HOUSE TRAINING PUPPIES
How exciting, a new puppy in the home! Puppy Breath – Yum! But also comes pottying in the house. The first training new puppy owners undertake is potty training- that is, teaching their new family member that you potty outside, not in the house. It helps to think of potty training as creaiting a habit. If a 5 year old dog could talk and you asked why they don’t potty in the house, they would not say because it would make my owner mad, they would say “BECAUSE THAT IS WHERE WE GO”. Keeping this in mind, there are several rules/guidelines to follow when potty training a new puppy.
- There are certain times when you know a puppy must relieve themselves – anytime they wake up from sleeping, whether it be overnight or just a nap, they will need to empty their bladder. Watch for these times.
- Meal feeding will time their BM’s with some having to go immediately after eating while others may take 10-15 minutes. Leaving food out all the time is not a good feeding practice and if you don’t know when the puppy eats, you can’t anticipate the bowel movement.
- Puppies will instinctively not urinate where they sleep-so using a crate can help train them to “hold” their urine until they go out as long as it isn’t an excessive amount of time. As a rule, 8 week puppies and hold their urine for 6 hours during the day, adding another hour for every 2 weeks of age. Most puppies can sleep through the night without having to go out because their kidneys produce less urine when they sleep.
- If time allows, set an alarm when awake at home and take the puppy out every hour, praising every time they pee.
- A puppy will show certain signs that he/she has to urinate. Sniffing the floor, raising the tail, walking to the door where he/she goes out. If a responsible person cannot be directly be observing the puppy to pick up on the signal that he/she has to urinate, use the crate to control the urination in the house. Think of the crate as the diaper. Remember, husbands watching TV or kids of any age playing their games or snap-chatting are NOT watching the puppy to pick up on the signs.
- NEVER judge success by what happens on any one day. Always review each week – success is when this week was better than last week.
- If you are following all the guidelines, and your puppy is still having accidents in the house or when they pee outside, they stop and pee small amounts at several different stops in a yard, your puppy may have a bladder infection and require antibiotics. This is much more common in females than males.
THINGS TO NEVER DO! Never call your puppy to the accident spot and fuss or rub their nose in the urine. They have no memory of what they did and it only makes them hesitant to come to you the next time you call them. Never pick a puppy up while they are urinating – they cannot stop and you will be sprinkling the path to admonishment, and then take them outside even though they just went.