needs to go. She is tethered most of the time, but sometimes she's playing with my son or untethered for another reason, and she will just go somewhere in the apartment instead of asking to go out. So frustrating!

I remember Pixie pooping a LOT at first, she still does up to 3 times a day. That's a puppy for you. I think Hurley is pooping/peeing from anxiety, when you leave him alone. The pens are bigger than crates, so he doesn't feel the same need to keep it clean. We have a pen too, and Pixie would poop AND then track it all over. Yuk. I gave up on that and just keep her in the crate or tether her. They definitely get better about being left alone as they get older, Hurley will too. And he'll poop less often when you can cut him back to two meals a day.

About the Kong - Pixie didn't like peanut butter either, but I discovered she loves bananas, so I shove some banana in there, or I break up little biscuits and fill it up with them. You could try cheese too.
 

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I have also found that there are other "potty" time signals my doodles have and still do

1. the easist MAX gives a sharp bark and then whines and talks to us

2. The PAW manuever hahhaa gives you the paw pat onthe leg.

3. Peanut s and Beau also to get on my nudging me.

4 PANTING while staring at you...yes panting is a signal here hahahhaa

5. HOW I WISH they'd stand by a door hahahhaha but they don't

and for now i am NOT using a bell due to having 3 doodles or i'd hear Bells ringing all the time hahhahaa

Beau so far is training with flying colors but we also don't let him out of our sight even for a minute hahaha besides he LOVES socks and paper napkins :wink:

Xpens? hahahhaa yeah right, peanut climbed out of hers on the 3rd daywe had her so my xpen is now at my vets, we just tethered Beau when necessary and/or put him in his crate for nap times in the beginning
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks everyone for all the help, this has been great. Yeah it seems like Hurley is going through some separation anxiety. He was fine going into his crate for a daytime nap until like 4 days ago. If he is in there an we are home he whines but if we go out he settles down (we know this because when we come home he's quiet until we make noise).

Tonight should be interesting, we're leaving him for 6 hours to see a Broadway show. Very curious what his reaction will be. So far today me and DW have ben taking turns trying to tire him out so he goes into his crate exhausted. He's starting to get cranky :)

He's also really taken to housebreaking. 3 days no accidents. He has even signaled us a few times by walking to the door and biting his leash!

I've seen all you're cute and adorable 'doodles and I'd like to share some pictures of Hurley. Here's a link to some pictures.

http://s246.photobucket.com/albums/gg83 ... 015395.pbw

Thanks again, this site is such a great resource!
 
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