Excitement Urination

Some dogs, adults and puppies, urinate uncontrollably when a new person comes into the room, when you bend down to pet them, when you chastise them, and so forth. Owners usually describe this as urinating when "excited."

Actually, this is not a housebreaking problem in any sense except when you have to clean up. The dog does not even know he is urinating and should never, never be punished for doing so under these circumstances.

This is truly submissive urination, as described in the section on eye contact. And the only way to stop it-gradually, not instantly, unfortunately-is to eliminate the cause, the eye contact, and perhaps other behavior on your part that the dog has come to associate with eye contact and reacts to by urinating.
Start obedience training so as to give your dog more confidence and a greater sense of security. At the same time, stop making eye contact with the dog upon entering the house after an absence. Look over the dog's head. Don't greet him. Just mutter, "Did you have a good day?" or some other inanity. And keep going, or take him out, or whatever, but don't look him in the eye! Try to avoid bending over him. If you must do so, first issue a command, such as "Sit" and "Stay", and keep his attention on that command by repeating it demandingly and with mild encouragement while you bend down to attach his lead.

Make sure that guests don't greet the dog when entering your house. Instead, they should sit down normally and when he comes over to them, talk to him quietly, with little enthusiasm, without looking him in the eye. After he has calmed down, they may pet him discreetly when he approaches them. At this stage, they are not to approach him.

As for the submissive urination encountered when you punish your dog, first, get your own head together and stop creating situations in which he must make mistakes and thereafter be punished. Make his life positive, quickly, and this form of urination will disappear overnight. But when you must punish, use the lead and collar as outlined in the chapter on punishment. That land of punishment will not bring on submissive urination. However, the answer is to vow to do better-you, that is.


by Patricia P. Widmer
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