Got a new puppy, or an older dog that is pooping or peeing where they are not supposed to? Getting frustrated that your toilet training is getting you nowhere? Almost given up altogether? Check out my top tips for helping your pet overcome toileting problems.
1. Keep ’em out of trouble – When a puppy (or older dog) is learning where to go, they aren’t going to get it straight away. They aren’t horrified if there is pee next to their bed – or in their bed. They aren’t going to be upset if they stand in a poop. For dogs this kind of icky mess is generally a sniffing, licking or eating opportunity. So since you are going to get upset if your dog pees on your bed or you stand on a poop, be proactive and put Fido somewhere they can’t get in trouble. Set up a special Puppy Area, a pen or an easy to clean space – where if there is an accident, it doesn’t have to be the end of the world.
2. Write it down – That’s right, you need to keep a toilet training diary – cover date, time, what, where. This can help uncover a pattern, highlight a time when the dog is toileting so you can adjust your outside times.
3. Consistency is key – if you are not playing, pampering or patting your pet, put them away – simple right? If you have trouble being consistent with this simple rule then you will have trouble toilet training your dog. It is your job to set your dog up to be successful as possible in this routine – be consistent.
4. Reward on completion – so you’re out in the yard, and finally your little puppy is on the job, they have started toileting and you say “good dog”, and your puppy runs over to you to grab a treat. You then come inside and they pee on the rug… what the..? The odds are that you actually stopped the puppy from going to the toilet and they had some stuff left over. So keep quiet and wait for your puppy to finish toileting before praise and reward.
5. Double Check with your Vet – If your dog is peeing a lot, it is time to rule out medical problems such as urinary tract infection. It is always better to be safe than sorry.