HOUSEBREAKING in GeneralHousebreaking your puppy can be extremely frustrating if you do not practice consistency. Every ½ hour - hour, take your puppy outside, place him in the spot you want him to relieve himself, and say Go Potty! or Outside or whatever words you want to use to indicate that you want your puppy to go. You will be most successful with getting your puppy to understand what you want of him if you are able to time this when you know he has to go, and he is naturally ready to eliminate himself. As soon as he begins to go, praise DURING the act, not after. This is extremely important! Say,good boy pooty outside use the key words to praise. Your puppy will begin to associate your praise with what he is doing during your praise. The more times you are able to successfully make this happen and the more consistent you are, the easier it will be for your puppy to potty train.
If you catch your puppy eliminating in the house, say NO in a firm voice do NOT HIT or RUB nose in his mistake!!! Just quickly scoop him up and carry him to the appropriate place outside. Wait for him to go again, and remember to praise him DURING the act.
Your puppy will eventually be completely trained, but be patient, some puppies take longer than others. Do not expect your puppy to go for hours without eliminating himself. At this age he is unable to control his bladder, and it is up to you to make sure he is given many opportunities to relieve himself, and to establish what you expect of him.
CRATE TRAINING Before you crate train, please be aware: a dog that is left in a crate all day long, gets let out in the evening after work for a few hours and then put back in the crate for the night can become a very unhappy, destructive dog.
If you work all day, it is recommended that you find someone who can let you dog out for a potty break and play time midday if you intend on crating your dog while you are gone. If this is not possible, then only use the crate at night. If you must leave your dog all day long every day and you have nobody to let the dog out during the day, you should find a room that he can be contained in and put down food, water and toys. A kitchen, bathroom or utility room works great. You should set up the room so that a bed and food are at one end and pee pads or newspaper at the other, I've seen people even use a doggie litter box with shavings. They need to find something to occupy their mind, so give your dog plenty of toys. Dogs are den animals and will usually come to like the crate, but even a den animal would go crazy if it was locked up all day long.
Buy a crate and for the first few weeks keep your puppy in it when you are not with him, but not for more than a few hours at a time. Make sure the crate is not too big. It should be large enough for the puppy to stand up, turn around, stretch out, but no larger. Dogs do not want to soil their bed and the use of a crate teaches them to control their urge to eliminate.
When your puppy is not in his crate you must maintain a close watch at all times. As soon as you see him pacing, sniffing around, and turning in circles, immediately take him outside. He is telling you "I am going to go potty somewhere, and this looks like as good a place as any."
Be patient and do not rush your puppy. He may have to go several times in one "pit stop." Give him about 10 minutes before taking him back inside. Do not play with him while you are on potty training ventures. Let him know this is a business trip.
Make sure you take him out after every meal and play session BEFORE you put him back in his crate. Be consistent and establish a schedule. Pay attention to your puppy's behavior so you can develop a schedule that works for you and the pup. When does your puppy naturally go? In the morning? 10 minutes after eating? Around bedtime? You may have to make some compromises. Be fair to your puppy. He cannot be expected to stay alone in his crate for endless hours and not relieve himself. During your work days, you will need to have someone go to your home at least once (lunch time is good) to let the puppy out. Take him for a long walk. Your dog needs something to occupy his mind and cannot be kept for hours in a crate with nothing to do, and no chance to relieve himself. Make sure everyone who is involved in the housebreaking process is using the same spot in the yard and the same word. Everyone should agree on the place they will take the puppy. The odor from the previous visits will cause the puppy to want to go in that spot.
Until your puppy is about 5 months old you will need to take him out frequently and keep an eye on him. But before you know it, you are going to be able to trust him to tell you when he needs to go or learn his cues. And he will learn that when he pleases you by going out to do his business, he gets more freedom in the house.
Important: Remain consistent. Do not allow your puppy to do something one day and not the next. This will confuse him. Never leave an untrained puppy unattended in the house. Make your dog understand what is expected of him. Dogs want to please. Always praise your dog for good behavior. No form of physical punishment is as effective as praise and encouragement.