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Your Jack Russell Puppy Care Checklist - Jack Russell Crazy Issue #23
October 26, 2011

To Pee or Not to Pee

To Pee or Not to Pee, that is the question.... Like many owners, you have this completely adorable Jack Russell Terrier who is the love of your family life and whose picture is displayed in many frames around your home. You keep him clean with special shampoo and well fed with high quality food. You buy special toys for him and take pride in finding new edible treats in different flavors. You may even dress him up in fancy raincoats and sweaters for the weather or even better yet, costumes for Halloween. So why o why is the little guy losing cuteness points by desecrating your house with his urine!!?? But he's housetrained you might say. Well, a dog who is house trained just doesn't start peeing in the house for no reason. And while every situation is different, I'm hoping to give you some common senarios to go by and steps in finding some solutions. And in the meantime, while you work on this issue with your Jack, please go to the pet store and buy yourself some enzyme based cleaner. Dogs have the keenest sense of smell and tend to "revisit" spots they have preyed on before. Enzyme based cleaners are the ones that erase the smell. Ammonia does not work!!!!

Scenario #1 - You get home from a hard days work and go to pet your Jack and then see yourself surrounded by a little puddle. Some young dogs that have been house trained may still have accidents when they get excited. This "excitement pee" is not uncommon for puppies that are just learning how to control their bladder. Some dogs roll on their back and usually onto their owners feet and pee when they are a little anxious. This "submissive pee" is not uncommong for dogs who are a bit shy or even a little scared of a tall dominating adult. The good news is that this is pretty easy to fix. Your Jack should not be punished for expressing their feelings to you and in fact, yelling at them or rubbing their noses in the mess will usually make things worse. Using a high pitched excited voice is not good either because it revs them up. When you get home, it is best to completely ignore them until they calm down and are ready to be pet. Make sure you voice is happy but low and steady. In the case of dogs who are submissive peeing, wait till they are calm, get down on their level and pet them gently. Because an extended hand coming towards them could be percieved as a threat, start by putting out your hand just a little bit and letting them come to you and then make sure to praise him for being calm or reward them with a treat. Dogs that are submissing peeing may feel insecure about their place in the household. Teaching them basic training skills such as "sit" can help increase their confidence or playing fun games like ball chasing with them can help as well with bonding. Scenario #2 - Dogs that have been housetrained for years and suddenly show signs of regression. Whenever a dog shows that kind of regression it is best to take them to a vet to rule out any medical issues. There are many medical issues that could cause bladder issues such as a bad reaction to food, parasites, urinary track infections, dementia, diabetes (due to thirst and an increase of water intake) and old age in general.

Scenario #3 - You lovingly opened your home to a rescued Jack who seemed to be housetrained but now is having accidents. Because your Jack was rescued it's hard to know what kind of training he received and it's also hard to know what kind of treatment he received. In this case, it may serve you best by retraining him in your with good sound methods. Start with the basics of housetraining and work your way up. It's also a good idea to limit his access to one or two rooms versus access to the whole house while you are doing this. Something that works well is that when you are with him in the house, try attaching your Jack's leash to your belt or wrist so that he is always in your site and can't possibly make the error of peeing. If he looks like he might pee, you can immediately take him outside since he is right by your side. And when you are out of the house try crating him. Gradually give your Jack more freedom as he regains housetraining skills. Give your Jack some time to learn. Patience is a virtue with rescue dogs!

Scenario #4 - X marks the spot and so does your Jack. Your Jack has been "marking" specific areas in your home. While scent marking is normal and instinctual for dogs, it is not kind on your carpets. In this case, you need to show who is boss of your home. Consistent obedience training and running your dog through commands daily can help with this as well as give your Jack something to look forward to everyday. Make sure that you go through doors before your Jack does and that he is not allowed on your furniture and that he follows through with commands in order to get treats. Neutering males before 1 years old can help with marking too.

Scenario #5 - Your Jack loves you to pieces and just can't stand to be without you. He often follows you around the house and can be clingier then cellophane. Try crate training. Most dogs won't pee where they sleep. Start with small periods away and gradually work your way to longer time periods. Give your Jack a fun chew toy such as a Kong filled with biscuits and peanut butter to keep him occupied and make sure you leave quietly enough so he doesn't know you are gone.

Scenario #6 - It's raining, it's pouring and your Jack is not going outside. It's best to keep your Jack on his regular schedule. Grab your umbrella and wait it out. He might not like it but "lather, rinse, repeat" until you get results.

Scenario #7 - Not only is it raining but it's thundering. I'm not a fan of thunder myself so I can see why our little guys dislike it so much. If it is really bothering your Jack to the point that he is peeing in the house, you may want to talk to your vet about medication. There are some pills and sprays that you can administer before a storm that can help alleviate some of the stressful effects. Having an issue with your Jack peeing in the house? Or have a scenario we didn't discuss? Be sure to post it in our forums so one of our many Jack Russell Lovers can help you out!

Need a more detailed guide to every aspect of raising, training and looking after a Jack Russell puppy. The Jack Russell Lover's Ultimate Guide to Training is the only resource you need and it's available for instant download for only $14.95.

Click here to watch a video explaining exactly how this guide can help you, and then get your copy today.


We absolutely love receiving photos of your JRTs. That's why we are holding our fifth, November cute JRT contest. Send us your most adorable JRT photos with a brief explanation of who your JRT is and what your JRT is doing/thinking/scheming about in the picture. It's okay if you've already entered in the past, just send us a different picture of your JRT than the one you've previously submitted. The winner will be announced on November 20th, will be featured on our homepage, and will receive a prize from our new JRT Amazon Store. Submit your photos here!

'Til Next Time...

Take care - and take care of your JRT!

Any comments on this issue, or ideas for upcoming issues of the E-Zine? Don't hesitate to contact me. Simply reply to this email. Your question may even be featured in an upcoming issue of the newsletter!

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Thanks for reading and best wishes,

Tom McSherry and the Jack Russell Team

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