When I brought my Dachshund puppy home to the Pacific Northwest, it was September.
That’s the beginning of the rainy season for us and I thought, how in the heck am I going to potty traing a Dachshund when it’s cold and rainy outside??
I’ve heard so many stories about Dachshunds who were perfectly housetrained refusing to go out, or potty outside, in the fall that it’s clear to me this is a common issue.
Also, my first Dachshund had wet belly syndrome and used to balk at going outside to releive himself as soon as the weather turned cold in the fall.
Instead, he would take one look outside, turn around, and poop in the house when I wasn’t looking.
It was an annual “tradition” I coined “pooping in the house season”.
But, I did manage to completely potty train my Dachshund puppy within 3 months (she stopped having accidently in the house before that but I waited for 3 months to be sure she was consistent).
Every year, I gave my first Dachshund a potty training refresher and managed do convince him to stop using the house as a bathroom.
Not every Dachsund can be trained or convinced though.
Sometimes you need to use trick to outsmart your Dachshund or modify the way you do things to accomodate their needs (and wants).
In this article, I will share what worked for me, discuss the reasons why your Dachshund could be refusing to go potty in the rain, and ways you may be able to fix the issue.
Why Your Housetrained Dachshund May Go Potty Inside in Cold, Wet Weather
Dachshunds prefer to be warm and dry. Don’t you?
When it’s cold and wet outside, it’s uncomfortable to your Dachshund.
The cold can make them shake and if it’s raining they can not only get wet from above but also from below because they are low to the ground.
Because Dacshshunds are low to the ground, they can feel the uncomfortable effects of rain more than other dogs.
The house is a much more comfortable place when it’s cold and blustery outside.
Which Dachshunds Are Most Affected?
Interestingly enough, it seems to be short haired Dachshunds who are most intolerant of the rain.
I suspect it’s because a short haired Dachshund’s fur is so thin, the rain penetrates it when it falls on them and feels like little pin pricks on their skin.
Long and wire haired Dachshunds have longer hair that helps keep the rain off of the skin. At least during a quick potty break outside.
Also, the longer hair helps to keep them more insulated from the cold.
Miniature Dacshsunds have a smaller body mass so it’s more difficult for them to generate their own body heat than a larger standard Dachshund, which may result in miniature Dachshunds getting colder in incliment weather.
Also interesting to me is that a lot of our followers reported that their Dachshunds – no matter the coat type/length – are more tolerant of the snow than rain.
My antecdotal conclusion is that miniature, short (smooth) haired Dachshunds are most likely to refuse to go outside, and start to have potty accidents in the house, when the weather turns cold and wet.
How to Get Your Dachshund to Go Outside in Bad Weather
To be frank, the way to make a Dachshund go outside in the cold is to literally not let them NOT do it.
I often suggest carring a Dachshund outside, or taking them out in a leash (remember to walk outside like it’s no big deal because your dog will take cues from you), if they stop in their tracks at the door threshold as soon as they see it’s crappy weather outside.
This shows them that it’s your choice, not theirs, and that you won’t take no for an answer.
Sometimes all it takes is removing the option. Simply making it clear that going outside to potty is not optional may solve your problem.
My Dachshunds are family. I treat them with respect and kindness. But sometimes they still have to do what I say whether they like it or not.
I also watch the forecast for breaks in the rain.
While I typically send my adult Dachshunds outside to go potty every 3-4 hours, I may send them out a little sooner than that if the rain temporarily stops.
However, just because your Dachshund is outside doesn’t mean they will go potty.
Dachsunds can be stubborn and may refuse to go no matter how long you stand outside with them.
So what can you do then?
How to Convince Your Dachshund to Potty in the Rain
Thankfully there are several different options for getting your Dachshund comfortable with going potty outside in the rain and cold instead of in the house.
You may have to try several of these ideas until you find one that works for your Dachshund.
You may also need to use a couple of techniques in combination.
Don’t give up – the process may take time but there is almost always a solution to stopping accidents in the house.
As I stated above, removing the option for my Dachshunds to refuse to go outside solved the issue for me but it doesn’t work for all Dachshunds.
Because I didn’t need to find more creative solutions to get my Dachshunds to go potty outside when it’s cold and raining, I asked our fans.
Here are the 5 most common suggestions:
1) Double down on the encouragement
No matter what the weather is on a particular day, in anticipation of the inclement weather to come, start having big party every time your Dachshund goes potty outside.
This will remind your Dachshund how fun it is for them to do the right thing so they may be more likely to go in the rain and cold.
2) Bundle your Dachshund up before they go out
Try putting a jacket or rain coat on your Dachshund before they go out to help keep them dry and more comfortable, which can increase the chance they will go potty outside.
Takiing time to put a jacket on your Dachshund can be frustrating but so can cleaning up accidents in the house.
3) Use an umbrella
Another easy trick is to go outside with your Dachshund and hold a large umbrella over them while they are looking for a place to go potty.
This is another time that using a leash comes in handy because it will keep you from having to chase your dog all over the yard while they look for the perfect spot to go.
4) Create a covered potty spot outside
Consider using a small pop up tent over your Dachshund’s favorite potty spot in the yard to keep the grass, and your Dachshund, dry.
Some people opt for one of those big, tall canvas tents like you see at an ourdoor craft fair or farmer’s market.
But someone else recently told me they use a camping tent with the floor cut out of it.
5) Consider using fake grass as a potty spot
If you have an outdoor patio or porch that is covered (or that you cover with a tent like suggested above), put a patch of real or fake grass there for your Dachshund to go on.
This may mean your Dachshund doesn’t have to venture far outside of the door and can potty and get back in the house quickly.
You can also put puppy pads or artificial turf in a basement or garage if you have that option.
This elimates the wet and cold issue completely but beware that it may train your Dachshund that:
- Going potty indoors is ok (they can’t aways distinguish the garage floor from your floor inside the house)
- They like this way better in all sutiaons so now they refuse to potty outside no matter what the weather
It’s a common challenge for many Dachshund owner to get their pups to go potty outside in the rain.
As you can see, there are many options for convincing your Dachshund to stop going potty in the house.
You can mix and match some of the different ideas to come up with a process that works for you and your pup.
If your Dachshund is still having accidents in the house after trying all of the techniques I listed (that will work for you situation), you may want to see your veterinarian to rule out an underlying medical condition as a cause.
For example, older dogs can develop health conditions like Cushing’s Disease, incontinence, or dementia, which can cause a senior dog to go potty in the house.
If your Dachshund is healthy and still going potty in the house, consier enlisting help of a dog trainer or behaviorist to help get to the root of the problem and correct it.