You could earn SmartPoints on this page!SmartPoint Coin

Health Questions & Answers



I would love to hear from you!  What is your greatest training or behavioral need when it comes to your dog?  What is your greatest accomplishment?

Victoria ;)

Victoria Swanson Health Coach asked this
August 1, 2011 at 6:54 AM



I'm watching my mom's teacup poodle, Ollie right now and though he's really cute and sweet, he's got a handful of training/behavior needs!

For one, he prefers to use the bathroom in the house. He'll actually hold it until we let him back in to go.

Two - he can act aggressively when my boyfriend tries to move him while he's sleeping.

The last - and strangest issue - he is obsessive compulsive about licking. He'll sit next to us and he'll just lick, lick, lick, lick the air without any stop. That's the ideal situation. The real problem is him licking wet spots on our couch and pillows and blankets. Gross. :/ It's the oddest thing.

Any ideas?

Erin Froehlich answered
August 1, 2011 at 12:34 PM

Hi Erin: Poodles are actually when one of the smartest breeds out there and usually are very easy to potty train. However, your third paragraph is what truly caught my eye, the fact that you mentioned he "acts" aggressively when your boyfriend tries to move him while sleeping. This could actually be causing his potty issues. Let me explain……

However, I have a few questions first….is this little guy neutered? How old is he? How old was he when your mom got him? Has Ollie had any type of "puppy classes"? Is he crate trained?

I would like to start here first with getting my questions answered, that will give me some much needed information in order to answer your concerns correctly. But going back to my original concern above...Ollie is "King" in your house and he knows it. You will definitely want to seek out a professional trainer in your area to get Ollie knocked off of his throne and to just enjoy being a loving pet of the family vs. being little bossy man.

His licking behavior is a common behavior. You will need to first rule out any allergies….food allergies or even seasonal allergies can be the cause of this excessive licking. A vet can help you determine if there is a medical reason behind this. You could check this product out too; it is holistic and a more natural approach to help relieve Ollie’s hot spots, dry skin and other irritants; Derma-Ionx ( Another reason could also be little Ollie pacifying himself, he could be bored. Is Ollie getting his daily walks in? If he is by himself throughout the day for how long is he by himself?

I hope to hear back from you soon on the questions.

Thanks! Victoria

Victoria Swanson Health Coach answered
August 2, 2011 at 6:41 AM

Erin - like Victoria said, all that licking could be indicative of allergies. If that's the case, your mom should get that checked out soon. Growing up, we had a lhasa apso who was honestly the sweetest dog I've ever met - but the poor boy suffered from terrible allergies and would lick himself raw. Yes, we even had to have him wear the "cone of shame" for a while. He was absolutely miserable, and we would get the wet spots on the couch and chairs like you described. We ended up needing to put him on prednisone, which gave him a better quality of life for a while in some ways, but it had side effects (at first he was skin and bones, and then he got quite fat, among other things) and ultimately, it shortened his life a great deal.

I get really emotional thinking about it because he was just the most wonderful dog. I wish I had known about more natural treatments because I think we could have given him a longer, healthier life. We have a maltese-poodle-shih tzu mix and she's starting to show some of the same signs, so we're not messing around this time. We just started her on the Derma-IonX and I'm hopeful that it will help.

All of this long-winded reply is just to say that the licking might just be an annoyance now - before Frisket was diagnosed with allergies, we just thought it was annoying - but it could be something worse, so I highly recommend getting it checked out!

Laura Hogg answered
August 2, 2011 at 9:04 AM

Victoria, Laura -

My mom got him as a puppy - not sure how old. He is neutered, he's 8 years old and he hasn't been to any training classes. -.-

We have just recently took him on when my mom moved to an apartment that doesn't allow animals. He went to the bathroom in the house at my mom's old place too and it really drove her nuts, but she'd just pick it up, steam clean and vacuum all the time. We thought we could break him of the habit, and he does pee outside (for the most part) now, but he seems to be more comfortable pooping inside. Like I said, he'll wait until we let him in and as soon as we're not looking finds a place and goes.

The licking - he doesn't really lick himself, he doesn't have sores or anything. He licks the air in front of him (or the blanket, or the couch, or the pillow, or the lap...). It seems like an obsessive compulsive thing - like hair twirling or foot tapping, like it's a comfort behavior.

Erin Froehlich answered
August 2, 2011 at 1:58 PM

Oh, and he does have a crate and bed (which is fiercely protective of). My mom told me she would crate him all day when she was at work, but it felt too mean to me, so I keep his crate, bed, toys, food and water on our big wrap-around front porch and let him roam that freely while I'm away. My boyfriend gets home at around 4, so he's alone from 8-4 typically.

Erin Froehlich answered
August 2, 2011 at 2:02 PM

Hi Erin:

I have to be honest with you here, if you will let me, this little fur kid needs training and needs it bad. His licking of the air is an OCD issue (nervous habit) which can be contributed from boredom. He needs mental stimulation which training gives. The more commands a dog knows the healthy they are mentally and within their whole being. Ollie is definitely marking inside…dogs can mark either with their poop or pee. It sounds like your Mom showered him with LOVE but no rules and boundaries. Little Ollie would benefit greatly with a set of new rules and boundaries. Please seek immediate training needs right away.

I want to encourage you to read my blog "Small Dog Syndrome". Let me know if you have any concerns or other questions.


Victoria Swanson Health Coach answered
August 3, 2011 at 6:42 AM

Thanks, Victoria!

Erin Froehlich answered
August 4, 2011 at 12:34 PM
Already a member? Just sign in!

You are at least 13 years of age and agree to our terms of service.

(All fields Reqiuired)

Report Abuse

Question Tags


Short URL:

    Kibble & Catnip Email Newsletter from VETiONX®

    Site Feedback