How to Housebreak an Older Dog

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Some adult dogs (older than six months) sometimes can go potty inside the apartment. House soiling can happen in any place of a house, but sometimes dog owners will notice that pet soils more in specific locations, which may uncover the cause.

For example, soiling might happen only in rarely used rooms or on a particular kind of surface, or only in the areas that smell strongly.  Some dogs might pee only during petting or greetings,  some – do that only when they’re left alone, or only when they haven’t had time to go potty outside.

However, even older dogs can be trained. And the key steps of the process are the same as for the puppies. What is different – is the previously acquired behavior. Your pet may have never been taught or may have placed into the new surroundings. The golden rule is to be patient.

Start with introducing your adult pet to a crate. It will teach your pooch bowel and bladder control and provide him a safe spot to hang out. Place the crate in a room easily accessible for your dog and keep the door open. Put a washable mat inside to deal with the future accidents. Add some toys to make the stay in the crate for fun.

  • Direct your dog to the crate. Talk with a cheerful voice as you throw a treat to the corner of the crate. Once he chews the treat, put another one deeper inside the cage. Proceed with this process unless he is completely inside the confined area.
  • Place his food place nearby the crate. When he is comfortable having a meal around the crate, move it inside and let them have his food there. Continue the training process by keeping your pet longer in a crate after each meal time. Eventually, he will feel comfortable there. And that’s the perfect timing to start the house training.

First, create a potty and feeding schedule. An adult dog has to be fed no more than two times daily, same time. Every time after he eats take him out to the potty area.  Also, you should take him out first thing in the morning, and right before bedtime. Potty time should be scheduled every two to three hours until the pet can control bladder and bowel properly.  The rest of the time – watch your pet or keep him in a confined area when you can’t be around.

Use a special word or phrase to identify the potty time. Take him out to his potty spot and repeat the same command to make him remember it. Give him enough time to potty. Sometimes it will take him several minutes to do his business, sometimes – up to 20 minutes – be patient.

Praise him every time for the correct behavior, but never punish him. Your adult dog needs to learn what is expected from him – and praising is the best form to get the idea.

Don’t feed or let your dog drink three hours before going off to bed. Take him out just before sleeping time and put him in the crate overnight.  If he is whining – take him out again, and then put to the crate right away.

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