dog with chewtoy

Training your puppy or adult dog is the essential task you need to take to ensure they live a good, safe, and well-adjusted life. House training your dog will also benefit you, as nobody wants accidents in the home. Training a dog where to “go” may require some patience and time, but it will be a skill that they will have the rest of their life.

The team at Kings Trail Animal Hospital is here to help you deal with the mess (figuratively speaking) by providing some tips and recommendations for potty training puppies.

First Things, First

Before you start the process of teaching your little one how to relieve themselves in the right way, your first point of contact is your veterinarian. Schedule an appointment for an examination. Here, you will get recommendations on the steps to housetraining. 

If your pet is an adult who is having more accidents, it is important to assess their health, as accidents can be a sign of illness. Having your pet examined will give you peace of mind and start your pet off with a clean bill of health. 

House Training Your Dog

Once your pet has been examined or has had their wellness exam, then you can begin. 

  1. Figure out your reward method. Potty training mastery relies on positive reinforcement, as with basic obedience training. Choose your pet’s reward. Most dogs respond to small treats, but things like verbal praise, along with petting, can also be good choices. Clicker training is another method that has worked for many. The clicker is a small plastic piece with a metal prong inside that you press, making a clicking noise. You click the clicker after your pet relieves themselves in the right place.
  2. Select your pet’s dinner times. Give your pet two set times for morning and evening meals and stick with them. Pets who are given food all day naturally want to poop all day, so limit the meals to the right potion and times. Remove food bowls with leftovers after your pet has eaten.
  3. Move accidents to their proper place. Wait! Before you throw out those poo messes, try moving them to the area you want your pet to use. Dogs naturally will look for their scent and re-use their former go-spots.
  4. Clean up accidents thoroughly. Since you know your pet will want to re-use areas where they can pick up their urine or feces scent, clean them up. Use an enzymatic cleaner like Nature’s Miracle for urine spots to eliminate those hard to clean odors.
  5. Supervise your pet. This may be difficult to do, but it is important to keep your pet with you during the weeks of training. You have to be there before any accidents occur, so plan to be available to them, or have another family member fill in while you are away. You might even want to look into crating your pet for a few hours when you cannot watch them. 
  6. Redirect accidents. When you see your pet about to pee or poop, tell them “Oops” or “Aha”, or some other verbal cue to get their attention. Then take them outside to their potty spot.
  7. Praise the correct behavior. When your pet successfully eliminates, praise them verbally and with whatever method of reward you choose. Be consistent with the process and reinforce the behavior with those awesome rewards that your dog responds to.

The best approach to house training your dog is through consistency, repetition, and praise. Set a schedule of feeding times and potty times. Take your pet out after they’ve eaten, as well as a few times during the morning and afternoon. 

House Training Questions?

We are here to answer any questions you have about housetraining your dog. We know this time can be trying, but with a lot of patience and love, your pet will be a potty training success in no time.

Please call us for more information or to schedule an appointment.