My wife and I adopted a 2-year old rescue Daschsund/Jack Russel mix a week ago. She's settling in quite well but we're having trouble potty-training her.
We bought a little fake grass potty patch that we want her to learn to use most of the time, so that when we're asleep or away at work she doesn't have to be outside in the cold. We don't have a garden, just a very small outside area with a stone floor, so she's not missing much.
We know that she was taken from her previous owners by an animal cruelty organisation, but we don't know details. We don't know what kind of training she had or what abuse/trauma she might have experienced. I'm guessing that when she was caught peeing indoors she was punished, and as a result has merely learned not to be caught. She often pees on the floor when we're not around to see it - once even when I went outside for just 10 minutes. On rare occasions I catch her in the act of peeing or looking like she's about to pee, say 'hey!' or something (not forcefully, just enough to stop what she's doing), pick her up, and place her on the potty patch. This simply scares her and she immediately goes back to bed, not at all understanding that I want her to pee on the patch. In general it's a struggle to guide/direct her to a location, or to get her to do anything if I'm watching.
We regularly transfer her pee from the floor to the toilet patch so that she can take a hint from the scent of her pee. It doesn't seem to have any effect.
Only once has she apparently peed on the patch in the night, as it was wet in the morning. Never have we witnessed her doing it, so there hasn't been any opportunity to reward her.
Strangely, we once found that she had peed in her water bowl. We thought maybe she had been trained to use an actual potty in the past, so we bought her a similar bowl for that purpose. She hasn't used it.
We walk her every day, and she pees/poops on about half of these walks. So she seems to have some idea that this is the time to do her business but it's not strong enough. In any case we don't want daily walks to be the only time she can pee.
We've taken her outside a few times, but she's never done anything there, nor does she ever show any signs of wanting to go outside if we don't take her there.
I know it hasn't been long and there's a good chance that over time things will improve as she becomes more comfortable with us and we learn how to communicate with her. But right now I'm out of ideas to make concrete progress, and I'm getting pretty tired of cleaning the floor. Any suggestions?