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Housebreaking in a highrise

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SoCal Cairn

Hello everyone.  I just applied for a sheltered 10-12 month old female that needs to be housebroken.  I've owned cats all my life but this will be my first dog.  Before I applied I read a lot about terriers, but until I found this forum and read a few threads, I didn't know that Cairn's do not like to be held for more than a few minutes.

So now I'm worried about getting her down to the street, especially at the beginning when we're just getting to know each other.  We live on the 23rd floor and would have to wait for the elevator coming up, taking it down and walking down a long hallway to the street.  Given our situation, is this possible or should I consider another breed of terrier?

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Got a balcony you could fit out with some astroturf or similar? 

For the being held thing, that's more a case of being resistant to snuggling-when-its-not-their-idea. You can tuck one under your arm and carry it as far as you need to (within reason). 

I know breeders who litter-train their puppies. I have *no idea* how that process would go with a year-old pup, but I imagine with patience, persistence, and a couple gallons of Nature's Miracle it could be accomplished. 

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SoCal Cairn
26 minutes ago, bradl said:

Got a balcony you could fit out with some astroturf or similar? 

For the being held thing, that's more a case of being resistant to snuggling-when-its-not-their-idea. You can tuck one under your arm and carry it as far as you need to (within reason). 

I know breeders who litter-train their puppies. I have *no idea* how that process would go with a year-old pup, but I imagine with patience, persistence, and a couple gallons of Nature's Miracle it could be accomplished. 

Thank you!  That's good to hear.  I'm worried about having an accident in the elevator on the way down, I suppose I'd have to use the freight elevator until I'm sure. :)

I have a balcony, but wouldn't allowing her to use a box or turf make training her to use the elevator more difficult?  I've read that many older dogs rescued from shelters need to be housebroken due to lack of earlier training.  I'm in San Diego and many if not most sheltered dogs have been picked up off the streets of Tijuana.  The Cairn I applied for came from there and has only been in San Diego for a little more than a week.  I also forgot to mention that she's a mix, so who knows how many Cairn behaviors she might have.

Thanks again bradl!

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She's adorable!

Yeah, adding a box to the situation would definitely be a complicating factor. I guess I was thinking more either/or.

 I think if you are *relentless* about taking her out many times during the day and night until she has the routine down, she will be able to cope with the elevator. 

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SoCal Cairn

One more question.  The shelter says she's mixed with another terrier.  Just for curiosity, is it possible to tell from how she looks, or some other method (besides a DNA test) what other terriers (or possibly some other breed) she might have come from?  I know her floppy ears are not a cairn trait. And can I assume all the posters here own purebreds?

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I am *terrible* at mix ID. The head looks a little hound-y to me. For terrier cred :P I'd claim the coloring looks a bit like a border terrier's. 

While originally formed to support a Cairn breed club we've always welcomed anyone with an interest in Cairns and have had over the years many who have and love their Cairn mix. We've even have (or had 😢) Westies and Scotties (both strongly related to Cairns, historically).  So while the forum is focused on Cairns, there is some variety that comes along naturally :).

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Sam I Am

Sam’s roommate, Rosie the Scottie. Never noticed before Sam photo bombing in the back ground! 

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Until one has loved an animal, a part of  one's soul remains unawakened.  - Anatole France

Adventures with Sam &Rosie

 

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sanford

She’s adorable!  

I live on the 10th floor in a city of high rises and many folks I know use Wee Wee pads and also walk their dogs outside.

As for not liking to be carried, my first shelter cairn came with the name Carrington because he LOVED being carried! Ditto for my cairn, Ruffy.

Your pooch is still young. You might be able to get her used to being carried.

Unfortunately, emergencies do occasionally happen. If you had to get her out really FAST, and worry about soiling the elevator, you might try carrying her wrapped in a towel. Hardly ideal, but desperate times...

Wish I could offer more/better help.

FEAR THE CAIRN!

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SoCal Cairn
4 hours ago, sanford said:

She’s adorable!  

I live on the 10th floor in a city of high rises and many folks I know use Wee Wee pads and also walk their dogs outside.

As for not liking to be carried, my first shelter cairn came with the name Carrington because he LOVED being carried! Ditto for my cairn, Ruffy.

Your pooch is still young. You might be able to get her used to being carried.

Unfortunately, emergencies do occasionally happen. If you had to get her out really FAST, and worry about soiling the elevator, you might try carrying her wrapped in a towel. Hardly ideal, but desperate times...

Wish I could offer more/better help.

LOL, I like the Carrington name.  I guess it's a roll of the dice whether a dog likes to be carried or not.

My ultimate goal would be no pad.  Given my situation, would you recommend using both a pad and training her to go outside, then weaning her off the pad, or start off with no pad?

I had thought about using a diaper for the first few trips on the elevator 😬

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Kathryn

Agree with many above: she is adorable.  I might have guessed yorkie rather than cairn with that coloring, but there is definitely terrier in there somewhere.  

I guess I would add that -- whatever method you choose to housetrain -- the key will be consistency and speed.  If your dog shows signs of wanting to go (restless, circling, sniffing), get her where you want her to go! Don't wait for the commercial if watching television, don't wait for the water to heat so you can bring your coffee with you on the walk. (This should all be easier in SoCal than here in Minnesota, where I have gone out into my snowy yard barefoot and in pajamas during the winter...). She might not even "go" every time you take her out, but she has the chance.  

