House training is really important to teach your dog where to go to the toilet – preferably not in your house! It does take time, but be patient and you’ll get there together.
When you first bring your new puppy home, put puppy mats down to teach them where they can go to the toilet. Once your puppy has received their first course of vaccinations, it’s time to introduce them to the great outdoors and to get them house-trained!
Follow the step-by-step guide below to help you on your way! Give this lots of time at the first to prevent any accidents.
Step 1: Remove all puppy training mats from inside your home
Step 2: Place one saturated puppy mat outside
Step 3: Take your puppy outside every few hours and wait until they have done their business
Step 4: Once they have done the deed, reward them with positivity and give them a well-done fuss! Or even a little treat for the good work
Step 5: And repeat! Persistence and routine is key
Did you know? Puppies sniff out the spots where they have previously urinated and use this to repeat the process in the same places.
The association between right and wrong should be implemented through a reward or a telling off. Reward good behaviour through positivity. Change the tone of your voice, give them some fuss or a tasty treat. Telling your dog off for bad behaviour is only effective when caught in the act and should be given out at the same time. Effective discipline can be delivered by using a firm tone of voice, or by learnt commands such as ‘no’.
Recall is really important to keep your dog safe and give you piece of mind when you’re out and about. Here’s some handy tips when you’re teaching your dog to come back to their name:
- Never ever call your dog to show annoyance. Always be show you are absolutely delighted that he has returned!
- Before returning, your dog must turn away from whatever he is doing. Remember that some distractions, particularly smells and sounds, are beyond our awareness AND may be more interesting than you
- Avoid calling your dog back to ‘do nothing’
- Teach your dog that coming back does not always mean ‘end of fun’. Call him back often when out walking; put him on the lead, then let him go free; offer him a variety of rewards when he comes back and generally motivate him to WANT to come when called
- Try different signals as well as just calling him. A whistle can be very effective
As with all training, work slowly and steadily. Make it enjoyable and don’t get frustrated. If it’s not working, just take a break and start again later. Don’t forget that each dog is an individual and learn at different speeds.
It’s a myth that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks! As they’re older, your adult dog might be more interested in other activities but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy training together. Here are some tips for training your dog:
Recall: Avoid calling your dog back to ‘do nothing’ as this can be confusing
Commands: Use clear commands like ‘Sit’ ‘Lay’, and as soon as they respond appropriately, reward
Rewards: Always reward after they have done well. For example, even if your dog has been called back from wandering too far, they still came back to you! If told off, they may associate coming back as a negative thing
Signals: Try different signals as well as just calling your dog. A whistle can be very effective
Remember to keep cool, calm and avoid shouting or getting angry. Speaking clearly and firmly is always a better option!