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Old 12-15-2009, 06:06 AM
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I have a one year old Bichon. This is my first dog. He is not on a very good routine of "going" We bring him out & he walks around the yard forever before he finally goes. (even in the morning) He is so distracted by everything. He only pees 2-3 times a day. He has a bowel movement at all different times. 1 -2 times a day. THere seems to be no schedule at all. I usually wait for him to tell me he has to go unless he has been in his crate for a long time. It is hard to keep bring him out & have him not go. Especially now that the cold weather & snow is here. WHat should I do?
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Old 12-15-2009, 06:23 AM
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Are you free feeding him? Would suggest not leaving his bowl down 24/7, he'll pick and will never get on a schedule. Would also not wait for him to tell you, mine usually don't so I can't rely on that, I just take them out every few hours or if I'm leaving and it works out fine (they get fed in the AM & PM, water is down 24/7). Take him out when he wakes up, when he starts circling etc - also he's young, would go outside w/ him and praise him and reinforce the good behavior. Would also maybe crate him less but confine him to the room where you're in (we close bedroom doors and use baby gates, they're less likely to 'go' in the room where you are. Try not to get discouraged, mine too get distracted easily (they'll turn and get ready to go but if their foot hits a stick or if they hear something, they gotta start all over again, LOL). Also you didnt mention if he's neutered, that should help (if he's marking).
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Old 12-15-2009, 07:11 AM
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All dogs generally like to sniff around and boys especially seem to like to "find the perfect spot"--I take mine out generally 4 times a day--7am, 1pm, 6pm, and bed time around 10 or 11pm--I count to 45 and then bring them back in--I know my stubborn boy will never have an accident inside so if he doesn't make good use of his 45 seconds then he has to wait till next time.
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Old 12-15-2009, 07:50 AM
Location: Dallas, Tx
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Go to this forum http://www.city-data.com/forum/dogs/

There are a lot of helpful people on this board and can answer any questions you have! Good luck!
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Old 12-15-2009, 09:20 AM
Location: Lemon Grove, CA USA
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Setting a routine and letting him know you'll stick to it helps a ton. Feed him twice a day and don't leave the food down longer than half an hour each time. Take him for a walk before you feed him and about an hour or two after you feed him. Walk him right when you get up and right before you go to bed. That will hit the major "go times" for him and should help him get a schedule down. Also once or twice during the day since that is a pretty long stretch. Controlling his intake (food and water) goes a long way to helping him get on a schedule though.

You can also teach him a go command. I use "potty" but anything short and not commonly in use will do. Say it every time he goes the bathroom... every time. Soon he will associate it and you can say it to trigger a response from him.
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Old 12-15-2009, 11:55 AM
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My dog is the pickiest about where to go (and she's a female).
In subzero weather you just want to tell her GET ON WITH IT.

We trained her to go when we said 'toilet' (go toilet) but sometimes she plays deaf (crazy bird dog).
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Old 12-15-2009, 04:39 PM
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I thought I read that Bichon's were quite difficult to housetrain. Maybe this is the point of what I read. It is maddening when the weather is icky to have the dog sniff around forever and then, right when it gets ready, a leaf blows or a car horn honks or something distracts the dog. I feel for ya!

I agree with others about feeding at specific times, except that I would only leave the food down for 15 minutes max and if the dog doesn't eat it, it's not getting fed until the next mean time. This will teach the dog to eat when the food is offered and prevent lack of routine. Don't worry, he won't starve himself! Then there must be some predictability about doing poop after eating if you pay attention closely.

Because of having greater access to H2O, potty is harder to predict. But as the other poster said, if you baby gate him close to you and watch, you should be able to tell when he has to go.

Good luck and stay warm. Here's a link to one place I read about Bichon's and house training...it may help. Bichon Frise FAQ
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