Puppy potty training is often the first major challenge you encounter when you adopt a dog. Those of you who have adopted puppies can surely identify. You've probably woken up in the morning only to discover your puppy has had an accident on the floor. What's more, your puppy has probably tracked it everywhere around the house. Yuck. That'll take some time to clean up. Then, you decide to take your puppy or young dog outside to pee. When you get inside, they decide to do a little more right on your new rug. Blecch! Puppy potty training can be frustrating.
Why does potty training a puppy take so long and why is it so hard? Well, the truth is, it doesn't take long, and it isn't hard, if you do it right. There are a lot of tricks you can use to potty train your puppy, but you are probably not using most of them. It's not your fault, because you've probably never been told any of them. No one has ever explained how important these little things are during puppy potting training. They're not hard. In fact, they are all very simple and logical.
Here are a few steps to get you started in the right direction. Then I'll share with you a pawsome potty training resource I've found for those of you who are interested.
5 Tips For Puppy Potty Training
- Stay calm. You're the one who has to take responsibility. The puppy doesn't know what to do and you have to show them. Don't take your frustrations out on the dog. It not only won't help to toilet train your puppy, but it will set you back. Being upset, being annoyed, or shouting will not encourage the correct behavior, which is to relax and follow your commands to potty outside. Try to look at it from the dog's point of view. Imagine trying to use the toilet with an angry and frustrated person staring at you or shouting. As for rubbing your dog's nose in their mess, do you really think they'll understand what you're getting at? They peed in the house because they had to go and had no way to get outside to do it. It wasn't vindictive. When you rub their nose in it, they still aren't going to know where they're supposed to go. Repeat…They are still not sure where they are supposed to go. When you tell them off for going in an inappropriate spot, all they know is that they shouldn't go there. They don't know where they ARE supposed to go. You need to show them and train them to potty somewhere appropriate.
- Stay focused on the goal. Many people make the mistake of not being consistent and stopping training too soon and in return they revert back to telling the poor pup off when they get it wrong. The secret is this… Reward your puppy with treats every time they go toilet in the right place. Yes, every single time, with amazing treats, immediately after they go in the right place. For a long time! It will keep your puppy motivated to go in the right place if they get amazing treats every time they do it right. Notice I say immediately. Not 30 seconds later, but within 2 seconds, otherwise, the connection with what they just did right will be lost. Reward them quickly with a treat and they will very quickly start to link the two. The Ah-Ha moment is when your puppy realizes… “If I potty on the grass, you'll give me an awesome treat. OK!” Many will just reward for a week or two and then stop. It's easy to forget or maybe you run out of treats and forget to get more. One great tip I heard on a great 40 minute puppy potty training audio the other day is to prepare a jar of treats that you can leave outside by the potty area so that even if you forget to bring treats out with you there are already some available nearby.
- Puppy potty training does take time. Puppies are young, small, and still learning, so it will take time to learn what you are trying to teach them. Anyone with young children will tell you that toilet training takes TIME and PATIENCE! Sometimes it takes 3 years or more for young human children, so think about this for a second. How old is your puppy? 16 weeks! At that age, children can’t even lift their own heads and we get frustrated when our puppy isn’t perfectly potty trained by that age. So relax and take a deep breath. You can do it and even if it takes a little longer, your puppy is perfectly normal. Learn to focus on the successes and quickly put any mistakes you make behind you. Analyze what you could have done differently, but don't beat yourself up for it. We've all been there.
- The rug. Here's another tip I heard from that puppy potty training audio file I mentioned earlier that I’ll tell you about in a second. It made me smile because this sort of thing happens all the time. Here’s the scenario. Your puppy decides it has to go, so it finds a nice thick piece of rug that is not the carpet and it kind of looks and feels like grass, a nice place to go potty. They go pee, or even worse poop! Unfortunately, this is your nice new white shag rug that will be next to impossible to get the stains and smell out of. Even if you clean it very carefully, your puppy's keen nose can still smell the pee and poop that used to be there and so it smells like a good place to go. Before long, that gorgeous shag pile rug is a very expensive toilet mat. The secret is simple. Pick up any rugs you don't want soiled and then put them back down in 6 months time in perfect condition. No stains, no marks, no regrets. Trust me on this. Do not take the chance!
- Knowledge is everything. When it comes to puppy potty training there really are just so many things for you to think about and you will simply not think of them all on your own, especially if this is your first time. You need to prepare yourself with all the secrets before your puppy potty training goes awry. The best place online that I have found by far to get all the knowledge you need about dog and puppy training including puppy potty training is Doggy Dan’s website, The Online Dog Trainer. There's even a 3 Day $1 trial of the site so you can take a look inside and decide if it's right for you! Inside the site are over 250 videos including a whole section with an amazing 40 minute recording on puppy potty training that I mentioned earlier. It’s fantastic and covers all you could possibly want to know.
Here’s an idea of what you can find inside:
- Those tricky times. What to do to prevent accidents at night and when you're not at home.
- How long to leave them and what to leave them with.
- Setting your puppy up to win so that they can’t make mistakes.
- Why some older puppies regress at 4 months old and why you need to get them back on track immediately.
- Older dogs. Why much older dogs who are several years old can suddenly start going toilet in the house and what to do to stop it.
- Habit Breaking. How to break an old habit if your puppy is toileting all over the house.
- Crate training. Everything you need to know about crate training your puppy if you choose to use that approach.
Plus all the tips, and advice on every topic to do with puppy potty training such as potty frequency and schedules, feeding, watering, and cleaning up the mess.
So that’s all for now. As you can see it’s a big topic. I hope this article has helped you and that you can get a handle on your puppy's pottying sooner rather than later. If you really are struggling with potty training and want to end all the frustration immediately then I strongly suggest you take a look at the Toilet Training section inside Doggy Dan’s site, The Online Dog Trainer. Remember, Dan gives you a $1 trial of the site for 3 days! To get YOUR access now just CLICK HERE.