Potty Training

So I thought I would offer some information from my experiences with our dogs in regards to potty training.

First off this won’t happen in a day unfortunately. You should be able to have a pretty good handle on the situation within a couple weeks if you are consistent with your new dog. It has been my experience that the moment I slip in my duties then the mistakes happen and you can’t blame the dog for the accidents.

Just a little plug in for our French bulldogs. They are incredibly intelligent animals however they can have a bit of a stubborn streak. So as long as they can recognize the benefit of potty training you will be successful. Make sure to give them every oportunity to be successful with what ever program or method you choose. From what ever age you bring your dog home they are very young and like an child have small bladders and are adjusting to a diet that could be foreign to them if you change what the original breeder was feeding them and it can have an impact on your success as a trainer and owner.

So getting started. First off you need to let them outside frequently for the first month or two after you bring them home. The first few weeks will probably be the hardest and most time consuming because litterally every 2-3 hours they need to go outside and use the bathroom. As they grow that time will increase (because their bladders get larger and they can hold it longer) but at the beginning there will be some time spent letting your dog outside to do their business.

Second, reward them with small treats and love and affection for going to the bathroom outside. You might think it silly but if you start from the beginning and give them small treats and a little rubdown with some kind words they will quickly realize there is a benefit for them to go to the bathroom outside. Again by doing this you will be providing them with the means to successful potty training and that is all they want to do. They want to be your best friend and make you happy because they know when you are happy with them or not. You will need to keep you eye on them while you are in the house especially for the first couple weeks because even though you think you have given them enough chances to go to the bathroom outside, it might supprise you to find out they might need it more often than not in the beginning.

Third, in the event you can’t be around to let them out provide an area for them to use the bathroom. Get some potty training mats and place several of them on a hard floor and keep them in that room. They will more than likely use the mats if there are several on the floor and it makes it easier to clean up than if it were just on your floor. As time goes by you can slowly remove the number of mats you are laying down to just one or two so they acclimatize to using the mats if they can’t make it out side.

Fourth, don’t get mad at them if you come home and find a little supprise off of the mats or on your floor somewhere. They won’t understand why you are mad and it will decrease their trust in you as thier master. If you have a temper then getting a dog probabl isn’t for you. Never hit your dog!! They will fear your hands and not be sure if you are going to pet them or hit them in the future.

Fifth, during this time when you are potty training it will be best if you can keep an eye on them and if they do go sniffing around you can catch them before they use the potty on your floor. Then you can run them outside and reward them for the good behavior. Scaring them by scooping them up to run outside usually startles them and helps to reinforce the good behavior outside rather than inside the house without hurting them.

And finally, as time goes by your dog will begin to catch on. They won’t need the treats everytime but it is a good idea to give them a rub and tell them they are a good dog. They will learn to appreciate the affection just as much as a treat and they will look forward to being successful.

That sounds simple but it takes time. I know, I had to do it with both our dogs and i’m the one that gets to clean up the mess if there was one. It isn’t always easy and you can’t always be around to let them out exactly when they need to at first but the more time you have to spend with them at the beginning will lead to a better relationship and better behavior in the end.

Depending on where you live and what sort of environment you have around your house or apartment use a leash so they don’t wander too far. If you have a fenced in yard, I’m jealous, and it makes it easier. If not keep your eye on them and again reward them when they listen to you.

I hope this helps, there are several great ways to potty training your dog and this is the way that i found worked best for us.