Who doesn't love puppies?! They're incredibly cute and sweet and so much fun to play with. If you have a new puppy, or are planning to get a puppy, we have some tips to help you house train them. You will need to be patient and attentive, but it's all worth it in the end!
Take your puppy out to pee -- a lot!
Puppies can only hold in their pee for about an hour for each month old they are. That means a 3-month old pup can hold out for only max 3 hours before having an accident. That means if you go out for 5 hours and come home to a mess, it's definitely not your puppy's fault or an act of disobedience. It's important to remember your puppy is a living, breathing being. Just like you, they have accidents despite their best intentions. There's no need to scold them or punish them for an accident. To avoid accidents in your home, take your puppy out frequently to ensure they have the opportunity to pee in the great outdoors instead of on your favourite carpet. Key times to go out include after they wake up, after you play with them, and after meals and drinking.
Find a consistent bathroom area and prompt them to use it, then reward them
If most of your walks with your puppy will be in the same place, try to guide them gently to the same spot to go to the bathroom regularly. Each time you go there, gently tell them what they need to do. The more often they hear you say what you want them to do, the more they'll associate the action with the command. Each time they go outside in this spot, encourage their positive behaviour with a little treat. Be sure to give them the treat right after the action rather than later on in a new locale.
Feed them regularly
Puppies need structure. A feeding schedule is a great thing to introduce as it will show your puppy that eating happens at particular times, rather than around the clock. It will also help you create a walk schedule as your puppy will naturally have to relieve themselves at particular times afterwards if fed on a consistent timeline.
Don't let them drink too close to bedtime
If you drink a glass of water at bedtime, you'll probably have to pee in the middle of the night. The same applies to your puppy. This is totally in your control -- just take away your puppy's water dish a few hours before their bedtime to avoid overnight accidents.
Pay attention to your puppy
Your puppy will usually give you clues that they need to go for a walk. They might bark, look anxious, scratch the floor or door, squat, and behave restlessly. Don't punish them just because nature is calling at an inopportune time for you. Be sure to take your puppy out as soon as you can if you see these signs.
If you can't be there, ensure they're safety
If you have to go out for a long period of time, try to arrange for someone to supervise your puppy in your absence. Puppies can become quite distressed when left alone for hours, so if you can find someone to watch them, do. If you can't, try to confine them to an area that's small but big enough that they can walk a little. The area should be mostly bare so they don't hurt themselves or damage anything. Ensure you leave them food and water in the space. You'll most likely return to a puppy accident, so it's best if the area is easy to clean.
We hope these house training tips help you train your puppy and enjoy the process! They are wonderful companions that should be treated with respect and care.
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