Positive puppy toilet training
Owning a dog can be one of the biggest joys in life. They are energetic, fun, loyal and loving but occasionally they do something that just makes you want to scream to the rafters.
Take for instance a urine accident or in some cases not so accidental but intentional! What do you do? Do you yell, scream, rub their noise in it? Does that really work?
After we calm down and look at it rationally we need to proactive when it comes to toilet training and understand the cue signs and offer a reward when they do “go” correctly. When it comes to puppies often they have limited to no bladder control so getting angry or scaring the pup will come to no avail.
Here are a few preventative steps to keep our homes urine free.
- Watch for the signals. A puppy will usually walk in circles and become more active than normal. A larger dog will start sniffing the area, circle then pause in the spot. This may vary from dog to dog so owners should watch their dog to get an idea of each dog’s cue signs.
Acknowledge the action and take them outside or to their designated spot immediately.
- Be proactive. Remember to take your puppy or dog to the toilet area first thing in the morning and wait until he goes. A puppy usually needs to go directly after they have eaten.
If their toilet area is the outside make sure they have lots of opportunities to go outside. Take them to the toilet area at least every 2-3 hours.
- Reward good behaviour. Reward based reinforcement training is the key. Old fashioned techniques such as rubbing their nose in it or some form of punishment will only delay the learning process.
Reward your dog immediately after they go to the toilet the their toilet area (within a few seconds). The reward can be as simples as a pat on the head or saying “good boy, good girl” in a pleasant tone of voice, giving a treat or their favourite chew toy.
Vigilant supervision is important for this system to work to ensure you can reward the good behaviour.
- Establish realistic expectations. Don’t expect toilet training to be easy or quick. Each breed is different in how quickly they may pick up the task. Be patient and remember consistent communication is important for key word recognition.
- Clean it up. If you don’t remove the urine completely, you puppy or dog will associate the urine smell with an accessible place to go to the toilet. Not to mention urine odours from urine stains are not a pleasant addition to any house.
Do not use any chemicals, cleaners or deodorisers to remove urine stains and odours. These only remove the water soluble components of urine but leave behind the uric acid crystal which retain the odour and the stain.
Take some paper toweling and blot as much of the urine deposit as you can. Saturate the urine with a bio-enzymatic formulation like urineFREE and make sure all urine-affected areas are wet. Do a colourfast test on a small area.
Allow to air dry, giving dwell time for the product to remove all the urine deposits.
When dry apply a small amount of water to the area and blot with a paper towel to remove any sticky residue.
Note: Never use cleaners, chemicals or deodorisers to remove urine stains and odours. These products tend to coat or encapsulate the uric acid crystals (the source of the odours) and make it difficult for urineFREE to penetrate. If you have used these products, try to remove as much of the products as possible with water and a clean cloth. Blot and allow to dry and then apply urineFREE.