Dr Pooches Guide To House Training

House training is absolutely essential for you and your pet?s wellbeing. Also it is the first real milestone to be faced in terms of building a structure for you and your puppy within your home. It is imperative that your pet realises that it is your ?house? and the rules are to be obeyed. This is not done through shouting, threats or contact; it is achieved through praise and consequence. It is also imperative that everyone within the household follows the rules. One person cannot house train a puppy if the rest of the household are not following the rules, it becomes to confusing for the puppy and will tend to lead to failure.

If there is an option for outdoor training it is by far the best option for you and your dog. However if you live in a flat and do not have access to an outdoor area then you will have to opt for pad training or crate training. Pad training is necessary if you are to leave your pet for long periods of time and crate training is necessary if you are to leave your puppy for and afternoon or morning at a time.

Crate Training
The steps for successfully crate training your pet are:

1) Find the right size crate. This should be big enough for your dog to lie down comfortably, with a toy or two. It should not however give your puppy enough room to run around in. A good pet shop or vet will be able to help you with sizing.

2) Make the crate a home within your home. Put the blanket from the breeders in the crate or buy comfy bedding. Have your pet?s favourite toy in the crate.

3) Always feed and water your puppy within the crate.

4) Get your puppy used to the crate with toys, treats and building up to closing the door. For example have your dog in the crate whilst you are getting on with a chore within close proximity.

5) The philosophy around crate training is that your dog will not go to the toilet within his crate as a dog, by choice will not go to the toilet where he sleeps.

6) Judge the times that your pet needs to go to the toilet and put him in the crate for small periods of time around these.

7) Build up the amount of time that you pet is in the crate and use it for a place for your puppy to rest after exercise and play.

8) Make sure that you realise this training comes with the responsibility of taking your pet outside to the toilet. This can be combined with outdoor training if you have a garden, but do not wish your dog to out alone in the house for fear of damage.

Outdoor Training
This is the best way to house train your pet and it will be a smooth process if you follow the below steps:

1) The best way to house train your pet is to pre-empt any toilets inside. You will achieve this by knowing your puppy?s toilet schedule but generally it is best to take them out to the garden area first thing when they wake, after breakfast, after lunch, after dinner and just before they go to bed.

2) When you take your dog outside for the toilet, do not play with them, but take a book and sit while they find their way. Just ignore them so they can relax and go to the toilet. This may be frustrating waiting at first but believe me in the long run it will prove worthwhile!

3) When your pet does go outside make sure you make a big fuss ?good boy, good girl? and clap and always give their favourite treat. This must be done instantly and at the spot at which they have gone to the toilet. Then welcome your puppy back into the house.

4) Whilst this training is going on please leave your dog access to the garden, so if you are out dog can go of their own accord.

5) If your dog does go in the house and you see it, make a sound as if a child is putting their hand in a fire ? ?uh uh uh? make it urgent and strong. You do not need to shout or scold. Your puppy will stop, pick them up and take outside where they will eventually finish. Then praise, using step 3.

6) If you do not see your pet go to the toilet, do not tell them off and use the steps as they will have no clue what they are being told of for. House training is not about rubbing dog?s noses in their toilet, it is about shoeing them what to do by praise and consequence.

Tracey is a dog trainer and Kensington dog walker and offers a very caring dog walking Notting Hill service to clients wanting their pets cared for.

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