CRATE & HOUSE
Your responsible breeder or Rescue Rep should have started this
By Tia Resleure ©2002-13
Please read everything thoroughly before
"Crate training is
getting your dog accustomed to enjoying the security of a crate, house
training is teaching your dog that you would like it to relieve
itself in a specific area. Crate training is a useful tool
for potty training and for giving your dog a sense of security. Dogs
were originally den creatures and a crate can be used to re-create
the den environment.
behavioral problems associated with anxiety can be avoided by early
In most cases it
is NEVER too late to crate train your older dog! You
might need to let the older dog get used to the crate for shorter
periods of time and build up to the regular schedule.
Crate trained dogs
are more welcomed as visitors, contented as travelers, and safer
A firm grasp of
the concept of crate training might make all the difference to an
ambivalent or a 'no dogs allowed' landlord.
Used as an aid
to potty training, you will be taking advantage of the dog's natural
instinct to not soil its den. The dog will be naturally
encouraged to 'hold it', rather than you frightening the dog by chasing
it down or getting into the unproductive habit of scolding the dog
dog came from a good breeder or sensible rescue rep and has already
been sleeping in a crate. This will make the process MUCH easier.
Do feed meals
in the crate. This will not only speed up the crate training
process it will reinforce the pleasure the the dog will have with
his experience with confinement. It is also useful for dogs
that are in the habit of spitting out kibble to eat in other locations
of your home. In multiple dog households it can be very stressful,
especially for a sensitive breed like the Italian Greyhound, to
have to eat their meals in a competitive environment.
Learn the behavior
that indicates your dog is about to pee or poop. Most dogs will
sniff the floor or ground intently some will do a few circles. Others,
especially puppies can be very fast, so if you see that butt start
to descend to the floor be ready to scoop the dog up and get it to
the desired area. Watch what leads up to peeing and pooping when
it is doing its business in the appropriate area. The
goal is to not let the new dog make even one mistake in the house,
it is either to use its papers or go outside. This is your
responsibility, you need to have your dog confined or under your
strict supervision so that it is impossible for it to pee/poop except
where you want it too.
Be sure to have
your new dog or puppy pee and poop (if it is time) before you allow
it free time in the house. Dogs are creatures of
habit if you allow them to potty in the house you are creating this
as a habit. Three times is all it takes to create a habit. If
you are unable to watch closely enough to prevent accidents you must
confine your dog so that it cannot make a mistake. The dog
isn't really making a mistake: the owner is, by not being vigilant
enough to prevent it.
After a dog is
comfortable with its crate and/or pen it may still want to let you
know that it would like attention. If you think it might need
to go out then take it out and afterwards return it to its pen/crate. If
you are sure it does not need to go out or to use its papers then
You want to make
this as easy on the dog as possible but they do need to learn to
be in the crate/pen and entertain themselves. Be sure you are
giving them attention, exercise and allowing them to relieve themselves
as needed so that if they fuss at other times you can ignore them
and allow them to settle down.
When you bring
a puppy/dog home all this is new, it has left familiar surroundings
and friends/family. Now is the time for it to learn how to be independent,
so it might as well get adjusted to what you would like to be its
routine in the long run. This can be stressful and a growing
experience, you want to give it what it needs but not coddle it so
much that it doesn't become self-assured and confident while left
Try not to teach
your dog that crying will automatically gain freedom by letting the
dog out (of its pen or crate) when it cries. Try to at least
wait for a momentary lull of noisy or frantic behavior before releasing
the dog. If you can catch your dog when it is quiet and reward
it by praise and a snuggle then put it back, you can speed the process
by rewarding for good behavior. The behavior you desire needs
to be encouraged by rewards (attention) and that which you do not
want should be discouraged by not giving any attention. Some
dogs will even take negative attention (yelling, spraying, etc.)
so the best form of not reinforcing undesirable behaviors is to ignore
them. If you can wait it out until the dog has stopped the
period of time that they fuss will get shorter and shorter. If
you reward them by giving in you strengthen their belief that complaining
will get them what they want and therefore it will go on for longer
next time before they will give up.
Be careful NOT
to inadvertently encourage a dog's crying by crooning to
the dog, saying it's okay or otherwise express sympathy
for its apparent displeasure with confinement.
best way to deal with barking while the dog is confined is to ignore
it's really driving you crazy, try telling it enough or hush then
spraying the dog with a squirt gun or spray bottle that contains
plain water. Do this calmly and without emotion and give the
dog a chance to obey your verbal command before you spray.
