Potty Training a puppy is one of the biggest and most important tasks you can take to help them (and you!) lead a long happy life together. As much as this task feels daunting, there are a few tried and true methods to teach your pup where to do their business!
The top three potty training methods consist of: crate training, creating a schedule, and praise. These methods can be used in combination with positive affirmations for a successful and happy training process.
Making a Schedule:
This includes keeping your puppy on a regular feeding schedule and keeping their food out only for meal times. As soon as you are awake in the morning take the puppy out to use the bathroom. A good rule of thumb is to take them out in the morning, after meals, and before bed.
This creates a basic routine for you and your puppy but watching your puppy’s ques will help you understand when he/she has to go outside (these signs might include; barking, scratching, whining, jumping, sniffing, and walking in circles). Each dog has their unique set of ques that you will learn as you get to know your puppy.
Some puppies have to go immediately after eating and some have to go 30 minutes to an hour after eating, this is determined by the puppy’s actions. When you are ready to take the puppy outside make it a routine.
Put on a harness and a leash in the same space and take the puppy outside in the same spot. Puppies will start to understand this repetition and will associate this with using the bathroom outside. Many times, dogs will know where to go by using their scent (where you took the pup last time).
Keep the puppy in a four feet square and allow the puppy to sniff and find the right space that they are comfortable in. Giving the puppy to much room to roam can have the opposite effect and distract them from going to the bathroom.
As soon as the puppy has eliminated outside praise them with lots of love and treats! Dogs understand different tones in their human’s voices. Make sure to praise them in a happy and excited tone so they know they have done the right thing!
Many people see crate training as an unusual way to potty train their dogs, but it helps when you are trying to create a schedule and acts as a den for the puppy. Crate training can be very beneficial when it is done correctly.
Animals, like dogs are den animals and they will seek out their crate as a place of safety and comfort. The idea behind crate training is a psychological one. Dogs are very clean by their own nature, this means that they are not going to sleep where they have used the bathroom.