House training your dog or puppy requires a lot of patience, commitment, and consistency. Accidents will happen, but if you follow these basic house training guidelines, you can get your new puppy on the right track.
Keeping a Routine
Keeping a regular schedule teaches your pup that there are times to eat, play, and do their business. Typically, a puppy can control its bladder for one hour for every month of age. So if your puppy is 3 months old, they can hold it for about three hours.
Take them out frequently —at least every two hours—immediately after they wake up, play, or eat and drink.
Choose a designated area, and always take your puppy on a leash to that spot. You can reward them with a long walk or playtime after they finish.
Reward your pup every time they eliminate outdoors. Praise or give treats—It is imperative to reward your puppy immediately after they’ve finished, not after they come back inside. Make sure they are finished, puppies are easily distracted, and if you praise them too soon, they may finish when they come back into the home.
They are keeping a regular feeding schedule. What goes into a puppy comes out of a puppy on a schedule. Depending on the age, puppies may need to be fed two or three times a day. Feeding your puppy at the exact times each day will make it more likely that they’ll eliminate at consistent times, making house training a much easier task.
Potty needs in the middle of the night
If your puppy wakes you up at night, do not talk or play with your puppy. Take them to the designated area, then return them to bed.
Supervise your puppy
Keep your puppy tethered to you or a nearby piece of furniture when you are not playing with them.
. Look for signs that your puppy needs to go out. Some obvious signs are restlessness, sniffing around, or circling. When you see these signs, immediately grab the leash and take them outside to their bathroom spot. If they eliminate, praise them and reward them with a treat or praise.
Keep your puppy on a leash in the yard. During the potty training, you should treat your yard like any other room in your house. Give your puppy some freedom in the home and yard after they become reliably house trained.
When you can’t supervise, confine
When you can’t watch your puppy at all times, restrict them to a crate or small confined area.
The space should be big enough to stand, lie down and turn around comfortably. If your puppy has spent several hours in their crate, you’ll need to take them directly to its bathroom spot as soon as you return.
Mistakes are going to happen.
It is normal for your puppy to have a few accidents in the house—it’s part of potty training. Here’s what to do when that happens:
Immediately take them to their outside bathroom spot. Don’t punish your puppy for any accidents in the home. If you find a soiled area, clean it up. Scolding or any other punishment will only confuse and scare them. Disciplining will do more harm than good.
Clean the soiled area thoroughly.
Puppies are highly motivated to continue using areas that smell like urine or feces. If you have to clean up an accident, put the soiled rags or paper towels in the desired location in your yard to help your puppy recognize where they should go potty.
Make plans for when you’re away.
If you have to be away from home for several hours a day, this may not be the best time to get a puppy. If you already have a puppy and must be away for long periods, please arrange for someone to take them for bathroom breaks.