When it comes to burglary, accidents occur. These 3 tips will help make the burglary a stress-free and chaotic (some kind of) training experience.
1. Consistency and timing are key
Like any training experience, breaking into your dog requires consistency and good timing. Reprimanding your dog for things they have done before will confuse your dog and will not teach them anything. You can only modify the behavior you witnessed. When training your dog indoors, pay close attention to them. This may require boxing them when you are not at home, dropping the door of a room you can’t see, or tying a leash to the dog and attaching it to the leash so that you can maintain observation when you move around the house.
You must teach your dog/puppy where you want him/her to “go” before you can teach them not to go. If he/she does not first know where the correct position is, it is a waste of time to blame your puppy for entering the wrong position. Once you and your dog have successfully established a restroom, you can begin to correct mistakes.
Choose a location that is not in the traffic path (in the yard or on a pee pad). After arriving at the scene, repeat the phrase “go to the potty”. By repeating the same phrases over and over again as your dog eases its voice, you are actually teaching your dog to be “potty” when hearing them.
When an accident occurs, (they will!) the timing of condemnation is as important as the timing of praise. If you can catch it as soon as they start walking, you can praise them for completing their business outdoors or on a changing mat.
2. Practice the “no” voice
To be effective when training dogs, you need to make a strong “no” sound when correcting negative behaviors. Although our dogs may not speak English, they do understand and respond to tone. Low, deep, and strong “No” are much more effective than high-pitched or high-volume shouts. When you catch a dog doing something, you will not agree. Pee or defecate in the house and use a “no” voice to let them know that the behavior is bad.
When you reprimand your dog, be prepared to back it up with active reinforcement. When you see a dog peeing or defecate in the house, you immediately reprimand them with a “no” voice, pick up your dog (if the dog is too large, you can’t wear a leash), and quickly bring them to their Location (as described above). Once your dog has reached their position, use positive reinforcement measures to let them know that this is a safe place to relax.
The entire sequence sounds like this:
“No!” Fido->”Let the potty replace Fido” -> “Go to the potty” -> “Okay’ Go to the potty Fido!”
3. Be patient
Breaking into your puppies is not a game of how long they can hold their bladder before catching them. Take your dog to the bathroom often and reward them for good behavior. This is a quick guide to when and how often your dog or puppy needs to use the bathroom:
Sleep-Your puppy must urinate several times a day. Whenever they wake up from a long sleep or a short nap, the bathroom is essential.
Activity-the more active your dog/puppy, the more frequently they will pee/poo
Food-Take a shower immediately after each meal. Free eating makes it difficult to track meal times, so designated meal times are the best. For more information on feeding your dog, please check out our article, Two things you need to do every day when feeding your dog, and a guide to choosing the right food for your dog.
No matter how old or young you are at adopting a dog, you may need to re-educate the door-to-door theft by establishing a new restroom location and restroom schedule. For a dog you think has been broken, this new process will take a long time. However, if your dog has not received or received proper indoor training before, be patient and persevering…you already understand!