My dogs use one part of the yard to urinate and it looks awfull. I want to dig it up and put pee gravel there, sort of a zen look, so they can do thier buisness and it won't look so bad. You know, yellow grass and all. The question is, will they look for another spot to urinate? If so is there anything I can do to keep them on that spot?
Here are a few ideas - try these out and see if anything works for you (and report back!).
1. Some dogs do habituate to a certain surface (ie grass). If you tear up the grass wholesale and put down an unfamiliar surface (gravel), yes, they will probably look elsewhere for their more familiar surface. However, since you said the grass looks pretty bad anyway and you plan to tear it out, it won't matter if it gets a little more destroyed first, right? What if you introduce the gravel slowly - sprinkle a bit of it onto their usual area, then a bit more - build up gradually so they get used to the feeling of the gravel without really thinking about it.
2. You can use rewards to reinforce the behavior you do want (peeing in a specific area, presumably in a specific time frame) - at first, reward them every time they go in their area. Ignore everything else. Once they get the idea that they get an extra treat if they go in a certain area, you can put the rewards on a schedule - only reward 50% of the time, and as long as you're only rewarding some of the attempts, only reward the BEST ones: decide if you want to reward the criteria of speed - going immediatly upon being let out, or the criteria of location - going within a smaller and smaller zone. You can actually build up both, but only do one at a time. Too many variables will confuse your dog about what it is actually being rewarded for. Once you get them going exactly where you want, you can slowly reduce the rewards until it is on a very random schedule. If you want to go one step further, you can even put all of this on a verbal cue. I use different ones for "pee" and "poop" - just try to think of a quick command-type phrase that you a)won't be embarrassed to use in public (personally, I hate using phrases that sound like I'm talking to a 2-year-old) and b)that you don't really use in casual conversation. I like "be quick" or some variation.
3. Give them a target. Do you have any male dogs? Even though mine is neutered, he always seems to aim for the highest point available. When I tore all the weeds and tall plants out of his corner of the yard, he was thoroughly confused as to where he was supposed to pee until I stacked up four large-ish stones. Target lock! Plus the stacking stones look pretty cool and might fit in with your zen garden idea. You can just hose 'em off and spray with Perma-Stall Wash to keep flys and general grossness off.
None of this will achieve 100% accuracy - at some point one of them will probably mark on a spot where a squirrel has peed, or a cat has rolled, or something. But hopefully it will help to encourage them to stay mostly within their designated area and keep the rest of your yard green and attractive.
Ron,There are two methods to keep your dog urinate on the same spot you prepared. Read the following.
1.You have to section off a spot where you put pee gravel in your yard and remember leave it open on one side and bring your dogs there every time you take them outside. Don't forget to choose a command word. Use it every time you take him there. At first leave his pee there so he can pick up the scent the next time he goes out. Eventually you will not have to take him there anymore just use your command word and he will go on his own. It really does work. For an instance you can use word bathroom for command word.
2.This method will take some time on your part. But will definitely work. Take dogs out on leashes to the area you prefer them to be urinated. When the job is done praise them and give dogs treats. This may take a few trips on leashes. Then try without leashes just accompany dogs to the area you preferred earlier, praise them and give treats after a few trips just praise, no treats. Give them treats when they are back inside. Now try just watching and see if dogs head for the area you preferred. If so praise few times.
Last edited by warunasanjaya3030; 09-05-2012 at 04:01 AM.