When you get a new puppy or rescue an older dog, it’s exciting. There are fresh cuddles, playful mishaps, and adorable moments that you hope will go viral on social media. But getting a new dog, whether puppy or older, means house training your dog to become accustomed to their new life and home. Once a routine is in place and established, this will help both you and your furry friend find more time for fun and less stressful moments.
Put Your Dog on a Potty Schedule
Potty training your dog can be easy. When it comes to relieving themselves, puppies have to go more often than other dogs. Using puppy pads as a temporary solution is a good way to start until your dog is old enough—and has had the proper vaccinations to go outside.
At first, bringing your puppy over every hour to two hours lets them know that this is the place they need to relieve themself. Similarly, with a rescue or older that dog that needs to be potty trained, make sure you take them out on a leash, also on a schedule. They may need to go out more often at first, but eventually you should be able to create the schedule, whether three or four times a day, based around the schedule you need to walk them.
Abide by the 15-Minute Rule
This is a great tip when it comes to potty training your puppy. Most often puppies need to go potty about 15 minutes after eating or drinking. If you keep this in mind, it will help you create the schedule your puppy needs to learn good habits. Take your puppy out after they eat or drink to the spot you want them to relieve themselves. When this happens over and over, your puppy realizes this is the place you want them to handle their business. There will still be mistakes and accidents in the beginning, but over time, making the 15-minute rule part of your house training schedule will help your dog learn good habits about when and where to let it go.
Clean Up After Your Dog
This is always important whether your dog has an accident inside or you’re taking them for a walk outside. Carpets often remind puppies, and especially older rescue dogs, of the soft feel of grass, and it may confuse them, leading to an accident. Cleaning up the waste right away, sanitizing, and deodorizing the indoor area immediately after helps to dispel the scent so your dog doesn’t think it’s meant to go there again. When outside, it’s best to clean your dogs waste, simply because it helps reduce disease—and if you’re taking the puppy to the same spot every time, you don’t want the waste to build up.
If your older dog is having repeated accidents in the house despite the training, they may not have complete control over their bladder. If this is the case, you can give your pooch cranberry supplements to help them regain control.
Positive Reinforcement for Your Puppy
When your puppy or dog goes potty where they should, make sure to reward them. This is known as positive reinforcement, and it teaches your puppy that what they’re doing is good and correct. Positive reinforcement for your puppy can come in the form of treats, excited praise, their favorite toy, or even belly rubs. Puppies and dogs want affection and attention, and while some punish them for doing wrong, you’ll find you get much better results when you reward them for being good.
House training your puppy or rescue dog takes perseverance and determination. It also takes patience and understanding. If you’ve never house trained a dog or puppy, you might find it to be a challenge. With these helpful tips, hopefully you’ll find it to be a bit easier on both you and your puppy or rescue dog.