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Hi,

we have a 7 month old toy who we’ve shifted onto twice a day feeding as when we were on 3 poop scheduling was tricky! Granted he’s had a bit of an upset stomach and he switched from diarrhoea to constipated all most over night!

Now that’s kind of settled we’re still having problems where he needs to go between 4 and 6 and we’re pretty exhausted!

he gets plenty of exercise and we take him out for a final 20 mins at ten but it’s hit and miss of he goes!

feeding times currently 6:30 am and 5pm...any advice much appreciated!
 

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Peggy Sue, Standard Poodle Born May 2019
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His tummy upset probably dictated that potty schedule, and even though he may no longer actually need an early poop, it’s just become habit.

My advice is to ensure he has 24/7 access to water. A thirsty puppy will struggle to stay in a deep sleep. A snack at bedtime is also helpful to settle the tummy. Peggy gets some kibble in her crate.

Then start setting your alarm a little ahead of his current wake-up time and take him out for his usual potty. Slowwwly set your alarm later and later. The goal is to gently teach him that humans decide the wake-up time, not puppies.

If he does urgently need that dawn poop, I would revisit what you’re feeding as it may not be agreeing with him. I would also treat potty times as potty times, not extended exercise times. At this age he should be learning to potty on command, but you may have to go back to housetraining basics for a while:

 

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If the feeding times are set more for your convenience but there's some wiggle room in there, I'd consider changing the times and see if that makes a difference.

This article goes into some detail about the whole digestive process and why things might happen when they do.



Here's an example from my mpoos schedule. They're now adults but the pattern has stayed basically the same whether 2 meals or 3. They've been on two meals daily since they were 6 months old.

Their mealtimes now are around noon and 7pm. They go to bed around midnight and get up around 9am.

Their first poo of the day is usually along with their first outside trip in the morning, so about 9am. If they don't go then, they'll go just before or just after their first meal at noonish. Sometimes it's both times :).

They usually poo again mid to late afternoon, so 3p-5p.

There is as often as not a third round.

If they didn't poo the three times, 9a ish, noon ish, and 3p ish, it'll be 2 of those 3 times with the third later in the evening, after dinner up til just before bedtime at midnight.

It's a pretty predictable pattern but I can't quite correlate which of the two intakes relate to the three outgos. They're physically eliminating the residue from prior meals but triggered by the current one.

Still, it's a pattern so it must be based on when they eat.
 
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