House-training your new puppy is all about the three Ps: Persistence, patience and positive reinforcement. Fully house-training your puppy can take anywhere from four to six months, so it’s important to keep your expectations realistic and remember that your new addition is doing the very best he can. Take in these tips to have a successful puppy house-training experience.
1. Know when to start. House-training works best when the puppy is between 12 and 16 weeks old. Confining your puppy to a small space, like a crate or small room, is the best way to begin; as your puppy learns more to go outside to do his business, you can gradually give him more freedom.
2. Feed on a regular schedule, and take away food between meals. This will allow you and your puppy to learn his schedule better.
3. Take him outside regularly and wait for him to go. Take the puppy outside first thing each morning, then once every 30 minutes to an hour. The frequency of your puppy’s urinations and defecations will depend upon his size; smaller breeds need to go more frequently.
4. Reward good behavior, and don’t punish accidents. Puppies respond very positively to praise and treats, so use both when your puppy goes outside. If your puppy has an accident, don’t punish. If you catch the puppy in the act, clap loudly to get their attention and let them know you see what they are doing. Then take them outside to show them where they should be going to the bathroom.
5. Puppy pads can make house-training easier. These pads are ideal for those who may not be able to take their puppies out as frequently. Use the same premise of outdoor training, but instead with pads. You can move the pad closer to the door if you wish for your puppy to transition to going outside.
Remember that house-training a puppy is a marathon and not a sprint; persistence, patience and positive reinforcement is key. Orscheln Farm & Home carries a wide selection of puppy training pads, crates, treats, enzymatic cleaners and other supplies you will need to successfully train your newest family member!