Housebreaking Your Dog
If you've recently added a new four-legged family member to your home,
you will need to understand housebreaking. Housebreaking your puppy or
dog teaches them the proper place to relieve themselves, which is of
vital importance to any canine owner.
Potty training your puppy or dog begins as soon as they arrive home.
Take them directly to the spot where you want them to “go.” Do not be
discouraged if they don't understand what you want them to do at first.
Puppies are physically unable to control their bladder function until
at least three months of age. Because of this, you will need to be
extra vigilant in taking your puppy to the designated potty area. You will
need to take your puppy at least six times a day in the beginning.
Good times to do this are first thing in the morning and last thing at
night, after naps, meals, and playtime. If you notice your puppy sniffing
the ground or going in circles, it is a good indication that they need
An excellent method of housebreaking is crate training. Crate training
utilizes placing your puppy or dog in a confined area for specified
amounts of time. A dog is unlikely to defecate or urinate in the area
where he sleeps, and will usually hold it if possible when in the crate.
Upon removing your dog from the crate, take them directly to the
bathroom area so they can relieve themselves. Be sure to lavishly praise
your dog for successfully going in the right place. Although your dog may
whimper and whine when first placed in the crate, he or she will become
accustomed to it and even enjoy spending time there. The crate should
be large enough for the dog to comfortably turn, but not so spacious
that the dog is comfortable using the bathroom in the crate.
When housebreaking a puppy or dog, be prepared for accidents. It's
best if you catch your dog in the act. Give a stern “No!” then
immediately take the dog to the proper area. There are special puppy training
sprays that can be utilized to encourage a puppy to go in a certain area.
If your dog does have an accident in your home, remove all evidence and
scent with a good cleaning. There are special products on the market
today designed to remove all traces of pet urine and waste from your
carpets and upholstery. It's important to remove the scent because if the
dog recognizes the area as a place he has used as a potty area before,
he may be tempted to use it again.
The most important thing in housebreaking is consistency.
Housebreaking can be a tedious process, but remember, it won't last forever. By
staying consistent in your training methods and daily routine, your dog
will learn how to go to the bathroom where, and even when, you want him
My one regret in life is that I am not someone else -- Woody Allen