29 September 2011

Mind your step

Long-time readers will remember that when we moved to our new house two and a half years ago, I was heavily pregnant with Woody.  At that stage, I knew that if I put in some effort to teach Bullseye where to 'do her business', it would pay off and we'd be happy in the long run.  But I was too large and uncomfortable to put the effort in, so first one then another 'number 2' went on the back lawn.

Before we knew it, Bullseye had designated pretty much the whole lawn as a Dog Toilet and we've been picking up or avoiding the area ever since.  Her two favourite places are under the swing set (very bad) and the spot where I stand when I do my gardening (also very bad.)


Six months ago I formulated a plan to re-designate the Dog Toilet through an elaborate routine of:

  • giving Bullseye to my Mum and Dad for the September week we were going to be away
  • watering the lawn to minimise Dog Toilet smell
  • spraying the lawn with that smelly stuff that's supposed to deter dogs from doing their business in that spot, and finally
  • when the little hound came home, keeping her at the side of the house for a few days to re-designate that as Dog Toilet.  It's the best spot in the yard, I figure.

Crazy?  Yeah, but it was my best shot.  I don't care if you don't believe it would work, or if you tried the smelly stuff without success, I HAD to give the plan a go.  You understand?  It was either try it or don't.  Pull out all the stops, using a week where Bullseye was scheduled for a holiday away anyway, or just give up and keep stepping in the Dog Toilet. Okay?

I was prepared for it to fail because of a number of factors.  The dog going lame wasn't one of them.

Her stay in hospital was a diversion I wasn't expecting but I took it in my stride, sighing a deep sigh for the outcome of my Grand Dog Toilet Re-Designation as I did so.  Still, I was hopeful that I could continue with the plan once she was home.

And now - oh joy of joys! - the dear thing is home, much less fluffy and certainly less steady on her feet, but she's home!

And what did she do once she got back on her turf?

She went out to the spot under the swings, and did a celebratory dump.

It seems that the universe is laughing at me.


Crazy Sister said...

Don't know about the universe, but it's giving me a chuckle... in a commmissserating sort of way.

I wasn't sure how to spell that, with one or two m's or s's, so I put in three of everything.

Givinya De Elba said...

That's what I do!! At least that way people think, "Oh, a typo" and are none the wiser that you don't know how to spell the word.

Heather said...

I also shall commmissserate.

What about making a "dog run" with some fencing? If you let Bullseye out into that area as soon as she goes outside, and only let her into the rest of the yard once she's "done her business" then maybe she'll eventually catch on?

If we ever can afford to fence in our back yard (hubby's #1 requirement for dog ownership - a fenced-in back yard so the dog can be let out without requiring a human to stand out there with him/her or needing a leash), I am hoping to be a Strict Yet Loving Doggy Mom who puts in all required effort to train the new dog how to only "go" in one designated area.

However, given the fact that I am not known for my Superhuman Perrrrseverrrrrance (turns out I don't know how to spell that word properly either - tried three times to get it right and had the Red Squiggly Line of Dumb turn up under it each time) and given that we live in a part of the world where it snows for almost 6 months of the year and rains for another 4 beyond that, I am sure that the "designated area" would very quickly turn into "the entire yard" because I am not overly fond of going out into Weather, and that would no doubt extend to Monitoring Dog Business Locations.

But, it is going to be a year from Never before we can afford the fencing, so a dog is but a deeply impassioned dream of the child's at this point. Whew.

Andi said...

Now my curiosity about her sequestering is satisfied. I trained my dog (at our old house) to do her business at the very back of the yard by daily moving all doo to that spot. Even when I cleaned the yard, I left a few piles there. She started always doing her business there. However, this house's previous owners had three dogs in a very small back yard. Then we added a puppy of our own to the mix. Wherever the puppy pooped, my dog pooped. Now, even though we've quadrupled the size of our yard, she still poops near the house. It is driving me crazy. I keep scooping it, and trying the very back of the yard thing, but it isn't working.

Oh, and I linked up to you with a post today. I linked up to your post about the vicious creatures in the sand!

tinsenpup said...

When we moved here, we bought dog wire and star pickets from Bunnings and spent an afternoon carefully constructing a magnificent spoodle-proof fence. We equipped a generous dog run filled with food and shelter and fun and toys and delicious treats. It took him approximately 2.7 seconds to escape. Oh and he poos where he likes too. Also usually near the play equipment.

Hippomanic Jen said...

For us it's the clothes line. Why?

I've also noticed that the LBD is most likely to dump on the shortest, greenest, best cared-for lawn when we go on walks. I'm wondering if I get my Mr to keep an obscure corner of the yard mowed beautifully...