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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-02-2013, 11:49 PM Thread Starter
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Smile Housetraining a new puppy

Hi, I'm brand new to the forum and will be getting my Havanese on July 1. We are extremely excited because this will be our new and only pet. This is so new to me and needed some advice on housetraining. Cocoa will be 10 weeks old when we get her. I recently bought a ex pen and crate. I wanted to crate train her and take her outside very frequently, but I'm hearing that some use a litter box in the ex pen too. Which is easier? It's very important that we bond with her, so I'll only crate her when she can not be watched. I asked the breeder to start taking her out so she'll be use to pottying outside. Hopefully she will. Just trying to find a method to stick with. We do not have a fenced in yard, but will have a fenced in area for her to potty. Any advice is much appreciated.

Faith, Nat,& Cocoa
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-03-2013, 06:17 AM
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It really depends on whether you want your Hav to use an indoor option sometimes such as if you need to be away from home longer than anticipated or have an outing that is longer than your pup can hold it, which for a while is about an hour longer than their age in months. If you don't use an indoor option you will need a good pet sitter to call if you get delayed or you may have a mess to deal with when you get home. Leo's breeder started the puppies going outside so that when we brought him home at 10.5 weeks he wanted to keep his expen clean and would tell us when he needed to go out. We decided not to train him to an indoor option because we have other dogs and didn't want to give them the idea that going in the house was ok. That said, we take Leo with us most of the time. We have good outdoor eating options in town and many of the places we go don't mind him coming along. He has been ok left at home for 3 hours so far, we haven't tried longer. You will feel like your life has been taken over by your puppy's bladder and bowels, however, the attention and effort spent now will pay off in a solidly housetrained dog down the road. You won't be there until somewhere around a year or so.

You will want to determine your house rules and the methods you want to use before bringing your puppy home. Then everyone in the household MUST be consistent with those rules. This will help your puppy learn what you expect. Puppies are great fun and sooo cute AND so much work for a year or so. Then they are mostly through their puppy and adolescent stages and are beginning to be that wonderful dog you hope for. It will take until around 2 years or so before they settle in to that role really well. Have fun along the way. Puppyhood really goes by quickly and is SO worth the journey!


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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-03-2013, 07:40 AM
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There are other indoor potty options besides the litter box too... And it's usually easiest to stick with whatever method the breeder started them with. In my case, Kodi was very well trained to use the litter box by the time I brought him home at 11 weeks. But pee pads can work well too, especially if they are in a frame like the Ugodog.

I'm on my IPad now, but when I get on my computer later, I'll post a photo of the set up we used.

If you do a search on the forum, you'll find about a zillion threads on otty training. While there are a variety of methods, they boil down to this... CAREFUL, EYES ON, supervision, and confinement when you can't givr this level of supervision. Over and over, you will read that people have trouble when they give their puppy too much freedom too soon, or don't REALLY watch them carefully enough when they are not confined. You'll hear people say the puppy "sneaked off" to eliminate. This can't happen if you are REALLY watching the puppy! .

Remember that potty training is all about establishing good habits. You will most likely have an accident here and there, mostly because it takes time to learn to read your puppy's signals. (and every puppy is slightly different!!!) but you want to minimize accidents as much as possible, and maximize successes. Accidents should be the exception, not an every day occurrence.


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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-03-2013, 08:10 AM
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We've had our Gibbs for about a week now and are in the early stages of housebreaking. We read Cesar Milan's "Raising the Perfect Dog" which I highly recommend. Cesar echoes Krandell's point above giving your puppy too much freedom too soon. I chuckle because my wife and I made the concious choice to give him more freedom than Cesar recommends. We decided we were willing to live with the occasion accident on the carpet when deciding to give him access to our family room, in addition to his sleeping den and the kitchen. It is easy to understand why the additional freedom makes it more difficult to house break your puppy.

When Gibbs is confined to his den (a short hallway blocked by baby gates at each end), he has never missed the puppy pad. His den contains some bedding, an open sleeping crate, a few toys and a pee pad as far away from his sleeping crate as possible. He has never soiled in his crate or bedding.

He eats in the kitchen and plays and naps in the family room when we are able to properly supervise him, otherwise he put him in his den. We have a pee pad in the kitchen and a pee pad in the family room. We will shortly be removing the pee pad from the family room because he hasn't used it or had an accident on the carpet for a few days. He try to watch him diligently and take him outside after every nap, after he eats, every three hours and before putting him in his den for the night.

We've attached a bell to our front door and ring it by touching his nose to it when we take him out. When he pees or poos, we praise him with "You're such a good boy" and give him a treat. Below is a list of what we have found in the first week:

1. He has started to ring the bell by himself, but has not gotten to the point where he rings 100% of the time.

2. In the first half of the week: If we missed a cue (meander sniffing) he would pee. Sometimes on the carpet, but Dana and I accept that's our responsibility since we willing gave him access to the family room.

