August 12, 2010

Housetraining your Puppy

Filed under: training your dog — Dr. Amber Reed @ 7:44 am

Whether you’ve just gotten a new puppy or you’re caring for an older dog that has not been house trained, you probably know the importance of house training.  Obviously it is inappropriate to allow your dog to urinate or defecate in the house, but knowing how to teach them the appropriate behavior is another issue altogether.  Fortunately, housebreaking your dog doesn’t need to be difficult.  With positive, consistent training, your dog will be housebroken in no time.

One of the first things to remember when training your dog to do anything is that reinforcement works better than punishment.  A lot of dog owners are confused about how to rely on praise and reward rather than punishments because it doesn’t seem logical.  However, by praising your dog and rewarding good behaviors, you are much more likely to see immediate and lasting results.  This means you need to praise your dog whenever they urinate or defecate outdoors.

Another important factor to realize is that dogs sometimes urinate submissively.  In other words, when you scold your dog, he may pee as a sign of respect.  Dogs are pack animals with distinct ranks in their pack.  Your family is essentially your dog’s pack and he likely knows that he’s at the bottom of the totem pole.  Often, when dogs meet superior pack members they will squat and urinate, likewise when the pack members meet them with aggression.  So, if your dog urinates when scolded, he’s not really breaking housetraining, rather showing that he understands his position in the pack.

Finally, during any training plan it is imperative that you remain consistent.  Give your dog ample opportunity to toilet outside, and lead him outside when he demonstrates those behaviors that indicate he needs to toilet.  With consistent praise and patience, you’ll have a happily house trained dog.

About Dr. Amber Reed

has written 281 posts in this blog.

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