Basenji slave in need of potty training help

  • We bought an excersise pen to allow for more space for Missi and Cooper while we are at work. We attached the open ends to their crates, which we butted up against each other. That way, they can still have their own space if they want it, as well as a common area.

    My question:

    What do you guys think of this set up? There are 2 water bottles attached to their crates (one in each). Is it a good idea to allow them constant access to water while we are trying to potty train? We started to use small treats that they love when they potty where they are supposed to. This seems to be sinking in better than praise alone, however, Missi still pees on the floor when she pleases. She'll go the peepads, sniff, then walk to the pen bedding or to the living room floor and squat. I don't get why she starts in the right place and then pees in the wrong place! I could use some suggestions. She poops on the pads though. We try and take them outside frequently, but we've had a front of cold weather and they don't like it out there much. Poor things start shivering almost immediately and then look up at us with those sad eyes…

    My last puppy (toy fox terrier) potty-trained almost instantly. It involved very little work. My b's on the other hand, totally different story! lol! Any help is appreciated!!!


  • Beth it looks like a great set up. My B still squats where evre she wants and i have had her since june. In the summer she goes out but in the winter if i do not keep her litter box clean she goes and pees on my one chair. I have gotten rid of that chair but she still goes in the palce of the chair. but try this it seems to work in the past few days going out every hour well ihope it all workes out for you take care


  • This looks like a great set up. BTW-the expen is SO TALL 😃 WOW!! What is it 5ft??

    When you see her giving you the "signs" of peeing pick her up quicky & take her to the pad saying "uh oh" in a calm voice. If you catch her in the middle of a squat peeing pick her up quickly saying "uh oh" & try to make her finish on the pee pad or outside & lots of praise & treats!! She'll get it in when you start to say UH OH that she needs to run over to her pee pad.

    Good luck & great job with the expen 🙂

  • LOL the ex-pen is 48". We debated on the 42" but decided the 4' would be better due to basenji climbing antics. And it's a good thing we did because Missi started climbing about 10 minutes after we penned them up while we ate dinner that first evening we had it! She didn't get very far, she couldn't get her front paws to the next set of rungs. We give them Kongs or something good to chew on when we put them in, so hopefully they will understand soon that it's a good thing for them to be in there, and not try to climb out. They seem to like it ok, they go in on their own to potty sometimes or just to play. I think she just wanted out so bad because she knew we were eating. They don't make a peep at night now either. I think they like being able to snuggle up with each other.

    Another question I had:

    Cooper seems to pee an awful lot. They do drink constantly, but he goes very often and just little bits at a time. I don't know if he just hasn't learned to hold it yet, or what. He has been using the peepads pretty regularly though, so I can't complain about that. Is his frequent peeing something I should be concerned about?

  • Nice doggy playpen in your kitchen. Wish my kitchen had room for one of those. Maybe I can't see the whole thing, but what's stopping the pups from jumping up on top of the crate and out of the ex-pen? Are there extra panels set on top of crates?

  • Nothing yet. They haven't discovered that method of escape yet. We are working on constructing something to cover that open space. The only time they've tried to get out was when they knew we were eating. And even then it was only the female who attempted to climb out. We will be putting something in that gap. Better safe than sorry.

    Any thoughts on the pups having unlimited access to water while penned during the day? Reminder: they are 10 and 1/2 weeks old.

  • Personally, I don't allow pups in training access to unlimited water while crated; mostly because they just always make a mess with it. But I rarely leave them for more than four hours. If I had to leave them all day, I would definitely provide water. Your pups sound totally normal for their age. There will still be accidents for a long time to come. Particularly because they don't have an older dog to show them where the right place is to go. Your training would probably go more quickly if you limited the space they had while you are gone…it will be a long time before they realize it isn't appropriate to go in that big x-pen area, because they can "designate" one area the toilet, and another for sleeping, and another for eating, etc. That is why crate training works so well...they usually hate to potty where they sleep and eat. But, I can understand that you want them to have more space during the day...but just know it will take longer for house training 🙂

    And, again, just my opinion, but I think pee-pee pads delay the whole idea 'the only place to potty is outside'. If you *want your dog to go potty on the pads regularly, then by all means use them (high rise apartment dwellers come to mind)..but if you want the dog to go outside, don't *give them a place to go inside...just clean up the accidents, and watch them all the time 🙂

    I would imagine it will be more difficult to train littermates, because they kind of feed off each other. And it is hard to watch two ALL the time, because they go different directions 😉 Give yourself some time, and patience, and you will all do fine 🙂

    By the way...looks like a really nice set up in the kitchen! Lucky pups.....