3. During the later half of the week:
a. He has started to ring the bell when he wants to go outside - sometimes to pee or poo, but sometimes just to play.
b. He doesn't always ring the bell and is getting better at going on the pee pads if Dana and I miss his cue.
c. His mishaps are becoming less frequent.

4. He wants a treat everytime he hears us say "Good Boy".

5. He will either fake peeing or pee mulitple times within minutes to maximize his treats. I can usually tell by his meander sniffing if he's faking or "peeing/holding/peeing". I let him get away with it twice, but not three times.

John





Last edited by Gibbs Mom and Dad; 06-03-2013 at 08:20 AM.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-03-2013, 09:00 AM
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It's great to hear that things are going well with Gibbs. Be aware of a couple of things, however. Letting them have mistakes on carpeting can be a real problem. It is almost impossible to remove enough of the smell, all the way down through the padding, that THEY can't smell it. And this becomes, to them, an "OK" spot to eliminate.

Second, even though he's doing well so far, do NOT get over-confident too soon. He is still a very young puppy. It will take AT LEAST a couple of months of close supervision/confinement before you can start to trust him in slightly bigger areas. Even then, be VERY quick to tighten things up again at the first sign of accidents.

Kodi had very few accidents after his first few weeks, but it was because of a combination of confinement, supervision, learning his signals and learning his schedule. He was over a year before we gave him full access to the house. We may have been being oer-cautious, but it was important to us to put in the time to have a COMPLETELY reliable dog. He was close to 2 years before he was RELIABLY telling US when he needed to go out. Until then, he didn't have accidents, but it was because WE were aware of his schedule and got him outside at the appropriate times. This isn't an uncommon time schedule for these dogs.


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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-03-2013, 12:43 PM Thread Starter
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Good advice...thank you

Faith, Nat,& Cocoa
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-06-2013, 01:42 PM
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Our puppy was also litter box trained and we keep one in her ex-pen with her. She has never had an accident in her ex-pen, but we learned pretty quickly that giving her too much freedom, even with the litter box, can cause accidents. I'm careful now when we bring her out to play, to keep the sessions to about 15 minutes and then make sure she goes back in the expen with her litter box. I've also started taking her outside when she wakes up. My goal is to ultimately train her to outside.

Question for all you experts - will it confuse her if I do both? If I want her going outside would it be best to remove the litter boxes all together and just start taking her out every 15-30 minutes and add time as she keeps not having accidents?

Thanks!
Beth
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-06-2013, 05:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thebean28 View Post
Our puppy was also litter box trained and we keep one in her ex-pen with her. She has never had an accident in her ex-pen, but we learned pretty quickly that giving her too much freedom, even with the litter box, can cause accidents. I'm careful now when we bring her out to play, to keep the sessions to about 15 minutes and then make sure she goes back in the expen with her litter box. I've also started taking her outside when she wakes up. My goal is to ultimately train her to outside.

Question for all you experts - will it confuse her if I do both? If I want her going outside would it be best to remove the litter boxes all together and just start taking her out every 15-30 minutes and add time as she keeps not having accidents?

Thanks!
Beth
Kodi learned to go outdoors with no urging on our part at all. In fact, we needed to work to maintain his interest in the litter box, since we wanted to have that option for bad weather, and time when we had to leave him for longer than he might be able to hold it.


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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-07-2013, 10:59 AM
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Please let me know if the following is routine for an 11 week old in his second week of housebreaking or if we need to be doing something different.

Gibbs no longer rings the bell to go outside. He seems to prefer peeing on the paper. We regularly take him outside and praise and reward him when he pees and poos outside. However, sometimes we have him outside for around 1/2 an hour and when he comes inside, he runs right over to the paper and pees.

We think we're doing a good job of giving him space outside - i.e. not rushing him or pleading with him to pee. We let him walk around, sniff and take his time.

Is this the normal trials or should we do something different? We don't want to discourage his use of the paper, but obviously want him to go outside.

John




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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-07-2013, 11:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gibbs Mom and Dad View Post
Please let me know if the following is routine for an 11 week old in his second week of housebreaking or if we need to be doing something different.

Gibbs no longer rings the bell to go outside. He seems to prefer peeing on the paper. We regularly take him outside and praise and reward him when he pees and poos outside. However, sometimes we have him outside for around 1/2 an hour and when he comes inside, he runs right over to the paper and pees.

We think we're doing a good job of giving him space outside - i.e. not rushing him or pleading with him to pee. We let him walk around, sniff and take his time.

Is this the normal trials or should we do something different? We don't want to discourage his use of the paper, but obviously want him to go outside.
I would be VERY surprised if he doesn't learn to go outside all on his own as he gets a little older. If you want to kick-start the process, take one of his pee pads outside and put it on the grass to give him the idea. Then next you can WIPE his pee pad on the grass to put some pee smell on the grass without actually leaving the pad there. But I think if you do NOTHING, he will eventually go outside. Then just have a party, and tell him what a great, big boy he is!!!


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