Raising a healthy happy pet starts with you; prepare your heart and mind before start potty training your dog. It’s going to take patience and persistence, but the reward is well worth it! 

Let’s start with potty training tips that apply to both puppies and adult dogs:

Visit the vet
First things first, take your dog to the veterinarian to make sure there are no medical issues behind his potty problems. It’s always a good idea to establish a relationship with your vet, so you can share concerns and get advice from an expert.

Be consistent
Establishing a steady routine is essential. Stick to a set time to feed, walk and take bathroom breaks. Also be consistent with where your dog does its business. This will help him associate the location with an appropriate place to potty.

Punctual punishment
If you catch your dog going to the bathroom in the house (or anywhere he shouldn’t), use a firm but calm voice to say no, and take him outside immediately. Don’t wait until after the fact to scold him, otherwise he won’t understand what he’s being punished for.

Keep it clean
Mistakes happen. When they do, clean it up thoroughly. Dogs tend to go potty where they’ve gone before. So, make sure to eliminate the scent, so your buddy doesn’t get distracted by past mistakes.

Consider a crate
Dogs instinctively don’t soil where they sleep. This makes crates a helpful tool for potty training. Use treats, chew toys and blankets to make him comfortable in his new digs. Keep an eye on your buddy, so he’s not crated longer than he can hold his eliminations. After letting him out, always take him straight outside (or other designated potty area).

Remember to reward
Positive reinforcement never gets old, even if your dog does. When your dog makes a mess, resist the urge to yell or scream. Instead, remain composed. It will help your dog stay calm and more receptive to training.

Puppy pro tips

-Use play as a reward (and withhold play as punishment).  

-Take a bathroom break 30 min after every meal.

-Make sure the crate isn’t too big for your puppy.

-Consider appropriate potty areas before bringing your puppy home.

Adult dog advice

-Visit the vet, especially with older dogs.  

-Be sensitive to past abuse or neglect.

-Observe his bathroom-related behavior.  

-Learn his habits to preempt accidents.

It takes consistency to learn healthy habits. But it has to come from the heart. Love and patience are essential to success. When you’re well-informed and stick to a plan, potty training is possible at any age.