I'm really not looking forward to potty training a baby human someday....potty training a puppy that thinks it's a baby human is difficult enough. After hearing stories from coworkers about kids that smear poop all over bathroom walls, I figured potty training a puppy must be a breeze. Fail.
When we first adopted Chipson and were staying at my parents' house, we took her out as often as we could to help her get used to doing her business outdoors. In fact, the first two times she peed were outside, so we thought she may not even need that much training. Then she pooped next to my parents' bedroom. Then she rolled in poop when we stopped off the freeway on our way home from Spokane. Then she pooped in our stairway. Then she pooped in our guestroom. Poop, poop, poop.
Peeing also hasn't been that great. If we left her alone for more than 30 seconds, she seemed to find a chance to pee on the carpet somewhere. If we take her to the door to go outside and pee, she couldn't seem to contain herself and would pee in the mudroom. There were a few occasions where I was putting my shoes on to take her out only to hear the piddle noise, and was then forced to pick her up mid-stream and run outside (with only one shoe on) before she was all done just so I could say, "Good girl!" when she peed outside. The problem is that if you don't clean up 100% of the "scent" she leaves behind, she will still recognize that "spot" as a good place to mark again - with a vengeance.
Then came Wednesday, February 2. 2011 - a day that will go down in history. She finally started getting it! Jenny was in the living room when Chipson, who was at the top of the stairs, started to whimper. On a hunch, Jenny took her downstairs to see if maybe, just maybe, if Chipson was trying to let her know it was time. Sure enough, as soon as Jenny took her outside, the desert of our walkway turned into "A River Runs Through It." Later that night, I was in the kitchen when Chipson again began to whimper at the top of the stairs. "No," I thought, "lightning does not strike twice." But even a broken clock is right twice a day, and after taking her outside, it was clear that Chipson indeed needed to pee again.
She's still not 100% there, but is well on her way. I would hardly consider ourselves to be dog whisperers, but at least we know our house won't have to always smell like, well, you know. She really is a great dog that is full of love....and poop.