  • I second that those puppies were really lucky to have you find them and give them a home and what seems like a lovely family. I have read your other threads and think it is wonderful how much you have done to give these puppies a warm, loving, comfortable home. Good luck and keep up the great work.

  • Thanks, I really appreciate all the support I've been given from this forum. It's good to know that we're on the right track with the training, and that my pups are behaving normally. I am being very patient and trying to be as consitent as possible with training. I understand that it will take longer to potty train since we aren't home during the day as much as I'd like to be, and that they have the peepads too. They are responding very well to the bits of treats they get when pottying where they are supposed to. I thought maybe that's why smart little Cooper has been peeing so much! Oooh I pee on the pad or outside, I get a treat! Pee pee pee pee 🙂

    And just cuz I love to share my cuties, I've attached a couple more pics.;) Sorry the quality stinks, I can only upload pics from my cell phone for some reason. The ones from the camera are too big.


  • I also provided my dog a water bottle in his crate while I was away. IMO, it's the best option. it provides water when you are away for long hours, they can't possibly make a horrific mess with it, and they won't gulp down a ton a time (which leads to accidents). my dog had a lovely habit of swimming in his water bowl - literally. he'd dig in it, knock it over, splash about…. so the water bottle solved a few issues for us.

    i think your setup is GREAT! I do agree w/ Andrea though, training will take longer since you are away for long hours, and need to use the pads. don't worry though, it may take longer, but it WILL happen. just keep at it, sounds like you're doing great.

  • I tried a water bottle with Querk in his crate when he was a puppy, but he managed to chew a hole in it, during the course of a day. Then the next one he managed to pull the metal spout out of the cap…he was a complete basket case in his crate though :x

    I usually use a small ceramic crock, if I need to...but they still seem to dance around in it 🙂

  • When you look at those faces and little bodies - ya just gotta forgive 'em. They're so young, but your attention to training and details about the house will pay off big time. This is one really smart breed. As you already noticed:

    Oooh I pee on the pad or outside, I get a treat! Pee pee pee pee 🙂

    As long as you're on to him. I don't reward for going on the pee pads. Only when Daisy (12 weeks old) goes outside and for when she pees or poops outside. If she goes on the pads, I don't give her any attention. If I catch her peeing on the floor, I do my best to stop her mid-stream - with a loud "DAISY!!" Then I whisk her outside soon as I can. It takes a lot of time and effort to do all this hawking but I think it's the only way to house train. Soon enough, that job will be done. Every dog is different. I went thru this last year with Duke. I remember it taking Duke 2-3 mos. before I noticed I wasn't cleaning pee & poop in the house anymore. (ahhh - that was a nice thought!) But I had to catch him and show him. I wasn't using the treat method though. (this forum wasn't known to me last year) Maybe Daisy will catch on sooner by using treats and because she has Duke to help show her too. :rolleyes: Anyway - stay positive with your mission - it's exhausting - but it will get better. 🙂

  • What an amazing pen you have there! Wow! I wish I could do something like that in my house. 😉
    While we were away during the day at work, our puppy would be created w/out any food or water. I found that everytime he had access to water he just drank and drank which leads to little messes. Now that our little pup is over 3 mts I still have to watch his water intake. At times he just wont stop.

  • Here is a couple pictures from the night Missi attempted her escape. They seem to be enjoying their pen better than being in the crates. They go right in all as soon as they see us bringing out the Kongs!

  • OMG look at that little one climb. Too cute. I wonder if my B has any idea he is capable of climbing. Probably not since he just stares up at the tree when he chases the squirrels.

  • Consider yourself lucky! lol That's as far as Missi has made it. She's only tried to climb one other time after that photo was taken. I hope she loses interest before she figures out how to get any higher! 🙂

  • I do hope she losses interest. My B girl Sugar climbs. X-pens are definitely out unless they have a lid, and then she'll scream. I can block the kitchen off with baby gates if I have visitors but not from her-she'll hop right over from a sit. She has climbed the fence to get at a squirrel, but since I watch her I got to her before she got over. I'm just waiting for the tree climbing to start!

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