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Potty Training Your Puppy: Tips For Accidents, Schedules, And More

Discover puppy potty training tips for a clean home. Learn how to train your dog to pee outside and avoid indoor accidents.

Effective Puppy Potty Training Tips for a Cleaner Home.

Puppy potty training. When a doggie comes home, one of our first problems is its ‘needs‘. How do you train a puppy to pee? What should we do? What do we need to know first? Which tips can be helpful and which are not?

It is a law of life: what goes in one way, sooner or later, comes out the other! It seems self-evident, but in many cases, it has dawned on me that perhaps this was not the case for everyone. Not only from a ‘theoretical’ point of view, if you want to call it that, but also from a purely practical one.

Facing the puppy’s pee, left in the middle of the living room, we have seen legions of individuals pondering how to solve the ‘problem’, speculating on the hidden meaning of that “disgraceful gesture”, devising ‘ethological‘ punishments to wash away the shame that this little creature, just arrived in the world, dared to perform, and so on.

First of all, let’s start by saying that it is practically a certainty that your puppy will leave his urine on your floor, be it marble or parquet, especially for the first few days. And we can guarantee that this act has no ulterior motive and is not motivated to wrong you, mock you or demonstrate “who’s the boss in the house“. It is purely physiological.

Techniques and Urban Myths

Over the past years, I have seen and heard everything about this long-standing problem for humans. Techniques designed to discourage this behaviour, prodigal punishments of varying degrees of ‘kindness’, and chilling explanations from self-styled experts: ‘You mustn’t let the pup see you clean up his pee, because otherwise, he thinks – nay, he is certain – that you are his slave and to emphasise this condition he will do it more.

Essentially, this is like saying that the dog will enjoy peeing around the house only to see us rush in to clean up, head bowed, prostrate before ‘His Majesty‘.

Or, even more absurdly: ‘When the puppy leaves his wee-wee, it is necessary to intervene promptly. Otherwise, the punishment will not have the desired effect; the poor doggy will not understand why he is being punished!’ and continue with advice such as ‘Then grab him firmly by the scruff of his neck and exclaim a peremptory “NO!” (or “Nein!”, for the more romantic traditionalists). At the same time, you dip his snout in his faeces or urine.

According to some, such a thing should discourage the puppy from ‘disreputable behaviour‘. I have always wondered about this latter practice, the widespread cultural heritage of dog lovers, and what it means for the puppy.

Could it mean it is ‘wrong’ to do one’s physical needs, or is it wrong to do it there? Or, is it wrong to do them in our presence, perhaps? Perhaps we should think that the puppy is stunned and frightened by our unmotivated behaviour.

It has always been done this way!

Let’s do a little mental exercise and see if we can come up with other considerations. Let us start with parallelism; perhaps that will help us.

Let’s take a baby, a (Homo sapiens) pup (twice sapiens, so much to expect from his intellect, suitable?) aged about ten or eleven months, who has crawled around the house chasing his fantasies, and the toys scattered on the floor.

Let’s say we don’t put a nappy on him and leave him free to roam around. When, inevitably, he stops from his wandering and, astonished, deposits his poo or pees where he stands, we try to apply the same method that should teach a Canis lupus familiaris puppy (mind you, not sapiens) that this is wrong.

We immerse his chubby little face in the droppings and firmly say, “No!“. And lo and behold, the spark of intelligence flickers in his clear eyes, filled with gratitude for the clear explanation of an essential fact of life. The sapiens pup has thus learnt that those ‘dirty’ things must go to the toilet!

If this also seems silly, applying the same education method to a two- or three-month-old puppy dog will also seem ridiculous.

Things are indeed different for puppies and children

Still, this little game of imagination can make us realise how incoherent and devoid of any logic certain practices are, even if “It has always been done this way”!

Excuse my arrogance. I have to say: It was always the wrong method.! Nonetheless, I reiterate my admiration for the dogs who, surrounded by so much nonsense, manage to grow up, despite ourselves, balanced and happy, and my compassion for those who do not, and trauma after trauma, especially in pre-adolescence, develop anxieties and relationship problems. Who can blame them?

What does Mother Nature say?

How to teach your dog to poop outside: the foolproof tricks!
Take your dog outside very often: it sounds trivial, but it is not; the more opportunities you give your dog to do his business in the right place, the more you increase the likelihood that he will not do it in the house.

I ask for your patience now; I will superficially use some terms, avoiding appropriate clarifications, which would take pages to go on in this context.

Let’s start by saying that a dog is a carnivorous predator (and here we should already point out the practically omnivorous nature of the species), but, as with all animals, when you are a puppy, you are also defenceless and subject to becoming the meal of other predators.

The various animal species have refined multiple methods, e.g. parental and social group support. However, this does not detract from the fact that the young may have to be left unattended for short periods, perhaps when the mother has to go away for watering or food.

Now, among other strategies, Mother Nature has taught the little ones not to run around too much at such times, let alone leave clues of themselves near the den where they feel safe and secure.

So, if it is necessary to perform particular needs (and it is, undoubtedly), then it is better to do them where one feels safest and most secure. So, certainly not in the open. Predators are often endowed with a keen sense of smell, and urinating or defecating near the den is not intelligent; even a (Homo sapiens) would understand that.