It usually takes
less than a week for the dog to get accustomed to the crate. If
you have neighbors, it would be polite and in YOUR best interest
to inform them that your dog is being trained and that there will
be an adjustment period. Gifts of earplugs and a show of concern
for THEIR well being can go a long way!
please consider collar safety! Dangling tags and regular collars
have been known to kill dogs by getting caught on knobs, wire doors,
etc. Only use a breakaway, safety collar when your dog is unsupervised! Contact
info can be written on the outside of the collar with a permanent
marker instead of tags.
households, every dog should have its own crate. Dogs that
aren't allowed individual space and time with their owners can develop
anything from subtle to serious behavioral problems. Dogs always
crated together can lead to unnatural dominance/submissive pack dynamics. My
feeling is that they should have at least 1/2-1 hour of quality individual
time with the owner (and at least 1 hour of dog time) If you
decide to get a second dog because you don't have enough time for
one dog and are concerned that the one dog is lonely, carefully consider
What goes in must come out! Food and water, on schedule,
will help you anticipate WHEN your dog will need to relieve itself. Once
your dog is completely house trained and mature, you should then
provide fresh water at all times, however, never free-feed your
dog. You must schedule and measure your dog's food so you can
get a handle on his/her potty habits. Keeping track of food measurement
and intake will not only help you keep your dog in optimum condition
but can prevent or cure picky eating habits. Studies have also
shown that dogs that are allowed to free-feed tend to develop tartar
quicker than those that are fed on schedule.
The ultimate goal
of crate training is to have a happy and well-adjusted dog that is
trustworthy and anxiety-free when left loose in your home.
"Belly Bands" (Velcro
attached, waist/penis covers, AKA"weenie wrappers") for
males are okay for visiting places where they might feel the need
to mark territory, but should not be considered a viable alternative
to proper house-training or for a dog that is suffering from anxiety.
Once your dog is
trained, do not take their crate away from them! Most dogs
enjoy having their own safe haven. You can remove the crate
door or keep it open with a bungee cord. At the very minimum,
your dog should continue to eat it's meals in it's crate and have
some quite time after each meal. It can be very useful if you
ever need to travel with your dog or you dog needs confinement because
of illness or injury.
If your dog is
still having accidents, and you are sure that you are utilizing the
schedules properly: CONSULT YOUR VETERINARIAN.
Any sudden lapse
in potty training or change in frequency of urination is a matter
to be taken up with your veterinarian.
If there are no
health problems, try to figure out if there is a new source of anxiety.
This could be something quite subtle, like a new mail carrier or
a new cat in the neighborhood.
DO NOT allow
your dog to continue to pee/poop in the crate. This will
ruin its instinct to keep the den clean and make house training
very difficult. If you cannot figure out and correct the reason
or are not being able to religiously honor the schedule switch
to an ex-pen or go back to a previous schedule immediately at least
until you can resolve the situation.
Once your dog is
potty trained, DO NOT rely on your dog signaling to you that
it needs to go out. Do watch for signals, but be sure that
you get the dog to a potty area on schedule. Even if there
is a dog door or available papers, you should still be responsible
for reminding the dog to go potty on schedule, especially if the
potty training is a new accomplishment.
TERMINOLOGY AND TIPS FOR USE OF SCHEDULES
1. Go out means
take dog to potty area (outside or to papers) ON LEASH. Teach
a word or phrase to associate with the action (i.e., hurry
up, go potty/, etc.) Choose a phrase and
use it consistently.
This is not a time
for play or walks. Keep dog in the general potty area.
Put up a tarp so
your dog has a dry place to potty outside.
dog has produced. Effusiveness of praise depends
on the individual dog. Use as much enthusiasm as the dog can
handle without getting OVERLY excited or distracted.
Keep in mind that
many males will urinate at least TWICE before the bladder is emptied.
Until you are in
tune with your dog's potty habits, you might have to wait a bit. If
dog doesn't go within 5-10 minutes, put dog back in crate
for about 10 minutes, then try again.
If you are reasonably
sure that the dog needs to potty, do not allow free period until
the dog has produced. This is especially important
in the early phases of crate training.
