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One of the things that I hear most about from new dog owners that really gets them frustrated is potty training their new puppy or dog. House training a new dog is really not that difficult and the methods used are the same whether it is an adult dog or a puppy.
There are many different ways that people have tried to potty train their dog. Unfortunately, most of these methods don’t work.
One of those ineffective ways is potty pads. People will literally cover their entire floor in potty pads, which means they had spent hundreds of dollars for these pads. I can tell you it is unlikely your dog will be trained well using potty pads. They use it sometimes, they get close sometimes, but they aren’t 100%.
And when it comes to potty pad training who wants to pee or poop in different locations around their home. Not me and I’m guessing not you either.
So if you want your dog house trained, and you want it done easily, then crate training is a must. This is true for both puppies and older dogs. Of course the older the dog will perhaps take a little longer if he’s used to using the house for his toilet. There are many different individual situations with housebreaking any dog.
In fact, you could have a dog for years that is perfectly housebroken and all of a sudden they start peeing in the house. Too often, we think this is a medical problem or our dog is getting old and can’t help it. This thinking keeps us from doing something to fix “the problem”.
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This actually happened to me. I had a dog who was getting up in years. Her name was Nikki and she was a spaniel mix. I had her since she was about 3 years old and she was pushing about 11 when out of nowhere she started peeing in the house.
I also noticed some other peculiar behavior at the same time. For instance, when she did go outside she didn’t want to walk in the grass. She would go over to the flower garden bordering our yard and just walk on the little bricks along the edge of the flowers. She did everything possible to avoid touching the grass.
Looking back I’m still not sure what happened but I believe something outside scared her. We lived on a golf course with a rod iron open fence. I think maybe some “critter” got in our yard and scared her.
Since we made the same mistake most people make, we just assumed she had a health problem that made it difficult for her to make it outside.
So, what did we do about it?
Nothing. Lived with it to some extent.
We moved to another home and it had tile floors so we just did the best we could and cleaned up if she had an “accident”
I wish I knew then what I know now.
Years later a dog professional (I can’t remember if it was in the medical or training space) told me that something probably did scare her in the yard and all I needed to do was start from scratch and re-housetrain her.
We lived with poor Nikki being unhousebroken for about two years and it pains me to know that quite possibly we could have fixed that.
Of course the older the dog is perhaps it will take a little longer if he’s used to using the house for his toilet. On the other hand, starting with a puppy it can be done very easily and quickly.
So when it comes to house training here is the rule that you need to follow.
The dog is only allowed in three different places
- The crate
- On the grass
- In front of you
Following this rule means your dog will spend more time in his crate than possibly you would like. However, this is only for a short period of time while he learns where he is allowed to do his business.
Dogs develop a preference for where they do their business and we want your dogs’ preference to be the grass. So that means the more time that your dog can spend on the grass the better and easier the training will go.
Since dogs develop a preference for they do their business the more times your dog uses your carpet, your tile or your wooden floors the more that becomes his preference. Following these rules will keep that from happening.
The last place your dog can be is in front of you. Most dogs have a tendency to not want to do their business in front of you. They would rather go around the corner or even behind the couch so that you can’t see them.
The easiest way to keep your dog in front of you is to attach a leash to him and then to your belt so wherever you go the dog goes with you. Which means since he is in your site he’s less likely to have an accident.
Housetraining a dog, young or old is a chore but it’s necessary to have a plan and be consistent. You can choose whichever plan works best for you, your family and your lifestyle but whatever you choose, it’s crucial that you are consistent.
The more consistent you are the quicker you will see amazing results with your dogs’ housetraining.