How can I turn my outside dog into an inside dog?


We have a nine month or so old black lab. I wanted to get a dog last year and was thinking along the lines of adult, housebroken, med. sized dog, that we would adopt from the humane society and then we saw someone selling puppies on the side of the road, and fell in love with this runt of the litter, ack black lab. However, my hubby didn’t have the patience to deal w/ her while she was untrained, and barking, and making messes in the house, ect.., so she’s an outside dog. I want her to come inside, and think maybe if I can train her while hubby is at work, then he will see she is okay to be inside? She has a big fenced area outside, but she is lonely. She jumps on the door and begs to come in. Is there a way I can work w/ her in the daytime, put her out when dh gets home, until she’s trained, or will that just confuse her and make her bark and cry when outside? Also, how do I bathe her?, she is HUGE!, and just rolls in dirt before she’s even dry.

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6 Responses to “How can I turn my outside dog into an inside dog?”

  1. sun_and_moon_1973 says:

    It will take a lot of work to get her trained to be an inside dog but it CAN be done. She isn’t housetrained so she will make messes in the house but how you deal with it make all the difference. It is best to talk to your husband and have him join you on the training or else the dog will not respect him as a leader of the pack. Keep her on a leash when she is in the house so you control where she is allowed to go-this will prevent potty accidents and her getting into things. Write down when she eats and does a lot of drinking and how long before she needs to go potty and take her out to one spot and say go potty-give her lots of praise when she goes in that spot and then take her back in. Have a small toy in your pocket or close in reach when she is in the house so when she goes to do something she shouldn’t you can correct her behavior and give her the safe toy to chew on and play with. Positive reinforcement and praise are the best ways to train the dog(at least I think). If you keep her in during the day and out when hubby gets home it is going to really confuse the dog and she will bark and jump on the door and might even become destructive to the yard and outside of your house. Bathing a large to xl -or in my case with my Dane a xxl-dog can either be a nightmare for both of you or something you both can tolerate depending on your approach. Start by letting her see and smell the tub with no water or threat to get wet-reward her with a treat and then go play a game with her. Lead her back to the tub 30-60 minutes later and just see what she does..if she shows interest give her praise. Keep doing this until she is comfortable being by the tub and then add a couple inches of water and lead her up to it. Dip your hand in and let her drink the water off your hand. I know it seems like a long process but after much trial and error I have found this works pretty good and I’d rather do this that fight with a huge dog. When she is ok with the tub and the small amount of water encourage her to jump in then splash the water on her legs going up until she allows you to get her wet without much of a struggle. Use lukewarm water and a good dog shampoo. You can do the 1st wash with dawn if she is really dirty then folow up with reg dog shampoo-that gets most of the dirt off so they are cleaner and in turn they dry faster. Make sure you give her a good brushing before the bath to get rid of extra hair and to loosen the dirt. Dry her starting at her head with a soft towel working down her back until midway then get another towel for the rest of her back and her legs-keep her in until she is almost completely dry to all dry so even if she does roll in dirt it won’t be too bad. I know this is long but I hope it helps:>)

  2. kittens says:

    I think that if she is trained properly then she should be able to come in.You need to start right away though or she is never going to be potty trained.Dogs are not like cats and you show them there litter box once and they remember where it is.Think of him more like a two year old humane toddler it takes a little effort to train them.Far as the bath goes my friend has a big lab and just brings her in the shower or tub and washes her up and then just towel dries her,and you can also use the hair dryer on cool to help dry a bit.Then maybe let her hang in the bathroom or kitchen for a half hour.She should be ready to go then.I forgot to tell you my friend would just put some old clothes on and stand in the shower with the dog.LOL.

  3. heather says:

    It will be tough to train you dog, but I would suggest keeping it inside while your husband is at work, only letting it out if it wants to. It may be hard, considering it might pee on the floor, but I would suggest keeping him in rooms with hard floors, not carpet, so it would be easy cleann up until he is trained.

    As far as bathing goes, bring him into the bathtub, scrub him down, rinse, and dry him off with a towel. Then wait a while to let him back outside if possible. Bathing it will be tough until he’s used to being inside, because he won’t get as dirty.

  4. MudFrog says:

    I commend you for trying to convert this poor dog from outside to inside. No dog should be an outdoor pet. It is lonely and scary for them. But this will not be easy.

    Training is involved. Time and patients. But I am unsure if all the training will be wasted if you just toss her back outside when your husband gets home.

