Puppy Poops/Urinates in Crate
I have an eight week of Labradoodle. She has been with us nearly a week. I bought a large crate but was told she probably relieves herself in the crate because it is too big.
I made it smaller and she still poops or urinates in the crate at night. I have to bathe her and the crate just about every morning. Can anyone help?
This certainly is a problem, and it must be incredibly frustrating for you.
There are lots of tips and advice on crate training on my Crate Training page, and it's important to realize that the crate should be just big enough for your puppy to stand up, sit down, turn around and lie down without touching the sides - no bigger. A puppy can divide a crate into 'sleeping' and 'defecating' areas quite easily if it's too big.
At 8 weeks of age, your pup has only very elementary control of her bladder/bowels. She will still need a potty break every 30 mins to an hour during the day, and most likely needs at least one bathroom break during the night (possibly two).
If she can manage to keep her crate clean during the day with this sort of schedule, you may just need to 'tweak' a few things to help her make it through the night.
First, feed her last meal no later than 6:00pm and pick up her water at 7:30pm. Be sure to take her out for a reasonably long potty break right before you go to bed for the night. If you hear her start to move around, whine or cry after a few hours, get up and take her out for a potty break. You need to break this habit of messing in her crate so that she can begin to build the new, correct habits.
As she gets older, her control will improve and you'll find that she can go all night without a break.
If she seems to urinate excessively, and sometimes only passes as few 'drops', have your vet check her out to make sure she doesn't have a urinary tract infection that's causing an uncontrollable urge to pee.
Housebreaking is definitely challenging, but with patience and consistency you will be able to work it out. Best of luck.