Do you still use a newspaper to housetrain your puppy or dog?

chrysolite By chrysolite, 20th Feb 2010 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Guides>Pets>Dogs

A new puppy or a new dog! What joy! Isn't it so cute! Look what he's doing now! And with the first little "accident", the newspaper comes out. Bad doggy! Read on for a more intelligent and faster way to house-train your dog!

A bit of dog psychology first

Dogs seek attention. Full-stop. They don't care really if it's attention in form of love, cuddles, commands, hitting, shouting - at least they got attention! And what dogs don't like at all is being ignored. So how can we use that to our advantage? Exactly, totally ignore the dog when he does a wee or a poo where you don't want him/her to do it and fuss and cuddle him when he does it where he should. That is difficult, because nobody wants to clean up dog poo all day long! But, combined with the next step, it WILL work perfectly.

How old is the puppy or dog to be house-trained?

If, for example, your dog mother has her puppies in your house, she will lick them clean until they can walk, all you have to do is change the bedding every so often. As soon as the little puppies can walk, mum will take them to the litter tray or to the garden or whereever she's allowed to have a wee or a poo. No more action on our part necessary, little accidents can be ignored, because that's what they are: Little accidents. But fuss even the little doggies if you "catch them doing something right"!

Let's assume, a little 6 week old puppy comes to your home. It will be frightened and alone. No mum, no brothers and sisters, no customary smells. You show it where food and water is and that it will remember almost instantly. It is a good idea to feed such a young puppy and when it's finished eating and drinking, take it out immediately or sit it in a litter tray. Remove any "accidents" and ignore them, don't scream and shout at the doggy. It won't understand. It HAS to do a wee and a poo, so unless you want a dog with indigestion, carry on with the next step.

Use normal vinegar or apple cidre vinegar to clean up any mess

Put gloves on if you like, prepare a spray bottle with water and vinegar or even use neat vinegar. Next, wipe clean using old cloth or towels and either place the poo into a litter tray or somewhere outdoors where you WANT the doggy to do its "business". Then spray the vinegar over the place of "accident" and wipe dry. No dog likes going back to a place that smells of vinegar! They all want to go where it smells "bad" = "good" to them. And whenever you "catch him doing right" fuss the doggy. It will usually not take longer than a few days to housetrain your puppy this way.

You take in an older dog, maybe from a doghome

You know very little about the dog's past experiences, but you can assume that he "learnt" a few habits that may or may not be acceptable to you. The above vinegar routine will work, but it might just take longer, depending on how "ingrained" his behaviour was and especially, if he was beaten.

Let me illustrate this with a personal example:

We already had 4 (abandoned) dogs, but a lady "talked me into" taking on a three month old Spanish "Padenco". She promised to pay for his chip and food and castration, but it was, as always here in Spain, just promises. Yes, I know, why did we take him in? But there he was, was named Puggi and as it was winter, he nosed his way under my blanket. How sweet! It took me exactly 24 hours to find out why the other lady didn't want to take him on. Puggi had "learnt" a routine. "Secretly" in the night he would wee and poo under the table. And as I found out later, in the morning he would get hit for it and sent out in the street. He had this pattern ingrained: poo under the table, get hit and then go out and have fun.

So I "ignored the accident", cleaned under the table with vinegar and took him out after every meal. He was a very frightened puppy, but got on with our other dogs just fine. He saw what they were doing and learnt fast. I never had a dog learning so fast! But the "under the table routine" was totally ingrained in him. So patiently, day after day, I cleaned under the table with vinegar and after a few weeks (yes!) he finally had a poo outside and I fussed and fussed over him. It still took a few more weeks to finally make him "forget" his "old routine", in fact, one day I thought, why not simply "remove the table". I did and he crawled under a chair to have a poo. More patience, more fussing when going walkies and finally, after almost 7 weeks (and it can take longer!) Puggi was house-trained.

Today he is my best watch-dog, the cuddliest big dog ever, a real softy and a very good and protective character.

Thanks for calling in!


Animals, Cats, Dogs, House Train, Ignore, Litter Tray, Make A Fuss, Newspaper, Vinegar, Walkies

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author avatar Silk
20th Feb 2010 (#)

Excellent article, well done! Even though I am not a dog owner I can vividly imagine that this method works!

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author avatar peachpurple
9th Sep 2015 (#)

When i was ypung, i had to bring my dog on leash for walks so that it doesn't poop inside the compound. NO beating

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author avatar chrysolite
1st Dec 2015 (#)

Well done, peachpurple! There is always another way! Dogs learn very fast and you seem to love your dog very much! Thanks for commenting!

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