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Four Steps for Easy Puppy Potty Training

Updated on July 2, 2020

Four Steps for Easy and Effective Potty Training

Make sure you have plenty of paper towels, and carpet cleaner, preferably an enzymatic cleaner, before you bring your new furry friend home! Accidents are bound to happen as you learn your puppy’s signals and body language, especially as your puppy is navigating their new environment. Understanding that accidents will happen is considered step one of potty training. Getting angry at your puppy for having an accident in the house actually makes your puppy nervous to go potty at all. They want to make you happy, but they are also unsure of where to go potty at. It is your job as their owner to show them!

This brings us to step two of potty training, showing them where to go potty. Establishing a specific area that is acceptable to go potty is important as it is the best way to show your puppy when it is potty time, and when it is not. It is also important they go potty in the same place every time because the scent they leave behind each time encourages them to go potty in the same place next time. This is also important regarding accidents, and why they need to be properly cleaned with an enzymatic cleaner, that will break down the urine, instead of just masking the stain and smell from our perspective. Your dog will be able to smell the urine unless it is cleaned with this cleaner.

Step three of potty training involves timing. This is very important early on in order to minimize accidents inside the house. Taking your puppy outside in specific time intervals allows them the most chances to go potty in the right place, outside! It is also especially important to monitor their food and water intake, as this will help you to know when then need to go outside. After a puppy eats or drinks, they will need to go outside 15-30 minutes after. Going outside every 45 minutes to once an hour when you first bring your puppy home will give you the best chance of having fewer accidents, and as they get older, gradually increase the increments of time between each potty break.

Finally, for step four, reward your dog for doing it correctly every time. Yes, every time! When they go potty outside, clapping for your puppy and being visibly excited makes them happy and excited also. Even bringing treats outside with you and rewarding them right after they finish their business lets them know that they are doing it right! It is important to present the treat right after they finish going potty so your puppy knows what exactly what action they are being rewarded for, as opposed to waiting until you get inside to present the treat. Giving the treat too late may cause your puppy to be confused as to why they are receiving the treat at all.

Other Tips

-Remember, it takes until your dog is six months in age to fully gain control of their bladder. Be respectful about their capabilities!

-Keep in mind that the younger your puppy is, the smaller their bladder is.

-Keep feeding times specific, and take away your dog’s food when it is no longer time to eat, as it will help to regulate their bowels, and help both you and your puppy get to know their potty signals.

-Take your puppy outside to go potty first thing in the morning when you both wake up, and after every time they wake up from a nap to help eliminate the chance of accidents in the house.

-Walk your puppy around the neighborhood to help them learn where other dogs go potty. Make sure to let them stop and smell, and possibly go potty on certain spots.

-Research and consider crate training to help you with potty training. They go hand in hand!

-When you discover an accident that you did not witness, do not yell at your puppy or punish them because they will not understand why they are getting in trouble.

-If you see your puppy going potty in the house, make a loud noise to startle them and stop them from going potty. Then immediately move them outside to finish their business, and praise them for finishing them outside.

© 2020 Makenzie Houston


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