House Training a Puppy

House training a puppy may not be the easiest job in the world, but it doesn’t have to be the hardest either. There are numerous recommendations by animal care experts such as veterinarians to make housebreaking a puppy as fast, convenient, and effective as possible.

First, pet owners should realize that it isn’t feasible to start potty training a puppy when he’s just a few weeks old. According to the short video tutorial below – from the web site (2)-, housebreaking should begin when a puppy is six to eight weeks old. A puppy that’s younger than six weeks still has poor bladder control since his bladder hasn’t fully developed yet.

There are several useful pet care products specifically designed to help a pet owner who is house training a puppy. There are puppy pee pads, which are placed somewhere inside the house and moved progressively closer and closer to the door, and eventually outdoors, as the puppy becomes comfortable using it.

House training a puppy in a training crateA crate or cage is also a popular item for housebreaking a puppy. Since dogs do not like to soil the area where they rest or sleep, using a training crate or cage wil teach them to rein in their urge to urinate or defecate until it’s time to go outside. One example of a good training crate is the Midwest iCrate Single-Door Home Training and Travel Series, which gets lots of thumbs-ups from pet owners. But it should also be kept in mind that puppies shouldn’t be left too long in a cage: they should still be taken out regularly to "go to the bathroom."

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) recommends that if a puppy who is being housebroken properly still poops or pees indiscriminately, it might be a good idea to bring him to a veterinarian to rule out possible medical issues. Some medical conditions can cause a dog to inappropriately void his bladder or bowels, such as a urinary tract infection, a gastrointestinal problem, or a genitalia abnormality that results in incontinence.(2)

Pets shouldn’t be punished or scolded during potty training. Rubbing their noses in their waste or using a harsh tone of voice with them when they make a mess is not only unkind, it’s also counterproductive. Showing attention and affection and giving rewards to reinforce the pup’s accomplishments should not be neglected when house training a puppy.