    Maybe you can speak to him about this and come to some agreement. If not maybe finding a new home for the dog is the best…. somewhere where she will get the care she needs.

  5. gc27858 says:

    Black labs are big. You may want to keep it an outside dog and train it to use the potty only outside, just in case you need to protect it from the heat or cold out side. You can sign up the dog for obedience class or be patient with it while you’re training it. Don’t spoil her. Show you are in command. Be firm and stern with her. If not, she will walk all over you.

  6. heathen says:

    When you bring your dog inside, keep her on a leash! Don’t let her have full run of the house right away – it’s far too much for her to handle. Close doors to rooms you don’t want her in in case she gets free. Plan a bit to set her up for SUCCESS! Take baby steps. Keep her on a leash so you can control where she goes. Try sitting on the couch with her on the floor. Turn on the tv and every couple of minutes, when she’s calm, give her a small treat and a pat. Encourage her to be quiet and calm. If she starts to spaz out (and she will because she’s young), go for a walk – on leash. Don’t let her run wild through the house unless this is what you want from her. I assume it’s not. She will repeat the behaviours you allow her to practice. If you don’t want barking, teach her to "sush". If you don’t want racing around the house, keep her on leash.

    Watch her behaviour and she’ll let you know when she needs to go outside to toilet. This is another good reason to keep her on leash – you are forced to pay attention to her movements and activities. Any time she begins sniffing the floor, turning in circles, etc. , say something like "OUTSIDE!" and run her outside and praise her when she goes toilet (a lab would do anything for a treat, this is a good time to give one).

    Remember this – DOGS ONLY DO WHAT WORKS. That means that they will repeat behaviours that give them some sort of payoff (in THEIR minds, not yours). You may not like being yelled at but for a dog, if that’s the only attention you get, you’ll act out until someone yells at you so at least you get SOMETHING. Bad attention is still attention to a lonely dog. That’s why yelling doesn’t work.

    Washing the dog is a TWO person affair. One person manages the dog’s body on leash and can comfort and control her and the other person gives the bath. Don’t try to do it alone with such a big, boisterous dog. It’s too easy for the dog to learn how to "muscle" you over, act naughty and to avoid the bath altogether. After the bath is done, squeeze out as much water as you can from the dogs fur, towel dry as best you can and then go for a long LEASH WALK on the street until the dog is nearly or completely dry. She can relieve herself on the walk and cannot roll unless you let her. After the walk, she should be "empty" (bowels, bladder) and exercised so you can come back inside and relax until time for the next toilet time.

    If you are having difficulty with housetraining, it might be because you are not feeding at scheduled times. Think of it – we eat at relatively the same times each day, right? Well, we also eliminate at nearly the same times each day. So this is the same way with dogs. Input time and output time can be scheduled. This helps tremendously when trying to housetrain a dog. If you can predict the time for output, you can avoid the dog having accidents and bring the dog outside to eliminate and ensure success more often. Remember the three things that make a dog want to "go" – E.S.P. – eating, sleeping, playing. After eating, the dog should go outside to eliminate. After waking up from a sleep (day or night), the dog should be allowed outside to eliminate. After a rousing game of play, again, bring the dog outside to relieve itself. Knowing this can shorten the learning time for your dog. And she’ll appreciate you knowing this and setting her up to succeed.

    Positive training doesn’t mean "permissive". You must have rules and stick to them. But the rules must be kind, fair and easily understood. That means CONSISTENT. Dogs don’t do well under constantly changing situations. They crave routine. The same rules, the same guidelines, the same behaviour gets the same results.

    And let’s not fool ourselves here. This is a young, large working breed dog. Energy must be spent somehow. You must decide how. Either it’s barking, whining, running in the yard, digging, chewing, freaking out or it’s a good jog ON LEASH or a swim in a lake on LONG LEASH. Leashes come in long lengths, up to 30 or 50 feet. Please remember that leashes don’t teach anything – they just prevent your dog from being hit by a truck. You teach the dog, the leash keeps her safe. So no jerking or choking on leash. It doesn’t do anything but confuse and hurt the dog.

    How about training some tricks or obedience? Labs adore training and using their sharp minds. Try a class.

    I’ve often said that a dog is a "lifestyle". It takes some arranging and some planning of your day to ensure your dog has what it needs and deserves. But in the end, the dog will learn how to follow our rules and the payoff is an adult dog who understands what’s allowed and what is not. If we are going to welcome a smart, creative, thinking and feeling creature into our homes we must give them what they need. Anything less is cruelty. Knowledge is power.

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