When house training a puppy it is important to have patience, consistency, and be sure to give the puppy positive reinforcement. A puppy owner must teach the puppy but also build a loving relationship with the puppy.
The ideal time for a puppy to finish training would be 4-6 months. Unfortunately, some stubborn puppies can take up to a year. The time of training may also depend on the breed size of the puppy. Smaller dogs have smaller bladders and have to relieve themselves more often than say a Labrador puppy would. If the previous owner wasn’t too attentive with a puppy’s house manners than the puppy will probably have hard habits that will be difficult for the owner to break easily. These habits will have to be broken before the puppy can learn good habits.
Accidents should not cause discouragement. If the puppy has an accident then the consistent training should continue. Rewards for good behavior puppy are very effective. An owner should always observe the puppy’s behavior and once there is a sign that the puppy needs to eliminate themselves they should be taken outside this consistency will teach the puppy quicker.
House Training Age
Between the ages of 12 and 16 weeks is a more effective age to start house training a puppy. This the age where a puppy will have more control over their bodily functions and can be taught to hold it.
If the dog is older than 12 weeks old it may take longer. This is especially difficult if the puppy or dog was kept in a cage where they were eliminated and ate their own waste. If this is the case, the dog will have to basically be taught from scratch. The bad habits must be stopped before the training can begin. Encouraging a dog with positive reinforcement will be most effective.
House Training Steps
At the beginning of training the puppy should be confined to a smaller living space. The puppy may even be put on a leash tied up in the house and given more space once the puppy has learned control.
The following steps may be helpful to successful training:
-The puppy should have a schedule for feeding times. When it is not feeding time the puppy’s good should be put out of reach.
-Times to allow the puppy to eliminate should also be on a consistent schedule. It is ideal to take puppy out first thing in the morning, after meals, before puppy is left by themselves, and every 30 minutes to an hour. This will create the physical habit for good behavior for the puppy.
-If the puppy is shown the same spot to eliminate, each time the puppy needs to go the puppy will smell their own scent and this will let them know that they should go every time they are there.
-The puppy owner should go outside with the puppy to witness them going and to keep the puppy focused on doing their business instead of looking around for their owner.
-Every time the puppy goes outside the puppy should have positive reinforcement and maybe rewarded with a fun walk.
If a puppy is put in a crate when the owner may not be able to keep an eye on the puppy it can teach the puppy to hold their elimination as dogs have the instinct to not want to go in an area where the dog sleeps. As soon as the puppy is let out of the crate the puppy should be taken outside immediately to have the opportunity to learn to do their business outside.
Rules for Crate Training:
-Determining the puppy’s crate size is based off of how big the puppy is as well. The crate should not be able to use a corner to eliminate, but they puppy should be able to turn around, lay down, and stand up.
-For long periods of time the puppy should have access to fresh water preferably attached to the crate at all times.
-If a busy schedule keeps an owner away from the puppy for the duration of the day it is important to appoint someone who can stop by to let the puppy out for at least the first 8 months of the puppy’s training period.
-Once bad habits are recognized in crate training such as not being able to control bodily functions while in the crate it may be time to stop the crate training. This may indicate that the puppy has already learned bad habits and has brought them to their new home. Other circumstances can be that the puppy does not get taken outside enough or that the crate is too big for the puppy’s size. The puppy may even be too young and lack control over their bodily functions.