Archive for March, 2011

Paper Training Your Puppy

An alternative to using crate training to help potty train, is to paper train your puppy. You can use either newspapers or special potty pads that are scented to encourage your puppy to eliminate on the potty pad. The idea is to gradually decrease the use of the paper/potty area, and also to move from using the paper inside the house to outside the house, then outside without the paper or pads.

One Important Note

I believe crate training is the best and most important tool for potty training your puppy. However, I am realistic because people have to go to work or school during the day. You cannot leave a puppy in the crate for more than a few hours at a time.

Unless you are going to come home every few hours, or have a dog walker come over every few hours and take your puppy to go potty, then paper training may be a good situation for you. Paper training may be used in conjunction with crate training, but not as a substitute in my opinion.

The downsides to paper training is that:

  • Your puppy will be going potty inside the house for a time.
  • You will have to double-train your puppy using a crate at the same time, or at a later time.
  • Puppies don’t always hit the paper or potty pad.

Some of the upsides to paper training are:

  • You can leave to go to work and school without having to come home during the day.
  • Your puppy will have his own area to move around in and go potty when he needs to.

It may smell a little during this training period, but what is your alternative if you are gone all day? DO NOT leave your puppy in the yard all day, or your puppy will take a very long time to potty train, and may never learn. Then you would never want to let your dog into your house, and this is not the reason you got a dog in the first place.

Paper training will take patience, and the puppy should never be punished for making mistakes. They should be praised and rewarded for doing things correctly, not punished for doing the wrong thing. There will be accidents, this is just inevitable, no matter what training technique you use.

If your puppy does have an accident, be sure to clean the area thoroughly with an enzymatic cleaner to eliminate the odors completely. Your puppy will return to the same spot to eliminate if any smell remains, so make sure you clean it well.

Paper Training Basics

The key to paper training is to enclose your puppy in an area, such as a kitchen, laundry room, garage, etc. and to have potty pads or newspapers set out in one corner for their potty area. Do not give them too much room. Give them just enough room to have a place to sleep, a place for water, some room to move around, and a place in the corner to go potty.

Choose only one area to confine your puppy. This area should have a hard floor, not carpet. Once you choose where you will confine your puppy, use this area only. Do not move the area around, do not leave paper or potty pads anywhere else in the house other than in their confined area where they will stay when you go to the store, go to work, go to dinner, etc. Use an x-pen or gates to confine your dog and to create a cozy space for them.

To teach them to go on the paper, simply put them on the leash and lead them to the paper or potty pads. Give the command to ‘go potty’ and allow them to sniff around. Keep telling them this command until they go. Once they go potty, give them lots of praise. Make a big deal about it and make sure your puppy knows they did a good job.

If your puppy does not go potty, go play with them for a while, and return and try again after about 10 minutes. You may also want to wait until your puppy eats or drinks water first, then take them over to their paper or potty pads and repeat the process.

By doing this for a few times, your puppy will quickly learn that the paper or potty pads is where they are supposed to go potty. This will be your puppy’s area whenever he is out of his crate and you cannot watch him, or if you have to leave. By using this technique, WITH other proper potty training techniques such as crate training and training them to go potty outside, your puppy will quickly be potty trained.

You can learn more about paper training to easily potty train your puppy.

Easily Housetrain Your Puppy in a Weekend?

If you are like any dog owner, then you want to potty train your puppy as fast as possible. If you get your puppy on a Friday, then you probably want to house train them in a weekend. Is this possible?

I do suggest that you get your new puppy on a Friday, work with your pup over the weekend, and also take a week’s vacation to be with your puppy the following week. This is the best way to introduce a new dog into your household. If you work with your new dog over this time, they should be very well potty trained by the time you have to go back to work, school, or what have you.

(Please note that your puppy’s bladder still will not be fully developed and they still cannot hold their potty, so you will still have to make plans for getting your puppy out every few hours to go potty.)

I am also realistic. Most people won’t take vacation to work with their puppy, for various reasons. So again, get your puppy as early as possible on a Friday. If you could take a Friday off of work and get your new best friend early that day, this will give you a full extra day to house train your dog.

If you have three full days to work with your puppy, then you can have good success with your house training. I am sure that you have been looking around the internet for information, and have probably seen other sites guaranteeing success in a weekend.

Be aware that, while your puppy can learn the principles of house training in a weekend, and can seemingly be house trained in that time, a weekend is NOT enough time to have a fully potty trained dog. You will be on your way, though. Your puppy can basically learn where it is appropriate to go potty in a weekend.

And, while you are home with them during the weekend, they can have good success. But, what about when Monday comes along and you have to go back to work. Young puppies cannot hold their bladder. The basic rule is that your puppy can hold their bladder one hour more than his age in months. So, a 2 month old puppy can hold his bladder for 3 hours, a 3 month old puppy can hold it for 4 hours, etc.

Your puppy may be different. Your dog’s ability to hold their bladder may vary, and this will depend on the breed, the amount of water and food they eat and when, the amount of play, and other factors.

So, now that I have said all that, when you go back to work your puppy is not fully potty trained and cannot hold their potty all day while you are gone. You will either have to come home every few hours to take your puppy out for a potty break, or have a dog walker come in every few hours for a potty break.

Your puppy house training is not complete over a weekend. Potty training is an ongoing thing that may take months for your puppy to be completely trusted in your home, and for his bladder to be fully developed before you can call your puppy house trained.

Read more on house training your puppy quickly and easily.

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