potty training a new puppy

Common Puppy Potty Training Problems (and How to Fix Them!)

It’s no secret that potty training is hard. Parents of real babies and fur babies alike can agree, the potty-training phase is challenging. There are a few common puppy potty training problems that most owners experience. Instead of letting these issues discourage you, let’s discuss simple steps you can take to fix them and successfully potty train your pup!

Accidents in the Confinement Area

A confinement area is used when you can’t actively supervise your dog or take them outside; For example, if you’re leaving the house to run errands or go to work. Confinement areas should be an accident-free zone. Most commonly, the confinement area might be a crate. Your puppy should know that this is their area and if they have an accident in it, their area will be dirty until you have the time to clean it up.

The most common reason puppies have accidents in their confinement area is because it’s too big. If your dog has enough room to have an accident and still be comfortable in the confinement area, it’s too big. Downsize the crate you’re using to confine the dog and the confinement area accidents should stop.

Accidents Aren’t Found Until Later

Contrary to popular belief, praise is more important than punishment when potty training a puppy. Anytime your puppy isn’t confined or outside, you need to be actively watching them. This will allow you to notice an accident as it’s happening. When you see the puppy start to go, quickly take them outside and encourage them to finish where they’re supposed to. If they finish outside, praise them endlessly for it! Finding an accident after it’s already occurred makes it impossible to redirect and praise the dog. There would be no sense in reacting negatively because dogs have a short attention span, they won’t understand what behavior your negative reaction is associated with. Instead, you’ll just have to clean up the mess and pay closer attention next time.

You Don’t Know When Your Dog Needs to Go

If your dog doesn’t know how to get your attention when they need to go, how are they supposed to stop having accidents? Adding a bell by the door that your puppy can be trained to ring when they need to go will create a clear line of communication and help prevent future accidents. A dog trainer can assist in teaching your puppy how to use the bell at the appropriate times using positive reinforcement training methods. You and your dog will feel more confident in the potty training process when you actually have a way to communicate with them!

Contact Argos Dog Training

If you’re struggling to successfully potty train your puppy, hiring a professional is a great solution! Argos Dog Training is an experienced and trusted dog trainer in the Boston area. We can assist with potty training, teaching basic commands, and so much more. Call today to schedule your consultation!