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Potty training puppies

House trained puppy doing business outside on lawn
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Want to know how to Potty training puppies? We'll show you some simple tips and tricks to easily achieve your goal!

Potty training puppies – A little basic knowledge

Dogs are cleanliness loving animals

Now you have your little friend – your new family member. But how do you potty training puppies? Simple in principle, but not easy to implement. First of all, your puppy has to learn where it is allowed to relieve itself. Since dogs are very clean animals, they keep sleeping, feeding and lying places clean.

So why do they relieve themselves in the apartment?

So relieving himself in the apartment is not something wanton, but something he cannot prevent. Puppies still have very small and untrained bladders and an unfinished digestive system. Therefore, in the first period of living together, puddles and poops unfortunately do not stay away. The fact that they have just been separated from their family and their previous home does not make the circumstance any easier. They have to deal with new people, smells and sensory impressions. Therefore, do not be annoyed if it is still in the apartment in the beginning. It just takes time for your new friend to learn to be housebroken.

When can I start potty training puppies and how long does it take?

The best time is right away. In most cases, puppies are already taught by the breeder where they can go. Therefore, it is quite possible that puppies are almost housebroken by the time they are eight weeks old. However, this is not always the case. On average, it takes about four to five months for puppies to be housebroken. However, it can also take six to eight months. Even after a year it can happen that your dog makes into the apartment. But this is often due to external circumstances such as excitement or if you do not come home on time.

Potty training puppies with our tips and tricks

The first signs

When your dog needs to go out, he will often show you with certain signs. These can be both clear and obvious, but also difficult to recognize. Basically, to get your puppy housebroken, you should watch for signs like sniffing the floor, spinning around, sniffing places he has already gone as well as running to the door, squealing, nervous behavior, or when seeking eye contact. If possible, you should always take him out after every wake-up, after eating and drinking, after playing, when he is moving a lot and before going to bed.

In the home

Potty training puppies means watching for certain signs, as he is not yet able to retain urine or feces for more than a few seconds. Therefore, take every opportunity to go outside with him until he can control his bowels and bladder. To find out whether your little pelt-nose has to go or not, you should not let him out of your sight during the waking phases. You should take him out every 1.5 to two hours up to the age of three months. Every three hours with your three to four month old dog and every four hours when he is between five and six months old.


If you take your dog outside to do his business, you should provide him with a permanent place to go. If you don’t want him to get loose in your yard, find a suitable alternative. This includes especially places that are quiet and overgrown. This place will then become the “regular place”. Having a regular spot is the first important step in potty training puppies.

For adventurous pups

Just before or during business, don’t talk to your little puppy, just let him do it and walk back and forth a bit if necessary. Make the visits outside as boring as possible, so that your dog can concentrate on his business and is not permanently distracted. As soon as he has done everything, you can play with him and go exploring. If you don’t, he will take more time to do his business the next time he goes out. After all, the world outside is much more exciting than the one inside.

At night

Puppies often wake up at night when they need to urinate and defecate. This means for you: react quickly. If you do not notice it immediately, it may already be too late. Take the little rascal in your arms, since he does not urinate there – in most cases – and carry him down. It is helpful if you go out with him early in the morning and late in the evening. A routine routine is most optimal: At a fixed time there is something to eat, go out one last time and sleep. Nevertheless, in the first time it is not excluded that your pelt-nose must go out.

For the deep sleepers among us

If you’re a deep sleeper, here’s a tip for you. Let your puppy sleep in a closed transport box or put the dog bed in a cardboard box, so that he can’t escape so quickly. You place his sleeping place near your bed. If your puppy wakes up at night because he has to do his business, he will not do it easily in his sleeping place. He will try to make himself known and in the best case he will wake you up. It is advisable for you to have your clothes and keys at hand, because you need to get out quickly. If your puppy does his business outside, you should praise him extensively. That way you are one step closer to potty training puppies!

Command and praise

Praise is very important because your puppy associates praise with doing the business and knows that this is the right way to do it. At the same time, you can also use a command like “make pee pee”. If the dog then makes pee pee, you praise him. The praise can consist of treats, petting, and kind words that shouldn’t be too euphoric, but still make it clear to the dog that it was a huge event. However, you should pay attention to how food-motivated your furball is, because otherwise when he goes out he will focus on the treat rather than the destination of the outing. So it happens that he may do his business only when you are back in the apartment.

