Maggie’s College of Dog Training Knowledge
Housebreaking a New Puppy or Dog
1. Use a crate or exercise pen to confine your puppy (or dog) when you are not watching him. DO NOT LET YOUR PUPPY ROAM FREELY AROUND YOUR HOUSE BEFORE BEING HOUSE BROKEN. The biggest mistake I see with puppy owners is giving too much freedom in the home before the puppy earns the right to have that freedom.
2. Take your puppy out frequently and to the same spot ON LEASH. Do not just let him out off-leash in the back yard and tell him to go potty. He hasn’t learned yet that he must do his “business” first before he can enjoy play-time. He will most likely just run around the yard playing if given the off-leash freedom. Even in the middle of the night, when your pup needs to potty, use the leash and bring him to the same potty spot each time. (and always clean up the droppings after him). He will soon see a pattern and head for that spot each time.
3. Use a “potty word” to get him to do his “business” on command. I use the phrase “Potty-Potty” to get my dogs to do their business and they all know what it means. You can choose whatever “potty word” that you like. Each time you take your puppy out on leash to potty remember to say their potty word in a praising tone as they sniff the ground to find their perfect spot. When they start to eliminate, use an excited tone (but not so loud as to disturb them while they are eliminating) as you say the potty word. “GOOD POTTY-POTTY!!”
Some people even give their pup a treat just after finishing their “business”.
4. If you CATCH your puppy having a potty accident inside the house, pick up the puppy while making a loud VERBAL ONLY correction such as “AH-AH NO POTTY IN MY HOUSE!!” Then immediately whisk your puppy outside to it’s potty area and change your tone instantly to “YEAH! GOOD POTTY-POTTY!!” even if your puppy just stands there at his potty spot and stares at you. Encourage him to sniff around and finish his business and praise him when appropriate.
5. If you FIND a wet spot or pile of puppy poop behind your couch or on the floor, THE ONLY THING TO DO IS ROLL UP THE NEAREST NEWSPAPER AND SMACK YOURSELF ON THE HEAD BECAUSE YOU GAVE YOUR PUP TOO MUCH FREEDOM. Expect accidents but they will be few and far between if you really stick to a consistent housebreaking plan.
NEVER, NEVER, NEVER rub you pup’s nose in its own poop or pee. That will only teach the dog that eliminating itself is bad and the dog will start hiding its little landmines for you to find at a later date. We want your dog to understand that eliminating in the house is not good but that eliminating outside is great!Categories: intro, Maggie’s College of Dog Training Knowledge