I think the number one question that I am asked most often is "When will my puppy be housebroken?"If I knew that answer I would be a very
rich woman. The truth is, there are no pat answers, but I can give you some helpful tips that will make the housebreaking process a little easier.
- Crate, Crate, Crate! They are not cruel and unusual punishment. If introduced in a positive way, it can become your puppies
favorite space. Dogs tend to be clean animals and as a rule, do not defecate where they sleep. (this may not be the case when getting a petshop or kenneled dog) The crate should be big enough for the
pup to stand and turn around in, no heavy beds or blankets(they will soak up the urine) and keep away from direct sunlight or heat. If the pup has to be in for extended amounts of time he should be
exercised adequately am and pm. That means running, playing, tricks or obedience. 1/2 hour-1hour at a time or what is appropiate for the pups age. A walk to the mailbox does not constitute good
exercise. Consider getting a dog walker in during the day.
- When you take pup outside. Go immediately to one area(10x10) and do not move until your pup has emptied. Praise, THEN..take him on
a nice sniffing adventure walk. That is his reward. Letting him browse before he goes may distract him and cause him to empty when you get back in the house. If you are going to give him treats
do so outside when he has done his business not when you go back inside. He may not empty and rush to go back in and get his treat.
- You can also put a cue to his "business" (go potty). When he understands this cue he will go a lot quicker and the cue is useful when in
strange places. BE PATIENT! If pup does not go,(over time you will get to know his habits) put him back in his crate, and try again in another 15mins or so.
- BE PATIENT!
- That brings us to the most important tip. WATCH HIM LIKE A HAWK!! No free roam of the house. In the same room with you or in his crate.
You can also tie him with a leash to your belt as you go about your day. They are very good at sneaking off and doing their business before you even notice their gone. If he does have an accident out
of sight. Do not scream, hit, put nose in it or any other punishment. Their short term memory is just that. SHORT! The only thing you are doing is making the dog afraid of you. The more you watch
your dog and learn his signals (stopping and sniffing suddenly when playing, walking back and forth towards the door, ext.) the quicker you can take him out and make the connection. Try putting a
bell (Christmas bell) on the door and teach him to ring it to go out. Always use the same door.
- If you CATCH him in the act. With a calm deep voice tell him "NO" and quickly take him outside, saying "Outside" as you do so. Even if
he did it all in the house, still take him out. Worry about cleaning it up after you come inside.
- Do not use ammonia to clean the spot. I use a "Sham WoW" to soak up the majority of the urine, then I use Urine Off.
- BE PATIENT!
- You can restrict their water, unless their is a medical reason not to do so. Pick it up after dinner time. He will be fine. Feed on a
regular schedule. Do not leave the food down all day for free feeding. Check your dog food. The cheaper brands usually have a lot of "bulk" in them. Which will make more volume. Its worth the
investment to buy a better brand. Its better for their health all around and you feed less. PLEASE...no Kibbles and Bits. ugh!Good luck!
TO MANY DOGS ARE RELINQUISHED BECAUSE OF AN OWNERS UNSUCCESSFUL ATTEMPTS AT HOUSEBREAKING. IF YOU NEED MORE HOUSEBREAKING ADVICE, GIVE
ME A CALL! IF IT IS BEYOND A HOUSEBREAKING ISSUE, A PRIVATE LESSON WILL BE ADVISED.