Many people use an indoor potty for their dogs for some time. Proof of this is the fact that the market for pet products is now filled with many varieties of indoor dog potties to choose from. To name just a few: Simple Solution Jump Start Pads, Patio Park, Porch Potty, Penthouse Dog Potty, PetaPotty, WizDog, Pet Zoom Pet Park, Ugo Dog, Potty Patch, Pup Head, Pee Wee Portable Potty, and Pet Loo.
Some of these products are developed for people who want a dog that is permanently trained to relieve itself in a designated place indoors. But, the vast majority of people use an indoor potty for just a couple of months or so, until a young puppy has developed the necessary bladder and intestinal muscle control to ‘hold’ it for periods of time between walks. Before that, a long-term confinement area, such as a closed-door bathroom or exercise pen, can be used when you need to leave your puppy for longer than you think you can ‘hold’ him in his crate. In this enclosure, the puppy has access to an indoor potty.
Most of the people who are faced with the task of moving from toilet training indoors to outdoors are those with puppies. In this case, the goal is usually to move the puppy from using the temporary indoor potty to relieving himself exclusively outside. However, we certainly hear from people who are faced with a more daunting challenge; Teach your small dog who has been potty trained indoors to potty-train now too, or make it even more difficult for them to stop using an indoor potty and only remove when take a walk.
When I meet people for puppy lessons, I often start by asking what their home training goals are. Those with medium or large sized dogs are usually quite light. They want their dogs to potty-train quickly when properly walked and not to relieve themselves indoors. People with small breed puppies are often not so sure of their home training goals.
In a perfect world of dog training, people would carefully plan their long-term goals for their dogs before even bringing them home. In the case of choosing a place to go to the bathroom, they would consider that even if having a small dog in an indoor potty seems convenient, it may not be wise to have this as the exclusive area for a dog’s potty, as in the future something could change instead. life that makes it preferable for the dog to go to the bathroom outside. This could be (among many reasons) bringing another dog into your family or having a new partner who wants the dog to go outside to the bathroom. Additionally, going for a walk can be such an enriching part of a dog’s life (both physically and mentally) that it is a shame this is not part of the dog’s daily routine. So while one of the many reasons why some people choose a small dog is due to the assumption that it will be easier in some way, it is generally advisable for small dogs to be trained to go out, even if they are also taught to use an indoor urinal for comfort.
Aside from socializing, building reliable home training skills is a top priority. The good news is that once you help your dog develop a strong habit of eliminating in a specific place, they tend to be particular about going there. But that also means that once you’ve helped your dog develop a habit of eliminating in a specific spot, changing that habit once it has become deeply ingrained can be more of a challenge.
Teaching your dog (be it puppy or small adult dog) to relieve himself outdoors rather than using an indoor potty or in addition to using it will require diligent scheduling and time management on your part. Your primary focus should be to give your dog as few opportunities as possible to be indoors with access to the indoor potty when he needs to relieve himself. Instead, when you know they need to leave, you should take them (it is advisable to carry them out for the first few weeks, so no accidents will happen when going out) outside to an area about 10 feet wide and walk. back and forth for five minutes without talking to them.
If they don’t remove during that time, pick them up and bring them back where you will hold them for five to ten minutes on your lap before coming back to try again. Make sure you don’t leave your dog on the ground as he can relieve himself indoors and this will create a pattern of behavior in which your dog will learn to go outside, sniff, and then go back to toilet. In most cases, this in-and-out routine requires no more than a few repetitions before the success of your outdoor home workout. However, it is advisable that if this is your first attempt at getting your dog to relieve himself outside, you should probably spend a week or two walking your dog on a leash to his indoor potty before beginning the transition to the outside. This will give your dog a chance to become familiar and comfortable with leash elimination, something many dogs that have been potty trained have not done before.
During this transition period, also be careful not to allow your dog to roam your home, even when you are home. Each time you do this, the dog can practice more indoor potty elimination, reducing the chances of being successful in the outdoor potty. Instead, when you can’t give your dog your full attention, have him on a leash securely tied nearby or resting in his crate, in both cases provide a couple of attractive and safe toys.
If you are trying to remove the indoor potty, be more diligent about it. Once you remove the indoor potty area, your dog may be so conditioned to go indoors that he will look for other areas and surfaces that are similar to the old indoor potty area. These could be doorway or bathroom rugs or newspapers that have been left on the floor.
It is also vital not to punish your dog if he makes a mistake indoors. This likely won’t teach your dog much more than to avoid relieving himself in front of you (the big, bad, pee and poop police!). In this case, your dog will surely hold you as long as possible when you take him outside on the leash, as he is standing nearby.
As you focus your energy on being a diligent dog time manager in an effort to help your dog learn to relieve himself on a new surface (grass or concrete), in a new and potentially very distracting environment (outside ), remember that it may take your dog some time to develop a strong new habit. Your dog is counting on you to help him understand the benefit of going to this new place (by offering quiet praise and other rewards) and to help prevent him from going to other places that you prefer not to.