There are few things more exciting (and exhausting) than expanding your family with a new puppy. Before you bring them home, you should get ready with everything your new fur baby will need, including the nutritional food they require during their growing years. In addition to taking care of their physical needs, be prepared to also support their mental development with training. Puppies may be the cutest things on earth, but they sometimes exhibit some not so cute behavior, like biting or peeing in the house, which requires training to put an end to.
Steps For House Training A Puppy
If this is your first time as a pet pawrent, chances are you don’t know how to potty train a puppy. We’re here to help! The most important requirements for training your puppy are love, patience, and yummy treats! If you’re already a few weeks in and wondering “ how long should it take to potty train a puppy,” we feel your pain. Keep in mind that breed and size play a big factor in determining the length of this process. It typically takes 4-6 months for a puppy to be fully house trained, but some pups may take up to a year.
Size can be a predictor of how often you pup will have to visit the loo; smaller breeds have tiny bladders and higher metabolisms, leading to more frequent trips outside.
Since dogs are den animals, training your dog to love their crate should be pretty easy. Dogs instinctively seek out cave-like dwellings for security, and a crate is the perfect solution!
Crates are great tools for house training because dogs are very clean animals. They don’t want a mess in their living space any more than their humans do. Crates should be appropriately sized for your pup; they should be just large enough for the dog to lie down, stand up, and turn around. Any bigger than that and you risk your dog doing their business in the corner of the crate and just moving away from it.
Paper/Potty Pad Training
Puppy pads are a great tool to use in the early stages of potty training. By teaching your dog that it’s safe to go on the pad while inside, you will reduce accidents around the house. After your puppy is a bit older, you can train them to only use the bathroom outside.
Create a Schedule for Your Puppy
Schedules are important for all dogs, particularly puppies that are being trained. With very young puppies, you should expect to take the puppy out every couple of hours...
- When you first wake up
- Right before you go to bed
- After playing inside
- After spending time in their crate
- After they wake up from a nap
- After chewing a toy or bone
- After eating
- After drinking
If you’re away from the home for several hours at a time, make some kind of arrangement (drop your puppy off at daycare or hire a dog walker) to keep that schedule. Stick with it and you will see improvement!