One of the most important first steps when you adopt a puppy is house training or pee and potty training. The process of training a puppy or an adult dog to learn the appropriate time and place to eliminate takes determination and patience. The key is to remember that successful potty training is based on positive reinforcement instead of punishment. Puppy toilet training is a 24/7 job. Some puppies will learn quickly, while others will struggle with it for a while. During the training period, always remember to be patient, remain calm and be consistent. If you stay positive and follow these guidelines, pee and potty training can be simple process.
Understand the Basics of Puppy Pee and Potty Training
- Begin puppy potty training when your puppy is 12 to 16 weeks old.
- This is when your puppy has begun to have more control of their bladder and bowel movements.
- Typically, a puppy can control their bladder one hour for every month of age. So if your puppy is 2 months old, they can hold it for about two hours.
- Teaching a puppy when and where they can go from a young age is important for avoiding behavior problems down the road.
Keep an eye on your puppy
- While potty training, it is ideal to keep your puppy where you can watch it at all times.
- This will allow you to look for early signs that it needs to go and help to prevent accidents.
- Signs when they might go are when they start circling, scratching or sniffing.
Establish a Routine to make Puppy Pee and Potty Training Simple
- Getting yourself and your puppy into a routine can make potty training much easier. Eventually, your puppy will pick up on the routine you design.
- They will learn what time you usually wake up and when you normally take breaks to let them out.
- You will need to go for more frequent potty breaks while your puppy is young since their bladder cannot handle waiting very long.
- It is recommended to feed your puppies two meals a day. Feed each meal at the same time each day. Dogs naturally defecate shortly after eating, so developing a consistent feeding schedule can avoid confusion and accidents in the house.
- Here is a basic potty training routine to guide your day and prompt your puppy it’s time to go out:
- When You Wake Up: As soon as you get up in the morning, take the puppy outside to the designated spot. This will start both of your days off on the right paw. Make sure you are not hanging around, waiting for the coffee or getting completely ready for the day first. Throw on some shoes and head for the door as soon as you are awake to help reduce the chances your puppy has an accident. Remember they have gone whole night having to hold it. That is a long time for a little puppy to wait. Go to the same area every single time and take the same path every single time. This routine will help your puppy better understand it’s time to eliminate.
- After Meals: Take your puppy out after every meal. They definitely have something in their system They will need to eliminate. Waiting too long after a meal can turn into an accident which will undo all the work you have already done. These after meal breaks should be at about the same time each day as your puppy should be on a regular eating schedule. Aim to make after meal breaks 5 to 20 minutes after your puppy finishes eating.
- When Your Puppy Wakes up From Naps: Just like when you take your puppy out in the morning, you should take your puppy out when they wake up from naps.
- After Playtime: Playing, jumping and running around may also cause them to need to go. Whether your puppy actually ends up needing to eliminate after playtime or not, it’s better to give them the opportunity to go.
- Before Leaving Home: When you have a tiny, furry canine to watch out for you will have to try and plan your outings around how long they can hold it. Always make sure you take your puppy out before leaving for an extended period of time. As soon as you are back home, again take your puppy outside just to avoid an accident.
- Before Bed: Before you go to your bed, take you and your puppy out for another trip to the outdoor potty to prevent overnight accidents. This will help your pet in the routine of having a final trip out each night.
My Personal Experience
- When I adopted my puppies- Golden Retriever and Pug, they were around 35 days old and at that time it was winter season. So it was difficult for me to take them out every now and then.
- And when the puppy is very young, he need to pee and do potty again and again.
- I watched them day and night for 2-3 days. It was a bit difficult but the plan succeeded.
- I designated our washroom as the spot for pee and potty for them so that I don’t have to babysit them all the time and they can go independently to washroom to empty their bowels.
- They learnt within 3-4 days and i could sleep peacefully at night. All I had to do was to leave the washroom’s door open and these two fine gentlemen would go to the men’s room, get their business done, wash their hands( or is it paws??) and get back to sleep.
- In the morning, I used to clean the floor using disinfectant.
- Then it was easier to do a transition from indoors to outdoors.
Choose a Specific Sound or Command
- Every time you take your puppy outside to their area, use the word “go” or pick another command. This will teach it to go in that specific location.
- The dog will begin to recognize the command and understand what you want it to do. This will help the dog to learn when and where it should be urinating or defecating.
- I used to say “susu karlo” or “potty karlo” and then take them to washroom and they learnt these words so fast that whenever I use this command, they directly go to washroom. They understand the command outdoors also and follow it.
Make Potty Time a Rewarding Event
- Always praise your puppy every time it uses the appropriate spot and reward them with treat.
- Use a cheerful, happy voice saying “good boy” or “good job” or anything to let them know that they have done something good.
- Time is everything. When your puppy is done with his business, immediately reward him with a treat. You should make sure you aren’t giving the reward too soon as this can distract from the positive action you are trying to reinforce.
- I used to reward them with treats and they were so clever that they used to stand in front of me demanding for treat after they have urinated or defecated.
Other Important Tips
- Signs:As your puppy begins to associate outside with the right place to urinate, he will find ways to signal to you. Following are some common signs your puppy shows to be let out: Circling and whining, Sniffing and Licking their groin or rear, Scratching or Sniffing at the Door, Returning to a spot in the house where they previously relieved himself
- My Golden Retriever start jumping on me when he needs to go outside to urinate or defecate. Different puppy can have different way of telling you. The important thing is that you should watch your puppy and observe the sign used by him every time he needs to go.
- When you take your puppy out for pee or potty, don’t start playing or any activity with him. Don’t talk to him, otherwise, this will distract him and he will not do anything. Just use the word or command used by you and stand quietly and immobile and wait patiently.
How to deal with accidents
- Interrupt Accidents: If you catch your in the act of urinating or defecating indoors, make a sudden noise such as clap or say the word “no” or “stop”( the command normally used by you to stop him from something). Then quickly lead the dog to the potty area.
- Never Punish: Accidents will happen no matter how much you try to prevent them. Never punish your dog for accidents. The dog does not know if he is doing something wrong. Do not force your puppy to smell or keep reminding them of their actions. They will not remember and could possibly become scared of you.
- Clean Up Accidents Right Away: When your dog has an accident inside, it is important to clean the area thoroughly. This will help to prevent the dog from wanting to go again in the same place. Use some disinfectant to get rid of odor and the dog’s attraction to that area.
Some Potty Training tools
- Dog Crate: When you leave home or are unable to watch your puppy, using a crate can be an effective way to help potty train. Your puppy will learn to view the crate as its home and will be reluctant to soil their area. The crate should be just large enough for the dog to stand up, lie down and turn around. If he crate is too large, the dog may use one area as a bathroom and another area for sleeping.
- Pee Pads: This is a good option if you live in a flat and have a very young puppy. Set up some puppy pads where you want your furry friend to go to the toilet. You can set up an area of your puppy play pen or their crate with some nice absorbent pads that reduce the mess caused by little accidents. As your puppy gets better and better at going to the pads when they need to pee, move the pads a little closer to the exit each day. This will help prepare them for the eventual move to outside only. During transition to outside, you may bring a puppy pad with you and place it on grass.
- Pets Potty Train Spray: Many people use Puppy Training Spray on newspaper and then slowly move the newspaper towards the door until it is outside. You can use this spray on Pee Pads also. These sprays mimics the scent of dog urine, encouraging your dog to the designated place to go to the toilet.