How To Get A Small Dog To Stop Pooping In The House

6 min read Jul 11, 2024
How To Get A Small Dog To Stop Pooping In The House

How to Stop Your Small Dog From Pooping in the House

It's frustrating to find a surprise "present" from your beloved small dog in the middle of your living room. While accidents can happen, consistent house training issues can be a real challenge. Fortunately, with patience, consistency, and a few key strategies, you can teach your tiny friend to do their business outside.

The Importance of Patience and Consistency

House training any dog takes time, especially for smaller breeds who may have smaller bladders and bowels. Be patient and understanding – your dog isn't trying to be naughty! They are still learning the rules of the house.

Consistency is key. Establish a routine for feeding, playing, and potty breaks. Stick to the schedule as closely as possible, even on weekends.

Understanding the Reasons Behind Accidents

Before you start training, try to understand why your dog might be having accidents in the house:

  • Medical Issues: A sudden change in housebreaking habits could be a sign of a medical problem like a urinary tract infection or digestive issues. If you suspect something is wrong, consult your veterinarian.
  • Lack of Potty Breaks: Smaller dogs often need more frequent potty breaks. Are you taking your dog out often enough?
  • Stress or Anxiety: Changes in the household, new pets, or even loud noises can cause stress and lead to accidents.
  • Inadequate Training: If you've never formally house trained your dog, they might not understand where they should be going.
  • Overfeeding: Too much food can lead to more frequent and larger bowel movements, making it more difficult to control accidents.

Steps to Train Your Dog:

  1. Establish a Potty Schedule:
    • Take your dog outside first thing in the morning, then every 2-3 hours during the day.
    • Schedule breaks immediately after meals and naps.
    • Evenings and before bedtime are crucial.
  2. Choose a Designated Potty Spot:
    • Pick a specific area in your yard and consistently take your dog to the same spot. This helps them associate the location with going to the bathroom.
  3. Use Positive Reinforcement:
    • Praise your dog enthusiastically and give them a small treat every time they go potty outside.
    • The praise and reward should come immediately after they go to the bathroom.
  4. Clean Up Accidents Properly:
    • Use a pet-safe enzymatic cleaner to remove any traces of urine or feces.
    • The cleaner helps eliminate odors that can attract your dog back to the spot.
  5. Avoid Punishment:
    • Never rub your dog's nose in the accident. This is counterproductive and can lead to fear and anxiety.
  6. Consider a Crate:
    • If you're consistent with potty breaks, a crate can help prevent accidents during the night.
    • Choose a crate that is the right size for your dog. They should be able to stand up, turn around, and lie down comfortably.
  7. Be Patient and Persistent:
    • It takes time and consistency to train a dog. Don't get discouraged if you have a few setbacks.
    • Remember, progress takes time.

Additional Tips for Small Dog House Training

  • Watch for signs: Learn to recognize your dog's potty cues. These might include sniffing the ground, circling, or whimpering.
  • Playtime after potty breaks: Keep things positive by associating potty breaks with playtime and attention.
  • Don't worry about accidents: If an accident does happen, clean it up quickly and move on. Dwelling on it will only make your dog anxious.

Remember: If you're struggling with house training your dog, don't hesitate to seek professional help from a veterinarian or certified dog trainer. They can provide customized advice and support to help you and your furry friend achieve success.