If your dog is relieving herself inside the house, it’s probably because of one or more of the following reasons:
- She is suffering from separation anxiety.
- She has not been properly housetrained.
- She is scent-marking her territory.
- She is ill.
Isolating the cause of your pet’s unacceptable behavior will allow you to take action to prevent it. Below is a discussion of the most common reasons why dogs urinate in the house, and some suggested solutions.
Most dogs simply can’t stand to be away from their owners. This stems from the basic fact that dogs are pack animals and can become seriously insecure when left alone. Feeling abandoned, they will bark, chew on furniture or eliminate in the house. This behavior is not their way of “”getting back”" at their owners, but rather an attempt to relieve their anxiety. (Have you noticed how excited your dog acts when you come home from work? This illustrates her relief that you haven’t deserted her after all!)
If separation anxiety is your dog’s reason for eliminating inside the house, you can correct this by teaching her that there will be times when she will have to be alone. The sooner you train your dog to accept your extended absences, the better for both of you.
If you have a puppy, you can prevent separation anxiety attacks by leaving her alone for a few minutes at a time. Gradually, over the course of two to four days, lengthen the time you’re away. Once she figures out that you do return at some point, she’ll be reassured and won’t feel the need to act out her frustrations and anxieties. You can use the same procedure to train an older dog.
Another way to help ease your dog’s separation anxiety is to leave a piece of your unlaundered clothing with her while you’re away. Your scent on the clothing will help calm and comfort her during your absence.