Mike's Q&A

An interactive question and answer forum with expert dog trainer Michael Wombacher for all of your most pressing dog behavior and dog training-related questions.

Housebreaking an Older Dog

Q: We have adopted a 3 year old female Yorkie 6 months ago. She had been living in a kennel all those 3 years and used as a breeder. We love her, have taught her all sorts of things dogs do--she didn't even know how to climb stairs when she came to us--but she's peeing and pooping all over the house. I can't believe it's too late to change this behavior but really HELP!
Thanks and hello from your former client Nicola and Snowy (dog is Monty), 


A: The best thing to do is to check out the section on this site specifically addressing housebreaking. Generally the issue is too much freedom. It’s through an intelligent combination of confinement, supervision and regulation that you can crack the housebreaking nut. It’s sometimes very challenging with an older dog coming from a breeder situation where who knows what the house rules were. This will take some months for you to resolve reliably. Again, check out the housebreaking section on this site. There’s tons of information there.