Potty Training a Puppy
Puppies are so cute and cuddly that you just cannot wait to take them home. That is until you make a midnight trip to the refrigerator and find the present Fido left on the hall rug. Potty training a puppy is probably the most frustrating part of owning a dog. People have been known to surrender their pets to shelters because they could not fix this problem. The good news is there are some tried and true methods for potty training a puppy.
Consistency is Key
The first place many new dog owners miss the mark is in consistency. You are going to have to address this issue head on and in the same manner every time. Potty training a puppy is much like potty training children in that you want to catch the situation early. For instance after your puppy gets a drink or eats there is a better than average chance they will need to eliminate. So after feeding it is a good idea to take them outside for a few moments. Ask them if they need to potty, or whatever word you feel comfortable with, and then make that the verbal cue. In other words, do not ask if they need to potty today and change the word to tinkle tomorrow. Be consistent in your words and actions.
If you have other pets or your new puppy has had accidents, chances are they are in the same general area. This is because dogs will sniff out an appropriate place to relieve themselves. Clean the area very thoroughly once they have had an accident or if you have other pets who have used the spot before. You may need to purchase a special odor eliminator, but the cost is well worth it.
Simply attach a bell or two to a string , rope or ribbon. Hang from the inside door knob for the dog to signal that he or she needs out. Practice a few times showing your dog that ringing the bell opens to door to the backyard or when the owner hears the bells the owner immediately puts the dog on a leash to visit outside.
Often times catching your precious bundle of fur in the act is a chore, particularly if you have a large home. A good way to combat this problem is by placing them on a leash and keeping them by your side all day. The moment you see signs that they need to potty you can quickly head for the door, all the while using the word you have chosen as a verbal cue.
Many people have had huge success with crate training. With this technique, you set up a crate with just enough room for them to lie down. Since a dog generally will not go to the bathroom where they sleep this teaches them to hold it if you will. The thing you have to remember is you are going to have to be very hands on with this approach. You should take them out of the crate every morning for a potty break and periodically for the rest of the day. If you work all day long this is not the best answer for your potty training issues. Should you decide to try crate training you will want to research the process thoroughly.
Finally, for some people taking their puppy outdoors is not really an option. They may work too much or simply do not have the yard for outside training. Thankfully, pet product manufacturers have come up with handy puppy pads. These are somewhat like a litter box for your dog, without messy litter. Many people use these to train their dog inside and then gradually move the tray outdoors. Either way they are a great invention that makes potty training a puppy much easier.