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Dog Keeps Peeing In The Same Spot? How To Quickly Break The Habit For Good

Dog Keeps Peeing In The Same Spot? How To Quickly Break The Habit For Good

When your dog keeps peeing in the same spot in your home, it can be tough to convince them that no, that specific area in your closet, on your prized potted fig tree, or under the table is not, in fact, an appropriate potty area.

But it can be done. You just need a deliberate, perfectly timed plan to break the habit for good.

Kill The Odor For Good

The scent of dried urine acts as an attractant, so as long as any trace of that scent remains, your dog will keep peeing in the same spot.

“But I clean!” you say, and you truly do use carpet spray on your dog’s favored pee spots.

But when your dog pees on the floor, it soaks through the carpet into the backing and sometimes even down to the hardwood beneath.

You’ll need to use an enzyme-based pet stain cleaner to break down the uric acid salt crystals in the stain.

Regular soaps, detergents, and homemade cleaners (such as a combination of baking soda and vinegar) DO NOT break down uric acid, so if you’ve been holding off on buying a real pet stain cleaner, there’s most likely still traces of uric acid in that spot.

How To Use Enzymatic Cleaner To Clean Urine Stains

For fresh stains, use paper towels to soak up as much of the urine as you can.

Then, spray a generous amount of enzymatic cleaner on the spot. It should seem like you’re using too much. I know that stuff is expensive, but if it can keep you from having to replace the carpet, it’s well worth it.

Also spray the surrounding area. Remember that urine splashes, so there may be traces of pee near the wet spot.

Follow the directions on the spray. Generally, you’ll have to wait then minutes, then blot the area.

Never use a steam cleaner to clean urine stains. Urine contains protein, and when protein is heated, it “cooks,” just like an egg when you break it into a hot pan.

Now, how do you know if you truly obliterated that urine stain?

You can use a handheld black light and/or use the enzymatic cleaner again after the first application has dried.

Now that you’ve put all of that elbow grease into killing that stain, you may need to use a pet gate or other barrier to keep your dog away from the area.

Though removing the scent removes a huge cue, the visual cue is still going to invite them back to mark their scent again.

Change Things Up

Now that the scent is gone, it’s time to change up those visual cues.

Can you move furniture around? Create a barrier? Maybe you can put a rubber mat over the area.

Repurpose The Area

Now that the scent-based and visual cues are gone, you’ll need to reconfigure your dog’s mental cues.

Because even though the area looks different and smells different, they’ll still have fond memories of peeing there.

It can help to spend time in that area playing, practicing tricks, and possibly even placing your dog’s food and/or water bowls there.

Training Tips For When Your Dog Keeps Peeing In The Same Spot

Okay, so you’ve taken apart your dog’s pee spot, now what?

Well, without some training in place, your dog will find a new favorite spot.

While you’re working on the above steps, make sure your dog has plenty of access to the outdoors.

When does your dog have accidents? Is it at night when you’re sleeping, or during the day when you’re at work? You can crate your dog at those times, hire a certified professional dog walker (they have business insurance, know CPR, and won’t make silly mistakes like leaving doors unlocked), or, or, if you can, take your dog out more often.

Are they letting you know when they have to go potty? If not, try potty bells.

Are they lifting their leg to mark the spot? This may be more common in dogs who live in a house with a fenced-in backyard. The backyard may take care of their need for relief, but not their need for new, novel areas scented with other dogs’ pee. Pee-mail is a form of mental stimulation. More walks around the block, at the park, or in other public places can satisfy this need so your dog won’t do it indoors.

When To See A Vet

Urinary issues, like a urinary tract infection or bladder stones, can make it difficult for your dog to control their bladder.

Any time your dog has a recent change in their usual habits, it’s worthwhile to rule out a medical problem. You’ll get the peace of mind that your dog’s not sick or in pain so you’ll be ready to move forward with training.

Ask your veterinarian to do a urinalysis. You may even be able to bring a urine sample to your vet without scheduling an office visit if you’re worried about the cost.

Lindsay Pevny
Lindsay Pevny lives to help pet parents make the very best choices for their pets by providing actionable, science-based training and care tips and insightful pet product reviews.

She also uses her pet copywriting business to make sure the best pet products and services get found online through catchy copy and fun, informative blog posts. She also provides product description writing services for ecommerce companies.

As a dog mom to Matilda and Cow, she spends most of her days taking long walks and practicing new tricks, and most nights trying to make the best of a very modest portion of her bed.

You'll also find her baking bread and making homemade pizza, laughing, painting and shopping.

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Azia

Thursday 7th of April 2022

I use the enzymatic cleaner every day on every spot he pees and still he pees in the same spot. I tried crate training but no one is home for about 5-6 hours. Isn’t that to long of a time to be in the crate for a small dog? He has started peeing in bedrooms/bed frames and I don’t know what to do.

MissBee

Sunday 13th of March 2022

My neighbor allows his dog to pee on the patio, which then spills down onto my patio and furniture, leaving filth and urine smell all over my outdoor living space. I have asked the neighbor to stop allowing the dogs out but he intends to make no changes. Are their any odor remedies that I can use to place on the patio edge above me that will keep his dogs from entering the patio at all?

Lindsay Pevny

Sunday 13th of March 2022

Wow, that's gross, I'm so sorry to hear about that! I don't think you'll. be able to stop the dogs from peeing there because it sounds like he doens't walk them or give them any opportunity to relieve themselves otherwise. Is there maybe a property manager you can talk to first? If you don't rent, maybe you can talk to an attorney? I think what it comes down to is the damages and the health hazard you're getting subjected to.

Paul

Wednesday 2nd of June 2021

is several dogs peeing in the same spot outside harmfull to humans health I can smell it sometimes and i have copd

Bernard

Sunday 6th of March 2022

Go to home depot or Amazon and buy the yard spray cleaner that Attaches to your hose. Hose down the affected areas that are stinky. Wah lah! Done!

Lindsay Pevny

Monday 14th of June 2021

The ammonia could definitely be irritating to your lungs if it's very concentrated, maybe you can hose down that spot or throw a bucket of water over it to dilute it. I wonder if it could help to lay down something that absorbs odor like charcoal or mulch.

Petsblow

Tuesday 9th of March 2021

Peeing is a common problem for many dogs and they need proper training for this.

Thanks, Lindsay for such a great post regarding this.

Dog Lover

Monday 13th of April 2020

This really good article to read, Thanks for good work!

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