Potty Training

Potty Training 101:

We use obedience and routines to set patterns to teach dogs where to potty.  Potty training is not so much where not to potty but teaching them where they should potty.  Part of the way we train is by setting routines for the dog and showing them where to potty.

The other tool for potty training we use is obedience (come on command and a place & stay on command) to control your dog.  If your dog comes on command he cannot go sneak away and potty and we can reliably and quickly get them to the correct potty spot if we see them sniffing around!

We take the dog outside and wait for 5 minutes and if they don’t go potty we use a place command (doggie timeout on a box or dog bed) to isolate the dog for 10-15 minutes and then give them another opportunity to go potty! This is instead of having to constantly put them in the crate!  They can stay out with us but on a timeout spot so they can’t just go potty on the carpet and that way we don’t have to just put them in the crate if they didn’t potty.

Crates can be used when we are gone or if the dog does not know the place command yet.  So if the dog does not potty outside after 2-5 minutes and we know the dog needs to then the dog would go to the crate for 10-15 minutes and then we would take the dog out again and keep repeating this until the dog went potty outside!  Potty training is all about routine and showing them where to potty and taking away any opportunity to sneak off and potty on the carpet!!


For more help on potty training please give us a call 918-991-8634 today and have a trainer come out and personally help you!


5 Potty Training Myths

  1. Spanking my dog if I catch him will teach him not to potty on the carpet
  2. My dog should be potty trained by 4 months old
  3. Bells by the door will help train the dog faster
  4. Crates are cruel and I don’t need one
  5. Potty pads will help my dog learn to not potty on the carpet


Myth 1 – Spanking my dog if I catch him will teach him not to potty on the carpet!  WRONG!!

Spanking your dog if you catch him will teach your dog to be scared of you and teach your dog not to potty in front of you!!!  When this happens what the dog will do is learn NOT to potty in front of mommy and daddy and instead the dog will run away into another room to potty or potty in hidden spots… We have seen dogs go upstairs to potty or into another room or even hide in the closet or under the bed!!!

The funniest thing we have seen is a dog that would hide underneath the bed and poop!! He knew daddy would spank him and was scared of being spanked so he learned to hide out of sight and poop!!!

If you are spanking your dog you are going to train your canine companion to run and potty in secret!  Don’t do it!!

Correct Response – If you catch your dog peeing on the carpet scream or shriek in a high pitched voice and immediately pick your dog up and put them in the grass.  Then in a soft, soothing voice tell them to “go potty, go potty”.  We shriek or use a high pitched voice to hopefully stop the peeing before we pick the dog up.  If it is a big dog and the peeing doesn’t stop you can clap your hands while shrieking to try to get them to stop and then take them outside.  But beware if you pick up or drag a peeing dog to the door you will have a line of pee all the way to the door…. Not cool….  So stop the peeing first, then take the dog outside and use a soothing voice to say, “go potty, go potty”.

Once the dog goes potty then praise the dog in a soothing voice (as they are going potty.  After they are done going potty throw them a big party with tons of praise, love and kisses!!


Myth 2 – My dog should be potty trained by 4 months old.  WRONG!!

There is no age where your dog is magically able to hold his bladder.  Potty training is a process that takes time.

Potty training is all about setting routines for your dog, helping your dog learn what to do and patience.  Young puppies have small bladders and some can go potty every 20-30 minutes!  Take them out after any activities, after eating, after waking up, after water breaks and just keep taking them out!!

As a side note here – some dogs don’t get full bladder control until 6-8 months.  Just like some children develop bladder control really fast and some still have accidents in their pants or wet the bed at night, this is mirrored in dogs.  Some dogs constantly pee the crate and just cannot hold it yet.  With these dogs you must be patient and develop a solid routine and be fair and let the dog outside to pee as much as possible.  Just know that your dog just might not have developed the physical bladder control yet to hold it for extended periods of time.

Story time – We have had our own personal dogs that at 3-4 months old that were pretty much fully potty trained, they would hold their bladder in the crate and if they needed to potty would go to the door and sit and wait, or whine at the door to be let out.

We have also had dogs that at 7-8 months old gave us no signals AT ALL what-so-ever that they needed out, and would still have accidents on the floor randomly and in the crate at night (even with a 7pm water shut off!).  This even with us setting very good routines for the dog and really trying to be fair to them by setting them up to succeed!  The difference between the dogs potty trained at 3-4 months and the dogs still struggling at 7-8 months has to do with the individual dog.  Please remember dogs can be just like children, some dogs develop physiological bladder control faster, some slower.


Be patient, there is no perfect age your dog should be fully potty trained by.  If you dog is still having 2-3 accidents a week after a year old then that is normally a human problem though…. And we need to train you!!


Myth 3 – Bells by the door will help train the dog faster.  WRONG!!

The bells don’t help the dog train faster.  If the dog doesn’t know where to potty yet and it hasn’t been established by routine then the bells won’t help the dog go to the door.  Yes, dogs can absolutely learn to hit the bells to tell you when to go outside but it won’t help them potty train any faster.

Bells can be a convenient way for the dog to let you know when they have to go outside.  But the bells work by routine and until the dog understands the potty outside routine they won’t actually ring the bells to go outside to use the bathroom.


Myth 4 – Crates are cruel and I don’t need one.  WRONG!!

A crate can become your dog’s safe haven, his or her own personal space.  A dog crate is not cruel at all if used properly.  Crates are very useful for potty training and most dogs will really like them once introduced to a crate properly.

The crate isn’t used for punishment but just as a little home for the dog.  Dogs come from den animals and have a den instinct of not going to the bathroom where they sleep.  We can easily use this for potty training at night and when we are not home.  This way the dog does not have free access to go to the bathroom wherever they want but learn they have to hold it and can only go outside on the grass!

Crate training isn’t the only way to potty train of course but it is very efficient and very useful tool in our dog training tool belt.

You need a crate unless you are home all day to let your dog out every 45 minutes and you are able to wake up and take your dog out at night every 2!


Myth 5 – Potty pads will help my dog learn to not potty on the carpet.  WRONG!!

We highly discourage the use of potty pads! Why?

  1. They teach the dog to pee inside
  2. They teach the dog to pee on absorbent surfaces inside – this normally goes from potty pads, to potty sweat pants, potty rug, potty mat, potty on everything or anything absorbent is now a potty pad
  3. They were originally made to start potty training little puppies like 5-6 week olds not for adult dogs to potty on the rest of their life
  4. It is gross to have pee and poop inside!!

Potty pads teach the dogs that it is ok to potty inside and this is not good!  The best thing is to teach the dogs that they are to only potty outside on grass ONLY.


For more help on potty training please give us a call 918-991-8634 today and have a trainer come out and personally help you!

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