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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-01-2011, 09:13 PM Thread Starter
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Bell Ringing

Any ideas how to stop or correct a dog from ringing the bells just to go outside when he doesn't need to go potty? Smokey caught on really quickly to ringing the bells when he had to go potty but I also think he knows he will get to go outside and he rings them constantly...the vet says it is because I treat trained him to go potty but I did NOT use treats to potty train..I just think he likes being outside..........sometimes he just goes out and sits down or just stands there staring off into the distance and when I say..."inside" he comes right back in......anyone else run into this issue?
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-01-2011, 10:41 PM
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Comes along for the ride. Yep that's typical. Only way out of it is extinction. Which means not reinforcing it. Which means don't open the door. Which means now your back to taking him out on a regular basis when you figure he needs to go. Now that you've trained that, you might as well honor his call because if you don't he might have to really "go:". Some people will take him out on leash, reward or praise only if he does his business, and if he doesn't bring him in immediately. But that involves a little work.

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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-01-2011, 11:50 PM
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Sounds like my house! LOL Tillie took to the bells immediatly and hasn't had an accident since she was 4.5 months old!! Small price to pay, I guess... with the nice weather Tillie rings the bells a lot. We only give her a treat when we KNOW she has gone potty.... I guess it's like kids, you have to "pick your battles"!

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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-02-2011, 07:30 AM
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Doesn't take them long to learn what to do to get outside does it? Tucker used to jump on the door when he needed to go outside. When we stopped taking him out every time he jumped on the door he changed tactics. Now he comes up to us whines and pats us with his paw. Once again we're having to ignore him if we're sure he just wants to go outside to play. Actually, the only time it's a problem is at night when he constantly wants outside. We have Fishercats in the area and will not let him out at night alone. It's really hard to ignore him whining and patting me with his paw though.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-02-2011, 08:15 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks...I have started making him come inside as soon as he sits down and/or just stands there and also alot of praising when he does go potty after ringing the bell...funny lol as I'm typing this he is ringing the bell like crazy...AND sometimes we do ignore him and he will forget all about it and get up on the couch and take a I guess it is just something we will work through....
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-02-2011, 08:18 AM
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Lizzie is starting to do that, too, now that the weather is nicer. She is ringing the bell when my daughter and her friends are outside riding their bikes or rollerblading or if her little doggy friend is out. Sometimes I take her out and sometimes I don't. So I guess I am reinforcing it. But at least I have an indicator of if she really has to go potty or not.

I would do what Dave says and put him back on a schedule and ring the bells when you take him out for potty. Could you use a different door to go out for "fun"?

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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-02-2011, 08:26 AM
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Just thought I'd throw in a funny here about Phoebe ringing the bell even tho
she doesn't really have to go. Phoebe soon learned that when she rings the bell our English Shepherds race to the door wall to go out with her.

Mind you they have not figured out this trick yet but are happy to go along for the ride.

Now, when of our two English Shepherds has a toy Phoebe wants she rings the bell. The two big dogs race outside and Phoebe runs back in the house to get the toy!
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-02-2011, 11:25 AM
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ha ha ha! SMART little phoebe!! that is GREAT! LOL

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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-02-2011, 11:55 AM
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Nellie has learnt a similar trick, she bangs the cat flap when she wants to go out or come in,and Dizzie tags along with her.She knows he will leave his chew or toy , and she will jump in there,he never seems to learn.

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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-02-2011, 02:15 PM
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They are so smart aren't they? Cey started ringing the bells weeks ago to go outside to play, especially when the neighbor's cat is out there (they are actually really good friends, and will play together!). We only have one door so we just got him a longer outdoor lead for the times when he wants to go play (no fenced in yard, but a little courtyard in front - and we can almost always tell when he has to 'go' vs when he wants to play, and we continue to take him out on his leash and praise him when he goes, when he does have to go potty). Not sure if that is the way it is 'supposed' to be done (probably not!) but it's a compromise that works for us and our situation. I'm sure you will figure something out that works for you
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