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House Breaking Tips

This is a place to gain some understanding of dog behavior and to assist people in training their dogs and dealing with common behavior problems, regardless of the method(s) used. This can cover the spectrum from non-aversive to traditional methods of dog training. There are many ways to train a dog. Please avoid aggressive responses, and counter ideas and opinions with which you don't agree with friendly and helpful advice. Please refrain from submitting posts that promote off-topic discussions. Keep in mind that you may be receiving advice from other dog owners and lovers... not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a trainer or behaviorist!

  
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Sir Snicker- Doodle

Snickers -- The Cutest- Little Moppet
 
 
Barked: Fri Feb 15, '13 4:48am PST 
Hey all my dogster furrends... I need some house breaking tips!

Snickers is 3 months old and he does pretty decent but we're still having accidents.

The thing is that everything is so new to him here we have a hard time distinguishing whether he's sniffing to explore or sniffing for a place to potty...

A lot of dogs (older) that I know of have signs they have to go out... but Snickers hasn't developed any of these. When we see him go for the door we take him out... but he doesn't make any vocalizations.

What can we do to help the house-breaking process easier so we have less pee-pee accidents inside?

Thanks!
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Sparkles

Wait for me!!
 
 
Barked: Fri Feb 15, '13 8:10am PST 
Hang jingle bells from the doorknob on the door you use to take him out. Make sure they're at nose level. Ring them every time you take him out and pretty soon he'll be ringing them on his own. Make sure you praise him and take him out every time he rings them. It may seem like he's playing a game or teasing you for a while but he'll get the hang of it. Trust me, it works wonders and is how we train our puppies smile
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Iris vom- Zauberberg

Service Werewolf
 
 
Barked: Fri Feb 15, '13 11:34am PST 
Some tips that have worked for me:

Feed on a schedule.

Praise success and don't give the puppy any punishment or attention for accidents. Just clean up silently and matter-of-factly without looking at him or her.

Set the puppy up for success: take the puppy out to eliminate within 15 minutes after a meal.

Take the puppy out every couple of hours for a chance to eliminate, and always before bedtime.

In my situation, these tips have allowed the puppy to have many successes in eliminating in the correct place and has helped him learn quickly where the right place is to go.

Good luck, and enjoy your puppy!
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Capone

Noms for the- pug...
 
 
Barked: Fri Feb 15, '13 12:29pm PST 
I agree with the other posters.

Keeping everything on a schedule will definitely help with house breaking. You should take him out every time he wakes up (even from a nap), shortly after he eats or drinks water, shortly after a playtime, and always before bedtime. If more than an hour has passed since he last went out and he’s sniffing, take him out. Any time you take him out, make sure he goes potty before you bring him back in and always praise him for going outside.

You can teach him a signal like the jingle bells that Sparkles mentioned. It can be anything you want, you just have to be consistent about demonstrating it to your puppy every time you take him.

Some breeds are just naturally more resistant to house breaking than others. I’m not too familiar with Snickers’ breed, so I don’t know if that’s the case, but it’s something to consider. A lot of smaller breeds are harder to house break. Smaller bladders, they don’t like the cold, or whatever… laugh out loud

But if you keep at it and stay consistent, I’m sure Snickers will get it all worked out before too long.

Edited by author Fri Feb 15, '13 12:30pm PST

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Sir Snicker- Doodle

Snickers -- The Cutest- Little Moppet
 
 
Barked: Fri Feb 15, '13 4:43pm PST 
Thanks! We do have jingle bells on the door... maybe we need to get stronger ones cause they're kind of quiet. Sometimes he's just so quick at having accidents it happens before I can get the leash on him. And he likes to run away when I try to get him leashed to take him out.

We're pretty regular about taking him out after naps, before bed and when we notice him sniffing.
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Capone

Noms for the- pug...
 
 
Barked: Tue Feb 19, '13 11:53am PST 
He’s probably having accidents so quickly because he either doesn’t have the ability yet (being so young) or hasn’t learned yet how to “hold it”. That will get better with time. When my dog was that young, I didn’t even bother with trying to get the leash on him in the house. Whenever I thought he might have to go, I just scooped him up and ran him outside. I always had the leash near the door so I could grab it after I had my puppy in my arms and attach it while I was carrying him down the steps.

