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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
New pup arriving soon. A few litter box questions…

1) How much litter to use? I bought a litter box with sides for the expen. I have read on here about people moving the litter box where the pup is playing, but I’m not sure how people are doing that since the litterboxes are so heavy once the litter is added. How thick of a litter layer is necessary in a box with sides (no grate)?

2) I can’t seem to add pics for some reason, but I might also get a litterbox without sides for the living room and found this huge one. (40x28) Maybe it’s too big, I don’t know. Do you think there’s enough room for litter under the grate? https://www.amazon.com/AQUST-Toilet...mzn1.fos.08f69ac3-fd3d-4b88-bca2-8997e41410bb

3) Training help- Pup has no experience with litter from breeder, so I know it might not work- but any tips on how to get pup to use it? I set up the small expen like Karen suggested with just a step between bed and litter tray. I was thinking of placing a pee pad on top of the litter at first with a few pieces of litter on the pad and then slowly adding more until I can remove the pad?
 

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New pup arriving soon. A few litter box questions…

1) How much litter to use? I bought a litter box with sides for the expen. I have read on here about people moving the litter box where the pup is playing, but I’m not sure how people are doing that since the litterboxes are so heavy once the litter is added. How thick of a litter layer is necessary in a box with sides (no grate)?
In an open litter box, People usually use an inch and a half or more. In one with a grate, you are limited to what will fit. I know some people move them around... For me, having more of them in different places was FAR preferable!

2) I can’t seem to add pics for some reason, but I might also get a litterbox without sides for the living room and found this huge one. (40x28) Maybe it’s too big, I don’t know. Do you think there’s enough room for litter under the grate? https://www.amazon.com/AQUST-Toilet-Protect-Training-AMT-1100/dp/B09R4JYFNV/ref=mp_s_a_1_7?crid=FLH4TR0ILUVL&keywords=pet+time+grand+dog+toilet&qid=1654614711&sprefix=oet+time+,aps,151&sr=8-7&ufe=app_do:amzn1.fos.08f69ac3-fd3d-4b88-bca2-8997e41410bb
You can't know for sure until you have it in hand. The ones I use are also about 2" tall, maybe a bit less. So this SEEMS to be adequate. I'd be interested to know how you like it. If you like it, I might buy one for future litters!

3) Training help- Pup has no experience with litter from breeder, so I know it might not work- but any tips on how to get pup to use it? I set up the small expen like Karen suggested with just a step between bed and litter tray. I was thinking of placing a pee pad on top of the litter at first with a few pieces of litter on the pad and then slowly adding more until I can remove the pad?
Easy peasy switching little puppies from pads to pellets. Don't bother with pellets underneath the pad. Start with just a pad in the litter box. Use pads with attractant in them (more do than don't) Once the puppy is reliably going on the pad in the litter box, spread a few pellets on the pad so they start to get used to the smell of the pellets. Then a few more. Then a thin layer on top of the pad. By the time the puppy is using that, you can just remove the pad entirely. Most puppies switch over pretty seamlessly in a few days.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Karen, I just want to say thank you. Your presence on this board and generosity with your knowledge is honestly SO appreciated. You are a godsend! And I will def post my experience if I buy that larger tray!
 

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Karen, I just want to say thank you. Your presence on this board and generosity with your knowledge is honestly SO appreciated. You are a godsend! And I will def post my experience if I buy that larger tray!
Awww, thanks!
 

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Just when it needs it. Where it gets wet, you can just scoop that out, and add more fresh. For a single puppy, you probably can go a couple of weeks before the whole thing needs to be changed. When you're getting the sawdust out, some will get mixed with the unused pellets. At some point, there will be enough sawdust through a lot of it, and you decide to dump it.

There is no fixed schedule. You'll be able to tell.
 

