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Thread: How to discourage scent marking?

  1. #1
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    Default How to discourage scent marking?

    So Abe's 10 months old now and hes been marking his territory for a while. He has one or two places on our walk (when on lead) that he's allowed to stop and sniff and pee over the top of everyone else, and he's accepted that, doesn't try to stop everywhere anymore. He's always had free reign in the yard - it's a huge yard and I don't care where he pees. All of a sudden, out of the blue, he's decided he's going to pee on the handrail pole at the top of the veranda steps, 2 feet from my back door, 2 feet from one of their water buckets, and right where Sal gets fed. He's fed about 8 feet away toward the other end of the veranda. He did it once, right in front of me 2 days ago, and was interrupted and reprimanded in the act. Didn't do it yesterday, then this morning after their breakfast I came out to see that he'd done it again. Again, straight after they finished their brekky. The first time he actually pissed IN her bowl! Charmer.

    Any suggestions as to how I can nip this in the bud?

  2. #2
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    Have you cleaned the pole and area with vinegar and maybe a squirty bottle loaded with 500ml water and 1/2 teaspoon lavender essence or oil (the expensive stuff not the cheap stuff)...

    Try to notice where he's sniffing, before he takes aim, and apply vicks vapour rub to the sniff spot (after you've cleaned it). Might have to repeat for a few days. Otherwise - you're going to have to supervise his pee stops for a while. I give my dog a shove in the behind if she tries to pee where I don't want her to. Definitely interrupts it. have heard of a person who gives her dogs a bit of a push to unbalance them any time they try to cock a leg on something. So they learn never cock their legs and squat like girl dogs to pee.

  3. #3
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    I just pee over the top of the goofs.......its my way of showing them I'M TOP DOG !!!!


    Quote Originally Posted by reyzor View Post
    Education is important, but big biceps are more importanter ...
    DONT SIC YOUR DOGMA ON ME !

  4. #4
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    Yeah good on ya Sean, don't think I'll be trying that, sounds a bit awkward for a girl

    Hyacinth I haven't put anything smelly there yet, just washed off with water. I wanted to ask here first as there's a spot in our local vet waiting room that all the boy dogs like to pee on, and it doesn't matter what they wash it down with, the boys seem to still be able to smell each other and still pee there. I was a bit worried that if I did that I might only encourage him to cover the new smell with his own.

    I do have lavender oil (the good stuff) and vicks, so I'm ready to go with your remedy, thanks. Seems vigilance is going to be the key...

  5. #5
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    Lol I wish I knew, Harley pee's in the most inappropriate places... like if I leave the washing basket on the ground near the washing line while it is waiting to dry he does a sneaky piss on it every time! Luckily I have always noticed before I put clean washing in there.

    There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face.

  6. #6

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    Well I know that plenty of people will swear until they're blue in the face that punishing a dog for something after the event is pointless, that they can't understand and that it serves no purpose outside of cruelty. I'm only going on my personal experiences here - Sammy was a very difficult dog to toilet train (took over 4 months where all my other dogs are basically done in 2 weeks). I actually spoke to the breeder about it because it was really causing a lot of stress between myself, Sammy and the other people we lived with - even as a young pup his pees were mini swimming pools. She was the one who told me to take him to the sites and tell him off for it, as she did that with all of her dogs. I felt so bad at first but really I had run out of options and I also knew that her dogs definitely seemed very close to her so it must be possible to maintain the relationship and trust even with this method. I took this dog out every 20-30mins for weeks and yet still, as soon as you thought he had the idea, he would just go inside again. It was almost as though he felt like there were advantages to be had by peeing in particular places when I was watching, but if not, there was no disadvantage or reason not to pee inside. So I took him to a pee site, pointed at it and told him off. He peed once more inside but hasn't had an accident since.

    There are other examples too. I keep a veggie patch with no fence or anything to keep Sammy out of it. He had a go at it one time when I was out and so again, I took him back to the site, told him off. I find with Sammy he tries everything twice, just to make sure I guess it wasn't some sort of fluke... But after that, no issues and my veggie patch is going strong.

