Puppy Toilet Training
Start training between 7 and 8 weeks of age.
Confine your puppy in a certain area (e.g. kitchen, laundry, verandah or in a crate) to give it a sense of security when you are not home or at night. The confined area will be similar to the wolf den. Leave a radio or light on with the puppy. Gradually expand this area as the puppy learns not to eliminate in it or destroy things.
If the puppy is confined for more than 2 to 3 hours provide a small area of substrate within this “den” such as newspaper or kitty litter for the puppy to eliminate in. Also
provide bedding, water, food and toys. Puppies learn preferences for certain eliminating surfaces or substrates.
Training to preferred substrates such as grass as a toileting area straight away is ideal. However, there may be circumstances when the puppy can’t be taken outside every 2 to 3 hours such as overnight. Newspaper, puppy training pads or kitty litter can be alternatives at these times. However, the puppy may learn to seek out newspaper instead and this may be the paper lying on the floor that you haven’t yet read!
Toilet Training Tips
- Take the puppy outside frequently (every 1 to 2 hours or a minimum of 6 to 8 times per day) including directly after waking, playing and within 15 to 30 minutes of eating. Watch for signs that the puppy may want to eliminate such as, whining, circling, pacing or a sudden cessation of some other behaviour, and quickly take the puppy outside.
- Choose one or a few preferred toileting areas with the surface (substrate) you prefer.
- Stand still and allow the puppy to sniff around on or off the lead. Always supervise the puppy.
- Put a bell on its collar to keep track of him.
- Put some urine or faeces in the selected spot to enhance its attractiveness.
- Reward the appropriate elimination behaviour with a treat. Praise the puppy as soon as it starts to squat. Teach the puppy some vocal commands.
- Play with the puppy AFTER it has eliminated appropriately.
- DO NOT punish the puppy for “mistakes”. A puppy will not understand a mistake by having its nose rubbed in it. Instead, startle the puppy with a noise (clap, whistle) or water pistol (that can’t be linked with you) if you catch it in the act.
- Then take the puppy to a preferred place and reward for appropriate elimination behaviour.
- Clean soiled area with BioZet (Kao Australia Marketing) laundry powder and spray with Bac to Nature (Nutripet) to eliminate the odour.
- If the puppy is paper trained then gradually move the paper towards the door when you are not in attendance. When you are supervising then follow the rules above for training the puppy to eliminate outside.
Accidents in the House