If you're just about to bring a puppy home and you've got everything ready so they are as comfortable and happy as possible the moment they walk through your front door, there are certain things you must not overlook which includes house-training.
House-training a new pup takes a little time and patience with some little guys being quicker to get the message than others. However, one of the most important aspects of training your new canine friend not to do their business in the house, is to recognise when they actually need “to go”. It takes a bit of practice and quite a bit of time carefully watching what pup gets up to just before they pee or have a poop. Some little dogs are quite good at letting you know, whereas others spend more time trying to find the ideal place to “go” which means you have to follow them around.
Recognising the signs that a puppy wants to go to the toilet and the fact they can't hold it in any longer will help prevent accidents from constantly happening around the home. Puppies tend to pee a lot more than more mature dogs, so catching them before they do will speed their training up no end. The signs to watch out for include the following:
Puppies and dogs tend to sniff floor and follow their noses around until they find a spot they like. If your pup sniffs away at the floor and won't be distracted, it's a good sign they need to go out and do their business. The problem starts when they find a place they like which is where they had a pee before and it turns into their favourite spot. As soon as you let pup outside to do their business and they do – you have to give them loads of praise which they will perceive as a great reward. The next time they need to pee, there's more chance they will come to you first before sniffing at the ground and having an accident inside.
Another sure sign your pup needs to go outside is when they start going around and around in circles while at the same time sniffing the ground. Dogs and puppies do this just before they have a poop so it's important to scoop pup up as quickly and as gently as you can and pop them outside to do their business. When they find the right spot in the garden and do their business most pups get very excited about things once they've finished which is the best time to give them lots of praise and a healthy little treat as a reward – it will reinforce the fact they have been “good” dogs!
Puppies learn things very quickly and this includes the good and the bad which means you have to catch things early to prevent any unwanted behaviours from developing. Most pups soon realise they'll be rewarded if they ask to be let out to do their business and quickly learn to ask to go outside. They will typically scratch or paw at a door and you have to let them out straight away. Even if a puppy is standing by an outside door it could be a sign they need to go outside. Other signs include barking or whining while standing by the door.
However, if you are at all worried your puppy seems to be peeing a little too often or if you notice they are straining to go to the toilet, it's important to get them checked out by the vet. As previously mentioned, puppies do pee a lot, but it could be they have developed an infection in their urinary tract or they might have a mild kidney problem. The sooner they are checked the better so they are made to feel more comfortable.
Very often a sudden change in diet can be the reason why a puppy or dog starts peeing a lot or it could be because they are drinking more water than usual. If your house is very warm the chances are puppy is feeling the heat and therefore more thirsty. It will take them a little time to get used to the new environment and the warmth of their new home, but if you are worried talk to the vet sooner rather than later. You might need to collect a urine sample so the vet can carry out a urinalysis which would show up any problems.
Sharing a home with a new puppy is great fun, but it's also a massive responsibility. Not only do you have to take good care of your new companion in a safe environment, but you also need to gently teach them all the “rules” on how to behave nicely so they turn out to be well balanced, happy characters. Recognising the signs that your pup needs to go outside to do their business and letting them out as soon as you can, will speed up the house-training process and it prevents all those “accidents” happening around your home.