Patience and consistency

The most important rule is to stay calm and patient – even if it’s the hundredth time you’ve fetched the cleaning kit and cleaned up the mess. It does neither your little puppy nor you any good if you fly off the handle. The little rascal isn’t doing it to annoy you, but because he simply doesn’t have control over his bladder and bowels yet.

Limited territory

As mentioned at the beginning, dogs only soil their territory in extreme emergencies. So that your little friend does not have the whole apartment at his disposal for loosening up, you can limit his territory somewhat. Helpful is a playpen or a special puppy fence, which you can extend as you wish. This way, you’ll have a better overview of where your puppy is, what he’s doing and when he’s giving signs, while you can even do smaller tasks on the side.

Adjust diet

Proper nutrition is especially important during puppyhood. Appropriate food enhances well-being, promotes healthy development and is critical to whether your puppy grows up to be a happy, alert and energetic dog. Adapted puppy food is necessary to meet the needs of your puppy after the mother’s milk. This food contains a lot of energy and nutrients, which are also present in the milk. Remember: improper feeding and diarrhea can make it difficult to house train your puppy.

“Pipimat” as an alternative

Should you have an apartment on higher floors, it is almost impossible to make it downstairs in time. Not exactly beneficial if you want to housebreak your dog. Helpful here is a tub with a flat edge that you can fill with newspaper or buy training pads specifically designed for this purpose. This way your little friend has a pee place in your home. It’s best to place it near the entrance or by the balcony door. Basically, though, teach your puppy to pee outside from the start.

It does not work to house-train your puppy?

If your puppy is not housetrained, there may be reasons that your veterinarian should urgently clarify. If organ disease is ruled out, for example, this may have psychological causes. It also happens that dogs pollute their territory because they act out of protest. Here it is necessary to find out why. In very difficult cases, you should go to the vet. For support can usually provide a special dog trainer.

HOW TO: Potty Train Your Puppy FAST!! 🐶 10 week old puppy trained in 1 WEEK!!!

Not house trained puppy sits next to urine

When things do go wrong

Misfortunes happen

Housetraining puppies has a lot to do with attention. Of course, you can’t watch your dog 24 hours a day – nor should you. But accidents are inevitable. If your puppy makes a move into your home, don’t scold him. Of course it’s annoying when you have to fetch your cleaning stuff for the hundredth time, just like when your child spills his food again and you have to get the vacuum cleaner out again. But remember: he’s not doing this on purpose. Maybe you weren’t fast enough or didn’t notice the signs. Don’t be mad! A mother dog doesn’t stand in front of her children and bare her teeth or growl at them. She lovingly takes care of cleaning up the mishap and so should you!

Punishment means fear

Besides the attitudes that it would be educational to push the dog with your nose into its droppings, we can only say – Don’t! This method dates back to the stone age and does nothing for you or your puppy, but promotes fear and shrinks confidence. If your puppy is afraid of you, he will look for a place unobserved by you or wait until you leave. Then he does his business, because only then he feels safe. Scolding or yelling will not get you anywhere. Your puppy will not understand the connection between what he has done and why you are so angry.

And how do I do it right?

You have to catch him in the act. Then simply admonish him with a stern but clear “No!” That’s enough to let him know he’s done something wrong. Take him outside without comment where he can finish his business and praise him for it. Wipe up the mess afterwards. Since dogs tend to return to already marked areas and do their business there again, place treats or food in that spot. Since dogs never do their business where there is food, the place will be spared in the future. For cleaning the place, you should resort to strong-smelling cleaners that your puppy does not like and eliminates the smell well.

Bottom line: Potty training puppies

Housetraining puppies is simple in theory, but requires a lot of patience and perseverance in practice. With consistent daily routines and regular exit and praise, this is quickly no longer a problem. That also sometimes something goes into the apartment, should be clear to every dog owner. We have shown you how to house-train your puppy and which tricks speed up the process. But the most important thing: punishment in the form of yelling and hitting does not belong to a healthy education! Stay calm and collected. Praise him when he does his business outside. So nothing stands in the way of a harmonious coexistence!

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