7 Tips for Dogs Refusing to Potty in the Rain
Why Do Dogs Refuse to Potty in the Rain?
Is your dog refusing to go potty in the rain? Who can blame the little pooch—nobody really likes getting drenched. If you have a dog that doesn't like to go out when it's raining, the situation may be quite frustrating to deal with, especially on those days when there's a steady rain that never stops, and your dog must go potty before going to bed for the night.
Why Does My Dog Dislike Rain So Much?
There may be several reasons that your dog doesn't like going out in the rain. Here are a few possibilities:
- Lack of exposure: Many dogs aren't used to being exposed to the rain when they are puppies, so they grow up not being used much to the rain and the sensation of getting wet.
- Negative associations: If, say, your dog is tentative one day about going out when it's raining and you get upset and scold him, your dog may start associating the rain with bad things.
- Our overreactions: Some people avoid the rain as much as possible when walking their dogs and avoid puddles like the plague. The fact that we make a big deal when we get wet can affect how our dog experiences the rain, as well.
- Our frustration: When we get frustrated when our dogs won't potty in the rain, we can make matters even worse. Dogs easily pick up our moods and reactions, so they may learn that rain is bad and should be avoided at all costs.
In Arizona, where I live, things can be particularly problematic because dogs aren't accustomed to seeing much rain for a good part of the year—and then during monsoon season, the rain comes non-stop for days at a time. Dealing with this problem first hand with my Rottweilers, I have come up with a nice list of tips to help your dog become more comfortable in going potty in the rain.
7 Tips to Help Your Dog Go Potty in the Rain
1. Get your dog used to water.
There are chances that domestication has spoiled our dogs. Dogs in the wild must get wet if they want to eat. Domesticated dogs rarely get wet nowadays. I recommend getting young dogs used to getting wet from a young age. I add getting a bit wet in my socialization classes. Get a garden hose and let your dog play with the water. Your dog will have lots of fun! I was reluctant to believe this at first but after being shy a few minutes my dogs had a blast playing in the water!
2. Feed on wet grass.
Rain is often not the only problem with dogs who hate rain. Many dogs seem to also hate walking on the wet grass. Well, guess what? You can classically condition your dog to love wet grass, here's how. If it has not recently rained, lightly make the grass humid with a garden hose and put your dog's food bowl down in the wet grass or toss some treats around. You can play a fun game of fetch on the wet grass. Your dog will start to associate wet grass with food or other fun things, or at least will learn that wet grass is nothing to worry about.
3. Let them walk.
Walking stimulates elimination. Take your dog for a walk in the rain. Sooner or later the urge will come, so be patient. It may be tough at first but they will get used to the rain and gradually getting used to it will shorten the time to go potty.
4. Invest in a large umbrella.
If you are looking for short cuts this may work. Doggy boots may be helpful as well as would a dog raincoat. But be aware: should one of these items be missing, your dog will go back to categorically refusing to go potty. Don't have an umbrella? Get your dog a nice raincoat instead!
5. Use a covered spot.
It's not a bad idea to take your dog to a covered area to potty. Look for a tree with thick foliage, a carport under dirt or build an area that is covered but that has still dirt under that you can bring your dog to when it rains. Of course, if you're using a public place, don't forget to pick up after your dog!
6. Wait until your dog really needs to go.
This may work in some cases. If it is raining outside, delay your dog's potty time. Let's say instead of 9 p.m. take your dog out at 10:30 p.m. or perhaps wait when your dog goes to the door. At this point, the urge to potty may override the fear of the rain.
7. Train a "go potty" cue.
This will help your dog generalize the behavior of going potty to different situations, places, and scenarios. This is a very helpful cue your want your dog to learn as it can make going potty a breeze. Here are tips on how to train your dog how to potty on command.
Does your dog hate to potty in the rain?
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.
Questions & Answers
Why are my dogs going potty in the house, even when it's not raining?
Dogs refusing to potty in the rain develop a tendency to go potty in the house for the simple fact that rain to these dogs is perceived as highly aversive. These dogs do not like the feeling of rain or are scared of storms, and therefore, will keep it for as long as they can. At some point, they no longer can hold it and will go potty in the house.Helpful 11
Are there ways to get your dog to pee so they don't get wet in the rain?
There are several options to get a dog to pee so that they don't get wet. One is to take the dog under a covered area (carport, tent, gazebo, area tarps, although with this latter dogs may be frightened by its movement/noise) and another option is to use a large umbrella. Many small dog owners use indoor pee pads for dogs who are squeamish about peeing in wet or cold weather. Owners of male dogs may use belly bands. Some dog owners use raincoats.Helpful 16
How do I get my dog to poop outside when it's raining? He peed out there just fine, but wouldn't poop!
Pooping can be a little more challenging, considering that dogs are often picky of where to poop and they may do better in holding their poop compared to their pee. It can help to walk your dog and let him sniff around. What helped me the most was training my dogs to pee and poop on command. https://pethelpful.com/dogs/How-to-Train-a-Dog-to-...Helpful 8
It's been raining all day and now it's 8:00 pm and my dog hasn't gone potty for 24 hours because of the constant heavy rain all day. What can I do to walk the dog despite the rain?
You can try walking your dog using a large umbrella or taking him to a covered area (like under a carport, pavilion) where hopefully he can relax a bit, sniff around and do his business. Make sure to praise your dog lavishly and give him a treat when he goes. I have been there when my dogs were puppies they hated to potty in the rain and I didn't want them to go to bed on a full bladder, so I had to spend hours outside in hopes of them going. They always went eventually and when they went we threw a party so to leave a positive impact on them.Helpful 6
© 2008 Adrienne Janet Farricelli