How do you train a corgi to let you know they need to go to the bathroom?

My corgi does not let me know when she needs to go to the bathroom. She does not go stand by the door, doesn't whine to be let out or anything like that. The only clue I get is that she'll start circling around. Thus, I have to watch her all the time.

I take her out regularly:
1) first thing in the morning, where she normally just pees. If she doesn't poop, we go inside and I feed her.
2) About 5 minutes after her breakfast, I take her out again and she'll normally poop.
3) About 30 minutes later, I'll take her for a walk and she'll normally poop (but not today)
4) I crate her for about 4 - 5 hours since I have to go to work.
5) I come back for a 45 minute break to let her out/have some play time before going back to work. She'll normally pee but not poop.
6) After I come back from work, I repeat 1, 2 and 3.

So when will she start telling me when she needs to go? I was hoping she'd catch on that the bathroom is outside and go to the door when she needs to go. Instead, she just circles around and I'm sure if I didn't take her outside, she'd relieve herself on the carpet. She hasn't had any accidents (apart from the fear peeing due to the vacuum cleaner and kickball) but that's only because I watch her like a hawk.

Is there anything I can do, training-wise? How long did it take for your corgi to tell you they needed to go potty (and go to the door)?

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With Gus, I found he started telling me he needed to go out around 4 months. Until then, we had to watch for the "signs" too. To get him to start asking at the door, we hung a jingle bell on a long ribbon around the door handle on the inside. When he was little and we would carry him out to avoid accidents, we would stop at the door and ring the bell so he got used to the noise and started to associate it with going out. When we trusted him enough to let him follow us to the door and outside, we would stop him at the door and use his own paw to ring the bell before we opened the door. It definitely started clicking after awhile and one day he walked to the door and pushed at the bell himself to ask to go out! Now it works without using the bell - he just understands that going to the door means going out.

Quick warning - Corgis are ridiculously intelligent. He figured out quickly that he could just go outside for fun if he rang the bell too (even if he didn't need to "go"), which is why we ended up taking the bell down after awhile.
Hahaha! Griff doesn't use a bell, but he abuses the "potty?" question for sure! Even if he doesn't have to go, he says he does so he can go run around and play :)
Oh yeah! I ask Lola if she needs to go potty & she'll jump up & down & bark (I have a video on my page... super cute! haha)... sometimes she has to potty, but a lot of the time it's to roam around outside. Although, when she does have to potty, it's a very urgent bark!!

I got her to know what 'do you need to go potty' means by taking her outside & praising her with 'good potty!' when she'd do her business. Then when I'd see her pacing, I would ask her if she needed to go, then would walk outside. She put 2 and 2 together in no time!
Oh I can just imagine the abuse haha that bell would be rining none stop if we had one!
I second the bell idea. We hung a bell on our doorknob and Edison figured it out almost immediately. Of course, it took him an additional 30 seconds to figure out how to abuse it! We've left the bell up but use our judgement when deciding whether or not to heed the ringing. :)
With TOva, we hung bells on the door she goes out, when she would piddle inside, a sharp NO and pick her up, ring the bells and out you go, as soon as she finished, Lots off praise, If you want more information on how we did this lemme know, helped too when at others homes, took some bells with and let her know "what " door it was to use by using the bells, now, she tells me by ringing the bells, who needs in or out, ie, kittys ets. its kind of funny!

Valerie and Tova
Zed rings a bell on the door to go out as well. Like everyone else, we would ring the bell before taking him out until he eventually caught on. Like Gus he has figured out that if he rings the bell he can sometimes get to go out and play. We're working on this.
My gal does the same thing, when we are at home she starts circling around the room. At night she will whine, to wake us up. At nine months, she wasn't too bad. At two years, she might have an odd accident. Now at four years, I cannot remember the last accident.

One thing that I did, I would go to the door/gate call her over and ask if she needs to go. When we are outside and while she does her business, I express verbally that she is doing and afterwards mention she is good. So when I ask her if she needs to go, she makes a connection to the action. If she has an accident inside, say nothing, clean up and walk away, ignore her for a couple minutes and then call her to go outside.

As life as it, each dog is different and each owner handles their dogs differently. When I polled family members on potty training, each one had a different answer. Some have shown dogs, breeders... etc. I had to find something that worked for me and mostly for her.

So don't worry, the circling is normal and the fear peeing from the vacuum cleaner... well, it happens at my home, too.

Enjoy your journey with your gal!
Cheers!
We need help with Lincoln too ...

We tied a bell to the door and he was absolutely deathly afraid of the bell. Barked and cried at it.

He does the circling and we know - sadly we can't watch him like a hawk so we just eye him ...
Ferris is terrified of them. We hung them on a hook by the door so that it wouldn't ring all the time. I started as suggested where you ring it for him. If I put his leash on him and go towards the door he fights it until I open the door and runs past the bells. I usually catch him and bring him back to ring the bells. Not sure if I should just give up on the bells. We'll keep doing it, I guess till it's obvious it isn't working.
He finally out of the blue started using the bells. It was great. After several months, he doesn't use them anymore to go potty, just to go out and play. He'll just go squat somewhere. I don't take him out most of the time when he rings the bell because I know he wants to play not go potty. At 7 months, shouldn't he know what he has to do? Do I have to crate train him all over again?
About the bell idea. That's smart, I never really thought of that. Although my corgi may abuse that idea, I think I may use that technique, because it is the best way she/he could let me know. Is there anything more you can tell me about how to train a corgi this technique? Thank you so much!

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