Dealing With Puppy Toileting Mistakes

One of the most common toilet training mistakes humans can make when toilet training a puppy is verbally punishing a puppy ‘caught in the act’ of toileting indoors. Most people think that when they catch a puppy toileting that they should yell out something like ‘No! Bad puppy!’ to teach the puppy that toileting in the house is unacceptable.

 
Let’s look at this from the puppy’s point of view. He feels like going to the toilet so he goes, unaware that he shouldn’t toilet indoors. You come along yelling and scare him. When he toilets indoors and you’re not around he doesn’t get yelled at and now that you ARE around he’s being yelled at. He’s learning that your presence when he’s toileting is a bad thing. You think you’re teaching him not to toilet in the house. The puppy thinks it’s not safe to toilet in front of YOU.

 
The next time you take him outdoors to toilet and say something like ‘Go do wee!’ the puppy remembers you yelling at him and refuses to toilet in front of you. He holds onto it and after a while you take him back indoors thinking he doesn’t need to go. At the first opportunity your puppy will sneak away from you and toilet undetected. I call this ‘stealth peeing’! He’s simply trying to avoid punishment.

 
If this has happened to your puppy the first step is to cease punishing your puppy for accidents immediately. Ensure that you have a proper toilet training plan that sets the puppy up for success. This should include confinement and 100% supervision in the absence of confinement. You will then need to take your puppy outside and let him roam far enough away from you so that he feels safe from punishment. When your puppy toilets praise verbally and reward immediately with a high value treat or fun game.

Puppy on Toilet

 

 

 

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