Potty Training Your Dog is Easier than You Think
There are many dogs who were never trained to potty outside. And having a dog like this can become a real headache if you aren’t sure how to train it during its adult life.
Luckily you can still train a dog to potty outside even if it’s past that puppy learning phase. It will take some time and patience on your part, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible.
The 20 Minute Rule
If you are training a puppy, having an “every 20 Minute rule” from the start is very helpful and will bring you quick results and a lot less stress for both yourself and your beloved furry friend! Another way to implement the 20 Minute Rule is to let your dog outside 20 minutes AFTER it has eaten and BEFORE it goes to bed. If your dog sleeps inside, this is an important one to follow.
A Set Midday Routine
It is important to set a routine for your dog. A midday day routine is very effective in potty training, providing you are able to implement this on a regular basis. For example if you work a full day job it is important to make sure that your dog has access to continue with their routine should you not be around.
Some people would argue as to whose bedtime this actually is? Puppies seem to sleep all day and have an overflow of energy at night. It is wise to set a bedtime routine right from the start. Twenty minutes before YOUR bedtime is best for preventing late night accidents. Although it’s safe to say that if you do go to bed at a late hour, letting your dog out a few times before your final “lights-out” is a wise choice.
How to Handle Accidents Positively
Remember YOU don’t “speak” dog and your fury friend most certainly does not “speak” human! So BE NICE. Aggressive behaviour can backfire at a rapid rate. Being aggressive when disciplining your dog can cause your dog to become aggressive toward you.
So when accidents happen—and they will—it is important to reprimand you dog in a stern voice and to take them outside as quickly as possible to enforce the rule of going to potty outside. Only reprimand in the moment. Reprimanding your dog hours after the offense has occurred makes leaves them feeling extremely confused because they understand belated discipline.
Also rubbing a dog’s nose in their own urine is not a great lesson and creates a sense of shame for the dog.
A Few Tricks
- Cut a patch of grass from your garden and put it into a shallow cardboard box inside your house. Encourage your dog to potty on this grass. After about six weeks re-plant the grass into your garden and lead your dog to this “secret” place. Because your dog’s scent is already on the patch of grass this encourages them to potty outside.
- Place pieces of old newspapers on the floors around the house. Teach your dog to potty on the newspaper in case of an emergency. When this happens respond with “good dog!” But still lead them outside to potty again. Gradually over a period of time your dog will realize this is only for emergencies.
- Treats are a great way to achieve fast results. Every time your dog potties outside give them a treat. This not only teaches your dog discipline but also shows them that rewards are interconnected to good behaviour and progress. It won’t take long for them to realize that their human loves to reward them for good behavior!
- If you are using some kind of formal training or school to teach your dog basic disciplines, using their lead to potty train is highly recommended. Make use of the lead when walking them outside after an accident to avoid unnecessary angry moments.