House Training

Subject: Puppy house training Skills- (By Jane Fink)

Here is the info on a method of puppy training that works.

Begin a schedule.  Take puppy outside every time it awakens from a nap and 10 to 20 minutes after each meal.  Learn to closely watch your puppy.  Any signs of sniffing and circling indicate the need to go potty.  Get the pup out immediately.  Puppies can’t wait.  You can take the puppy out every hour or so just to be on the safe side, when you are at home.  If puppy doesn’t go potty, back in the crate it goes.  It gets freedom under supervision only if it has gone potty.  No potty, no freedom.

Take puppy out on leash even if your yard is fenced so you can be there to praise it for going potty.  BE PATIENT!  Housebreaking generally takes a week to accomplish.  It is helpful to command a response from the pup by teaching it a KEY WORD, such as go potty, go pee, whatever word(s) you want to use.  Be consistent though and reinforce the keyword after the puppy has done the job, “Good piddle!”  Allow the puppy to sniff around, sniffing stimulates bladder and bowel functions.  Take the puppy to the same place each time.  It will smell where it went before and go there.  If puppy has had an accident in the house, clean it up with a paper towel and take the paper towel to the spot in the yard you want the puppy to go to.  If it’s poop, just drop the poop in the same spot.

If the puppy makes a mistake, quickly take it outdoors, even though it just went.  Simply stand there for a minute using the key word to let it know it must do THAT out here not in the house.  Timing is very important.  If you find a mess on the floor but didn’t see the puppy actually do it, simply clean it up and be more observant next time.  Puppies have no recognition of time so scolding for something that happened even minutes ago will be meaningless to the puppy.

The concept of rubbing a dog’s nose in its mess is unreasonable, as is striking a dog.  The dog is only doing what comes naturally, it just has to be taught that what comes natural needs to be done outside.  You can only teach this through consistency and fairness.  If you see the puppy sniffing around, give a verbal Ah Ah and get it outside.  If the pup is already in the process, DO NOT pick it up, just let it finish because otherwise you leave a trail of pee and poop.

Do not free feed and water a puppy.  Food times should be established routines and not left for the puppy to decide when it wants to eat.  What goes in, must come out, and a feeding schedule can help you know better when the puppy will need to go out to potty.

For accidents you can use any of the commercial products on the market, or plain white vinegar.  Remove any area rugs, newspapers, cushions and other tempting urine absorbing materials, until the puppy is reliably housebroken. Anything left down on the floor just presents potty options for the puppy. You’ll just have to watch puppy very carefully on carpet.

NO SCOLDING: When puppy makes a mistake, DO NOT yell at it or any of the other ridiculous methods of punishment.  If you yell and otherwise scold a puppy or adult dog for doing something that is completely natural and necessary, the puppy will learn to go out of sight when it has to potty. Then you are left with a dog that has learned to go upstairs or in a vacant part of the house to potty, so he won’t be scolded.  That is a difficult problem to stop.

YOUR SCHEDULE: A common mistake people make is trying to teach the dog to tell them when it has to go potty.  This is hard to do with some dogs.  If you teach a dog to tell you when it has to go potty, what happens if you are not at home or are distracted when the dog is trying to get your attention? You miss the signal, but the dog gave it….now he figures since he gave the signal, you had your chance, you ignored the signal and now he potties at the door or nearby.

Instead, don’t leave it up to the dog to tell you when it has to go, reverse it and teach them that you will be in charge of potty times.  In other words, they learn to potty when you give the signal or command.  It’s as simple as saying to the dog, “Ready to go potty, ready to go out?”  That way if the dog really has to go out before you are ready to take them out, they at least learn to come to you and let you know, because YOU are the one in charge of “bathroom time.