If your dog is
new to a leash and will NOT poop on lead, try using a baby suppository
to "get the ball rolling.
ALWAYS clean up
after your dog when it poops in public places, even if you feel that
it is an out of the way location!
2. Free periods
are NOT to be unsupervised! In fact, free periods need to be
used for EXERCISE, such as interactive play, walks, training, socialization
etc. Free periods can be EXTENDED by having a collar and leash
on the dog with the leash attached to your waist or belt loop. Free
periods are also a good time to introduce your dog to other parts
of the home.
3. Food and water should be provided at scheduled intervals for approximately
20 minutes and then picked up. You can refrigerate, if necessary, and
re-heat for the next meal. Dogs will occasionally skip a meal. This
is alright, just wait until the next scheduled feed time and offer it again.
It is very important
to allow time for food and water to process through the dog's system
BEFORE confinement. Unrestricted water in the early phases
of training can overload the bladder, causing accidents in the crate
or give the dog a bladder infection if they try to hold it too long.
Use common sense! If
your dog is over heated before a scheduled watering, do give the
dog a little water. Try to avoid situations that would make
the dog SO thirsty that it would want to gulp large quantities of
water off schedule.
CANNOT leave a dog without water if you live in a hot climate and
your home is without air-conditioning. If that is the case,
potty training will take a lot more effort and more frequent outings.
A covered ex-pen would be a sensible choice for this situation.
Once your dog has
a stabilized schedule and can be allowed freedom, then be sure to
provide a constant supply of fresh water.
Do not, however,
keep a constant supply of food in the bowl. Keep feedings on
a timed schedule. You need to be able to monitor your dogs
Food should be
a quality brand that does NOT contain preservatives, especially ETHOXYQUIN. Try
asking which natural food sells well at your pet food suppler. A
fabulous food that isn't popular might be very stale. My personal
favorite is Innova, made by Natura Pet Products. Web site: http://www.naturapet.com
Any diet changes
should be done VERY gradually to avoid loose stools.
4. Confine means
to a crate (or an ex- pen for puppies and special cases). I
prefer to use a Vari-Kennel type crate instead of all wire crates. They
give a greater sense of security to the dog. If you use an
all wire type, I advise draping it with a blanket to give the dog
The crate should
be large enough for the dog to stand up, turn around and lie down. Their
head need not be erect when standing in the crate. Withers
height (point at the base of the neck and top of the shoulders) should
be the MINIMUM (including the bedding in crate).
Too large of a
crate might not give the dog enough security. They might also
make their den in the rear of the crate and use the front
for the potty area.
For the growing
pup, I recommend getting a crate that will accommodate the dog when
it is an adult If you find the pup doesn't respect (potties
near the door) this large of a crate, you can make it smaller by
wiring in several layers of cardboard in the rear of the kennel.
Placement of the
crate is very important. The purpose of crating is NOT to
isolate the dog. Try to put the crate (applies to ex-pens too)
where dog will not be lonely. Put the crate in your bedroom
at night. Do not place crate near drafts, too close to heaters or
in places where sun will bake the dog.
Remember that sun
patterns not only change seasonally, but daily!
DO teach a word
or phrase when putting the dog in the crate (i.e.: "crate", "kennel
For very short-coated
breeds, DO try warming up the dog's bedding in your dryer when first
teaching the dog to accept the crate.
DO NOT worry about
your dog needing a view out a window. Passing strangers and
teasing cats can cause immense STRESS to a dog, confined or not.
DO leave on a radio
or TV when you are gone from the house. Be sure that it is
a consistently calm station.
The toys that you
give your dog when confined should be sturdy and long lasting. I
recommend Gumabones (not the rock-hard Nylabone) in the wishbone
shape (easier for dog to hold in paws) or a rope bone. Some
animal product chewies are too salty and would make the dog thirsty.
Personally, I don't like my dogs to get a taste for them because
it can then be difficult to get them to accept the safer chewies
that don't taste as good. Dogs have choked or gotten intestinal
blockages when they ate the animal product toys rather than just
chewing off tiny pieces. Dogs that are usually gentle with
toys can be unexpectedly destructive when left alone. Save
the more fragile (ones they can tear apart) and edible toys for when
you are there to supervise. Try to distinguish safe toys from
TROUBLE SHOOTING & GRANTING FREEDOM
Any accidents need
to be cleaned up and have the odor NEUTRALIZED. Use commercial
pet odor neutralizer or white vinegar, 50/50 with water. Blot
up as much urine as possible, then soak area with treating solution
(keeping in mind that urine can spread further under upholstery fabric
or carpeting). Blot again, repeat. Stubborn odors may need re-treatment
or need to be kept wet with treating solution for at least 8 hours.
