How to Housetrain Me. Love, Your Puppy (or Newly Adopted Dog) – Rule #2

Great to see you again! Read my continuing letter below.

Dear Human Parent,

Thanks so much for listening to me about this whole house training thing. I’m so grateful for your attention and I promise I’ll get it right if you follow these SIX SIMPLE RULES.

Just be consistent and give me some time to figure it all out.  It’s going to be so much fun to learn exactly where I’m supposed to potty so nobody will get pissed off.  (Ha! Who said puppies don’t have a great sense of humor?)

Okay, now that we got Rule #1 down in the last post, I’m ready to tell you about…

RULE #2:

Don’t wait until it’s too late.  Take me to “my spot” as often as Ineed to go.

All of us pups have different size bladders and different digestive systems. That means some of us pee and poop more often than others.  As a young pup, I can tell you straight away that I’m going to pee A LOT!  Sometimes I’ll even pee within ten minutes of my last pee.  (I know, it’s a bummer, but there’s not much I can do about it.)

Let me warn you now – I WILL NOT be able to tell you when I have to potty in the beginning stages of house training.  But, if you pay attention to how often I go, you’ll see I have pretty consistent patterns.  You have a better memory than I do, so please keep track of when I go.  And take note that after I eat or drink, something’s going to come out sooner than later!

Once you have a sense of my patterns, all you have to do is get me to “my spot” as often as I need to go!  If you’re training me to go outside, that means take me to the yard or for a walk.  If you’re training me to go on wee pads, then think of my exercise pen with the pad as the yard, and put me in my pen (“the yard”) as often as I need to go.

The bottom line: if you take me to my spot to empty my tank as frequently as needed, I’ll never make mistakes anywhere else. If you wait until it’s too late, please don’t blame me! I won’t know any better until you get very consistent with showing me what to do.

The great news is that once I go to the same spot, on the same type of surface, over and over, I’ll come to prefer that as my favorite spot!  That’s why it’s so important to be consistent.  I can’t develop a preferred spot if I end up making “mistakes” on the wrong surfaces, or many different surfaces. So please follow this Rule #2 and help me out!

Here are some things I know about myself that will help YOU out. Common times that I will have to potty are:

  • first thing in the morning
  • after I eat
  • after I drink
  • right after a nap
  • after a big chew session
  • after (or right in the middle of) a big play session/running around
  • after I come out of my den/pen

Here are some more helpful facts about me.  If you see me doing one of these, good chance I have to potty. Quick – get me to my spot!

  • sniffing the ground, especially sniffing in circular patterns
  • walking towards, on, or around “my spot” (including the door to outside)
  • suddenly walking away from an activity I was engaged in – as if something unseen has caught my attention
  • panting
  • whining
  • squatting (uh-oh, that could be too late, sorry but you’ve got to beat me to it!)

Okay, now that we’ve discussed the first two rules for house training, I’m feeling really good about our chances for success.  Let’s talk again soon, I’ll tell you about Rule #3 then (wag, wag)…

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