    But I'm not going to advise you one way or the other, because I don't know you or your dog and I'm no expert anyway and in times before I have copped pretty heavy retribution for advocating telling your dog you're not happy with something after the event. I only know what has worked for me.
    My dog does not fear me, fear trying new things or anything like that. But they can recognise their own pee, and it's ingrained into them that some places are supposed to be peed on whilst others are not (that's why they have bladders in the first place - because they had a purpose for their pee) and of course all dogs are different but some certainly seem to be a lot smarter than we give them credit for.

    Edit: One thing I would add (though it seems like you've already done this), crucial for this sort of method is making sure the dog knows there's a place where they can do this sort of activity and it will be a good thing. That way, they can then ascertain that it's not the action itself, nor you just not liking them, it's about the place.
    Last edited by 99bottles; 08-11-2013 at 09:08 AM.

  7. #7
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    99 bottles - I agree that all dogs are different. Abe isn't one that reprimands after the fact work on, he just doesn't get it. Sal, on the other hand, if I just grumble and complain and make it obvious I'm unhappy with cleaning up the mess she'd made - even hours after the deed - has never repeated said deed. But then she's as smart as he is doughy, so that makes sense.

    Think I caught him just as he was about to lift his leg again this morning. I growled my displeasure and he took off as though he'd been kicked. Even when he's interrupted in the act I'm not convinced he gets it. He's just so worried about being in trouble that what little brain he has stops working altogether. Just to think I might be unhappy with him is the worst punishment ever! Now if only he could figure out what it is that makes me unhappy...

    Pissing on my verandah, shredding bromeliads, and ringbarking my native trees make me unhappy. And I've kinda given up on the broms now, so that only leaves 2 things for the boofhead to figure out...

  8. #8

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    The absolute best command I have found to teach a pup – is the ‘leave it’ command. It will cover a multitude of dog sins - so have a look at the following link:

    'Leave it' from dogs and people- clicker dog training - YouTube

    When Riley first came home as a 2 year old – he went from an outside pup to an indoors pup after some hours in the car. I started his training straight away – he wasn't allowed inside until he peed. He was on lead and I had heaps of treats and had my ‘happy voice on’ - so then started his toilet command and also the leave it command training.

    So ‘dhru' - take a few steps back in Abe’s toilet training and show him where you want him to go to the toilet and what he is able to cock his leg on. Good idea to have him on lead to start with !
    Good Luck ! smiley-eatdrink004.gif

  9. #9
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    If they're still going over a spot... it means a bit was missed in the cleaning process.

    And you need a UV light to find it.

    Although sometimes - a particular spot is chosen for strategic reasons - eg lamp posts - an opportunity to get a message up high...

    Unfortunately (flood) lamp posts cost several thousand dollars to replace and they don't seem to last very long at dog clubs for some reason.

    One of my vets recommended scolding the spot where you want the dog to avoid, and beating it up with a roll of newspaper. This worked on my mum's old dog. But evil hound thought it was the best game ever, and joined in the scolding and tried to eat the newspaper roll. Massive fail as far as training her to avoid the spot goes. She gets just as excited when I get the fly swat out. Especially if I swat a fly. But swatting the floor and furniture is almost as much fun. (oops).

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyacinth View Post
    One of my vets recommended scolding the spot where you want the dog to avoid, and beating it up with a roll of newspaper. This worked on my mum's old dog. But evil hound thought it was the best game ever, and joined in the scolding and tried to eat the newspaper roll. Massive fail as far as training her to avoid the spot goes. She gets just as excited when I get the fly swat out. Especially if I swat a fly. But swatting the floor and furniture is almost as much fun. (oops).
    That actually worked on Abe when he kept pushing chicken wire down to get on the other side to walk around and trample some seedlings I was trying to protect. He thought the wire was there specifically for him, but when I beat the crap out of the ground with the nearest stick at hand right at the spot he kept going over he never went back. Didn't think of beating up my verandah post though

    I laughed picturing your dog helping you with the scolding and trying to eat the newspaper Hyacinth!

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