How To Respond To Your Pup's Accident
I think the worst part about raising a puppy is thinking your puppy is finally catching on to house training, and then he or she squats right in front of you and leaves a nice puddle on your carpet.
It’s hard not to be frustrated, and think: “What am I doing wrong?! I could have sworn he or she was just understanding that outside is where we go potty!”
With my puppies and the dozens of foster puppies I have raised, I have been in this position many times, so don’t worry, you are not alone!
Let’s get this straight, your puppy WILL have an accident in the house.
Even if you are doing everything right in the house training process, I can almost guarantee you that accidents are going to happen.
Be prepared for this and do your best to not get frustrated when they do happen. One of the most beneficial things you can do for the house training process is to properly correct your pup when he or she does have an accident in the house.
So, first of all, why is your puppy having accidents in the house?
1. Your pup is confused about where he is supposed to go potty
From the moment you bring your puppy home, you should begin house training.
Choose the place outside that you are going to bring your puppy every single time.
This will help him associate this area with you wanting him to go potty and teach him that outside is where he needs to go potty. Each time you bring him to this area, tell him “go potty.”
When he does go potty outside, you need to throw him the biggest praise celebration every single time-with treats included!!
2. You are not letting your puppy outside enough
You need to bring your puppy outside more frequently. Yes, it’s going to be annoying having to go out so often in the beginning, but that’s part of having a puppy.
I recommend dog owners bring their puppies outside every thirty minutes after first bringing a new dog home. Yes, you read that right. Every thirty minutes.
Bring the pup outside to a designated area and say “go potty.” The more often you bring your puppy outside in the beginning, the more times your puppy will go potty in the grass, and the faster the house training process will be.
3. You are giving your puppy too much free roam around the house
If your puppy is just roaming around the house all day, it will be very difficult to house train him. He will go potty wherever he pleases because he can. Your puppy’s crate will be your best friend during house training.
I use the crate A LOT in the beginning of house training because it is so incredibly beneficial for house training a puppy. Puppies won’t usually go potty where they sleep, so it is very rare that a pup will go potty in his crate (as long as you are crate training properly as well!)
Get in the habit of having your pup in his crate with a chew toy, instead of roaming about the house, meanwhile giving him the opportunity to pee wherever he pleases.
Whenever you take your puppy out of the crate, bring him straight outside to his designated potty spot.
What should I do when my puppy has an accident in the house?
This is one of the most common questions we receive from new dog owners.
Good thing, because it is also one of the most important when you’ve never owned a puppy before. How you as the owner responds to your puppy having an accident is incredibly important to successful house training.
If you catch your puppy going potty in the house:
1. RUN to your puppy.
2. Say “No” and pick him up.
3. Bring him outside to the designated potty area and tell him to “go potty”.
Seriously.. run! Whenever one of my puppies started squatting in the house, I literally sprinted to the pup to try to catch him before he started going!
Even if he is already going, get to him as fast as you can and pick him up. He will stop going once you pick him up, so don’t be hesitant to pick him up because of that.
Just get him outside to his spot as fast as you can.
Is there anything else I should do?
These are the ONLY three steps to take when your puppy has an accident. This. Is. It. Despite what you may read other places, those three steps is all it takes.
Your puppy will NOT respond well to negative reinforcement and excessive scolding, and it WILL stall the house training process.
- Rub your puppy’s nose in his accident
- Put your puppy in the crate as punishment for having an accident
- Yell or aggressively scold your puppy
- Just watch your puppy have an accident and not do anything about it
- Scold your puppy for an accident you didn’t see him do
Of these myths, the last one is probably the most common mistake.
Many people will find a pile of poop or a puddle of urine in the house that they did not even notice their puppy make, get upset, and then scold the puppy for doing it.
When you do this, your puppy has NO idea what you are scolding him for. By this point, he doesn’t even remember going to the bathroom in the house!
Scolding him will NOT benefit you in any way at this point. So, unfortunately there is really nothing to do in this situation other than to clean it up.
House training your pup is obviously one of the biggest issues that new dog owners encounter.
That’s why we developed “The Puppy Training Handbook” Program, so that new dog owners have a reliable, complete resource when it comes to how to potty train their pup and just about everything else you need to know as a new dog owner!
But don’t just take it from us, check out what others are saying about “The Puppy Training Handbook” HERE and see if you’re ready to make the jump to become the best dog owner you can possibly be!