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Hi everyone,

I haven't had a chance to visit much (or upload recent photos) since we got Pixie. She's 16 weeks now. One of the reasons I've been too busy to get online is because she has been sick a lot, first kennel cough and then giardia. I've been at the vet at least once just about every week since we got her. I decided against getting insurance, and BOY am I regretting that decision! lol

So, I'm looking for some advice from you. Pixie has gotten used to pooping in her crate. I usually keep her with me when I'm home, and crate her at night and when we are out. I noticed right away she preferred to lie under the sofa, rather than in her crate, so if I'm home I usually allow that, and tether her if I'm doing things around the house. I was feeding her in her crate but stopped bothering a week or so ago (big mistake), and just let her eat in the kitchen.

Remember I told you I carry her around town in a doggy sling? After a month, she got busted in the school yard. The vice principal told me I couldn't bring her in anymore, even in the sling. I can't leave her tied up outside the yard (she's too little, plus too big a risk of someone taking her), so for the past few weeks I've been leaving her at home when I take my son to school, and sometimes for pickup too. At most 3 hours, usually less. The routine was, feed her at 7:30 (because she had medicine to take w/the food), take her out before we leave about an hour later. A few times in the last week or so, I found she'd pooped in her crate while I was gone. Mostly morning, but afternoon too. I had taken the divider out, but I put it back in, and she still pooped. I then tried putting her in a 2'x6' pen, with her wee-wee pad (we usually take her to pee and poop on the pad on our terrace, so she's used to the pad) at one end and her blanket at the other. Came home to poop ALL over, several times. She steps in it and tracks it everywhere. The one positive thing I'll say is that all the times she has pooped in the crate or pen, she has walked in it, but never laid down in the mess.

After we finished the giardia medicine, I ran out of the canned food I'd gotten at the vet, and I switched her to Wellness kibble. She had originally been on Iams kibble from the breeder, and I wanted something similar but healthier. I think the excessive pooping started because of the giardia and diet changes, but I'm afraid it's turned into a habit. Last night I went to bring the crate into our bedroom to put her in there, and I saw she had peed in it. Now, she's been very good about peeing outside in the past few weeks, settled into a predictable schedule. Last night she also peed on my son's rug while I was getting him into bed, and peed outside 2 or 3 times - this all within a couple of hours. I was concerned she had a uti, but so far no pee accidents this morning. But she chose the crate to pee in last night, so now I know it's not just a few random accidents, but a problem.

What do I do? It seems like retraining for the crate is a ton of work. She does stay clean in the crate overnight (except when she was sick). I know she can hold pee at least for several hours. I shifted her feeding schedule so that she doesn't eat until I come back from school dropoff, so hopefully she won't poop while I'm out in the morning. But she rarely poops first thing in the morning, I don't have her poop schedule figured out at all yet (probably becuase of the illnesses and food changes). Her poop seems ok now in consistency, if unpredictable, but I do have a stool sample to drop off at the vet.

I'm thinking about just using the crate for overnight, and fencing off part of the kitchen (we have a small galley kitchen) for when we're out. At least it would be easier to clean up accidents in there! I'd like to be able to keep her on the terrace while we're out, but we have a baby next door and one right below, and I'm afraid she would bark too much. The people downstairs have not been very nice (about other issues), so I really want to avoid dealing with them.

I'm so confused! What do you guys think?
 

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Sheila
I would definately try the kitchen idea and I do think that due to the sickness there are left over problems. I am not a fan of wee wee pads
because when others that I know have tried this they resemble the
texture of towels or blankets and confuses the dog into thinking peeeing
on anything that might even resemble a wee pad in the house usable.
One solution a friend tried was to build a small wooden box that they
filled with grass and they put that on their terrace as they are on the third floor and running down to the first floor and outside took too long for a little puppy to handle. They do not have accidents going on three weeks
now since they build their littlle grass wee wee box. Just an idea
 

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I've heard of using a grass box but have no personal experience. Thought it might be a good idea to train Cali for if and when we might be housebound by a hurricane and it's not safe to send her out to take care of business. Of course I haven't done it yet....
 
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She is still so young and the addition of the medical issues has not helped! Bella had an issue with peeing in the office. Our trainer said to ABSOLUTELY not let her near the office because she thinks it is ok to go there. I blocked it off for a month and have not had a problem since.
Sooo, in your case, I might stop using the crate (OR the wee pads since they might be the cause for confusion) during the day. Since she is fine with it at night, I would continue with using the crate for night time. If you do block off the kitchen, don't leave a wee pad, she should be able to be just fine for the 3 hours you are gone.
Good luck and she is so smart it won't be an issue for long, especially since you are with her most of the day!
 

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HI Sheila and welcome

I too only know too well what is it like to have a sick puppy and eventually when your doodle is all better the accidents will stop.
Our Max was trained and he too went in the crate and on floors due to bad diarrhea for 7 weeks

anyway, putting your doodle in the kitchen might be a good idea and only crating at night. I'd keep the crate close to your bedroom so you can hear if you doodle cries to having to go out. Max only cried during the night when he had bad digestive issues
OH in regards to getting insurance for PIXIE they dont cover parasites and such...as that is too common but cover so much more
I have VPI for max and peanut
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Yes, I really don't want to use the wee wee pad indoors, so as not to cause confusion. I have one of those plastic grates that goes over the pad (I can't remember the name of the product), so it doesn't feel exactly the same as a towel or blanket, but it could still be confusing to her. I did put the pad in her pen for one day, after she messed her crate a few times. I was out twice that day, and both times I came home to a huge mess; she had pooped and then tracked it all over. Hopefully, now that her digestive system seems to be getting back to normal, she'll be able to hold it while I'm out.

I have the pen I can put in the kitchen, without a wee wee pad, when we're out. I do keep her crate in our room at night. I'm happy to say that I haven't had to get up with her during the night for almost a month, although she does have me up around 6:30 most mornings.

The part of the terrace right outside our door, where I have the wee-wee pad, doesn't get any sun, so I don't think grass would do too well there. Plus, I can't imagine it growing very well, being peed on every day! I have a neighbor in the building who has a box about 4'x6', with pads in it and astroturf laid on top. Her dog goes there, I don't know how often she changes the pads, and the super takes the astroturf down to the basement every couple of weeks to hose it down. Disgusting, in my opinion!

I feel better after hearing from all of you. I'll post back with an update!
 

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I'd say the meds and just the fact of being sick has played some role in this Giradia makes their little hurt and upset so usually will have loose stools during that time. I know you don't want to hear this but you just might have to retrain on the crate issue.
 
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