Successful Potty Training and Pups

By Maria Posted in pet housebreaking /

While basic obedience and agility training are useful, most dog owners’ primary concern is potty training their pet. Successful toilet training is necessary before you can allow your dog to roam around your home freely; it also assures you that there will be no “surprises” when you’re traveling or walking your pooch.

photoThe good news is that canine potty training has been made easier by crate training and positive reinforcement methods. The best strategy for any type of training is to set things up so that success is more or less ensured; employing a crate and establishing a suitable daily schedule is practically a guarantee that your housetraining will be successful.

An important thing to be aware of is that puppies can’t go very long without eating, sleeping, or taking a bathroom break. Food and water must be regulated during the toilet training process. For the first four months of his life, your puppy will need to eat and drink three times a day. Afterwards, he’ll be fine with eating twice a day and having constant access to water.

Your puppy cannot make it through the day without going to the bathroom, so you have to take him out at lunchtime or ask someone to do it for you. If this is not possible, then you must realize that there will be a mess waiting for you when you get home. Getting upset about it is pointless, as it’s physically impossible for your puppy to hold it in for that long.

A daily schedule is essential to successful housebreaking. Take your pup outside first thing every morning. Once you arrive at his designated bathroom area, say the potty command, and praise him if he relieves himself there. After that, take him back inside. Feed him, then take him back out right away. Again, give the command and praise him when he does a good job.

If you need to go to work or school, place him back in his crate until lunchtime. If you won’t be leaving, you can let him stay out of his crate for a while, but don’t let him out of your sight. After an hour or two of playtime, take him out again, then put him in his crate until lunchtime.

Follow the same routine at lunchtime: outside, command, and praise. Then, head back inside and let him have his meal. Take him out once more, give the command, and praise success. If you’re short on time, play with him for a few minutes then put him back in his crate. If you have more time, you can play with him more, but take him outside one more time before placing him back in his crate.

For best results, do the same routine at dinnertime: outside, food, outside, play. When it’s time for bed, you’ll need to go out one last time – hopefully! There’s a possibility that during the middle of the night, your puppy will wake up because he has to relieve himself. Don’t lose your consistency or your cool! This probably won’t last more than a week or so. Take him outside, but no food, water, or play this time.

Housetraining you pup is not some kind of conundrum. It just involves a bit of discipline, plenty of consistency and patience, and a healthy dose of fun. Once you get it out of the way, you will most likely not have to think about it again. Moreover, your puppy will grow into a confident, well-behaved, and low-maintenance adult dog.

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