Thus, the little ones are somewhat reticent when placed outside to produce such physiological performances. Let us say that insecurity creates an involuntary tightening of the sphincters in the little ones. ‘Certain things,’ sounds Mother Nature, “as long as you are small, you do them safely. In the den. Mummy then cleans up, don’t worry”. Yeah. Clever.

What do you do if your puppy peed in the house?

What can we, humble pet mates of a puppy only a few months old, understand from these considerations? First, there is nothing wrong with pooping and peeing.

So, it makes no sense to punish a canine for this. However, we can also understand that the natural process leads the pup to leave clues where the dog feels most comfortable and calm and does not expect aggression from anyone.

This place is supposed to be our home, his safe place, where we brought him after separating him from his mother and siblings. His new den, we who are his ‘new mother’, those who surround him and, in theory, protect and care for him.

So, what is the natural progression of things? Thanks to our loving support, our pup will begin to experience the ‘world outside’, gradually discover the fantastic environment we have brought him to live in, gain self-confidence and naturally start to leave clues about himself, translated: to do his business outside.

Especially towards adolescence, then, the needs will not only have a purely physiological function, as it is for us but also a declarative one and will serve to communicate to the world one’s passage, to tell one’s story: “I have passed through here!”, “I live around here”.

Here are little tips for “surviving” your puppy’s homemade peed in the early days.

Tips and tricks for teaching your puppy to poop outside the home.
During upbringing, it is a good idea to introduce a word you only use when you take him outside for that reason and while he is doing his business.

At this point, more sapiens (humans) might wonder how to facilitate this natural progression. For example, a new human-dog companion must consider that a puppy will tend to “let go” more efficiently when it is awake, during or immediately after play, and after eating.

OK: practically always, since sleeping, playing and eating are the only things a hound of a few months does. The little one doesn’t have much sphincter control (apart from when fear stops the pup, which is perhaps the basis of the absurd old practices mentioned above), i.e., as soon as he escapes, he does it. We don’t have time to notice the impulse and take the baby out; we could do this when he is a little older by refining the communication between him and us.

A garden simplifies and accelerates your puppy’s training.

So, if you live on the third floor of a building, you have to be prepared for the idea that the puppy will make it indoors. But, at the same time, spend some time outside, near the house (read: den) with him so that he gets experience, is safe and protected by your presence.

Then, in a few days, you will see that the little one will let go there, too. This event is something to be happy about, not because this will mean that the pup will no longer do it at home, but because your little one is growing emotionally in the best way.

I do not think one should gratify the little one because he has peed outside; there is no need to shout “Good boy!!!” and reward it with a treat immediately so as not to miss the moment.

On the contrary, this, in my opinion, distracts from the experience. You can also be happy about something without acting like a lunatic. Let the pup realise what he has done; the little one usually turns and sniffs after squatting down and peeing. Please do not disturb him; it’s a crucial moment about becoming aware of the self, of one’s olfactory identity in the outside world. Keep your jubilation to yourself internally: it’s fine either way.

The harsh reality of the puppy at home

Have you ever heard the phrase: ‘A puppy dog is very demanding?’ I guess so. Here is a trivial example. Puppies tend to the soil at least twenty times a day.

You must have realised by now that “nature cannot be commanded“, and so when all is said and done, if we want to facilitate our puppy’s natural process of balanced growth and development without experiencing the repeated shame of having to clean the floor, we should take him outside a lot, but not for long walks.

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Let’s go to a safe place close to the ‘den‘ where he can gradually increase his confidence in himself and the world around him. Yes, dear friends, having a garden is an advantage.

Let’s say it speeds up the process for the youngest puppies. Working from home also helps a lot; otherwise, after long hours of absence, and therefore of loneliness of our puppy, we will have to spend time being ‘good mums’, i.e. cleaning the den. And, know this, there is nothing untoward in doing so. Your puppy will not look at you as the enslaved person: this is only (Homo sapiens) stuff.

Thank you for reading the article to the end. Your reading contribution was significant to us.

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The "Frenchie Breed" website is a blog aimed at dog owners. We regularly publish articles about our four-legged furry friends. Among the contents of our blog, you will find ample space on the latest news in the sector, with information and in-depth analysis dedicated to the world of dogs in all its forms, the latest trends and news of the moment, curious facts, events devoted to dogs, product reviews, as well as an intense activity of information regarding the health and well-being of pets.

Please Note: The articles in the 'Frenchie Breed Blog' are for information purposes only; nothing published can or should be construed as an attempt to offer professional advice or consultation with a physician, veterinary surgeon or another health professional.

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Written by Frenchie Breed

The "Frenchie Breed" website is a blog aimed at dog owners. We regularly publish articles about our four-legged furry friends. Among the contents of our blog, you will find ample space on the latest news in the sector, with information and in-depth analysis dedicated to the world of dogs in all its forms, the latest trends and news of the moment, curious facts, events devoted to dogs, product reviews, as well as an intense activity of information regarding the health and well-being of pets.

Please Note: The articles in the 'Frenchie Breed Blog' are for information purposes only; nothing published can or should be construed as an attempt to offer professional advice or consultation with a physician, veterinary surgeon or another health professional.

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