Is there anything more exciting than bringing home a new puppy? Those furry balls of cuteness will melt your heart in an instant!
Puppy ownership can be one of the most rewarding challenges of one’s life. But besides the fact that puppies are cute and that we all want one, there are a few reality checks that prospective owners don’t always take into consideration. Number one being: puppy toilet training!
In this article, we will prepare you for one of the bigger feats for new puppy owners: toilet training. We’ll get into the nitty-gritty, including how often puppies poop and how to clean up after any indoor accidents. We’ll discuss the subtleties between toilet training in apartments vs houses and the logistics of puppy toilet training at night. We also hope to impart some trusted puppy toilet training tips along the way, including the use of puppy treats and puppy pads. So get ready to embark on your puppy toilet-training adventure!
As a new puppy owner, you’ll need to learn the signs your puppy gives you indicating the need to “go”. Puppies can show this through various behaviours, but the most telltale sign will be an abrupt stop to their current activity or a shift in attention. Other signs can include barking, whining, circling, sniffing around, scratching at the door or restlessness in general. Knowing how to identify these signs will make the toilet training process much easier for both you and your puppy. Once you’ve got a firm grasp on the signs and how to space out your dog’s toilet time, you can well and truly begin the toilet training process.
No two puppies are the same, and neither are their toilet training experiences. That said, we strongly suggest trying the following step-by-step guide to help make toilet training your puppy as easy as possible:
When you’re getting ready to create a house training schedule, it’s best to get an idea of what your puppy’s output will be in the first weeks and months after you bring them home. Puppies generally poop 5 to 6 times a day, though some may do it more frequently. This is normal and nothing to worry about – as they mature, the frequency will slow down. For example, a 2-week-old puppy might poop after every meal, but by 12 weeks, they may only need to go four times a day. The fact that puppies need to poop so often means using a house training schedule is essential. It will assist with preparing both you and your pup for how frequent toilet breaks should be.
A nighttime routine is extremely important for your puppy’s toilet training. Be sure to adhere to a strict bedtime and wake-up schedule; this lets your puppy get used to appropriate toilet times. Before you go to bed, let your puppy out one last time. When they’ve finished, put them in their sleeping spot, communicating to them that it’s time to calm down and rest.
For the first few weeks with a new puppy, you’ll most likely need to take them out at least once during the night. To avoid accidents, it helps to set an alarm approximately six hours after their last potty break. If no accidents occur, then you can delay their nighttime potty break by an additional 15 to 30 minutes until they are eventually able to wait until the morning to go.
Here are a couple of tips that might help with your nighttime puppy toilet training:
Toilet training a puppy isn’t easy, but it is easier if you live in a house with yard access. Once trained and if there’s a doggy door, your pup can take himself out whenever duty calls. However, puppies who live in apartments need more attention as they have to be taken out more frequently since they cannot access a backyard.
Potty training an apartment puppy also requires closer supervision and management than puppies with outdoor access. Additionally, if you rent an apartment while toilet training a puppy, it can be extra stress, especially if carpets are involved! If this is the case, you just need to be extra diligent about establishing your puppy’s training schedule. Using extra protection on carpets, such as with puppy pads, can prove very helpful for renters with puppies.
They say it takes a village for a good reason! When toilet training a puppy, it’s best to take all the advice you can get. When toilet training your puppy, start as early as possible, as the younger the puppy, the easier it will be to train them. Throughout their training, you should also aim to be consistent. Sending mixed messages by letting them inside sometimes and outside others will only lengthen the training process. Check out some additional tools we recommend for successful puppy toilet training below:
As previously discussed, we suggest using puppy treats to celebrate when your puppy successfully goes outside and at an appropriate time. This positive reinforcement conveys to your pup that they have done something good and should repeat this behaviour. Since puppies love treats, this is an easy way to communicate that they should continue the behaviour that was originally rewarded. As far as what types of treats to use, it’s best to look out for puppy treats that contain healthy and natural ingredients, like meat with minimal sugar and preservatives. It’s also best to avoid giving your pup dental treats until they are at least six months old.