Working on sitting while you attach the leash should definitely be on your to-do list for training. That’s something you’ll want to work on when he doesn’t have to go potty. If he goes crazy every time he sees the leash, try to desensitize him by pulling the leash out every now and then only to put it right back, or leaving it out somewhere he can see it but not get to it. Once you can hold the leash and he can be calm, work on lowering the clip towards him. If he moves, just stand back up straight again and wait for him to calm down. You keep lowering it slowly until he can stay calm all the way until you clip it to his collar/harness. Then, of course, you can use going outside as a reward. dog walk
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Josie

1284059
 
 
Barked: Tue Feb 19, '13 11:55am PST 
We've had the jingle bells up for about 2 weeks and they aren't working. We ring them every time, but some of the times we were just letting her out on a cable. I said no more just letting her out, we have to TAKE her out every single time and praise. I hope that helps. I read they were supposed to "get" the bells in a couple days.
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Lexus

shy girl
 
 
Barked: Tue Feb 19, '13 12:31pm PST 
applause great suggestions from everybody!
Lexus was especially stubborn when it came to house breaking. She has it now though. Even though your dog may not give vocal signs he will start giving you body language signs. You will pick up on them eventually. It is hard to distinguish sniffing around to just sniff or sniffing for a spot to pee. Lexus still only gives subtle signals, but when I see them, even if I second guess it, I take her out anyways. Better to prevent then wait. She will sniff, but she will sniff as she walks around in a circle. The other thing she does is just walk over to me and simply look at me for a sec, walk away and then walk back to me and look at me, like she is trying to tell me something. So sure enough I take her out and she goes. With cleaning up the messes as the one poster said, do not scold and things like that, but do not completely ignore when you catch her in the act. When you catch her say in an alarmed voice "outside" (not mean or stern, but alarmed) and carry him out right away, then if he finishes out there praise, this way your showing him where the right place to go is. If you dont catch him, simply clean it up and continue your day.
Another thing that works until house training catches on is tethering. When you know it has been a while since he peed tether him to you with his leash, and go outside every half hour or so till he goes, but do not let him off tether in the house till he goes outside, this way you wont have to worry about what he is sniffing for, because your tether will prevent it. Once he goes, praise and when you come back in let him have free roam again for an hour or 2, depending how long you think he usually goes between pee's. Then take him out again, if he doesn't go then tether him again, this is a great way to prevent accidents and set your dog up for success. Also make sure you are cleaning up those pee spots reeeeeally well, if his scent stays in the house, he will keep peeing in there.
Good Luck! way to go
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Capone

Noms for the- pug...
 
 
Barked: Tue Feb 19, '13 1:00pm PST 
Josie, I wish I could help you with the bells, but I don’t have personal experience with them. I only endorse the method because as a trainer, a lot of students and other trainers I knew swore by them. But I’ve always just let my own dogs develop their individual methods of letting me know they had to go.

I’ve had dogs that barked, scratched at the door, circled in front of the door, sniffed at the door, sat in front of the door, stood in front of the door staring at it expectantly...

My current dog has developed different methods for both me and my husband. He scratches lightly at the door for me. For my husband, he stares at him, walks away, comes back and stares at him some more. Unless my husband is trying to sleep in while I’m at work…then he scratches at the bedroom door which has a broken stopper so it bangs loudly against the wall. laugh out loud
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Sir Snicker- Doodle

Snickers -- The Cutest- Little Moppet
 
 
Barked: Wed Feb 20, '13 6:42am PST 
I think I might have figured out the "game"...

When Snickers runs to the door and is sniffing but runs away from me when I try to put the leash on him... he does NOT have to go outside. If he goes to the door and I come with the leash... he will sit patiently to put it on and then sits by the door and looks at the bells when I jingle them... then runs out the door.

We haven't had as many accidents in the last couple days... so we might be getting the hang of it.

He's already got Sit down fairly well. The crazy thing is that he already just sits and waits. But if he gets too eager I'll say UH UH and he'll back away and sit down. Trying this with biting me as well and it's working. Thanks for all the tips.
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