Saturday, September 24, 2022

Pets – Housebreaking: Too Cold to Train?

In a case of life’s irony, Christmas and the holiday seasons fall at the coldest and wettest time of year, making housebreaking a new puppy miserable.  Right when we got a new puppy in the house, it snowed, and not only did the puppy not want to go outside, but we humans sure didn’t like that idea either. 

Housebreaking your puppy is one of the first things you do to train your dog, besides the puppy learning it’s name, your housebreaking efforts will be the first time you try to communicate your wishes to this new species in your household.  Your relationship with your puppy will be influenced by how you choose to housebreak your pup, it will shape your dogs’ behavior to humans for the rest of their lives far more than most people realize.


Do not punish a puppy for an accident inside your home.  Of all the pieces of advice I give, this would be the most important thing I can say to anybody who has gotten a new puppy.  Eliminating waste is a natural thing, every animal does it.  When you punish your pup for eliminating inside, you teach the dog that the perfectly natural waste PLUS YOU means something bad is going to happen.  The outcome is that soon the puppy will then make sure there is no YOU in the picture and will hide when they have to go, which makes praising them for going in the appropriate place difficult.  If you spank or rub the pup’s nose in its mess, it will also make your puppy think that a human hand can be bad thing.  Punishment relative to housebreaking can often make a dog look as if it has been abused, so keeping a positive approach to your housebreaking plan is important to having an emotionally healthy dog in the future.

Although it seems simple, housebreaking your puppy is different for everybody.  The pup’s age, temperament, size, food, health and previous experiences will all affect your housebreaking experience.  Your schedule, your home size, the number of people in the house, your yard size and how you house the dog will all affect your housebreaking experience.  So many things that lie within all of the above variables can affect how quickly you can teach your pup to eliminate where you want them to.  There is not a one-size-fits-all answer to housebreaking; it is a very personal experience but a very important step in turning the cute little puppy into an integral member of your family. 

I offer a free in home evaluation to assess your situation, so that I may give you tips on achieving success and we can determine if one of my training programs would benefit you as well.  The best way to start off your New Year is with a good path of communication between yourself and your pet.  I would love to be the dog trainer that helps you achieve this!  Mia’s Canine Solutions – 972-849-7688


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