House training your dog properly is one of the most important aspects of dog ownership. More dogs are surrendered to animal shelters for elimination problems than for any other reason, so proper house training can literally be a lifesaver.
The most popular ways to house break dogs, and the ones that are the most effective, are those that use the dog’s own instincts to provide this important lesson.
Dogs are instinctively very clean animals, and they try very hard to avoid soiling the areas where they sleep and where they eat. The modern methods of house training dogs, including crate training, den training and other variations, take advantage of this aspect of dog behaviour to create a well behaved, house trained dog in less time than many other methods.
Another aspect of the dog’s nature that can be used to your advantage is the fact that the dog pays close attention to the kind of surface on which it makes its toilet. That means that a dog that has become accustomed to using grass or dirt as a toilet will be reluctant to eliminate on other surfaces, such as gravel, asphalt or carpet for that matter. This is a great aspect of canine behaviour that many owners are unaware of.
The first part of house training any dog is setting up the training area, or the dog’s den. The den is the centerpiece of the house training program, and it should be a small area, like a small bathroom, or part of a larger room. The dog should be confined to this den any time it cannot be directly supervised.
It is also important for the owner to spend as much time as possible in the established den with the dog. The owner and family members should spend time in the den, playing and interacting with the dog. It is important for the dog to feel as comfortable as possible in his special area. The dog should be given a special bed in the training area. This bed can be anything from a store bought bed to a beach towel to something as simple as a large cardboard box. The important thing is that the dog feel comfortable and secure in this area.
At first the dog may do its business in the bed area of its den, but after awhile, when the dog has come to recognize this as his sleeping area, he should be reluctant to eliminate there.
The other part of this house training process is to establish the toilet area. It is very important that the dog have ready access to the toilet area every time he needs to do his business. It is also very important for the owner to go with the dog every time he goes to the toilet area. This is important for two reasons. First, it will ensure that the dog uses the established toilet area and only the toilet area. Second, it will allow the owner to provide praise and encouragement to the dog for using the toilet area.
Establishing a set feeding schedule for the dog is also very important to properly house training the dog. A set feeding schedule will mean a set elimination schedule. Once you are familiar with the dog’s toilet schedule, you will be better able to anticipate his toilet needs and take him to the toilet area whenever the need arises.
It is important to not confine the dog for long periods of time without access to his toilet area. If the dog is left alone too long, he may have no choice but to soil his den area and his can set house training back for weeks or even months. It is important to take the dog to the toilet area consistently and to provide lots of praise every time the dog eliminates there.