Keep dog and crate
clean and odor free!
Do NOT scold a
dog for an accident. If caught in the act, you can try to startle
the dog into stopping, but it is far easier to follow the schedule
and avoid the accident in the first place. Many dogs will perceive
that they are being scolded JUST for eliminating, not for eliminating
in an inappropriate LOCATION.
Allow your dog
to earn its freedom GRADUALLY. I can't stress the importance
of this enough! Many dogs will get the potty thing down
quickly but still need to be confined while you are away until
they get through stages where they might hurt themselves or your
home. Keep in mind that puppies will go through a very heavy
teething phase around 5-6 months of age. During this period, even
though your pup may be potty trained, you still want to make sure
that he/she is safely confined, when you are not able to supervise.
Another very important
consideration is the dog's ability to handle the responsibility of
being LEFT IN CHARGE while you are away from home.
Never make a big
deal when you are leaving your dog. This will only encourage
Dogs have a natural
instinct to protect your home while you are gone. When you
leave, they move up in pack position. This can cause ANXIETY
if the dog is too young or is reaching sexual maturity.
New, older dogs
are also susceptible to anxiety, even if previously potty trained. Be
ESPECIALLY concerned if your dog has come from an abusive and/or
emotionally neglected background.
This anxiety is
also not uncommon with smaller breeds of dogs. The smaller
dog will have the same instinct to guard the home, but might feel
insecure about this responsibility due its size.
This can lead
to the dog marking territory in an effort to "add insurance" that
will keep away intruders. THIS IS NOT A LAPSE IN POTTY HABITS,
BUT IS AN ANXIETY ISSUE.
THINK THAT YOUR DOG KNOWS THAT IT HAS DONE SOMETHING WRONG. If
you think your dog looks "guilty", you are wrong. The
dog just remembers that in a similar situation YOU got angry
or were in an unreceptive mood.
Other signs of
anxiety can be excessive barking and/or destructive chewing.
With ANY dog in
your home, you will need to be aware of situations that can cause
Grant freedom one
room at a time. Keep curtains drawn. Always go back a
step if problems arise.
issues by building the dog's self confidence with jobs like
obedience training and by making sure that greater freedom is given
gradually. Being in charge of the whole house and property
may be too overwhelming unless the area is increased over time.
While I would say
that they are in the minority, be aware that some dogs may NEVER
be emotionally stable enough to have full run of your house while
you are gone.
YOUR RESCUE REP IF YOUR NEW IG IS EXPERIENCING ANXIETY.
is another factor that should NOT be considered a lapse of potty
training. Some dogs will 'piddle' as a sign to you that they
know you are the BOSS and they are on the extreme bottom of pack
Ideally, all dogs
would fall somewhere in the midrange of the dominant/submissive scale.
Submissive piddlers are the extreme opposite of the alpha role.
Causes can be improper
socialization, spending too much time with litter-mate after 7 weeks
of age (being constantly picked on) and overly harsh punishment at
too young an age.
a dog for submissive urination!
The most common
time for this behavior to occur is when the dog greets you after
To solve this problem,
you will need to make greetings VERY low-key. I advise not
saying anything, not making direct eye contact and not bending over
to pet the dog. Come into your home calmly, ignoring the dog. Quietly
lie on the floor and allow the dog to greet you at his/her level. Be
sure to protect you face from happy paws! Gradually speak softly
and pet the dog. Do NOT get up until the dog has calmed down.
This approach may
be necessary for several months! In the meantime, learn or
practice obedience with the dog to further build it's confidence. Be
sure that all family members and any visitors understand the importance
of this type of oblique greeting.
