She's 10yo this year, is a wonderful family dog (unspayed Staffie, if that makes a difference). Over the last couple of months, she has started pooing in the house She hasn't done it since her puppy days.
It has triggers (storms, fireworks); it's just now that it's made her poo, rather than 'just' causing distress. It is coupled with extreme panting whenever I come home (not relating to poo) that she's never done before. She's an awesome dog and I'm upset by this
The thing is, I have a 5yo and and almost 2yo and I am finding it very difficult indeed to manage the problem. In that I'm exhausted disinfecting my house after she has shat everywhere and walked it about (again).
I let her out before we go out. She has ample opportunity to 'go'. Is this a common problem? What can I do to help her (and my sanity?)
What do you clean up with? Does she poo in places you don't use that much? It's horrible when dogs poo in the house. Does she do it in front of you? Most of these things are sortable outable. Has anything in the family situation changed? Dogs pick up all sorts of things that we might not notice. I agree with Molotov, go first to the vet!
You do need to check with the vet especially given her age. If there is no physical cause it could be a stress reaction. Try adaptil collars and zylkene tablets which can help some stressy dogs. Also if she does it only when you are out (which does seem to indicate a stress reaction) leave her in a much smaller area which is easier to clean. Is she crate trained? If yes she may find it reassuring to start using her crate again.