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I only use a thin layer of pellets and it does work. The reason I started using less is because I noticed that if they were too thick, the top layer of pellets wouldn’t break apart when he peed, the pee seems to sink to the bottom. If I moved the pellets around I could see the sawdust beneath, but it was harder to see if he peed. If the pellets are on the thinner side, it’s easy to see the little piles of sawdust the pee creates and to scoop them out of the litter box. I usually filled it so the bottom of the box was covered, maybe 2 pellets deep, I think it must only be 1/2-3/4” thick. Maybe the size of my pellets is different or I’m misjudging? There may be advantages to filling them a little deeper that I didn’t experience because Sundance only used it the first year as a puppy. I didn’t keep up on it well enough but i have one set up in my garage and if it’s storming I can place him on it and tell him to go potty and he will go, which is nice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I only use a thin layer of pellets and it does work. The reason I started using less is because I noticed that if they were too thick, the top layer of pellets wouldn’t break apart when he peed, the pee seems to sink to the bottom. If I moved the pellets around I could see the sawdust beneath, but it was harder to see if he peed. If the pellets are on the thinner side, it’s easy to see the little piles of sawdust the pee creates and to scoop them out of the litter box. I usually filled it so the bottom of the box was covered, maybe 2 pellets deep, I think it must only be 1/2-3/4” thick. Maybe the size of my pellets is different or I’m misjudging? There may be advantages to filling them a little deeper that I didn’t experience because Sundance only used it the first year as a puppy. I didn’t keep up on it well enough but i have one set up in my garage and if it’s storming I can place him on it and tell him to go potty and he will go, which is nice.
Great to know thanks! This is exactly what we are hoping for… We’d like our pup to mainly use the outdoor potty as an adult but want to keep the option of the litter just in case (like during CA wildfires when the air is terrible outside). I still can’t quite figure out if I should be training the pup solely to use the litter for now and then introduce outside pottying at a later date or if I should be combining the two now (seems like it would confuse him).
 

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Great to know thanks! This is exactly what we are hoping for… We’d like our pup to mainly use the outdoor potty as an adult but want to keep the option of the litter just in case (like during CA wildfires when the air is terrible outside). I still can’t quite figure out if I should be training the pup solely to use the litter for now and then introduce outside pottying at a later date or if I should be combining the two now (seems like it would confuse him).
Just a word of warning... You need to DILIGENTLY encourage the use of the litter box after they have discovered the "joys of the outdoor potty", or you will lose it. And once lost, you will never get it back. I don't know of a SINGLE adult dog who has been successfully retrained to use a litter box once they have firmly refused it.

You won't "confuse" a puppy" by working on both, but you will confuse and frustrate yourself. And it's not necessary. If you think it is, you are already confused. ;) What you are training your puppy to do is to NOT potty in the places you DON'T want him to go. Which is anyplace but the "approved"places... (litter boxes, with I train with TREMENDOUS diligence) and outdoors. (which I let happen naturally, but praise when it occurs) Just going outside become reward enough in itself, so you don't need to do more than that. The point of potty training is NOT to teach the puppy "where to go". It's to teach the puppy "where NOT to go"!
 

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There are not hard and fast rules for any of this sort of thing. A lot of it you have to figure out what works for you and the dog as you go.
I agree. Thats what I meant by saying you will confuse yourself! Tom said it more succinctly!
 

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Just a word of warning... You need to DILIGENTLY encourage the use of the litter box after they have discovered the "joys of the outdoor potty", or you will lose it. And once lost, you will never get it back. I don't know of a SINGLE adult dog who has been successfully retrained to use a litter box once they have firmly refused it.

You won't "confuse" a puppy" by working on both, but you will confuse and frustrate yourself. And it's not necessary. If you think it is, you are already confused. ;) What you are training your puppy to do is to NOT potty in the places you DON'T want him to go. Which is anyplace but the "approved"places... (litter boxes, with I train with TREMENDOUS diligence) and outdoors. (which I let happen naturally, but praise when it occurs) Just going outside become reward enough in itself, so you don't need to do more than that. The point of potty training is NOT to teach the puppy "where to go". It's to teach the puppy "where NOT to go"!
I can firmly support that you need to be diligent to keep up the litter box— we did both, but Jo preferred going outside from day one, and as soon as she figured out how to hold it and tell us she needed to go out, she totally stopped using the tray. We kept it out for months and then finally put it away when it became clear that it wasn’t going to happen.
 

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New pup arriving soon. A few litter box questions…

1) How much litter to use? I bought a litter box with sides for the expen. I have read on here about people moving the litter box where the pup is playing, but I’m not sure how people are doing that since the litterboxes are so heavy once the litter is added. How thick of a litter layer is necessary in a box with sides (no grate)?

