For some reason, puppy potty training has not been going well. Smooth Fox Terriers have such definite personalities, that my past training efforts have all been about keying into what Method Actors would call “their motivations”. For instance, Charlie was, in many ways, like a fussy little English gentleman who liked everything just so. Training was easy. He’d rather gnaw off his own paw than wee anywhere near where he lived. In fact, it was always a challenge in the dog park because he had difficulties when people weren’t respecting his privacy. It’s embarassing to have to tell parents, “Can you tell your child not to stare at my dog? It’s violating his personal space.” Oscar, on the other hand, has no such scruples. He’s quite happy to poo right in his bed. Then lie in it. Or maybe eat it.

Actually, from the first day he caught on exactly what the routine was. Wake up, get taken to the “puppy wee pad”. Do your business. Eat. And for a more leisurely session, and when there was no rain, be taken out to the back deck to the cleverly designed AstroTurf doggie pad.

He seems to be an emotional pooer. If I leave him, he lets loose on his bed, makes sure to stamp on it and track it around. Then just for good measure eats some of it. Ditto if he’s on the bed and you step away for just a moment. See, and they say raising kids is hard. Sure an ungrateful child may go on drugs, drop out and become part of the Manson Cult and vote Libertarian. But they seldom yell out, “Ignore me, huh? Won’t give me what I want? I’m going to eat poo!”

I guess the next phase is going to involve more rigorous training of the owners, who need to anticipate output before it can appear, and get Oscar to the correct spot. Then lavish praise and lots of doggie treats for a correct performance.

I’ll let you know how it goes. Meantime, any suggestions?