Dogs are considered “man’s best friend” for a good reason – they are known to develop deep and meaningful bonds with their owners and remain loyal to them. Television shows, movies and books have all been devoted to the intensity of the bond between a human and their dog and this isn’t without good reason!
If you have a new puppy in your home, congrats! A dog can be your closest friend in the world and will never turn down your affections, will never stop listening when you need an ear and will be your friend for the rest of their life if you take the time to build a healthy relationship with them.
However, the dog in your home does not make the rules. You do. That being the case, you need to make sure your animal understands what is acceptable and what is not. Dogs don’t train themselves!
Be sure to make big decisions early such as what he will chew on and play with, where he will sleep and what is off limits to him (for example: Can he get on the furniture? Are any rooms in the home off limits?).
Housebreaking your dog as a young puppy will help ensure they respond successfully and quickly to the training and thus be a happy and positive member to the household, causing you (and him) as little stress as possible.
The crate training method is a perfectly humane and quick way to train your puppy not to go in the house.
Before we dive into that, some Do’s and Don’ts on housebreaking your new family member:
Be Consistent. Without your consistency, your puppy will only get confused as to what you are expecting it to do.
Do regulate your dog’s food and water intake during the day. Never withhold food or water if your animal needs it, but remember that the more your animal eats or drinks, the more it will need to go to the bathroom.
Do remember to stay close to your puppy. If you aren’t near him, he will have no way to get let out to use the restroom. If you have to be gone for long periods of time while you are training him, make sure that you keep the puppy in a limited area of your home where you are prepared to have accidents happen.
Do reward your doggy with praise whenever he does what you’ve asked or expected him to do. Your puppy wants to make you happy and he needs to learn what are the right things to do that generate that praise he is seeking.
Be realistic. As frustrating as house training can be, your new dog may not be completely housebroken until 6 months of age or more.
Don’t allow your pup to use the restroom anywhere other than his designated area during the training period.
Don’t discipline your dog when he has an accident. While housebreaking a new puppy, accidents are inevitable and when they do happen it means you did not get him outside to use the restroom soon enough. Clean up the mess and move forward.
Don’t use your puppy’s crate as a way to punish them, the crate should not be associated with negativity. Also, don’t lock your doggy up in their crate for long periods of time.
The crate method and why it works:
Dogs are by nature picky about where they do their business. They will not use the restroom where they eat or sleep. If your puppy sleeps in their crate, they simply will not use the restroom in it.
To Begin With:
– Puppies urinate often. Anytime they drink, eat, run, chew, play or walk they will need to use the restroom within 15-30 minutes following depending on the size, age, temperament, and breed of your puppy.
– Document how often and when your puppy needs to do his business for a few days. Keeping an eye on his general schedule will make training easier.
– After you’ve determined your puppy’s natural schedule, plan your walks around it. Between the ages of 10 weeks to 6 months, your puppy should be taken out or walked 5 to 10 times daily. Between 6 months and 11 months this number will drop down to 4 to 6 times daily. After he is grown 3 to 4 times daily should be enough.
– Especially on your first walk of the day (after your dog has spent the night in their crate), do not come home from your walk until your puppy has done their business. If, for whatever reason, you do need to return, return your puppy to his crate and let him back out every 15 minutes until they use the restroom.
Your puppy’s crate is his special sanctuary away from any stresses during the day. It functions as his bedroom and his own personal spot that no one else uses.
Your puppy should associate his crate with only positive things. Be sure to keep his favorite toys, blankets and treats inside. While he is still adjusting to the crate, leave the crate door open until he has no anxiety about being inside it.
The better your puppy feels about his crate, the lower the chances of him using the restroom inside it.
Do not encourage bad behaviors by letting your puppy out of the crate for whining, scratching or barking.
– Create a daily schedule of taking your puppy out and feeding him.
– At night time, put your puppy in his crate, but be sure to take him outside first thing in the morning and do not return from your walk until he has used the restroom.
– After you’ve taken your puppy out and he has eliminated, bring him indoors and allow him to play for about an hour. (Also remember to keep an eye on his whereabouts in the house until he is fully housebroken.)
– Feed your puppy.
– Using the information about your puppy’s natural schedule that you’ve already written down, take him outside within fifteen minutes of when you anticipate he will need to go. Do not return from outside until he has used the restroom.
– Come back inside and allow the puppy to play.
– Put your puppy back in his crate for naptime.
Repeat this schedule throughout your day.
This may seem like a ton of effort, and it is, but this is a method that is wildly effective. Your puppy will quickly be house trained and when your puppy is older, he will inform you when he needs to go out. During the training process, you will have confidence in your dog and know that accidents are much less likely to happen.
Housebreaking Your Puppy Do’s and Don’ts courtesy Dog Articles.
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