Puppy pads could honestly be a puppy owner’s best friend, especially when starting toilet training. Puppy pads are square pieces of absorbent material that you can place on floors or carpets to protect that surface. The major pros of using puppy pads are that they protect your floors, make indoor cleanups much faster and easier, and can also be a great stepping stone for puppies during potty training. Training your puppy to use the puppy pad will include physically putting your puppy on the pad at regular intervals during the day. When they do use them, reward your puppy with a treat or verbal praise.
The time it takes to toilet-train a puppy varies depending on the individual dog. Some puppies learn quickly, and others may take longer to catch on. It usually takes 4 to 6 months for a puppy to be completely house-trained, but some puppies might need a whole year. The puppy’s size can sometimes predict how long it will take to train them. For example, small dog breeds have smaller bladders and higher metabolisms, so they will need to go outside more frequently.
No matter how long it takes, patience is key when toilet training a puppy. It’s up to you as a pet owner to teach your puppy good habits. Inevitably there will be accidents, but with time you’ll realise it’s all part of the process.
If you own a puppy or dog, you’ll realise sooner rather than later you’re going to have to learn how to properly clean up dog pee. It’s absolutely part of the package of owning a dog. Luckily, dog pee is somewhat easy to clean. Depending on the type of surface, the cleaning methods will vary.
Dog pee on wood floors: if the dog pee is fresh, simply soak it up with a paper towel or clean cloth. If the dog pee is dry, you will need to scrape it up with a putty knife or similar tool. Dilute vinegar with warm water and use this solution with a sponge to wipe the area.
Dog pee on carpet: to clean up dog pee on carpet, begin by blotting up as much liquid as possible with a paper towel or rag. Next, use the same vinegar solution and pour it over the soiled area. Let it sit for several minutes before scrubbing it vigorously with a brush. Finally, rinse the area with warm water and allow it to air dry completely.
Dog pee on leather: if you have a leather couch or chair that your dog has peed on, the best way to clean it is with the same vinegar mixture used for the carpet. Apply it to the affected area with a sponge. Rub the area in circular motions until the stain is gone, then wipe away any excess liquid with a damp cloth.
Nobody loves cleaning up an accident, but always try to take it in stride and avoid negative reinforcement with your puppy while they’re toilet training.
Unlike dog pee, cleaning up dog poop requires slightly more effort. Dog poop is not only unsightly, but it can also leave behind an unpleasant odour. Luckily, there are a few simple steps that you can take to clean up dog poop quickly and easily.
Dog poop on wood floors: the first step is to make sure that you have all of the necessary supplies. You will need a dustpan, brush, paper towels, white vinegar, baking soda, and water. If you do not have white vinegar or baking soda, mild dish soap will also work fine. Once you have all of your supplies, it is time to start cleaning up the mess! Begin by using the dustpan and brush to scoop up as much of the dog poop as possible; if any solid waste is stuck to the flooring itself, use paper towels dampened with water to gently scrub it away. Next comes the deodorising process; this part is important because otherwise, the bad smell can linger. To remove odours, mix equal parts white vinegar and water together in a bowl or spray bottle; alternatively, you can also use mild dish soap diluted with water for this purpose. Once everything has been mixed thoroughly, simply mop or spray over the top of where the accident occurred until everything has been saturated. Then let the area air dry completely before allowing your dog back into the room.
Dog poop on carpet: if your dog has an accident on the carpet, it is important to clean it up immediately. The best way to do this is to use a paper towel or wet vac. First, you will want to pick up as much of the solid waste as possible. Next, soak up any remaining liquid with a paper towel or wet vac. Finally, you will want to use a pet-safe cleaner to disinfect the area and remove any lingering odours.
As with any accident, your dog should never be “punished” if they poop or pee indoors. Continue with the process, and eventually, your pup will be on the road to appropriate potty time practices.
Everyone loves dogs, and owning a new puppy can be a very rewarding experience. However, today we have learned that toilet training a puppy takes time, patience, and consistency. No matter if you live in an apartment or house, there are many different aspects to consider when toilet training a puppy. You’ll need to make sure you are aware of the frequency of their potty breaks to create an effective training schedule. You’ll also need to be armed with treats for positive reinforcement and puppy pads to save your floors. Get mentally prepared to clean up accidents and have nighttime routines. While it may seem daunting at first, following this guide and making use of our many tips will help make the process as smooth as possible for you and your new furry friend.