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Wednesday, January 15, 2020

The Basics of Potty Training Dogs

While I love having a dog, I knew that with four little kids, there was no way I'd have it in me to deal with potty training a dog, so when we got our Snickers, she was a year old and already potty trained. However, quite a few friends of mine are in the new puppy potty training stage, so hopefully this post will be helpful for you!



Puppies can be a lot of work, and potty training them might be the epitome of the work associated with coaching your new dog. Don't worry if you’re having a hard time teaching your puppy, almost all dogs learn eventually where it's okay to go to the bathroom.

Keeping that in mind, there are a few basics to consider when you're instructing your pooch.


Consistent location

If you think about it, people always go to the bathroom in the same spot in their house. So it naturally makes sense that your pup should be trained to go to the bathroom at the same spot outside. Bring your pup to this location even after they've had an accident in the home to show them where they should be relieving themselves. After a few times of using the bathroom at this spot, they'll know what it means when you bring them there. They'll also smell their own scent and know this is where it's “OK” to “go”.

Read your pup

Puppy's are sort of like kids when they need to go to the bathroom, the tell-tale signs are all there. If your pooch is scratching at the door, and whining, they might just be trying to get out, or they may need to evacuate themselves. If they're obsessively sniffing or licking their nether regions this might also be a sign they need to relieve their bladder. Learn to read the signs that your dog gives you when they need to go, and bring them out then. The better you're able to do this the fewer accidents you'll end up having to clean.

Keep a regular food routine

If your puppy is eating the same food, everyday, at the same time, odds are going to be their bathroom routine will be similarly scheduled. Make sure you're feeding them on a consistent basis and you'll get the routine of when they need to go out. Abby Texas from DogEmbassy.com provides a list of which foods are the least likely to make your dog go poop too much. All natural food, with good protein sources, and limited allergens are going to reduce cases of excessive pooping in your furry friend.

Watch fluid intake

If your new dog is downing water like a champion, they're going to need to let it out at some point. Watch how much water your dog is drinking and you'll know when to watch for the signs that they need to go. If they are drinking far too much water and finishing the bowl every time you fill it up, you might want to reduce how much water that they have access to at this stage. It's important you ensure they're getting enough water for them to stay healthy, but if it's too much you can reduce the amount they have as long as you’re careful.

Tell them they've done a good job



Just like people, dogs love praise. If your puppy lets you know when he/she needs to go out and poops exactly where they're supposed to, tell them they're a good boy/girl. Give them praise and even a treat if they've been behaving well. A dog that associates a proper potty routine with positivity will likely continue to behave well. They might still have one or two accidents in the future but this doesn't mean that they're a bad dog.

Don't get mad

It can be easy to lose your cool when you notice poop on the ground at home, but don't get overly upset at your dog. This can cause them to become more stressed and lead to continued accidents. Just take them outside and show them where they should be going. Adhere to the routine and don't become frustrated, your dog will start to learn eventually. Just ensure you're not leaving any of the scent behind at all, your dog will pick up on these smells. If they smell the residue they may think this is an okay spot to go and lead to more cleanups.

When you're first training your dog, make sure you're using the same spot to show them to go to the bathroom to increase familiarity. This will also make cleanup a lot easier for you initially as well. Learn to read the tell-tale signs of your pup needing to go to the bathroom, and keep up with a consistent feeding routine. Watch how much water they're drinking out of the bowl to know when to expect to take them out. Don't forget to give them praise when they do a good job! Dogs need reassurance just like people. It can be hard at times not to become frustrated, but don't lose your cool with your dog. You want to develop a relationship of trust after all, just make sure you're correcting the behaviour. After a little time and (a lot of) effort, your dog will be potty trained like a champion!

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