FOR CRATE TRAINING & OTHER CONSIDERATIONS
For young puppies
(7 weeks old to 14-16 weeks old):
Most breeders raise
puppies in an ex-pen. This is a wire doggy playpen 4 foot x
4 foot with a wire-hinged top. Inside it are papers, a bed
(preferably in a crate), food, water, and toys. The puppies
will be sleeping in the crate, coming out to pee and poop on the
papers, have room to play, and access to food and water. Initially
the papers will cover the entire exposed floor, then as the puppies
pick an area they like to use we will start removing the extra sheets
and decrease the area to that of an unfolded newspaper page. Then
the papers can be gradually moved to the handiest part of the pen.
Pup should be confined
to a small manageable area, covered with papers, with the crate set
up inside for its bed. Remove the crate door or prop it open
with a bungee cord. It is handy to be able to confine the pup
while you are cleaning up the papers.
The four-foot square
wire exercise pen (ex-pen) WITH A TOP is ideal for this kind
of arrangement. These can be obtained from pet supply wholesalers
for a reasonable price. Be SURE that bar spacing is appropriate
for your size of dog. Many dogs are climbers. Use a top
for safety. Don't just get a taller ex-pen, this won't stop
the climbers and is even more dangerous.
Ex-pens can be
set up in carpeted rooms if you first lay down a scrap of seamless
vinyl flooring (at least a foot wider than the pen). My favorite
exercise pen is made by Precision Pet Products and can be seen at:
I recommend the
models SXP or GXP (24" high for IGs). This standard set of 8
panels sets up to a convenient 2' x 6' pen. You must get 3 extra
panels to make a top: Many IGs will climb and you
don't want to risk a broken leg! These pens come in
gold tone or silver. With the 2' x 6' configuration you can
put the pups crate at one end the potty papers at the other end so
the living and potty areas are distinctly apart.
(800) 524-0820 Or contact Precision Pet Products for a dealer near
Precision Pet Products
2183 Fairview Road, Ste. 103
Costa Mesa, CA 92627
Phone (800) 397-3167 or (949) 574-1800
Fax (949) 574-1822
For a different "look", PVC exercise pens can be ordered from Rover
(see under Dog/Baby gates below).
Your kitchen or
a corner of your kitchen can work too, if you'd rather not purchase
an ex-pen. If this is what you chose, avoid very small rooms with
high ceilings (like small bathrooms). I have seen dogs that
were extremely disturbed by this kind of set up. I'm not sure
if this was causing a type of claustrophobia or if it was the acoustics,
but regardless, I would be leery of this type of situation, and still
believe that an ex-pen is preferable.
If you choose to
set up a puppy area other than an ex-pen, be sure that it is completely
puppy-proof! Be especially aware of knobs that could hook on a collar
or cupboards edges that could be destroyed. Any cupboards need
to be securely puppy proofed.
start to develop TRUE physical bladder control until they are 14-16
Although you can
have some success with more frequent outings, I prefer to wait until
they are really ready to learn to "hold it". In the
mean time you can follow the Play/Potty Schedule to structure
your interaction so that you may enjoy your puppy but not allow it
make mistakes in the house.
When your young
puppy is out of the pen leave the side open to the room so the puppy
has access to the papers. At first you will be putting the
puppy back in the pen or onto the papers according to the schedule
(below) but you will be watching for the puppy to start heading back
on its own. Praise every time the puppy goes on the papers
but (if you are going to paper train) Let your pup know you ar very
pleased when it goes back on its own!
Gear your feeding
schedule towards what you will be doing when you start confinement
If your goal is
to have an outdoor potty dog ONLY, resist the urge to praise your
young pup for running back to the papered area to potty! It
is natural for pups to seek out a place that smells familiar. If
your goal is outside only, your pup could later be confused about
what you want. Try to just quietly enjoy this marvel of natural
For adults who
were not previously accustomed to a crate:
If you are using
an ex-pen, introduce your new dog to the crate by taking the door
off or using a bungee cord to tie it open, then put it inside the
pen. Fill the crate with soft thick bedding and toss some treats
inside. If the only soft bedding is in the crate your dog should
use the crate for its bed. When it is comfortable with the crate
start closing the door for short periods like when you clean the
pen. Give your iggie treats whenever you want it to go in the
crate and when you leave it inside try to have a good toy, chewy,
or cookie that will last at least 5 or 10 minutes for them to enjoy. Once
they are comfortable in the crate you can begin following the appropriate
schedule when you are at home.
