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I Need Your Help . . . How to Deal With "Happy Pee"

I Need Your Help . . . How to Deal With "Happy Pee"

Over the weekend, I met a Maltese with a bit of a pee-pee problem. The owner scooped her up, apologized profusely when I wanted into the apartment, and admitted she had no idea how to predict or stop this.

Flashback to a childhood friend of mine: we knew to knock on her door and immediately step back so her pooch would come outside to greet us . . . and thus pee on the steps, not in the foyer. This accidental piddling often occurs around new voices and people in the home — some believe it's a nervous reaction that comes from fear, while others term it "happy pee" since it often happens around strangers/excitement. If you've experienced this submissive behavior, share your thoughts on it, and how to deal, in the comments below!


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Lauren3185 Lauren3185 8 years
I actually went to a dog trainer for this problem...and what he told me did the trick!! Starting when I come home, I don't pay attention to her until we are both settled down. That means she has to be totally calm before I even look at her let alone pay attention to her. Then I always have my guests do the same. Unfortunately with guests this problem tended to be more of an issue. So, after she has settled down and the excitement of new people is TOTALLY gone they slowly get close to her by standing next to her, rubbing up against to her with their body/legs and then if she remains calm at this point they can then pet her. But the big key of this whole process is you can't even look at them, let alone touch/pet them. You have to pretend they don't exist until they mentally calm down. It took my dog awhile to get a hold of this but it worked! At first it took her a long time to settle down and now its down to 30 seconds to a minute and the piddling has stopped.
Happsmjc Happsmjc 8 years
our golden did this as submissive/excited behavior...he grew out of it
LoveThyDog LoveThyDog 8 years
We call this behavior nervous tinkle in our house and we had a trainer come help us with the behavior in one of our dogs many years ago. The behaviour tends to occur with a dog that has anxiety in general, or one that is nervous about their pack standing. A good way to help ease dog anxiety (in general and specifically with this behavior)is to keep them well exercised. A tired dog is a good dog! Also I think crate training helps dogs build their confidence. The more secure they are, the less likely they will be to nervously tinkle when they see someone new!
Octobersky Octobersky 8 years
My Boston, Fenway had this problem. He usually only does it when people come over and try to pet him when he is still in his "excited" state. So, our guests know to just walk away and not to pet him until he has settled down. Also, when people are coming over I have a tasty treat in my hand and I tell him to sit and then after the people have come in the door, I will give him the treat. It usually distracts him long enough to prevent him from peeing.
nyaxa nyaxa 8 years
This 'happy pee' is most likely a submissive behaviour. There's some great info out there on how to train a dog to out of this habit:
psterling psterling 8 years
I've had dogs that do this and as far as I can tell there's no real way to stop it but I've found that if you greet them calmly and quietly they're usually able to control themselves.
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