House Training Puppies
Most animals born in a nesting environment instinctively go away from the nest to relieve themselves. They will naturally do this without having to be taught as soon as they are able.
Dogs are no exception to this and at about three weeks of age will begin to leave their sleeping area to urinate. The goal is to teach them that we view houses are our nests and they need to go outside when they need to relieve themselves.
The best way to do this is to take your puppy outside to the same spot in your yard or garden at the following times. Here a couple of house training tips that will help:
After each feeding, playing session, exercise time or any time they are excited.
Immediately upon waking up or as soon as possible in the morning and the last thing at night.
Once every hour or so.
It is important to stay outside with your pup and be patient and wait for them to start going. Once they begin say something like “Be clean!” or “Good Boy”. When they are through going praise them enthusiastically and play a game with them as a reward. Be sure and keep their area clean by picking up any messes and disposing of them.
Puppies can be easily distracted when outside so it is essential that you have the patience to stay with them until they have settled down. It is not a good idea to just leave them alone as they will probably run to the door and try to get back inside with you.
If this happens and you let them in the stress of being separated from you coupled with the increased excitement will invariably make them want to go and you will be left with a house training accident to clean up and an uneducated puppy.
There is no need for you to stay outdoors for hours waiting for them to go. If they don’t go after a few minutes take them inside and try again a little later. If you notice them sniffing the floor and circling or getting ready to squat immediately stop them and take them outside.
Do not pick up your puppy. Instead, have them walk outside to go. If you don’t do this they will not learn the vital link in that when they need to go they must go to the back door to be let outside.
If you catch them at any time going in the house shout at them. What you shout is not important but you need to shout loud enough to get their undivided attention and to stop them mid-flow.
Do not punish your puppy if they have a housetraining accident or get angry at them as this will cause your puppy to feel distressed and will inhibit the learning process. They will also start avoiding going to the toilet in front of you because they know it makes you angry and will sneak away to do it when you’re not looking. This just makes it that much harder for you to teach them the correct behavior that is expected.
As soon as you have shouted at them try running away from them towards the door and call them enthusiastically in an upbeat and happy tone of voice to encourage them to follow you. Go outside to their chosen spot and wait until they have relaxed and finished what they started earlier. Say your chosen praise phrase as they go and play with them as usual when they finish. Take them back into the house and put them in another room while you clean up any accidents.