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  1. #1
    Road Dawg

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    Default Housebreaking questions

    We've had our ~10wk old pup Charlotte for a couple weeks. First time dog experience.

    We have a puppy safe zone in our living room where she is restricted to be. Her crate is also in that room.

    She is generally out of her crate and supervised most of the day. We take her outside during those times every 2-3 hours else an accident.
    The floor is that fake hardwood and the fluid stays pooled on the top and is relatively easy to clean.

    She is usually crated around 11-12 at night and holds herself well until taken out around 7am. Never a crate accident.

    So far so good.

    I realized a problem is my living room she stays in has no door per sey. If there were a door I think she'd go to it for alert. As it is she gives no recognizable indication at all before releasing her cargo.

    You see we live in a split foyer home.
    To get to the back door we carry her down 1 flight of stairs, pass the front door in a U turn, down a 2nd flight of stairs, across a large room and out the door to the specific doo doo area.

    I was hoping Charlotte would alert us in some way when it's time but not thus far.

    We don't take her out the front for toxic lawn chemicals.
    Also she's too young to navigate the stair cases.

    It would be simpler to move her downstairs into the room with the back door, except it would be very exceedingly difficult to puppy safe that room for her.

    An old movie scene comes to mind where the people rush into a backyard shed to escape the approaching tornado only to find its full of hanging saw blades and other sharp objects.

    Puppy proofing at least part of that room is not entirely impossible but a LOT of work with making custom barracades and she'll have less room to roam about.
    Also that room has heavy thick carpet. Harder to clean and I've read Pry's love to destroy carpet.

    Any thoughts or ideas?
    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) Antonia's Avatar

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    My suggestion would be to start training her to potty on command to a certain word or phrase. My dogs don't have the run of the house when they are inside and can't access the door to outside, nor can they be let free out the door of the house I live in, even if they could access it. So, I start training my pups at a young age to go on command. This allows me to have them go before coming inside and then I can take them back out later and know they will go again and I will have another period of "safety" since they just went. I only had a single accident with my no almost 2 year old and never had an accident with my current 6 month old. Has worked very well for us.

  3. #3
    Road Dawg

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    Default

    Thanks Antonia.

    Does your puppy alert you, or have you trained to alert you when it's time?

    If it's training then how was it done?

    My wife has been doing a poo poo command outside since day 1 and seems to work good.

    We still need to scoop up Charlotte every couple hours if she's uncrated else she unload without warning.

    We don't scold her in any way when she accidents but I am sure she knows our urgent manner to scoop her up when it happens.

    Do dogs eventually learn to alert beforehand on their own or is there something we should be doing differently?

  4. #4
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) nick's spirit's Avatar

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    Default

    you have a difficult house to train in...but it's not impossible!

    I would take her out everytime she wakes up from a nap, plays really hard, eats, drinks...or as you are doing, every couple of hours. My potty phrase, while they are doing their business (whatever it is) has always been "outside....goooooood job"!!!! happy voice, big deal, make her very proud, maybe even a special "potty" treat...aren't your pockets full of treats all the time!?!

    do you take the same route to the outside every time? If you do, try to watch & see if she starts heading that direction, that will be a clue.

    yes, she will alert you eventually...but it's going to take time, mostly because you still have to carry her & she hasn't learned to let you know yet.

    another thing you can do is when she does get bigger, put a sleigh bell or there is a "door bell" for dogs that you can install & teach her how to "signal" you that way...but that will take some time.

    It's a long road, but she will get it...even tho you might sometimes think she won't!

  5. #5
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) Christi's Avatar

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    Isn't she just about 10 or 11 weeks? That's like a 6 month old baby. Most important part for me was consistency every 2 hours around the clock we went out. Now I don't have obstacles like you have so it was easier to get him out the door to the yard. Now one thing I did, like Nancy says, always have treats in your pocket. Just FYI, I always had the Blue duck treats. When he went potty I would dance around, sing a happy song I made up, give him 2 or 3 treats, and love all over him telling him what a wonderful puppy he was, It is silly, but it worked. He alerted me eventually but it took a while, I had timer that I set for every 2 hours and he learned after a week or so that noise meant it was time to go outside. When he heard the timer he ran to the back door, maybe something like that would help. And there is nothing like a super delicious treat and excessive silliness to make a pup want to potty outside.

  6. #6
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) Antonia's Avatar

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    Yes, she will start alerting you eventually but like both Nancy and Christi outlined, right now you have to be responsible for taking her out regularly. If Charlotte is not crated, I'd definitely go with something even more regular than every couple of hours and do more like what Nancy listed, when she wakes up, eats, drinks, etc. These are common times for them to eliminate and taking her out at these times should help cut down on accidents. When I'm training my pups, we walk around outside and as they start to go, I use the "code" word, in our case, "hurry up". As the pup begins to associate the word with the act, you can then say the word and they will go. It will take some time because Charlotte is so young but she will catch on pretty quickly if you are consistent. Like Christi, we have big celebrations for puppies that potty outside, happy voices, special treats, etc. We are in and out of the house a lot so it is rare for my pup to need to go out to potty before we'd be going anyway. Once she went and stood at the door that has a baby gate in front of it when she had a stomach upset and needed to go. When we are headed out the house, we move quickly so there is no time for an accident before we make it to the great outdoors and I issue the magic word.

  7. #7
    Old Dawg (Senior Member) Jewel's Avatar

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    I have nothing more to contribute by way of suggestions but I thought I share how it was with us. Every puppy is different so they develop at different rates. My boy had to be taken on every 45 minutes well into his 4th month (that's about 16-18 weeks old) or we were risking an accident. He never gave a signal, like sniffing around or walk in circles. He'd be walking around and then suddenly stop & pee. But by the time he turned 6 months, he was rock solid trustworthy to hold it until he's let out. My female did have a signal, except it was so subtle that unless one was watching her like a hawk, one easily missed her signal. She would literally walk by us, at a perfectly normal walk, no hurried/dancing gait, and she'd give a sideways glance at us when she walked by. That was it. If we didn't catch that glance and she walked to the back door and no one was there to open it IMMEDIATELY, she would go and do it in the corner of the back room.

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