2) I can’t seem to add pics for some reason, but I might also get a litterbox without sides for the living room and found this huge one. (40x28) Maybe it’s too big, I don’t know. Do you think there’s enough room for litter under the grate? https://www.amazon.com/AQUST-Toilet-Protect-Training-AMT-1100/dp/B09R4JYFNV/ref=mp_s_a_1_7?crid=FLH4TR0ILUVL&keywords=pet+time+grand+dog+toilet&qid=1654614711&sprefix=oet+time+,aps,151&sr=8-7&ufe=app_do:amzn1.fos.08f69ac3-fd3d-4b88-bca2-8997e41410bb

3) Training help- Pup has no experience with litter from breeder, so I know it might not work- but any tips on how to get pup to use it? I set up the small expen like Karen suggested with just a step between bed and litter tray. I was thinking of placing a pee pad on top of the litter at first with a few pieces of litter on the pad and then slowly adding more until I can remove the pad?
I would not use litter/litter box for puppy. Most puppies are teething any will chew everything. If they ingest litter can cause serious blockage. I recommend potty training the classic way. As soon as they wake &15 minutes after eating/drinking, pick up & take outside to potty. Reward & praise every successful potty. If you take note of every time pup sleeps, wakes, eats, drinks, pees, poops for 2-3 days then you will have a rough schedule for your pup.
 

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Jasper is 4 1/2 months old now. I wasn't able to get him to use the litter in an open litter box. He would only use it for a bed and chew on it. Also, I wasn't a fan of the litter getting tracked out of the litter box. I found that he preferred fake grass to standing directly on a grate. So I got Smart Paws Large 29.92"x24.4" Pet Training Tray on amazon, put pellets under the grate then fake grass on top. The grass has holes in it. He now both pees and poops on the grass and it drains through to the pellets. This is set up on my condo balcony. I'm using a small pen to limit his freedom and direct him to the correct spot. When I'm home he can come and go through a dog door. I can see hm through the sliding glass door. I'm a little surprised that he hasn't tried using the fake grass to chew on or drag around the house but so far that hasn't happened. He no longer can chew on the pellets, everything is easy to clean up, and I haven't had any problem with anything smelling bad. He will still go potty outside when we take a walk but I will always need him to have this option. I've given him tons of praise and treats. He's very proud of himself. FYI At one point I tried "Go Here Attractant" and he just licked it before peeing elsewhere.

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New pup arriving soon. A few litter box questions…

1) How much litter to use? I bought a litter box with sides for the expen. I have read on here about people moving the litter box where the pup is playing, but I’m not sure how people are doing that since the litterboxes are so heavy once the litter is added. How thick of a litter layer is necessary in a box with sides (no grate)?

2) I can’t seem to add pics for some reason, but I might also get a litterbox without sides for the living room and found this huge one. (40x28) Maybe it’s too big, I don’t know. Do you think there’s enough room for litter under the grate? https://www.amazon.com/AQUST-Toilet-Protect-Training-AMT-1100/dp/B09R4JYFNV/ref=mp_s_a_1_7?crid=FLH4TR0ILUVL&keywords=pet+time+grand+dog+toilet&qid=1654614711&sprefix=oet+time+,aps,151&sr=8-7&ufe=app_do:amzn1.fos.08f69ac3-fd3d-4b88-bca2-8997e41410bb

3) Training help- Pup has no experience with litter from breeder, so I know it might not work- but any tips on how to get pup to use it? I set up the small expen like Karen suggested with just a step between bed and litter tray. I was thinking of placing a pee pad on top of the litter at first with a few pieces of litter on the pad and then slowly adding more until I can remove the pad?
I found using a pad holder with pad in liter box keeps pup clean &contained
 

