Great house training tips

When a dog urinates in an inappropriate area in the absence of a medical problem, it is considered a housetraining problem.

OVERVIEW

All dogs, puppies or rescue dogs, require consistent housetraining. In most cases, it is fairly easy to housetrain a dog if you stick closely to a routine. Unfortunately, housetraining problems or inappropriate toileting are a common reason for why pets are relinquished to shelters. When a dog urinates in an inappropriate area in the absence of a medical problem, it is considered a housetraining problem.

SIGNS

Common forms of inappropriate toileting:

  • Inconsistent toilet training
  • Preference to puppy toileting habits such as newspaper or puppy pads
  • Preference to an area where they have toileted a lot and now has the stimulating scent such as the carpet or mat
  • Territorial such as an entire male marking its territory, the introduction of new furniture, new pets, new people
  • New location
  • Dietary problems such as overfeeding, high-fibre diets
  • Musculoskeletal disease that causes the dog pain when squatting
  • Anxiety such as separation anxiety, noise phobia

MANAGEMENT

Tips to good housetraining:

  • Start toilet training early. Puppies are best able to develop good toileting habits at approximately 8 weeks of age.
  • Take the dog to the appropriate toileting area frequently
  • Relocate your pet's faecal material to the allocated toilet area
  • Take the dog to the toileting area after sleep, play and eating
  • Toileting should occur before play
  • Choose a few specific toileting areas and stick to them
  • Keep your dog on a short leash initially
  • Do not give your pet attention until it has toileted
  • Reward the pet with praise immediately after toileting
  • Do not punish your pet if it toilets inappropriately. But take it immediately to the area where it should toilet
  • Be consistent with your toilet training

Minimum toilet breaks

6-14 weeks of age 8 times a day
15-20 weeks of age 6 times a day
21-30 weeks of age 4 times a day
30+ weeks of age 3 times a day

Management of inappropriate toileting involves thorough cleaning of the environment, ensuring your pet is treated for any medical or behavioural condition and the neutering of all household pets.