Potty train your dog is one of most seeks after topics about dog house training. This is the part where most dog owners get frustrated because their dogs defecated anywhere and ended up there’s a lot of cleaning to do.
It can be a real issue if your dog just potties anywhere. I understand your problem and do not worry, after you go through this guide, you will learn the right techniques and tips to potty train your dog.
However, before we look at the exact steps how to teach your dog to do it, let us find out some of the most common questions that dog owners asked…
When can you start to potty train your dog?
So at what age does you potty train your puppy? This is one of the most frequently asked questions. Well, some experts recommend to potty train your puppy starting from when he is 12 weeks old.
While this is subjective to the dog breed, some larger dog breeds will grow faster, and you can start the training as soon as you bring your puppy home. Ideally, you can start to teach him to defecate properly after a month or two.
How long does it take to potty train your dog?
There is no correct answer to this. As this totally depends on the puppies and the owners. I have seen some puppies learned to potty train as fast as 6 months. On the other hand, some puppies finally learned it after a year.
Thus, it all depends on your dog and the effort you are going to put it. If you pay all your attention to your dog and teach him to potty properly consistently, your puppy will learn it faster.
Where should your dog potty and defecate?
It is better to do it outside the house. It can be at the yard of the back of your house. This is because if you choose to potty train your dog inside the house, you need to be extremely careful and clean up the spot immediate.
This is especially true if you have babies or children in the house. You seriously do not want your babies to play on the spot where your dog defecates. It is dirty and can be full of bacteria.
Thus, the best place for your dog to eliminate is to do it outside. If you have no choice but to do it inside the house, find the right place or spot, or train your dog to potty using a pad.
Should you get a dog potty pad or dog grass or dog pen?
The answer is subjective, and it depends on your condition. If you are staying in an apartment, you will have no choice but to use a potty pad or a dog grass. It will be more convenient for your dog to eliminate in the house than to get to the lift and go down 18 floors.
Even if you are staying in a landed property, you can still choose to have a dog pen or potty pad.
The key is to use the pad or the grass as soon as you start training your dog. You want to be consistent and do not want to confuse your dog by changing the spot he eliminates.
Some dog grass and pad are said to release the scent and lure your puppy there to defecate, maybe true, but the best way is to train your dog to do it to make sure he never eliminate anywhere in the house.
Another good reason to use a dog pen is that during winter time, it will be easier for both you and your dog. Imagine bringing your dog outside during the cold weather. You’d rather have your dog to potty on the pad than outside.
Pro tip: If you are using the potty pad, dog pen or dog grass, use it all the time so that your puppy can learn to potty at the right place faster. Change the pad when necessary.
Puppy Potty Training in 5 Simple Steps
Potty training your dog is not something difficult or complicated. In fact, it is easy to do. The challenging part is to have the patience and consistency in doing so until your dog has learned it.
Remember, the key to teaching your puppy to eliminate at the right place is your responsibility as the dog owner. And you must be patience with him or her.
1. Identify the right spot
The first step is always the easiest; identify the right spot where you want your dog to defecate.
If you are using the dog grass, then use it all the time. If you are using the dog pen, then use it consistently from the beginning. If you potty train your dog outside the house, find a spot for him to do it.
Even if you do the toileting outside, you must choose a spot for him to do it and use the same spot all the time. You will be grateful you use the same spot because it will be so much easier to clean the place after that.
Choose a place that is away from the play area or your house main area with less traffic. Once you have identified the location, let’s get to the second step.
2. Create a schedule to potty train your dog
This is one of the most important keys to making your puppy learn to potty correctly faster.
Most dogs did not learn to potty at the right spot because their owners did not teach them well. And it is all because dog owners do not follow through a tide schedule or simply just give up after that.
Do not be discourage if your dog is toileting at the wrong place. Mistakes and accidents do happen, but you can prevent them by having a potty schedule.
Set the alarm or timer for potty time
Keep your puppy close to you most of the time. I know people are busy, but if you want to successfully teach your dog to do this, you should spend more time up front than spend more time for more extensive training later.
It is easier to potty train when your puppy is still young. Older dogs may be more difficult to teach as they have conditioned the toileting behavior and made it their habits.
Bring your puppy to the spot you have identified in step #1 above every 30 minutes, or an hour, or 2 hours.
This is totally depending on your schedule and your time. If you are free, it is better to bring your puppy to defecate every 30 minutes or an hour. If you are busy, you can do it every 2 hours.
It is common sense that smaller dog breed has a smaller bladder and generally speaking, your puppy can control toileting an hour for every month of age. For example, a month’s old puppy will need to pee every hour and a two month’s old puppy can take it to two hours.
