Puppy Potty Training
New puppies are going to leave little accidents around the place. It is inevitable and all part of the learning process so it’s important not to be too harsh on the little guy as he may not have yet gained full control of his bladder and bowel movements. Prepare yourself beforehand and keep the proper cleaning equipment within reach so when accidents do happen they cause minimal disruption and mess.
While they are eating, the puppy’s intestinal tract is being stimulated, so once they are done with their bowl part of their toilet training can take part in a specially designated area of the yard straight after meal time. Every puppy is different so there is no guarantee that they will poop immediately after eating; it could take 5, 10, or even 30 minutes so patience is key. Training your puppy to go in the same area of the yard each time also reduces the burden of cleaning up afterwards, as you don’t have to scour the yard on a daily basis looking for doggy presents.
Puppies learn quite quickly but at this early stage of their life they go toilet quite regularly with smaller breeds such as Moodles going more often than larger breeds like Groodles. During this young stage a puppy will tend to go whenever and wherever they happen to be; which can be up to every 30 – 45 minutes. Your due diligence is required so you are on hand to notice and can show the puppy the correct place for them to eliminate. It can take a couple of weeks for a puppy to “get the hint” but even so expect a number of accidents during the first 6 months before the training really takes hold.
A puppy’s feeding schedule is an important part of their training. Regular meal times are a must as what goes in will eventually come out in a somewhat predictable time frame. Do not leave food out for your pup to feed on whenever they feel like it. Firstly, this will create a random toilet time that you will have no way of figuring out. And secondly, your pup needs to get to know you as the provider of food; which is an important part of designating you as pack leader.
Set up your household to facilitate house training. Have cleaning products on hand which can remove urine and faecal stains – and make sure you have plenty of paper towels on standby as well. Confinement is the key to gaining greater control over their toilet training. A crate that can sit next to your bed and an exercise pen near where you spend the majority of your time are excellent measures so you can notice accidents immediately. A small treat kept close to the toilet area is also another great tool for training, but make sure this treat is especially reserved for house training.
Start a regular routine of taking your puppy to the designated toilet area. Immediately on waking, after they have finished eating or having a large drink, and after a bout of vigorous play. Do this every 45 minutes, and when they do manage to go correctly, get excited about it and reward the clever little thing. If they whine while in the crate by your bed, or while in the exercise pen immediately take them out to do their business. This routine should be adhered to for at least 3 months or until your puppy understands where the toilet is.
If a puppy is peeing in the wrong spot it’s safe to startle them a little (but not scare them), and pick them up to take them to the correct spot. However, let them finish a poo as they may not be able to stop it and you’ll have a large mess on your hands – and probably all over them as well!
Housetraining a young puppy takes persistence, consistency, and patience. Never yell or hit a puppy who has had an accident as this will only be detrimental to your training efforts, and the mental health of your new little friend. Over time you will notice fewer and fewer accidents as your puppy learns the art of self-control over their bowel movements.