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  • Deb Bauer

Housetraining Doesn't Need to be Difficult

Golden puppy is assuming the position to defecate in the grass.  Text says Housetraining doesn't need to be difficult!

I’m seeing a lot of posts on social media recently asking for advice about how to housetrain a puppy. Usually, these posts are from family members who are getting frustrated because what they’re trying is not working. I hope that by sharing 5 tips for toilet training puppies, I can help to alleviate that frustration for people and their puppies.


  1. Supervise your puppy all the time!  Whenever your puppy has freedom in the house, be sure you are watching closely. Prevent any accidents at all costs. You want your puppy to learn correctly from the start where to do their business. If they learn to go in the house, that means you’ll need to work harder to teach them to go outside. You will be taking your puppy outside a lot in the beginning. That’s normal and necessary.

  2. Set a schedule and stick to it - but also be ready to take your puppy out at other times that aren’t on the schedule. Puppies usually need to toilet upon waking (even from a short nap), after eating or drinking, and during/after play or excitement, and should also go out as late at night before bedtime as possible. But puppies also need to go outside anytime they are acting restless, sniffing and circling, or you just get that hunch that they might need to go.

  3. Go outside with your puppy.  This is one that many people don’t pay attention to if they have a fenced yard, or when the weather is not ideal. Wintertime is not a super fun time to housetrain a puppy, but it still needs to be done. By going outside with your puppy, you will know for sure whether they did their business or not before you bring them back into the house. You will also be right there to praise and reinforce your puppy for going where you want them to go, which is super important for the learning process.

  4. Put management in place.  Gates can be super handy to keep your puppy in the room with you, so they are easier to supervise. When you can’t supervise your puppy, be sure they have had a chance to toilet outside first, and then put them into a smaller area that you’ve set up with things for your puppy to do. There will be times when you need to leave your puppy unsupervised, so make sure you have set your puppy up to be successful, safe and happy.

  5. Overnight trips outside are strictly for business.  When your puppy wakes you up at night to toilet, which they will do … they are babies and can’t hold it all night yet … this is not time to play. Keep things quiet and keep lights off as much as possible so you’re not waking your puppy up any more than necessary. Take your puppy outside, gently and quietly praise as they go, and bring them right back into their bed. If you are consistent, your puppy will learn to go right back to sleep and will become better at sleeping through the night.


Housetraining doesn't need to be difficult! It's no fun to live with a dog that is having accidents in the house. If you're struggling, let me help!



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