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Accidents happen: potty training your puppy


Remember when you first brought your puppy home? That tiny ball of fur with the boundless energy and those adorable, yet oh-so-frequent pee puddles? We all know the potty-training struggle is real!

 

While those accidents might have tested our patience (and carpets!), here is how I worked on minimizing the mess. By teaching puppies appropriate potty habits you can prevent accidents, minimize messes, and establish good hygiene practices for your new puppy.

 

Understanding Your Puppy:

 

• Puppies develop bladder control gradually. A good rule of thumb is one hour of control for each month of age, up to a maximum of around 8 hours for adults. However, individual puppies mature at different paces.

• Pay attention to your puppy's natural cues like sniffing, circling, or whining. These often precede elimination and can help you anticipate their needs.

 

Establishing a Routine:

 

• Take your puppy outside frequently, especially after waking up, playing, eating, and drinking. Every 2-3 hours during the day and more often for younger puppies is a good starting point.

• Choose a designated potty spot outside and always take your puppy there. This helps them associate this location with elimination.

• Crate train to provide a safe space and prevent accidents when you can't supervise directly.

 

Positive Reinforcement:

 

• Celebrate success with praise, petting, and even small treats when your puppy eliminates outside. This positive association motivates them to repeat the desired behavior.

• Accidents happen. Avoid punishment as it can create fear and anxiety, hindering progress. Clean up thoroughly with an enzymatic cleaner to remove lingering odors.

 

Bonus Tips:

 

• Limit water intake before bedtime as this can help reduce nighttime accidents.

• If accidents persist, consult your veterinarian to rule out any medical conditions.

 

Remember, potty training takes time and dedication. But with these tips and a whole lot of love, you'll be amazed at how quickly your puppy catches on. Soon, you'll be enjoying a clean house and fewer messes!


Pictured: Scout, our mascot, at 9 weeks old. 

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