Submitted by: Patti Oar
Isn’t your new puppy adorable? They are just precious. And it’s a good thing too. They’re lucky they’re so darned cute cuz they can be so frustrating sometimes you want to strangle them. But how can you stay mad at the little guys?
As the owner of a new puppy you have a huge and very important job. It’s your job to make sure that this adorable little ball of fur grows up to be a calm and well mannered dog. Remember the old saying “puppies are cute but they grow up to be dogs”? I’ts so true. There are hundreds of dogs our there that are exhibiting bad behavior. Of course, it’s not their fault. Dogs are very smart creatures and they learn very quickly. It is up to us humans to make sure that they do that. I’ts easy to get lazy and hope for the best, but when it comes to housebreaking your puppy it is critical that you stay focused. This training can be accomplished quickly and easily if you stay on top of things.
There are a few crucial steps to accomplish housebreaking your puppy, but the first and I believe the most important tip is that someone must be at home with the dog. At least for the first week or two he can’t be left alone. You can’t expect a puppy to be home alone all day while you’re working. Their little systems just can’t hold out that long. If you do that and put those puppy pads on the floor you’ll just be training him to go on the pads and then you’ll never be able to break the habit of going inside the house.
1. Crate the Puppy
This doesn t necessarily mean inside of a crate. There are many theories about this and that s not what this discussion is about. I mean to confine the dog in an area such as a kitchen or family room, preferably where he can t do any damage if he has an accident, such as a tile floor. You can use a baby gate for this, and you should be nearby so you can monitor his behavior.
2.Set Your Clock
Puppies don t have the capacity to wait very long, so it s important that you take them out frequently. This depends on the the pup. You can try different times. I start out at 2 hour intervals and change it if necessary.
3.Pick Them Up
When you are taking the puppy outside to potty, make sure you pick them up and carry them. If you let them walk and they have an accident on the way you ve wasted a valuable training moment.
4.Tell Them What You Want
When you get them outside and preferably to a spot where you would like them to go all the time, tell them to go potty or use whatever words you want to get them to go. They learn the words very quickly and once they figure out what you want pretty soon your dog will be able to go on command. If you re watching the clock you re probably timing it right about when they have to go anyway.
Get excited. Show them how pleased you are that they did what they re told. Tell them how good they are for performing. Dogs are so smart and they really want to please you and it won t take long before they are associating the outside spot with the command you ve given them (Remember Pavlov? Association is amazing. Try whistling when you feed them and watch how fast they come running when they re outside and you whistle)
6.Going After Mealtimes
Another conditioning trick is to take them out after they eat. You are probably feeding your puppy twice a day so you can take him outside either right after his meal or within about 15 minutes. He will probably be ready to go then and this will just reinforce what you re asking him to do.
Make sure your dog goes potty just before you put him to bed and he will get into a routine. It s more conditioning for him and if you walk out with him and repeat the command you used before he will pick up this routine very quickly. This should also help in putting him to bed because he will recognize it as his routine. Crating or confining him at night will minimize accidents also. He still may have accidents during the night but if you ve followed all the steps he will probably understand and cry or whine to let you know he has to go and you can get up and let him out. Remember to pick him up and carry him.
If you are diligent about following the steps above, you will be surprised how fast your puppy understands and learns. He will almost potty train himself.
About the Author: Patti Oar is a freelance writer and admitted dog lover. She has had many dogs and currently shares her life with her husband and 2 big goofy labs. Learn many more dog training tips at her website: