1Stay ahead of dog’s needs: At the beginning of potty training we need to stay ahead of the dog’s needs, this means we will be treating them like a puppy. About 20 minutes after eating, drinking, waking up or playing hard we will take them outside. We are basically reminding them that they might want to go. So instead of waiting until your dog can no longer hold it, we provide access to relief.
2Use enzyme based cleaners, not ammonia: Make sure you clean with enzyme based cleaners following directions closely. These will break down the particles in the pee and poop so the spot no longer smells of it to the dog. If it smells like a spot where they have gone potty before they are likely to repeat the behavior, enzyme based products avoid that.
3Select a designated potty spot: When taking your pup outside do it on a leash or out to a pen of about 6 ft in radius. Take them directly to the spot you want them to use and wait there for about 5 minutes. Be very boring while dog sniffs, when dog goes potty praise enthusiastically. You can use treats as a reward as long as these don’t distract your dog from doing his business. Once you’ve had a successful potty break you can take your dog out for a walk or play out in the yard with him. So potty first. Then go for a walk or play in the yard.
4What goes in must come out: It is important to keep an eye on both water and food intake. For dogs with potty issues free feeding is not a good idea. If they are on a schedule you will be able to predict when they need to go potty a bit more accurately. Exercise is also a factor when potty training. If you have had a long walk with your pup the first thing they do when you get back is gulp down a bowl of water right? This means that in about 20 minutes all that water will need to come out so plan ahead considering this. Always leave your dog on an empty bladder, not a full one.
5Never reprimand your dog for an accident: If they have an accident while the humans are not around we just clean up and continue with the regular schedule. If you catch them in the act then we rush them outside, if you get a single drop outside we still reward enthusiastically when they are done. Then move back inside and clean up the area. There is no need to reprimand the dog at any time, this actually causes more problems than it fixes. We want your dog to be comfortable going potty in front of you so your potty training can be successful.
For more potty training help or any questions about training, don’t hesitate to contact Animal America’s Training Academy.