House Training Options

House training is one of the areas of dog ownership that’s most subject to misunderstanding, confusion, and just plain dread! I personally don't know anyone who likes to clean up dog poop inside (or out for that matter)!

Dogs are den animals, instinct encourages them to keep their dens clean by eliminating outside of their sleeping area.

It is this instinct that allows us to house train them. There are several ways we can accomplish this, but each takes training ourselves first.

Learn About House Breaking A Puppy.

Understanding what options are available to us and how we can achieve a positive outcome to each may help ease that dread of House Breaking.

A general rule for house training is a puppy can hold it one hour for every month of its age, so a 2 month old puppy can hold it 2 hours, etc. until 10 hours, the maximum an adult dog should be asked to hold it. So about 2 hours is maximum target for your puppy.

Its best to catch them before they have an accident. While their young don't expect them to hold it through the night.

Also, make sure the crate is an appropriate size, if they can mess in one corner and then avoid it by sitting in another corner, its too big.


House train your puppy or dog to go on paper or puppy pads.

  • Pros: Papers can be moved around, you and puppy stay indoors.
  • Cons: Your puppy or dog may see any papers lying on the floor as a place to relieve themselves. If you plan to eventually train them to go outside you must transition from paper to ground or grass.

Choose a confined area such as a bathroom or service area. Cover the floor completely with papers or puppy pads, place their bed in one corner. Instinct will take over, they will go as far away from their bed as possible.

Once they use an area consistently, start removing papers closest to their bed. Change the remaining papers frequently, but be sure to leave a small piece of dog urine soiled paper on top of the clean ones where you want him to go.

After they consistently use one or two papers you can slowly give them a larger area to move around in. If accidents happen reduce their area again, this is all part of the process.

If they go on bare floor at anytime, clean the area good with an enzymatic cleaner, and recover that area with papers.

How To Remove Urine
6 Easy Steps for a Proven Method of
Urine Removal. Freedom is Possible!

Visit Planet Urine for more info on cleaning. They discuss enzymatic cleaners, and since urine is their biz they know what they're talking about. I just know you gotta clean it right!

No matter how hard we try there are times or circumstances where a dog will urinate in our house even after the training process is complete, see Common House Training Problems here.

Litter Box or The Potty Park

Your puppy or dog can learn to use a litter box, I house trained my chihuahua's to a litter box. With 4 of them it was not easy, but I hate going outdoors at night "it's cold here in Oregon"!

Update...I recently transitioned my dogs over to the Potty Park and love it!!

Chihuahua Puppies on Dog Potty Park

This is a picture of my Nursery pups just beginning their training.

  • Pros: Portable, indoors, keeps you from having to go out in the cold or heat and your puppy or dog doesn't have to wait for someone to let them out.
  • Cons: Requires daily cleaning of the litter box; may not work well for larger dogs and some male dogs.

Crate Training

House train by using a crate to confine your puppy or dog when you're not able to supervise them.

  • Pros: They use their own natural instincts to control their bathroom needs, making training easier. The bonus of crate training is they have a secure and safe place to retreat to.
  • Cons: They must go outside regardless of the weather or time of day or night. They must wait until someone can take them outside.

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Learn How To Crate Train

Punishing after the fact will not help, it will only teach them to fear you. There really is a 3 second rule: praise or punishment will be associated with whatever the dog or puppy was doing 3 seconds before it occurred. Never rub their nose in it, this will only teach them to leave the area as quickly as possible.

Are You Sick & Tired of
Your Puppy's Dirty Habit of Messing on Your Floor, Sofas, Rugs & Walls?

Do you wish that there was a simple way of house training a puppy quickly and easily?

Presenting a Free Course on Potty Training Puppies
That Will Put an End To All The "Messy Nuisance" Your Pet Makes Once and for All...

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Go to Litterbox Training

to Bad Dog Behavior

to Chihuahua Breeder Home page

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