When you are using
a crate only for house training put treats and soft thick bedding
inside. After your dog is used to going in and out toss a treat
in and close the door for a few seconds while the dog is inside then
open it and praise. If you do this while you are sitting in
front of the crate it should not bother the dog. Make this
a game. Next shut the door for short periods of time with a
longer lasting treat. Gradually lengthen these times. At
first stay with the dog then leave the room and return in a few minutes
gradually lengthen your away times. You are trying to assure
the dog that you will return.
For dogs that
have had their natural instinct not to soil the den broken
by over confinement:
You will have to
redevelop the dog's natural instinct. Do this by using the
same ex-pen setup used for very young puppies. Make sure the
crate is nice and cozy (not too large!) and always kept clean. Be
PATIENT! It may take SEVERAL months of the dog being allowed
the OPTION of not soiling the bedding to correct this problem. DO
continue to follow the schedule as closely as possible, but WITHOUT
crate confinement, so you will be able to anticipate when your dog
needs to go potty and you are there to reinforce the desired results
PVC gates that don't have many (if any) cross pieces so there are
no footholds. I have heard of folks adding another gate when
they climb the first and then another, then they get hurt falling
down the other side. Another tip if you have a potential climber
is not to lift the dog over the gate, but to open the gate. The
safest is to start with a 4 foot gate with only vertical bars on
hinges and don't show the dog the over the top exit route.
The Rover gate
manufacturers will send you a catalogue.
20 Kiji Dava
Sundog Industrial Park
Prescott, AZ 86301
VERSUS OUTDOORS ONLY
Many people prefer
the convenience of paper training small dogs.
Using a plastic
or metal tray will help to define the potty area. Sides of
this tray should be shallow. This area should be NO SMALLER than
an open sheet of newspaper for one dog. Useful trays could
be a large photo-developing tray, a commercial baker's tray or a
metal or plastic pan sold as a replacement for a wire dog kennel. I
prefer a tray that has about 3 inch high sides. Do be as methodical
about paper training as you would with outdoor training.
Wee-Wee pads are
very expensive and are not necessary. Many layers of newspaper
will retain enough attracting odor after you've picked up the top
layers. If you prefer, you can buy bulk rough surface plain
newsprint. Plain newsprint doesn't smell as much (no wet ink)
and is cleaner on your hands and the dogs feet. There
is also a newer type of cat litter that is a paper product, which
I haven't tried but sounds like a good possibility.
When first starting
to paper train, try soaking up some urine with a paper towel to scent
the potty area.
Leg lifters prefer
having a target. Try a plain paper bag weighted down (with
a rock or marbles, if your dog can be trusted with small objects)
in the middle of the papered area. You might need a larger
tray area to accommodate the leg lifter. Some people have constructed
a washable walled corner (with paper clothes-pinned to it) for the
potty area for their leg lifters and find it very effective. Others
have used the large storage bins with one side cut down or a small
dog house (with top off) and papers inside. These can be easily
Clean up papers
at least twice a day!
DUEL POTTY AREA TRAINING (indoors & outdoors)
want to choose one method or the other to avoid confusing the dog. Make
SURE that your dog fully understands what is expected with the original
potty location before training your dog to be an indoor/outdoor potty
First train your
dog to what will be the MOST usual/preferred location. Duel
trained dogs are a BONUS, but duel training doesn't ALWAYS work out
and can't be absolutely counted on.
Methodic and gentle
handling are in order if you try to achieve this goal. Introduce
your approval to this new location by taking the dog there on leash
and giving the cue word for potty that your dog should already know. PRAISE when
you get the desired results.
DOG DOORS: (great
Dog Doors are great
to use if you have a safe yard or enclosure for the dog to go to. This
area should be escape proof, free of poisonous plants and predators,
and one where your dog will not be a temptation to thieves or crazy
people who might poison it. Know your neighbors and be sure
they will feel comfortable coming to you if your dog ever becomes
Install a dog door
that has a flexible flap to avoid an injury that would discourage
a dog from trusting it.
Try to get one
with a clear flap. Many dogs want to make sure that the coast
is clear if they have ever had an accidental unpleasant experience
outside the door (such as a run-in with a nasty cat).
DO NOT use the
dog door as an excuse to get out of the discipline required in
initial potty training.
Make sure that
you have a solid foundation of being with the dog to
assure that it goes potty and that you are there to praise, before allowing
the dog to go outside on it's own. Otherwise you run the risk
of your dog not really understanding what you want. If
this were the case, your dog would likely be confused in any other
situation that was without a dog door. (visiting friends, etc.)
