House Training Your New Puppy

House Training Your New Puppy

Bringing home a new puppy is a very joyful, exciting time.  Everyone is excited about how the puppy will respond to its new environment.  There are so many new sights, sounds and smells to explore.  However, one of the experiences you and your family and friends don’t want to smell is the odor of accidents that happen in the house.  That, then brings the issue of how to house training your new puppy to the forefront of every dog owners’ priorities.

Many dog owners fear that house training the new puppy may be a long process; long enough that their carpets and floors may be destroyed while the puppy learns the nuances of going potty outside each and every time.  However, if you follow the right procedures, house training a puppy can take just a few weeks.

Tips to House Training Your New Puppy

Consistency is key.  No matter what method of house training you choose, be sure and be consistent throughout the course.  Nothing is more confusing to a dog than for something to be okay one time, but not the next.  Be sure and reward him when he gets it right, but on the flip side, do not punish him for his accidents, he will not understand it and it may delay the amount of time it takes in his training.

Establishing a routine is important.  Puppies thrive on having a regular schedule.  They will get the hang of the routine and know when it is time to go out.  A good rule of thumb is to take him out first thing in the morning, after each meal, and before bedtime.  Always take him to the same place in the yard so he knows what he is supposed to do.  As he is learning, you should take him out at least every two hours until he is able to reliably hold it longer. After he is finished, take him for a walk and play for a few minutes, but remember, business first.  Also, as you are taking him out, you can establish a phrase such as, “Out” to go outside and “Go potty” to do his business.  Used consistently, your dog will know exactly what you expect from him each time.

Do not expect too much.  Remember the size of your puppy’s bladder is very small and he won’t have the control that a big dog has.  If he is tiny, it stands to reason that he won’t be able to “hold it” for long periods of time, especially when he is small.  Some breeds are easier to train than others as a rule and individually, there can be many differences.  My first Labrador (Bear) had to be let out every two hours for several months until he was able to develop his bladder control.  Whenever I heard him stir during the night I would wake up my husband (it was his dog) to let him out to potty.  It took a while, but he eventually was able to hold his urine all night long.  So, be patient with your new canine friend.

Supervise your puppy closely while you are at home.  While you are house training your puppy, it is important to keep a close eye on him to prevent accidents.  Keep your puppy in the room with you at all times.  Never give him an opportunity to make a mistake and soil the house.  You can keep him on a leash to keep him close to you.  If you see him starting to sniff around and walking in circles, say “Out” in a happy, inviting tone and immediately take him outside and say “Go potty” with lots of rewards afterwards.

Don’t linger outside.  If your puppy doesn’t have to go when you take him outside, bring him right back in.  If you follow this procedure, he will learn what is expected of him when you take him out. This is not playtime, it is for business only.

Potty training outside

King Charles Cavalier learning where to potty

Choose a particular place in the yard for your puppy to go.  You can let your puppy decide where a good elimination spot is in the yard (so long as it is appropriate and not too far from the door).  When he has picked his spot, take him there every time so he associates that spot with going potty.  If your puppy is taking too long to find a spot on his own, choose one for him and repeat the phrase, “Go potty” until he realizes this is his spot.

Confinement.  It is not always possible to supervise your puppy 24 hours a day.  Depending on the breed and the climate where you live, you may be able to keep your puppy in an outside kennel for short periods of time while you are away.  If he is an inside puppy, you can teach him to go into a crate.  In any case, you want to be able to confine your puppy to a place he cannot destroy while you are gone.  It’s difficult to come home and find everything chewed up and pee/poop places around the house.  You want your arrival to be a happy one, not one that you both dread.

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Accidents!!  If уоur puppy does have an accident, do nоt scold hіm.  It іѕ а normal part оf thе house training process.  If уоu catch hіm іn thе act оf relieving hіmѕеlf, thеn do ѕоmеthіng tо interrupt hіm, but do nоt scare hіm.  Thеn take hіm оut immediately tо thе potty spot аnd give а treat once hе finishes.

If hе has аlrеаdу relieved hіmѕеlf, do nоt punish hіm.  Just clean іt uр.  It’ѕ no uѕе taking hіm tо thе spot аnd scolding hіm fоr hіѕ mistake.  It wіll just make hіm scared оf уоu.  Hе does nоt understand punishment аnd іt wіll do more harm thаn good.  Clean thе area thоrоughlу аnd make sure уоu remove thе odor аnd stains, аѕ puppies continue tо soil thе area thаt smells оf urine оr feces.

Following the tips in this article should give you a good start on establishing a lifetime of good potty behavior in your puppy.  Starting early is the easiest way.  Be sure everyone in the household knows the “puppy rules” and everyone is consistent with them.

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