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I've been reading this forum for a couple months and have found it very helpful.

Our puppy Dax is almost four months. He's very smart and picked up indoor training quickly (while not vaccinated) and transitioned very well to outdoor training. He has bells that he rings 80% of the time, or he sits up in his crate quietly and waits (which then leads to whining when he really has to go!).

He has had intermittent diarrhea a few nights over the past 4 weeks when he woke us up 3 or 4 times during the night to go outside. Luckily he always woke us up.
Unfortunately, a few days ago, he messed the crate first thing in the morning before we could take him out, and he did it again in the middle of the night 2 nights ago. Both times, he whined a lot and did not seem happy to have done so, so we didn't think he was learning that was an acceptable place to go.

We have been to the vet and are working to modify his diet, giving him medication, and doing tests for parasites. Since then, his stool is normal and all is well...

MY QUESTION: Today, he awoke from a nap, started smelling the crate floor, and then circled and starting PEEING! (I interrupted him and rushed him out, where he went a swimming pool's worth!) He has never done that before. He has had accidents when playing in the apartment and he forgot to go ring bells, but he's never deliberately peed in his crate (only slight accidents when he was much younger).

Is this a four-month-old starting to regress a bit on his training (as he enters his more independent phase), or has he "learned" that it's okay to mess his crate if he absolutely needs to? This makes me paranoid to leave the apartment for fear of returning to an accident.

I have moved the crate partition smaller (it's downright cramped now), but I'm wondering if I need to worry, or if he will be fine as long as we are diligent in taking him out at the first sign.

Any advice or anecdotes would be helpful!
Aaron
 

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Puppies can sleep really soundly, just like babies do. If he had a really full bladder and a profound nap, he might have just had an accident. I wouldn't worry that he's "regressing." I would, however, make sure you've cleaned his crate thoroughly with an enzyme product, like "Pure Ayre" or" Nature's Miracle." First clean the crate with a mild detergent, then spray the enzyme on till it's damp and let it air dry. It sounds to me like you've done a great job of training him, but his little puppy digestive system is still working out some "kinks". Let us know if it gets worse, but I'll bet it won't.
 

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