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Potty Training for Small Dogs

The essential for potty training in small breeds are the same as those in large breeds, that is


Be consistent in when you start training your dog. Choose a designate potty area and any time your dog needs to eliminate, take them to the same spot every time.

If you keep changing the spot, your dog will be confused and will think it is ok to eliminate anywhere he/she chooses.

If the dog is a family dog, then let other members of the family know the dog’s schedule, this will help maintain consistency even when you are not there.


Be generous with your praise whether verbal or in form of treats whenever the dog eliminates on the correct area. Remember, positive reinforcement will give you better results than other methods.

That’s where the positive reinforcement for puppy potty training with your praise and affection is even stronger - when it’s so important to your dog to please you.


Your dog will at times mess up. Never punish the dog, especially if you do not catch him in the act. Clean up the mess, use detergents and enzymatic cleaner and ensure that you have removed any trace of the smell to avoid the dog returning to the same place.

When correcting you can tell the dog “no” in a firm voice, or say “stop” then move the dog to the correct place.

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When training the dog, remember that dogs are different. Your dog may not learn in the pace that you want. Do not lose your patience or your temper with the dog. Be calm and give your dog time to adjust to the routine.

In training your small dog, you need to decide whether you want to train your dog indoors or outdoors. In indoor training, there are some things you will need to facilitate potty training. If you intend to paper train your dog, then all that is necessary is lots of paper preferably newspaper to line the floor with. You may also purchase a litter box or a training pad.

Some training pads have been scented in order to attract the dog to the pad. They are ideal for use if your dog likes tearing up paper. The pad will also absorb the urine and remains dry ensuring that the top doesn’t get soaked in urine.

It is important to have a schedule for elimination for your dog. Your dog will eliminate after feeding, in the morning and after playing. During these times, make sure that you take your dog out or keep him contained in a place to reduce the chance of him soiling other places.

When you first start potty training, it is advised that you stay with the dog until he/she has had a chance to eliminate. Once you are sure the dog has eliminated, you can then let him to run around the house.

If the dog is unsupervised it is likely they will soil some places. Since the urine will be in small quantities, it may not be possible to find all the places your dog has soiled with your bare eyes. A black light will come in handy to help you find and clean such places.

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