This is the reason you should bring your puppy for toileting every hour.
3. Reward your puppy like crazy
Another crucial component to making the potty training successful is the reward. Whenever your puppy defecate when you bring him there, reward him like crazy. Give him treat and praise him and pat him on the head.
Treats will be the best motivation and reward for your puppy. Games, toys, and praise, are just not enough. Dogs love to eat treats. So give them high-level treats that they love the most if they pee or defecate when you request them to.
You want to go all out to reward your puppy for properly release on the right spot. He will learn it, and he will love it.
4. Cue the toileting command
Remember to cue your puppy the toileting command when he is urinating or eliminating. You can use a verbal command such as “Wee-wee” or “Release” or whistle or even use a hand gesture to tell your puppy about it.
Whenever your dog eliminates, you should cue the command. You want him to understand and to learn the command. So whenever you bring him to the spot, cue the command, and he will release.
No matter whether you are training your puppy or teaching your old dog, you should associate every cue with a verbal command. You want your dog to listen to you and understand what you mean.
It will be easier to train and teach your dog in the future if you start with a proper cue, trust me.
5. Supervise your puppy
The final step is to supervise your puppy. Keep an eye and pay more attention to him. You can tell when he wants to eliminate. Clear signs such as barking, wanted to go out (if you potty train him outside), sniffing around (this is obvious), or restless, these are indicators that your puppy might want to go to the toilet.
Please also understand every time your puppy wakes up in the morning, bring him to the spot and house train him. Usually, a dog will want to toilet after 10 minutes of waking up.
Besides that, you should also house train him after every play session, drink or eat. Most dogs will release after play or go out, or after they eat or drink.
These are the 5 basic steps to potty train your puppy. Remember, it depends on your effort to house train your dog.
Some people takes a few months to potty train their puppies while some people take a much longer time frame to finally teach their puppies to release in the correct place.
Extra potty training tips for you
I hope you have a clear understanding about how to potty train your dog right now.
If you follow and read through this article, I’m sure you can see the big picture. And before you check your puppy, here are more tips for you…
1) Use a leash to confine your puppy’s movement
What if you bring your puppy to the toileting spot, and he keeps moving and getting away? The answer is simple, use a leash to confine his area of movement.
When you bring him there, you should pay your full attention to him so that he does not get away from there. And remember that you need to reward him crazily if he releases, so just pay attention at your puppy.
2) How to prevent your dog to pee during bedtime
Just like children, how do you prevent them from peeing at night? The best way to do this is to prevent them from drinking or eating 2 hours before bedtime.
Same goes for your dogs. Take the water dish away so that they cannot drink water before bed. And you will decrease the possibility of them peeing at night.
3) What if your dog wakes up the middle of the night?
Take it easy, do not play with them and do not give them a treat. Just bring him to the toileting spot and let them eliminate. Once done, get them back to their sleeping area and let them sleep.
And do not try to talk to your dog too because he will think that you will want to play with him. Try to lower down the noise and keep the light dim.
4) Confine your puppy or put him into the crate
I know that you can’t pay full attention to your dogs all the time. I can’t too because I have got work to do. So use the crate training for this.
However, remember to bring him to release every hour or two. And make sure you remember to spend time playing with him. When it is time to play, play with him.
5) Dog potty train inside apartments?
No problem for this. Follow the same steps above. The only thing different is the spot you choose. And because it is an apartment, you should use a dog potty pad or a dog grass.
Otherwise, you will have your dog to do it outside on the balcony or in the toilet. Remember to thoroughly clean the place after your dog eliminates.
6) Should you punish your dog?
What if your dog pee or poop on the wrong place? Should you punish him? Not really. This is especially true if your dog is still a puppy.
Punishing your dog will only mean one thing to him, you are making him fear you. And he will get the wrong message from you. Do you love him or do you hate him?
Key To Successful Potty Training Your Dog
The ultimate key to successfully toileting your dog is through your patience and your commitment.
Remember, dogs are like children. They will learn everything they see from you. Whenever you are interacting with them, they will learn and try to understand.
Therefore, put in the effort, have the patience and be consistent and never give up.
Get Help from Professional Dog Trainer
What if you have tried all the above and all else fail? It is not a big issue; you still can your final opportunity to seek help from a professional dog trainer.
Here’s who you can go to, Doggy Dan. When it comes to an online dog trainer, a committed one, a professional one, the only one I can think of is Doggy Dan.
He has been training dogs for years and has trained over a thousand dogs.
More importantly, his Online Dog Trainer program has taught me how to take care of my dogs carefully, properly and in the right manner. My dog is smart, and he is very obedient.
If you want, you can check out Doggy Dan’s Online Dog Trainer program here. It is worth it.