If your puppy is having trouble with potty training, there are a few things you can do to help.
Make sure that you have been consistent with taking your puppy outside to go to the bathroom. If you have been letting them out at different times or in different places, this can be confusing for them. Try to establish a regular routine and stick to it as much as possible.
Another thing you can do is create a designated potty area in your yard. This will help your puppy understand where they are supposed to go to the bathroom. You can use something like a baby gate to block off the area, or just keep an eye on them when they are outside so they don’t wander off.
To get you started back on the right track, here are 11 tips for potty training a stubborn puppy.
11. Be Consistent In Your Efforts
After all that is said and done, consistency is your best friend when potty training a particularly stubborn dog. This means consistency in everything from the reward system to the specific routines. It is important that you keep up with your efforts even when the dog has actually learned how to hold it and where to go.
This is because even the best trained and most disciplined dogs are prone to relapse into bad behavior. Fortunately, the efforts may not be too taxing down the line but the consistency is non-negotiable.
10. Establish A Potty Routine
Another very important routine to work on when potty training the dog is the actual potty break routine. Most dog breeds are innately habit-driven. This means that once they have a routine locked into their brains, they will do whatever it takes to stick to it.
For this, you have to understand your dog’s specific holding capabilities as some breeds have lower capacities than others. Synch this to the meal routine and you should be able to come up with something that works in no time.
9. Restart Training Whenever You Move
Potty training a dog is never a one-time gig. The dog could actually forget some of the training especially when they go through some kind of psychological change. It could be anything from recovering from an illness to moving houses.
In such scenarios, the best thing to do with the stubborn dogs is to simply restart the training from scratch. Fortunately, they learn a lot faster in this case which will make life much easier for you.
8. Clean Up Potty Accidents As Soon As They Happen
Dogs are very territorial and one way they mark this is through pheromones in their poo and pee. They also tend to feel a lot more comfortable taking potty breaks in spaces they recognize by scent. This means that it would be in your best interest to deep clean after potty accidents as soon as possible.
That way, the dog will not learn to associate the space as acceptable to relieve themselves.
7. Choose The Right Outdoor Space
One reason you might be having such a hard time potty training your dog is that you are not choosing a comfortable outdoor space for them. Dogs are surprisingly very fussy about where they feel safe and comfortable relieving themselves. If there is something like distractions or the scent of other dogs then they may not play along with the training.
Make sure to find them a spot that is quiet and not very crowded so they can do their business carefree.
6. Keep An Eye Out For Potty Break Signs
You will save yourself a lot of trouble when potty training a stubborn pooch by simply keeping an eye out for signs they want to go. This is particularly important when you want to teach them appropriate places to take potty breaks and not necessarily for potty schedule training.
Some of these potty break signs include sniffing around, scratching, pacing, and going in circles. Once you notice them just immediately take them out or to their training pad and eventually they will learn to go on their own.
5. Make Use Of Outdoor-Themed Training Pads
Speaking of training mats, they come in particularly handy if you have limited outdoor space with which to train your dog. In this case, it is always best to go with comfortable and outdoor-themed training pads. These feature soft faux grass which is perfect for dogs that are very particular about where they are going.
With these options, it is also very easy to transition from training pads to going outdoors as they have the same visual cues of appropriate potty break spots.
4. Start Crate Training
Crate training is one of the most effective secrets to successful potty training with stubborn dogs. This stems from the fact that dogs really love to keep their spaces clean. They are therefore unlikely to poop or pee in their own crates especially if that is where they sleep, play, or simply hang out.
This trick is especially useful with schedule training as the dog has to learn how to wait until the specific time they are let out for potty breaks.
3. Stick To A Specific Mealtime Routine
This means both feeding and watering schedules. They are very useful when it comes to predicting the best time to take your dog out for some bowel relief. That way you don’t have to keep guessing or chasing false alarms only to clean up potty accidents at unexpected times.
This means not leaving food or water out when it is not specifically time for the dog to eat. It is also best to avoid meals or drinks too close to bedtime if you do not plan to wake up at night to let them out.
2. Avoid Punishments After Potty Accidents
Negative reinforcement on the other hand does more harm than good. Shouting at the dog, chasing them away, or even getting physical could actually traumatize the furry little buddy which makes training them a lot harder than it needed to be.
Therefore, it is best to avoid harsh punishments even when they are going out of their way to be stubborn. Instead, be patient and take your time teaching them and they will eventually get with the program.
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Dogs are suckers for love and affection which makes positive reinforcement one of the most effective tools you have for potty training. There are very many ways to do this from praising them to letting them play with their favorite toys.
Treats are perhaps the most popular option in this case. Dog chews would be fantastic because in addition to being effective they last a lot longer. Here, we recommend the Purina Bacon Strips with their rich bacon and cheese flavor that no dog could resist.
What Is The Hardest Dog To Potty Train?
Dogs are difficult to train for different reasons whether it is average intelligence or generally stubborn personalities. Some of the most notoriously difficult dogs to potty train include Bichon Frises, Chihuahuas, Yorkies, and Jack Russell Terriers. High intelligence breeds could also be a little tricky to train including German Shepherds – the very same breed the 46th POTUS has – and Doberman Pinschers which need more time and assertiveness.
Why Is My Potty Trained Dog Having Accidents?
Contrary to popular belief, potty training is not a one-off thing. There are instances where even well-trained dogs have slip-ups. This is more often than not a psychological response to some change. It could be that you moved house. Maybe the dog suffered some kind of trauma. It could also be a result of separation anxiety.
Do Dogs Pee In The House For Attention?
Dogs do not necessarily pee indoors for attention. At least not from you. They do, however, sometimes do it as a way to mark territory especially if there are other pets in the home. For the most part, these accidents are truly accidents with the dog not knowing any better. This is why training is so important to help them establish a routine and understand it is not ok to go potty in the house.