With smaller dogs,
it will speed up the process of learning to go through the door,
if you start by holding up the flap for them and gradually letting
them feel the weight of the flap as they go through.
Do not force
them through. If you are on the opposite side of the
door, they will be much more likely to try it. It's usually easier
to start with them outside.
IT WOULD BE
CRUEL AND INHUMANE to confine a dog for extended lengths of time:
exercise and quality human interaction.
allowed to eliminate before confinement.
If it has a
weak bladder or is prone to bladder infections.
THE FOLLOWING SCHEDULES
Always be sure that you have blank copies of the schedules on hand. Please
feel free to distribute this information to ANYONE who might find it useful.
Also feel free
to reformat this info for ease of printing. (I would recommend
having the schedules on separate pages according to age group.)
schedules are only meant to serve as a starting point.
Start by filling
in YOUR wake up time, initially following the recommended time
Use a PENCIL
to allow for modifications based on the individual dog's needs
and to allow for physical and emotional maturing.
Start the schedule
on a day that you won't have to go to work (the beginning of your
weekend) so you will be aware of morning time modification requirements.
You might find
that you will have to wake up earlier, especially when first starting
the training schedule.
If you are still
having problems with a 14 or 15 week old puppy after a few days,
your pup may not be physically mature enough. If that is
the case, delay crate training for a week or two.
NEVER come home
later than usual if your dog is confined or does not have access
to potty area!
with your schedule. You will need to follow it even on your
days off. I highly recommend posting the schedule in a convenient
Confine your dog
to an exercise pen WITH A TOP and with papers if you cannot come
home at the scheduled go out times. Follow the
crate confinement schedule when home. Paper training will be
your most flexible option.
EX-PEN PLAY/POTTY SCHEDULE for puppies 7 to 14-16 weeks
___ 07:00 Wake
___ 07:15 Free period
___ 07:30 Food & Water
___ 09:00 Go out
___ 09:15 Free period
___ 09:45 Confine
___ 11:00 Go out
___ 11:15 Free period
___ 11:40 Confine
___ 12:30 Food & Water
___ 01:00 Go out
___ 01:15 Free period
___ 01:45 Confine
___ 03:00 Go out
___ 03:15 Free period
___ 03:45 Confine
___ 04:45 Water
___ 05:00 Go out
___ 05:15 Free period
___ 05:45 Confine
___ 06:45 Food & Water
___ 07:00 Go out
___ 07:15 Free period
___ 07:45 Confine
___ 08:45 Water
___ 09:00 Go out
___ 09:15 Free Period
___ 09:45 Confine
___11:00 Go out/Confine overnight
SCHEDULE for 14-16 weeks - 6 month old pups/ 3 meals per day
____ 07:00 Wake
up/Go out ............NOTES:
____ 07:10 Free period
____ 07:30 Food & Water
____ 08:00 Go out
____ 08:15 Free period
____ 08:45 Confine
____ 12:00 Food & Water
____ 12:30 Go out
____ 12:45 Free period
____ 01:15 Confine
____ 04:30 Food & Water
____ 05:00 Go out
____ 05:15 Free period
____ 05:45 Confine
____ 08:00 Water
____ 08:15 Go out
____ 08:30 Free period
____ 09:00 Confine
____ 11:00 Go out/Confine overnight
SCHEDULE for 6 - 18 mo. old pups or untrained adults (2 meals per
____ 07:00 Wake
up/Go out NOTES:
____ 07:15 Free period
____ 08:00 Food & Water
____ 08:30 Go out
____ 08:45 Free period
____ 09:30 Confine
____ 12:30 Water & Go out
____ 12:45 Free period
____ 01:45 Confine
____ 05:00 Food & Water
____ 05:30 Go out
____ 05:45 Free period
____ 07:30 Confine
____ 11:00 Go out/Confine overnight
SCHEDULE for HOUSE TRAINED ADULT DOGS/ 2 meals per day
____ 07:00 Wake
____ 08:00 Food & Unlimited water
____ 08:30 Optional- if your dog didn't poop when it went out earlier it may
need to go out again
____ 12:30 Go out
____ 05:30 Food
____ 06:00 Go out
____ 11:00 Go out/Bedtime/Remove water overnight.