Dogs of any age may have trouble keeping to their bathroom schedule if you have recently changed their food or gave them a new treat or some human food. If you’re changing their diet, you can expect their bowels to normalize in about two weeks. To avoid these problems next time, mix the new food with the old one for a few days to help your dog adjust.
New Problems in the Environment
You also need to consider whether your dog’s surroundings have changed to make it harder for him or her to go outside. If you’ve just moved, your dog may be confused about where they are allowed to poop. You should remind them by doing a few training sessions as if you were housetraining them for the first time. Reward them when they poop outside and bring them out frequently.
Also, consider if a new appliance or source of noise is preventing you from hearing your dog ask to go outside. Or, if something is physically in their way. For example, if your dog normally scratches on the door to be let out, and you’ve put something in front of the door, they may not know what to do to signal to you that they need to go out.
Lastly, also consider if there is a reason your dog may not want to go in the backyard. It’s not uncommon for dogs that got sprayed by a skunk to be scared to go outside, especially at night. Or, maybe a new pool or new garden bed is freaking your dog out. You may need a trainer to help solve this one.
Other Medical Reasons
If you have a young dog who hasn’t been getting into new foods and isn’t in a new environment, their indoor pooping is most likely a medical issue. Unfortunately, bowel incontinence in dogs can be a sign of several health issues, from parasites to bowel cancer. Any dog that is having trouble keeping to their washroom schedule should be checked out by a vet.