How to Housetrain Me. Love, Your Puppy (or Newly Adopted Dog) – Rule #1

Hi! Please read this letter, I worked hard on it. (Have you ever tried writing without thumbs?!)

Dear Human Parent,

I love you and I’m so happy to be here with you.  This is going to be a great time, but can we please get on the same page with one thing right away?  It will be so much more fun for both of us if you teach me EXACTLY where you want me to potty.

Please follow these SIX SIMPLE RULES and then I’ll know where to pee and poop! Just be consistent and give me some time to figure it all out.

Today, we’ll start with…


When you’re not watching me, please keep me in an area where I can’t make any mistakes. I don’t want to screw up, but if you let me walk around anywhere in the house I just know I’ll pee and poop all over.  I can’t think of a single reason not to.


By the way, I don’t mind hanging out in my own special den.  A crate, a pen, or a small room is cool by me as long as you show me that it’s a safe, relaxing place.  It wouldn’t hurt if you made the space extra fun, especially in the beginning while I’m getting used to it.  If it’s somewhere that treats and chewies are regularly found, I’m sure to like it!  And please give me plenty of exercise in between my time relaxing.  Do that, and  let me experience separation from you very gradually at first.  Then I’m totally cool with it all, promise.

If you want me to use a wee pad, make my special den space JUST big enough to have a wee pad and a small separate area for me to hang out in.  Make sure the separate floor space has a VERY different surface texture than the pad!  I’ve heard those exercise pens you get in pet stores are perfect for creating a den with a wee pad.  They can even be set up so you surround the pad on all three sides with the walls.  This makes it much easier for me to hit the target.  Believe me, that’s great!  Any help you give to make this as easy as possible for me is appreciated.  The idea of knowing EXACTLY where to pee and poop takes some time for me to get used to and I just can’t figure it out on my own.

If you prefer to skip the wee pads, that’s just fine by me. But, if you want me to hold it in until you take me out of the den, then please make my den space smaller.  Naturally, I prefer to keep a small space clean.  If you give me a lot of space, believe me, I’ll just go poop over there and nap over here.  I can’t help it.  That just seems to work fine for me.  Oh, and don’t forget not to leave me in there too long – I can’t hold it forever you know!  And I do like to balance my alone time with fun time!

Thanks so much for listening.  You seem like a great owner.  I’m excited about this relationship!

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