And, if she is true terrier, any kind of "food" treat used as praise for her accomplishments will definitely work wonders.

I really think lots of dogs who are given up because they are not housetrained actually have owners who are not "housetrained." Our dogs look to us for the lead, and I have even trained adult dogs, using a sharp eye and a bag of treats. 

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SoCal Cairn
7 hours ago, Kathryn said:

Agree with many above: she is adorable.  I might have guessed yorkie rather than cairn with that coloring, but there is definitely terrier in there somewhere.  

I guess I would add that -- whatever method you choose to housetrain -- the key will be consistency and speed.  If your dog shows signs of wanting to go (restless, circling, sniffing), get her where you want her to go! Don't wait for the commercial if watching television, don't wait for the water to heat so you can bring your coffee with you on the walk. (This should all be easier in SoCal than here in Minnesota, where I have gone out into my snowy yard barefoot and in pajamas during the winter...). She might not even "go" every time you take her out, but she has the chance.  

And, if she is true terrier, any kind of "food" treat used as praise for her accomplishments will definitely work wonders.

I really think lots of dogs who are given up because they are not housetrained actually have owners who are not "housetrained." Our dogs look to us for the lead, and I have even trained adult dogs, using a sharp eye and a bag of treats. 

After reading up and looking at many pics of cairns, I wonder how the shelter came up with the description of, 'Cairn Mix' rather than, 'Terrier Mix'.  When she has to go, I wouldn't wait, I'm just worried about travel time to the street.

For many reasons besides dog ownership, I'm glad I don't have to deal with snow.  The temperature range I need is 69 to 75 😉

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SoCal Cairn
5 hours ago, bradl said:

That face and expression is just killing me (in the good way). Is her name Cleopatra? :lol:

Yeah, I would describe her as looking dignified.

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Hillscreek

I don't know about cairn mix but terrier something seems likely and agree coloring looks like Yorkie or Australian somewhere. That regal head placed so well on her neck looks like a bigger dog to me. However, no matter what, she is a good looking youngster. 

Don't know anything about raising a dog living in a high rise. Only suggestion I have is to wrap a towel round her to catch accident on way out. If you are persistent and take her out frequently whether she signals or not then reward desired action with lots of praise she will learn. Big effort  on your part for a while but well worth it in the end. Also helpful when you get outside is a word or phrase to tell her what you expect.  eg go potty, do business, or whatever you choose. Use it every time. 

Good luck with her.

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SoCal Cairn
2 hours ago, Hillscreek said:

I don't know about cairn mix but terrier something seems likely and agree coloring looks like Yorkie or Australian somewhere. That regal head placed so well on her neck looks like a bigger dog to me. However, no matter what, she is a good looking youngster. 

Don't know anything about raising a dog living in a high rise. Only suggestion I have is to wrap a towel round her to catch accident on way out. If you are persistent and take her out frequently whether she signals or not then reward desired action with lots of praise she will learn. Big effort  on your part for a while but well worth it in the end. Also helpful when you get outside is a word or phrase to tell her what you expect.  eg go potty, do business, or whatever you choose. Use it every time. 

Good luck with her.

Thanks!

I hadn't thought about using the exact same command every time you want her to,"do it".  So much to learn.

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Well we picked up our new dog on Monday and renamed her Astra.  She's much smaller than I had thought judging from the pictures the shelter posted.  Her back stands only 12" tall and weighs 8.6 lbs.  She crossed the border from Ensenada just two weeks ago on the 2nd.  They called her a 'Cairn mix', she's definitely a mix, but I think they pulled the word Cairn out of their gazoo.  She has the long muzzle of a terrier with some possible Chihuahua thrown in.  She has wire hair on top and thin wispy hair on her stomach, legs and top of her head.  The first pic I posted was right after a haircut.  I wouldn't doubt that 90% of the street dogs in Mexico are 20-50% Chihuahua.

We went to the pet store and bought one of everything in sight.  An hour after we got home she pissed on her brand new bed.  I think housebreaking a one year old dog will take its toll on our patience and wood floors, although she has been doing her business while on a leash on our walks also.  I've been using the same command when I see her do it and giving her a treat right afterwards.  I tried pads without success but I suppose I should continue trying to train her in case of a heavy rain storm (it does happen here occasionally).   But she's an awesome dog who follows me everywhere.  I guess I need to find a terrier mutt forum now.
 

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Astra is adorable! Who cares what mix of terrier (or whatever). We welcome cairn terriers and also their 'mixes'. 

If she messes inside do not scold. Immediately pick her up and take outside. She does know about doing business outside that's a big plus. Be patient calm and consistent. She will learn.

She follows you, she wants to be with you. She'll be a great buddy.🙂

 

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I met a few dogs and their owners on my first walk today and everyone said there's no Chihuahua in her.  The more I look at her the more she looks like the prototype mutt to me.  While walking she'll stop to look at another dog or smell something on the ground.  So a little while ago while crossing the street she paused and when I looked down she was taking a cr_p in the middle of the street!  When I turned back to use a doggie bag (not sure what they're called) someone had just run over it.  So far she prefers sidewalks and astro-turf over grass.

It's amazing how close she wants to be, she'll follow me when I walk between the couch and the thermostat in the living room.  Thanks for the invite, I've got a million, new dog owner questions.

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