Puppies and Potty Pads- Indoor Housetraining Made Easy

Your ears are tuned to the slightest noise coming from the slumbering lump of cuteness in the crate next to your bed.

Any stirring from the crate prompts you to vault out of bed well before dawn and hustle your puppy outside on the dewy grass to go potty.

Sometimes you get lucky, and sometimes the little darling waits until he is back inside on the Oriental rug.

Training a new puppy to eliminate outside isn't just a big stumbling block in our busy lives, there are health considerations, too.

Veterinarians prefer that young puppies stay away from areas soiled by adult dogs or wild animals that may harbor illness and parasites.

To protect your puppy and your sanity, you may wish to start with indoor housetraining.

Try these four simple steps:

• Set up a puppy pen or gated area in your home where the puppy will sleep, eat, and start the housetraining process.

• Place a potty pad at one end of the puppy's pen, and the food, water and bedding at the other end. 

• Keep the puppy’s confined area consistent. Switching the location or configuration may upset his routine. Now begins your supervisory role. As the bond between you and your puppy grows, you will learn his unique body language cues indicating his readiness to use the pad, like sniffing, circling, agitation or restlessness. Potty prime time is after eating and drinking, upon waking from a nap, and immediately after a play session. Take him to the pad right away and point to the center of the pad with your finger. If he uses the pad, (and bless him if he does!) praise him and replace it with a fresh one.

• Here is my best tip for success: If the puppy is out of his confined area, keep eyes on him at all times. The two minutes you are on the phone is the exact time he will choose to decorate your best rug. Consider keeping a leash on the pup to limit his explorations while you are watching TV or working on the computer.

Have you had success with indoor housetraining? Let me know how you did it!