Housebreaking a new puppy is no easy task, but as I'm sure you'll agree, it's a very necessary one. But how do you start? Is there a right or a wrong way to go about this process? These are the questions we will explore in this brief article as we give you a short lesson on how to housebreak your new puppy most effectively.
So when should you begin the process of housebreaking your new dog? Experts differ slightly on this, but most agree that a new puppy is ready to learn this new skill at about 7-8 weeks old. At this age, the dog can fully grasp what it is you are asking him/her to do. To begin with, designate a spot outdoors where you would prefer the dog to eliminate, and take your new puppy outside to that spot at least 6 times a day. Taking him to a different spot each time may be confusing for your pup, so be sure and be consistent with the spot you designate.
Once you have taken your puppy outside and to the designated area where you would prefer he "go," watch your puppy carefully until he begins the act of elimination. Be quiet during this time so he doesn't feel agitated or pressured, but as soon as he is finished praise him, pet him, play with him or offer him a reward. After a few sessions like this your dog will begin to understand that the act of going outside is connected to the praise.
The next step in housebreaking a new puppy is indoor supervision. Accidents will happenâat least until the puppy is about 12 weeks oldâbut the frequency of these accidents can be lessened with proper supervision. Keep your puppy in the same room, and when you are away, make sure that he/she is crated so he cannot go on the carpet or floors. If you catch your new puppy in the act of relieving himself indoors, immediately discourage the behavior and take him outside to the preferred location.
It would be great if puppies were born knowing that they need to "do their business" outside and only in a certain area, but unfortunately this is a learned skill only. Follow the steps outlined above and in no time at all you can housebreak your puppy permanently and can get to the fun stuff associated with owning a new dog.
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