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How To Housebreak The Stubborn Yorkie
I'm sure many of you have ran into the that terrible dillema of having a precious tiny Yorkie that just does not seem to get the housebreaking concept. Any Yorkie lover knows how hard it is to get upset at those big brown eyes staring up at us, but the bottom line is that if the pup is going to live in the house, he must learn the rules. Ok, so the concept is easy, but how do we get there?
First thing any Yorkie owner MUST remember is that a Yorkie is a terrier above anything else. This loveable breed may be listed as a toy breed, but he's still a terrier. Terriers are known for being stubborn. Hey, that's what makes them so good at their hunting skills when going to ground. If you're going to housebreak a Yorkie, you're going to have to outlast him in the stubborn department. In other words, if you don't want to spend an hour outside in the freezing cold, pouring rain, high winds, or in the middle of the night, although you have to be up at the crack of dawn, you might want to rethink your breed choice. I prefer the method of going outside versus puppy pads or litterbox training; however, the plan is the same no matter your potty location preference.
Next, invest in a crate. No, it isn't mean. My Yorkie absolutely loves to be with me every second, but because he has been taught that the crate is an ok and enjoyable place, he's fine with it. The first time you put your Yorkie in the crate make it comfortable for him. I usually have a bed with a few different toys and chew bones inside. Be prepared to listen to whining and howling and the most depressing horrible sounds that you've ever heard. Who would have thought that such a tiny pup could be so loud! You would think you were the worst pet owner in the world, but you aren't. You're giving your baby a safe quiet place to rest. Make sure that no matter how much he complains, you do not let him out until he's quiet. Once again, you need to outlast him in the stubborn department. When he has quietened down, you can get him out and praise him. Take him straight outside or wherever it is you want him to do his business. I promise you that if you are consistent, within a few days, he will learn that you are not leaving him in the crate forever and that it's not the end of the world. He will come to accept it. I've had some accept the crate within a day, but then I've had some to take a week. Just stay consistent.
The main thing over everything is consistency. Get on a routine and stick to it. That means that whatever your routine is during the week, follow it on the weekends, as well. Once your little one learns that routine, it will make it easier for him to learn what you expect, but it will make your life easier, as well. Now, that doesn't mean that if he's crated all day while you're at work, he must be crated that way on the weekend. Just remember to increase your number of potty breaks.
I, highly, recommend a feeding schedule. You can account for your little guy or gal to have to go potty within 15-20 minutes after eating, immediately following a nap, and after hard play. If you can get an idea of when he will need to potty, then you can set him up to succeed, which makes everyone happy. Take him to his designated potty area frequently. If you can't watch him, crate him. If you want him with you, then attach his leash to you, so that he stays with you everywhere you go. That doesn't allow him freedom to sneak off and have an accident. Of course, if you haven't leash trained him yet, this last suggestion will not work until you do.
Just remember, any dog can be housebroken regardless of size. It's all in the matter of how much time you, as a pet owner, want to spend on teaching this very important rule. Accidents are going to happen. Don't scold your Yorkie if you did not catch him in the act. He will not know what you're scolding him for. Housebreaking doesn't happen overnight, but, with patience, it will happen. You can do this! :-)