Save your future self some trouble and start potty training as soon as possible. Below we outline some steps you can take to make the transition to a house-trained dog a little bit easier. Make no mistake though, it’s not easy. You may have tired nights/days, accidents all over the house and probably get very frustrated. Take it easy, you got a puppy, and you must put in the work. Read on and good luck!
The below is a guide. Every dog is different and so is their schedule, bladder size and bladder strength. Best tips you can get, stay patient and be consistent. If you suspect your puppy may have any issues with their bladder or bowels, please consult your vet.
Always Be Watching:
As we just stated, every dog is different. As such, you should be watching your dog for ques that they may need to go to the washroom. Eventually, you will know what signs your puppy gives when they need to go. Some common ones could be circling, whining, or going to an area that they have already relieved themselves in.
Don’t Get Mad:
If you get mad after they have relieved themselves, they might think that you get mad because the pee or poo. This could lead to them getting anxiety about going in front of you and/or hiding their accidents in strange areas around the house. If they get anxiety from the thought of going to the washroom in front of you, training is going to get tough.
Clean Up the Messes:
Accidents are going to happen. Accept it. It is important that you clean the areas, very well. You can get cleaners that have specific agents in them that help break down excrement. The issue with not getting the spots clean and the smell gone goes beyond your discomfort. If they pick a spot inside and the smell lingers there, that spot will see a lot of action moving forward.
Make a Schedule Stick to It:
It might be hard to make a schedule with a puppy as they are growing, learning and in a constant state of change. That said, you should take them outside every hour (minimum) at the beginning. It could actually be every 15 minutes depending on your puppy. Further they should probably be taken outside after they sleep/nap, play, and eat. The best way to avoid accidents in the house is to get them outside before they even know they need to go.
When they Need to Go:
It’s time to go outside. Put them on their leash and take them to the same spot every time. Choose a word to say, like potty, and say it right when they start going. When they finish give them a treat and praise. Timing is key as they need to learn to associate the word with them relieving themselves and the following treat with what they have just done. Eventually you should be able to say potty (or whatever word you chose) and they will know what they need to do. You should probably let them let them sniff around for a bit after as sometimes puppies may have a little more pee to get rid of.
Along with consistency in your training, you should make a proper feeding schedule (ask your vet if you are unsure how often to feed them). A proper feeding schedule can help you know (roughly) when they will need to go.
Use a Crate or Designated Area:
Most breeders will hold on to their litters until the puppies are 8 – 10 weeks. Often, the litter will be accounted for before they are even born. New owners will most likely be given an opportunity to visit the litter and potentially choose which puppy they would prefer. This is often a very controlled meeting and generally a safe experience for you and the puppy. Look to the breeder to set boundaries and expectations.
Nighttime Potty Training:
It will help if you take their water away 1-2 hours before their bedtime. This will limit the amount of pee that they need to get rid of throughout the night. You are probably going to be up every 1-2 hours at the beginning although puppies due tend to be able to hold it a little bit longer throughout the night. Depending on how your dog can control their bladder, you will be able to extend that time as they grow. Beyond that, show as little excitement as you can and do not engage in any play during the nighttime pees/poos. Your goal is to not have them stimulated. You take them outside, you say your associated word, they go, praise/treat, wait just a bit (in case they have a bit more) and you are able to come back inside, and all go back to sleep.
At iTK9 we take every dog’s needs into consideration for their training program. We focus on creating happy and obedient family members out of your pet and take pride in our work. If you are considering training for your puppy, please don’t hesitate to reach out.