Housetraining your dog is one of the most important things a puppy owner will do. When housetraining a puppy, owners need to remember the following important P’s: Planning, Placement, Putting a word to it, Patience, Practice, Persistence, Praise, and Persevere.
• By planning your puppy’s feedings for the same time each day, you will eventually be able to anticipate when he needs to go. From the beginning, your puppy will have to go as soon as he wakes up, shortly after he eats, and most likely right after he has finished playing.
• Place your puppy in a crate when you are not home, when you are sleeping, and when he cannot be supervised. Ask your canine educator about acclimating your dog to a crate. It is a puppy’s instinct not to soil their den and a crate becomes the puppy’s den. You are placing the puppy in an environment where he will not want to soil, therefore teaching him to “hold it”. However, keep in mind that the younger a puppy is, the less time he is physiologically capable of holding it. Therefore, if you do keep a young puppy in a crate too long, you may find a mess when you get home.
• When you do take the puppy out, take the puppy out the same door to the same spot in the yard each time. This will teach him the proper door to use and the proper place to go. When you are outside in your puppy’s potty place, plant your feet. Otherwise your puppy will learn he can get a walk out of you every time he goes outside, walking you all over the yard trying to find a place to go.
• So what about placement when he is not in the crate? You will constantly need to know where the puppy is and what he is doing. Remember to take the puppy out to his place in the yard frequently (especially after feeding, naps, and playing) until you are more and more confident that he can hold it for longer periods of time.
PUT A WORD TO IT
• As the puppy is relieving himself outside, say a word that you would eventually like to be the instruction for him. As silly as it may sound, “Go Pee-Pee”, “Do your business”, or “Outside” are all examples of relief instructions. Eventually, when the dog hears those words, he will probably go on demand.
• You will need to be patient. Puppies need time to learn. Don’t ever scold your puppy for having an accident. It will take time and energy to teach your puppy the proper place to go.
• Both you and the puppy will need to practice. He most likely won’t get it the first time. It goes back to the old saying, “Practice makes perfect.”
• You will need persistence. Be persistent about taking the puppy out each time he wakes up, finishes eating, and finishes playing. You will be going outside with your puppy more than you can probably imagine. But just remember that the more persistent you are, the better results you will get.
• You will need to praise your puppy every time he goes potty outside. He will learn that going outside is a wonderful thing!
• Because most puppies are not physically mature until they are a year old or older, it takes perseverance on your part to work with him until you have total success
It is a joyous day when you realize that your puppy is housetrained. Remember all of the P’s involved in this method of housetraining: Planning, Placement, Put a word to it, Patience, Practice, Persistence, and Praise and that day will come!
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