A Guide to Potty Training Your Pup
Welcoming a furry friend into your home is an exciting and rewarding experience, but along with the joy comes the responsibility of potty training. Successfully training your dog to do their business in the right place not only keeps your living space clean but also strengthens the bond between you and your fur-kid. Check out our strategies and tips for potty training.
Ideally, potty training should begin as early as possible, whether you've adopted a puppy or an older dog. Younger dogs may require more frequent bathroom breaks, but the principles of training remain the same for dogs of all ages.
Make A Routine
Dogs thrive when they have a consistent schedule. Establish a regular feeding schedule and take your dog outside at the same times each day, especially after meals and waking up. This routine helps your dog associate specific times with potty breaks, making it easier for them to understand when they should go.
Remember: the general rule of thumb is that puppies can usually hold their urine one hour for every month of age (e.g., a four-month-old puppy can hold it for four hours). So as you train your puppy remember that they will need more frequent potty breaks at first.
Designate A Potty Area
Select a specific spot outside where you want your dog to do their business, and use that spot as you train. Additionally, start using a command word or phrase. Consistently taking them to this area will create a strong association between the location and the going potty. The command will also remind them why they are outside. Be patient and allow your dog enough time to sniff around and find the right spot.
Use Positive Reinforcement
Reward your dog with praise and treats when they successfully go to the bathroom in the designated area. Positive reinforcement strengthens the connection between the behavior and the reward, encouraging your dog to repeat the desired action.
Supervise Your Pup
Yes, we want our dogs to have freedom. While you’re potty training, it’s important to know when they’ve eaten/drank to gauge when they might have to go. It’s also good to watch for signs they’ll have to potty, which can include: whining, pacing, sitting by the door or right in front of you, scratching the door, and trembling.
Consider Crate Training
Crate training can be a valuable tool in potty training. Dogs see crates as safe spaces and instinctively avoid soiling their sleeping areas, encouraging bladder and bowel control. Ensure the crate is appropriately sized to allow your dog to stand, turn around, and lie down comfortably.
Be Patient and Understanding
Accidents are inevitable, especially during the initial stages of training. When you see your pup peeing, take them to their potty spot to help reinforce the idea that they should only urinate there. Punishing your dog after the fact will only confuse them or create fear during the training process.
If your pup goes in an area they shouldn’t, make sure to thoroughly clean up. You do not want germs to spread in your home or for your pup to associate indoor areas (that you haven’t specified) as bathroom areas.
Potty training your dog requires time, patience, and consistency. By understanding your dog's instincts, establishing a routine, using positive reinforcement, and incorporating crate training, you'll pave the way for a successful and stress-free training experience. And make sure you're prepared with The Poopcase, our compostable USA-made waste bag dispenser, and Poopy Packs, biodegradable waste bags in fun designs.