If you have a new puppy, you've got your work cut out for you. You're going to have to house-train it, which isn't always the easiest thing to do. Puppies tend to have a mind of their own, which means you could be facing a lot of little messes throughout the house in the coming days. Luckily, there are some things you can do that will help take some of the work out of the process. Here are four simple steps that will help make house-training your puppy a little easier.
Start with the Crate
When you're trying to house-train a puppy, the best thing you can do is start small. That means you'll want to limit the space your puppy has to roam. Start out by keeping your puppy in a crate. Place a small blanket inside to keep it comfortable. Whenever you take the puppy out to play, take it to its toilet area first. This will teach your puppy that there is a specific location for it to do its business.
Do not get Angry
All puppies have accidents from time to time. Your puppy will not be the exception to that rule. When it does have an accident, do not get angry with it or punish it. This may cause the puppy to fear eliminating in front of you. In a kind but firm voice, tell your puppy "no" and move it to the proper location. This will help reinforce the rules.
Remove the Scent
Once your puppy has had an accident on the floor, you'll want to remove the scent as soon as possible. Leaving the scent will provide an enticement for your puppy to return to the same location. Fill a spray bottle with water. Add ¼ cup of vinegar, one tablespoon of lemon juice and a few drops of dish detergent. Thoroughly saturate the area with the cleaning solution and allow it to set for a few minutes. Scrub the area with a sponge and allow it to air dry. Repeat the process whenever your puppy has an accident.
Go by the Bell
Pavlov discovered that dogs can learn through a process known as conditioning. You can use this method to house-train your dog. Set an alarm for 60 minutes. When the alarm goes off, pick your puppy up and take it outside. Once your puppy has relieved itself, bring it back into the house and set the alarm for another 60 minutes. When the alarm goes off, repeat the process. Once your puppy is trained to use the bathroom every hour, you can gradually space the amount of time between alarms.
House-training doesn't have to be an impossible task. Use the tips provided here to teach your puppy that there's an appropriate place and time to relieve itself. If your puppy continues to have accidents, be sure to speak to a veterinarian from a company like Grove Center Veterinary Hospital. It may have an underlying health issue that will need to be addressed.