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Retrain Puppy Pad to going outside

October 18th, 2007, 11:37 AM
I have a new 12 week old male maltipoo puppy. The breeder trained him to go on puppy pads but I would like to train him to go outside to do his business. I live in an apartment and work during the day but I'm able to come home at lunch to let the dog go outside. I've had several dogs in my life and have always been successful at crate training. This particular dog does not like to go outside at all and has no interest in pottying outside. He is also peeing in his crate when I leave him in there overnight. I've never encountered a puppy that wasn't constantly peeing or pooping so I'm not quite sure how to handle this. I think he is pretty smart because he isn't messing anywhere else except for the puppy pads but I really, really don't believe in training a dog to go in the house. Does anyone have any suggestions as to how I can retrain him to go outside instead of the puppy pads?

October 18th, 2007, 02:16 PM
First of all, are the pee pads in the crate? How big is the crate? It should only be big enough to stand and turn around comfortably...if it's too big, puppy will pee/poo in one end and sleep in the other...getting into very nasty habits. Your maltese/poodle mix is presumably very tiny and will need a tiny crate area at this time.

Our 12 week old puppy had never been outside to go to the bathroom when we got her, and since she's a german shepherd this could not be the case forever. She actually was TERRIFIED of going outside, so it took some patience to overcome helped having another older dog in the house...Gracie showed Jaida that "outside" was not scary. You can make outside time fun using treats, encouraging voices and words, and favourite toys that get reserved just for outside time (but only AFTER puppy has done his first, play later).

You need to set up a pee/poo routine. Outside after every meal, nap, playtime, after waking up in the morning, as soon as you come home, etc. Go outside with puppy on leash. Say a cue word...we just say "go pee/poop!", others use stuff like "hurry up!". Don't badger puppy, but keep him focused on the other words, keep him away from distractions, and stick to one's not a walk, it's a potty break. If he doesn't go after 10 minutes, come back inside and put back in crate or else keep him on leash and tethered to you so you can keep a very close eye on him in case he decides he needs to go, in which! If he goes, praise him like it was the most frickin' amazing thing he could possibly ever do in his whole life, and don't forget the cue word ie. "good hurry up/good pee!" Pull out the treats and the toys and make it a crazy party.

Since he's used to the pads, you could also try bringing a pad outside with you, put it on the ground in his pee place, and use the same procedure. Again, praise like crazy if he goes. As he gets more consistent, cut the pad in half. Repeat. Then cut it it half again. Repeat. Get him used to going on grass instead on on the pad over a few weeks if he needs to.

It will come, but the big thing is going to be getting him to not pee in the crate. Clean it REALLY well with an enzymatic cleaner to remove all traces of the smell, replace soiled blankets and make sure it's small enough (we used a scrap of pegboard from the hardware store and tied it to the crate at about halfway when we first got our puppy)...and never put pee pads in the crate.

Good luck!

December 6th, 2007, 01:13 PM
Thank you for posting about this, I am having a similar situation with my puppy.

My concern right now is, when she is a little older (she is only 2 months right now), I'd like to take her around when I am out. How can I control her business? Right now, whenever she feels the need, she runs to her pad to do her business.

I know that pups can only hold it for max 4 hours and the time will be longer as she grows. But is there a way to train her to go at specific times?

I don't want to be in my car or something when she may suddenly need to go and does not have access to her training pad.

Also if I use the method for re-training for outdoors mentioned above, would that confuse her and break her great house-training habits?

I'd like her to be able to remain house-trained because she stays in her excercise pen while I am at work.

Thanks in advance! :)

jamie 82
December 7th, 2007, 06:14 PM
hi there!

thanks for posting these questions!

i'm having the same issues with my pup. whenever she's gotta go, she runs to her pad (right beside the front door)...which is great. its time to get her outside. she's peed a couple times out there, but still will want to go whenever...she's almost 4 months....we are ready to move the pad do we get her on schedule? do we tackle one thing at a time first? like just getting her to pee out there?

her eating is regular - in the morning and after work - but she still poops 3 or sometimes 4 times a day.

what happens when we go to work while trying to train her - do we take away the pee pad form inside and hope she holds it??