If anything makes a person hesitant to adopt a dog, it’s usually the challenge of housebreaking. Puppies will definitely need to be housetrained. Rescue dogs may need to be housetrained. Even dogs that are “already housebroken” are not necessarily so in your home.
It only takes one accident and you’re on your hands and knees, hoping the stain and the smell won’t soak in.
However, any dog person will agree that the love and affection of a faithful pup is worth the trouble of housetraining a dog.
What is the quickest and most effective way to housetrain your dog?
As with all training, the most effective method depends on the dog. Here are a few ideas:
- Remember to always use positive reinforcement.
The experts at Fetch by WebMD agree that you should never punish a puppy for having an accident. It makes them fear you, and it sends an unclear message. For example, they may interpret your reaction as meaning going to the bathroom is bad, rather than going to the bathroom in the house is bad.
The same goes for “rubbing their nose in it;” they cannot make the connection between something they did earlier and the punishment they are receiving now. They will not understand why they are in trouble.
If you catch them in the act, say “No!” or clap and show them where they are supposed to use the bathroom instead. Use a potty command to accompany the act, and always offer a reward if they go in the right place. This could be a treat or a simple pat and praise.
- Utilize a dog crate.
In our last blog (link!) we mentioned how helpful crate training can be for a variety of reasons. A big perk is, of course, house training your dog.
The American Kennel Club states that dogs naturally do not like to sleep in a messy space, so they are unlikely to urinate in their crate. There is a small chance they will still defecate (and possibly clean it up themselves…yuck!) but this can usually be solved by ensuring you establish a routine.
Especially when it comes to younger dogs, you’ll need to take them out to do their business often. Until they get the hang of it, this may mean every 30 minutes to an hour.
Getting them on a regular feeding schedule can help make their needs more predictable. As The Spruce Pets reminds us, “What goes in comes out!”
- Hire a trainer.
That’s right! Skip the stress and hassle and call in the experts. You can even have a private dog trainer from Sally Said So! come over to help you get started with a few precautionary measures before you bring your pup home.
Some of the perks of hiring a certified in-home dog trainer are:
- They have studied all of the proven training methodology available.
- They have experience housetraining dogs of all shapes, sizes, and temperaments.
- They stay focused on your dog, so the training plan can be customized and easily conveyed to the owner.
Sally Said So! is available to help with all of your North Carolina housebreaking needs! Give us a call to discuss your goals today.