Teach Your Dog To Potty Outside, Not in The House

Accidents Are No Fun, Learn How To Potty Train Your Dog 

From puppy age onwards, dogs display a natural tendency to select and repeatedly use particular locations for elimination. Essentially, all owners have to do is steer this location’s development to preference to ensure that the puppy relieves only at the desired selected location for a few weeks.


Effective housebreaking involves arranging conditions so that the animal only eliminates outside in places acceptable to the owner. Suppose you achieve the dog’s preference for relieving at these sites and its related tendency to inhibit elimination at others. In that case, it develops without training the dog to do anything in the ordinary sense of the term.


The following rules should be applied with young dogs:

  1. Scheduling

Take the dog outside to the place the owner wishes it to eliminate at times when it’s likely that it will soon need to relieve itself. 

These times can include:

  • Shortly after eating/drinking
  • As soon as the owner returns after being away from home for some time
  • If the owner notices that the dog is engaging in pre-eliminating behaviors such as circling, sniffing, becoming restless, etc., then take outside.  
  • After a certain period has passed since it last went potty. The timing of this varies from dog to dog, and owners must therefore adjust their tactics to their dog’s particular rhythm
  • Right before going to bed
  1. Supervision

Closely supervise the dog when the owner is home, mainly when considerable time has passed since the last elimination or if the dog goes to the room or area of a previous accident.

  1. Punishment

Mild punishment like startling the dog with a hand clap or other loud noise is appropriate, but only if caught in the act of eliminating or squatting. This aversion will interrupt the elimination and take the dog immediately outside to potty at the desired place. Be aware that harsh punishment, in this case, will cause your dog to hide from you while eliminating, and this is not the goal of housebreaking. If you discover that your dog has already eliminated anywhere in the house – there’s nothing you can or should do to the dog. DO NOT punish the dog if you don’t catch it in the act. The dog would not understand why it’s being punished, even when you show it the spot. The dog is not at fault. You are for giving them too much freedom too soon.

  1. Crating

When left in the house alone, keep the dog in a crate, which will inhibit elimination until the owner returns. It can also be kept in a small room where it has never had an accident before or a baby gate to confine it to a small area. Areas preferred by puppies for elimination are away from their usual sleeping place. Dogs don’t like to soil their den.

  1. Paper Training

When leaving a puppy for a longer time than the puppy can hold its potty, use potty pads where the dog is likely to relieve. Potty pads prevent the formation of other surface preferences (on carpets or bedding). If necessary, you can manipulate the size and location of the areas covered by potty pads to help in the housebreaking process if a strong preference for eliminating on them develops.

  1. Cleaning

In case of an accident, we recommend cleaning the spot as soon as you discover it, with “Natures miracle” found in most pet stores. DO NOT clean with general cleaner products that contain Ammonia. Ammonia is located in the urine, so you are not removing the scent away but replacing it.

  1. Successful Potty

Eliminating in the right place – Praise quietly as the puppy goes to the desired place and give food reward immediately after it eliminates. Praise and reward will speed up the process of house training.


The Adult Dog

Use the same basic housebreaking techniques to house train adult dogs, which have never been well housebroken or have lost their inhibition against eliminating inside. Depending on the specifics of the case, one or more of the following methods may also be helpful:

  • Reward the dog for eliminating outside. As soon as it starts eliminating, quietly praise it and may give food reward after it relieves.
  • Put the dog on a feeding and water schedule that fits your routine to encourage correct let-out times. 
  • Use a crate or baby gates to confine the dog to an area while alone. The dog should be content to be in the crate. You can put its bed inside and have interactive toys offered. 


If you keep missing when your dog is eliminating in the house, you may keep the dog on a short leash tied to your belt. When it is not confined, you can pay attention to the signs we mentioned above. Never give “the run of the house” to a puppy or new adult dog without close supervision.  


Once you see that the dog understands and keeps the place clean, start gradually to give more freedom.


When do you consult a dog behaviorist?


Marking is a behavior problem almost exclusively involving male dogs. If your dog keeps urinating inside the house, never really empty itself, but leaves few drops on specific places (leg of the table, chair, etc.), then a different approach is necessary. I advise using a belly band.

Submissive urination

Submissive urination is a behavior related to a social status/ranking. It is seen mainly with puppies and younger dogs. It occurs when the dog feels confronted by someone that it perceives to be socially dominant or threatening. Submissive urination may also occur when the dog is over-excited. NEVER use punishment to correct this problem. Most pups will mature out of this behavior. Try to stay neutral upon greeting your puppy to reduce the chance for them to get overstimulated. You can meet visitors out front to help the pup as they are learning to control their impulses.