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I would not use litter/litter box for puppy. Most puppies are teething any will chew everything. If they ingest litter can cause serious blockage. I recommend potty training the classic way. As soon as they wake &15 minutes after eating/drinking, pick up & take outside to potty. Reward & praise every successful potty. If you take note of every time pup sleeps, wakes, eats, drinks, pees, poops for 2-3 days then you will have a rough schedule for your pup.
Many people potty train traditionally, there’s nothing wrong with that. But some Havanese can take 6 months to a year to be fully potty trained and some can’t hold it for more than 4 hours until they are older. Taking a puppy outside every 2-6 hours for potentially up to a year is difficult for a lot of people. Litter boxes training is very effective, and useful for anyone living in a cold climate or in an apartment or for someone older or with health problems that would make such frequent trips a challenge. Or ordinary me, to make my life easier :) It is clean and it doesn’t smell, and a puppy that is properly litter box trained ends up being very reliable and will still go potty outside. Most litter boxes are similar to potty trays that hold pads and are protected by a grate that clicks into place, but open litter boxes can also be covered with a variety of safe mesh materials that can protect a curious puppy. Many Havanese breeders indoor train their puppies with litter boxes.

Traditional outdoor training is the way to go for some people, and for many breeds, especially large breeds. But indoor litter box training does work and is very misunderstood. Many people confuse potty pads with litter box training and then assume indoor training doesn’t work. It is not laying out a potty pad in a large open room or a large expen and expecting a puppy to know to potty there, or for the pad to do the indoor potty training. It’s more of an extension of crate/expen training and built on similar concepts of a puppy’s “bubble.” Many forum members have done it and can help troubleshoot if someone is having trouble!
 

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Jasper is 4 1/2 months old now. I wasn't able to get him to use the litter in an open litter box. He would only use it for a bed and chew on it. Also, I wasn't a fan of the litter getting tracked out of the litter box. I found that he preferred fake grass to standing directly on a grate. So I got Smart Paws Large 29.92"x24.4" Pet Training Tray on amazon, put pellets under the grate then fake grass on top. The grass has holes in it. He now both pees and poops on the grass and it drains through to the pellets. This is set up on my condo balcony. I'm using a small pen to limit his freedom and direct him to the correct spot. When I'm home he can come and go through a dog door. I can see hm through the sliding glass door. I'm a little surprised that he hasn't tried using the fake grass to chew on or drag around the house but so far that hasn't happened. He no longer can chew on the pellets, everything is easy to clean up, and I haven't had any problem with anything smelling bad. He will still go potty outside when we take a walk but I will always need him to have this option. I've given him tons of praise and treats. He's very proud of himself. FYI At one point I tried "Go Here Attractant" and he just licked it before peeing elsewhere.

View attachment 177996
It sounds like you found a system that works for you! It may not be an issue since your potty tray is outside, but I looked at the fake grass trays because I thought they were kind of cute and a lot of members said they hold the smell of pee after a while, although you mentioned it hasn’t been an issue for you. Maybe because it drains and is combined with litter? I set up a makeshift litter box for my basement (my other boxes came with grates to contain the litter) and I wanted to mention that I tried a few different household items that worked well to contain litter - in case at some point you need a new “grate” and don’t want to buy a whole new litter box or grass mat. The one I liked best was rubber/silicone type gridded sink/tub liner. It kept the litter in place and allowed the right amount of drainage and was easy to clean.
 

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It sounds like you found a system that works for you! It may not be an issue since your potty tray is outside, but I looked at the fake grass trays because I thought they were kind of cute and a lot of members said they hold the smell of pee after a while, although you mentioned it hasn’t been an issue for you. Maybe because it drains and is combined with litter? I set up a makeshift litter box for my basement (my other boxes came with grates to contain the litter) and I wanted to mention that I tried a few different household items that worked well to contain litter - in case at some point you need a new “grate” and don’t want to buy a whole new litter box or grass mat. The one I liked best was rubber/silicone type gridded sink/tub liner. It kept the litter in place and allowed the right amount of drainage and was easy to clean.
I notice that she says she is using it out on a balcony. Maybe that, and the fact that her Dog is still a puppy is helping with the smell. We have put fake grass out on our Deck for Kodi in the winter, because at his age, he has trouble with the icey steps. (Hopefully, with his new ramp, we won’t have to anymore!!!) Even though I REGULARLY cleaned it with Parvosol, by spring it smelled SO bad, we had to throw it out… and Dave had to take it to the dump in the open back of the pick-up truck!!!

We have tried fake grass litter boxes and tried every imaginable cleaning product on them without success in the house. Maybe my nose is more sensitive than others, but it sure wasn’t a product I could live with!!!
 
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