Now, that you have your adorable new puppy home are you beginning to
ask:

"WHO'S IDEA WAS IT TO GET A NEW PUPPY ANYWAY?"

Don't despair - housebreaking does not last forever! Until your puppy is
about 3 1/2 to 4 months of age - they really do not have alot of bladder
control. From the seventh week to the 12th week you are really just catching
the puppy before he goes on your floor - rather than making wonderful
training strides. Some puppies are intelligent enough to catch on right away,
but this is the exception that proves the rule. If you were to remove the diaper
from your 1 1/2 year old child in order to potty train him, you would have the
same scenario. They can look at you, respond to you, and maybe even have
a small understanding of what you are asking of them - but they truly do not
have the capability to function that way.

Your main goal is to never allow the puppy out of your sight long enough for
him to have an accident that you do not witness. He is going to have
accidents - this is just a simple fact! But, you need to
be there when he does,
so you can gently scold him WHILE HE IS MAKING THE MESS! This ensures
that he will understand what he did wrong. If you find an accident after the
fact, then scold him - he may or may not have any idea what you are talking
about. CONSISTENCY is the number one word when training a young pup!

The one and only method of housebreaking that we recommend is by the
use of a dog crate. The crate must be thought of as a playpen for a child.
Your pup should be in the crate any time your attention is not directly on him.
The crate should never be used as a punishment. In order to choose the
proper size crate you sould seek the advice of a professional or use the
purchse guides offered by the crates manufacturers. A crate should only be
large enough for the dog to comfortably lie down and turn around in.
Anything larger than this will defeat the purpose as your puppy may learn to
have an accident in one end and sleep in the other. The correct size crate, or
partitioning off one end, is vital to the successful use of a crate.

You must correspond feeding and watering times around crate times. Your
pup should be fed and watered at least one full hour prior to being placed in
the crate. This is expecially true if you are leaving for any period of time. Food
and water should not be left in the crate with a young puppy as he will
certainly need to eliminate before you return.

You should not put anything in the bottom of the crate for the first few nights.
Items like blankets, towels or rugs will absorb any accident your puppy has.
If he does not have the unpleasant experience of sleeping in his mess he
may continue to do it over and over. After a week of keeping the crate dry you
should be able to make it more comfortable for him by adding some type of
bedding.

You should also purchase a stain and odor remover that has been
specifically designed for dog odors and stains. Other products simply mask
the smell to our human senses, but your puppy will still be able to smell
where he has previously gone. This will be an open invitation to go there
again.

All puppies need to go outdoors after a meal, directly after a nap, and regular
intervals in between. We find it very helpful to take the pup out, let it go-then
bring it back out again about 10 minutes later. Quite often a young pup will
not fully empty their bladder as they are so excited to see you.
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