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How to House Train your new Puppy

House training accidents in the house are the major reason many puppies lose their home.

House training is not that hard once you understand how to do it. House training involves: Feeding high quality diet, having a consistent feeding schedule, using a crate and lots of patience!!!

First of all, remember that a young puppy is just like a “baby in diapers.” It takes time for the puppy to grow to the point that it can control it’s eliminations. For that reason, it is important to immediately purchase a crate. Your puppy should stay in the crate all the time it is not under your direct supervision during the next 6-8 weeks!

Dogs are clean animals—they do not want to “mess up” where they sleep. They also are “den” animals, meaning they like small confined areas for security. In the wild, dogs make their homes in caves and other similar areas where all sides are protected except for the one they enter and can watch when laying down. Crates should be large enough for the puppy to stand up and turn around. Do not get it too large; allow a little “growing room.” This is not meant to be a play area.

If you are not unable to be home for long periods of time, buying a play pen might be your best option. In a playpen you could divide the area for playing, feeding and elimination avoiding the risks associated with leaving the pet loose in a small room; it also allows plenty of room for your pet to empty their bowels without holding it for a prolonged time.

This play pen option is not recommended unless extremely necessary. The puppy will not develop bowel and urine control because of the large area available. Also keep in mind that as a general rule, you should never make your pet hold the urine for an 1 hour more than their age or eight hours at the most for pets over 7 months. i.e. an 3 months old should not have to hold their urine for more than 4 hours. Making pets hold their urine for long periods of time will cause urine to acidify and build-up crystals that could form into stones.

Using the crate will also give you an easy area to clean when accidents occur. These plastic cages are easily washed out and ready for use again after any accident. Dog grooming is also an important aspect of house training your puppy. When bathing your pet, it is important to use a high-quality soap free pet shampoo with a balanced PH. Most shampoos bought at the markets are too acid and will cause the hair coat to dry out and the skin to become scaly. We recommend our Aloe and Oatmeal shampoo, specially formulated to bathe pets as often as needed without removing the essential fatty acids from the skin.

When the puppy is placed in the crate, do not show it any attention whatsoever!! Any attention you show, such as talking to it, sticking your finger through the door to pet it, or even yelling at it, will allow the puppy to train you instead of you training the puppy. If attention is shown while in the crate, the puppy will quickly learn that all it has to do is bark, howl, or whine to get more attention.

Starting the first night, locate the puppy in the crate in a separate room and turn on a radio this will help the pet get used to hear different noises. Do not neglect the pet in the crate and always follow the given training schedule to allow plenty of play and family time along with sleep time in crate. This perfect balance will make the puppy accept its own new “space” willingly.

When the puppy is removed from the crate, take it outside immediately. Use the instructed cue words and schedule for greater success. Do not play until he does “1″ and/or “2″ and always take it to the same spot. Many puppies become so excited when they get outside that they “forget” what they are supposed to do. Be sure to praise the puppy when it does eliminate and play with it before coming back inside. Most puppies are fully capable of holding their urine for 8-10 hours if they really want to do so. Since they are really very clean animals, and don’t want to mess up where they must stay, you will be surprised how easy it is to house train your new puppy by following these rules.

After the puppy is brought back inside, feed it following the guidelines on your training schedule. You could moisten the food with warm water to make it more palatable. Puppies should be fed 3-4 times daily until 4-6 months of age, and then can be cut down to twice daily feeding. High quality food will result in much less stool volume and less odor. If you work and are unable to feed the puppy as scheduled, feed the puppy early in the morning, again as soon as you get home and again one hour before bedtime. It is next to impossible to house train a puppy that is on “free-choice” feeding where the food is left available at all times. Feedings must be scheduled, without restricting the amount required, into definite feeding intervals to develop good bowel habits. After the puppy has finished eating, take it outside as scheduled. Every puppy will have a bowel movement within 1 hour after eating. Some puppies take 5 minutes, some 30 minutes, and some take up to an hour. Whatever the time happens to be, you will usually find that it will be close to that same time each and every time. Once you have learned the appropriate time for your particular pet, you now can wait and take it outside close to that exact time.

Be sure to feed your puppy early enough so that it has sufficient time to have its bowel movement before placing it in the crate when you go to work or go to bed. Offer water to the puppy through out the day as scheduled and also after exercising. Do not Keep food or water in the crate. When the puppy is left out of the crate keep your eyes on him at all times. Watch for the telltale signs of the need to eliminate: circling, restlessness, sniffing, etc. The puppy should be taken outside after each meal, after drinking, when taken out of the crate, before going in the crate, after playing sleeping and bathing. All of the above mentioned points are also an important part of the wellness plans for dogs. So make sure you follow them religiously.

Pets will quickly learn what to do if you will just be patient. We have used this method of house training in puppies and it works. Let us know if you have any questions or if you would like to receive the training schedule, we’ll be glad to help you.

Remember, house training accidents are the fault of the owner, not the dog!