No matter how well behaved your precious pup may be, it takes time and practice to properly potty-train the newest addition to the family. Before forging ahead with these amazing tricks, be sure your dog isn’t having bladder control problems for any other reasons. Anything from anxiety to medical issues can cause dogs to urinate inside the house unintentionally. If it seems like there might be something more to your dog’s bathroom problems, or you want to be on the safe side, take them to see your veterinarian to get them checked before you begin training. Once you’re sure they are indeed their untrained-puppy-self, take a look at this list of simple and effective tricks to keep your dog from going potty inside.
1. Dogs Thrive on Routine
Take your dog outside to where you want them to go to the bathroom multiple times a day. Make sure it’s part of a regular schedule. Take them out first thing in the morning, a few times during the day, after dinner, and before bed. Once this becomes a regular part of their daily activities, they’ll come to expect it, and eventually, you won’t have to be quite so strict with this routine.
2. Praise Is Key
Whenever your dog does go potty where you want them to, i.e., outside, praise them like crazy! Use plenty of verbal praise while they’re going to the bathroom, and reward them with attention, more positive praise, and even treats and toys once they’re done. One mistake many people make when they are training their puppies is focusing on punishing them for bad behaviors, instead of rewarding them for good behaviors. As is evident by any pup’s desire to sit, stay, or roll over on command, most dogs want to please you. Because of this, your dog will most likely respond better to positive, reward-based training than to punishment-based training. Be as enthusiastic as you can when you are praising your dog every time they go potty outside or ask to go out and reward them with treats and attention.
3. Cleaning Isn’t Just an Afterthought
If your pup does go potty inside the house, cleaning it up is so much more important than just mopping up the mess. We all know how dogs mark their territory by urinating in a particular spot—and they will do this same thing to designate their favorite place for going potty. To avoid this happening, make sure to properly clean up with effective, specially formulated products that are deliberately designed to eliminate any lingering odors. It is also essential to clean up immediately, as it’s much easier to clean up a new mess than one that has had time to set. Try one of these cleaning products for a thorough cleaning job: PX550 and OdorPet, both offered by Alpha Tech Pet, who specializes in environmentally friendly animal care solutions. Both of these products provide specialized chemical processes which not only eliminates odor immediately but also destroys odor-causing debris for a permanent fix.
4. The Element of Surprise
If you manage to catch your dog during the act, shock them with a loud noise, like a steady clap or sharp shouted word like no. By startling them, hopefully, you will be able to interrupt them, and they’ll stop what they’re doing, long enough for you to take them outside and show them where you want them to finish. Remember, after startling them initially, praise them once they are out and going where they are supposed to.
5. Learn to Spot the Signs
If you can learn to spot the tell-tale signs of when your dog is about to go to the bathroom inside the house, you can try to nip it in the bud and take them straight outside. Watch out for them circling and sniffing around for the perfect spot to go. If you are lucky enough to catch them and take them out before they go potty, take them right outside to where you want them to finish and praise them for this. Don’t forget—you don’t need to punish them for wanting to go to the bathroom inside, instead, be firm and brisk with them, taking them straight outside without hesitation to encourage them to go in the right spot.
6. Use a command word
Just like teaching your puppy any simple trick, introducing a command word can be amazingly helpful in properly potty training them. As with any learned behavior for a dog, they gradually learn to associate the act with the word you use. By consistently repeating a simple word or phrase, such as busy or bathroom, they will eventually be able to go potty when you say this word. There are a few crucial tricks to making this work: always using the same word or phrase every time, say it when they do go to the bathroom where they are supposed to and say it every time you take them outside.
7. Assert Your Dominance
Dogs are pack animals by nature; they respond to dominant behavior by submitting to the pack leader. If you want them to listen to you and respond to your commands, you have to assert yourself as the dominant member of the pack. Being the dominant member of the pack means you must exhibit consistent behavior on your part throughout all your interactions with your dog. Therefore, you must assert your control when you are training them, such as telling them to sit and then making them stay calmly in place, thus forcing them to show restraint and obey you. When it comes to food, never feed them your food from the table when they beg, as this tells them that you’ll do what they want you to. When you feed them, make them wait before they start eating and don’t feed them just because they beg. Make sure feeding is part of their regular schedule, just like everything else, so they know you are the one in control.