One of the most common questions I get from new puppy owners is how to house train their
dog. First off it’s important to know that it takes quite some time, a few months is not uncommon for a puppy to be fully house trained. The advantage we have, is that in the first few weeks it is fairly predictable when a puppy needs to go potty. You should take him outside after every play session and nap. Besides that, every two hours is an absolute minimum. Set up a routine
I always advise new puppy owners to make up a routine. An example of a morning routine could be: 7am; Take puppy outside: Since they just slept for the night (hopefully) they will have a full blather. 7.30: Play time 8am: First meal inside the crate and after that they stay inside to take a nap 9am - 10am: When they wake up, go outside again. 10am - 12am: Play time, you could take time here to play or train with your puppy. 12am: Second meal and nap time.
Recognize the signals
Most pups start sniffing around in circles when they need to pee or poop. If you learn to recognize your pups signals, it will be easier to house train them.
Reward your puppy
Make sure to reward your puppy immediately after he defecates in the right area. This way he learns what you expect from him.
Limiting the space outside
The world is interesting, especially for your puppy. So when they go outside, they get distracted easily. This way, they might forget they need to pee until they come back inside. So to make it easier for them, you could put them on a leash. Even in your garden this might be a great solution. Since they have less to explore, they won’t be distracted as long.
Punishing accidents does not help your puppy become house trained. The only thing the dog learns is not to pee when you can see him. So some dogs learn to defecate in corners or different rooms just because they are scared of your punishment. It’s easier to teach your puppy what to do, instead of what not to do.
Since dogs like to pee in the same place as they did before, your puppy might pee faster when you return to the same spot every time.
Some common ‘problems’ people ask me about are that their dog does not want to go potty outside. In these situations, often the dog has learned that going potty means the end of the walk. So he tries to hold this as long as possible. To avoid this, make sure to continue your walk after your dog has gone potty. Even if it’s only for a few minutes.
Besides that, I often get asked why their dog doesn’t go potty outside, but the moment they return inside the puppy starts to pee. Since everything is interesting outside, many puppies forget they need to go potty. The moment they return inside, they relax because they know the environment and that makes them remember to pee. Because of this, I advise to limit the space your puppy gets outside when they need to go potty.
Lastly, make sure to remain patient and calm. A puppy needs time to learn to control his bladder.