A simple overview of potty training for puppies
Your daughter is playing with one of your neighbor's new Golden Retriever pups and wears the expression of bliss. The neighbor informs you that she is looking to give all the new pups away and that you are welcome to one of them. Your little girl hears this and yells with delight 'Really? Oh Mommy! Please! Please!' You agree. But not before informing the newly ecstatic girl that she must help out with potty training for puppies.
There are a number of ways people go about housebreaking their dogs. One good method is using newspapers or pads. Often, these pads are treated with a chemical with a scent to which puppies are attracted. This encourages them to use the pads. Set the papers or pads down in the area where you want to begin. If the puppy shows signs of needing to potty, like walking in circles and sniffing the floor, simply pick her up and bring her to the pads or take her outside. Do not speak until after the dog has done her business. After each successful bathroom break, bestow her with praise. As she continues to have success with the pads, you can move them closer to the door or put them outside.
Crate training is another option. The concept here is that if you set up a crate for your pup, it will become her special spot and where she sleeps. She will not want to make messes where she sleeps. Always take the dog out for potty before putting her in the crate and immediately after taking her out of the crate. Through crate training, puppies learn not to pee and poop inside. Most dogs can 'hold it' for up to seven hours. This training method also teaches pups that they can control it.
A third method is constant supervision which is very time intensive. Instead of using papers, pads, cages or crates, you make the decision to spend as much time as necessary training your dog. This technique is popular with retirees and stay at home individuals. In this situation the owner watches the dog constantly for any signals that he needs to go to the bathroom and immediately brings him outside. If the dog does his 'business' praise him and bring him back inside immediately. Do not play with him as he needs to understand the reason he was brought outside.
Always keep in mind that these are puppies and they will occasionally have accidents. Though you may be frustrated, it does no good to reprimand pups for accidents if you do not witness them. Dogs will not be able to equate the scolding with the accidents and they will only get confused. If you do see the inappropriate potty taking place, sternly say 'No' and pick the dog up and carry her outside or to her pads. If she completes her business in the right spot, praise her.
Get everyone in the household involved in the potty training process. Whichever method you use, make sure everyone is on board and follows through. This takes pressure off of just one person and also keeps the training consistent. It is also a good lesson of responsibility for kids and helps build a bond between them and the dog.
When a business trip or vacation comes up, you may be afraid that all your hard work will be for naught. While you are gone your puppy will forget everything she has learned. A good way to avoid this is to utilize the services of a pet sitter. A sitter will be able to continue the process while you are away.
A new puppy is like a new family member. The time you spend together can bring untold joy to your life. Proper bathroom training will relieve stress and therefore make it easier for you to build the bond.