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Best housetraining strategy?

October 27th, 2008, 03:12 PM

We just got two puppies, two Shih-Tzu/Bichon puppies from the same litter that were born on September 2, and am wondering if the following strategy for care and housetraining are a good idea.

- The puppies get taken outside after they wake up and about once every hour or so when they are awake to pee/poo. They get treats and lots of praise for peeing/pooing outside. We haven't had many accidents in the house but when they do have an accident we don't scold them we just pick them up and take them outside.

- We both work from 9 to 5. The puppies stay in their crate all day except when I come home at lunch to let them out and let them eat a little bit. Then they eat when we get home and later in the evening. They get let out in the morning to pee/poo.

Does that sound okay? I feel bad keeping them in their crate for most of the day, but they have enough room in their to move around a bit, snuggle and sleep for most of the day. I would keep them in a locked room all day, but I'm afraid that would encourage eliminating in the house and I definitely don't want to do that.

Any advice? Does anyone know when I can get rid of the crate and let them stay in a room (ie. the laundry room) for the day?



October 27th, 2008, 03:24 PM
It sounds great. I think you are doing fine.

Nowadays crating is all you can do if you cannot afford puppy daycare (which is more expensive than children daycare). People have to work and I cannot critisize anyone for this. Don't feel quilty - you have no choice but to crate during the day.

In the perfect world someone would be home all day. As long as the time that you do give your pups are that of quality - then who can say that it is wrong.

Good luck with your puppies.

October 27th, 2008, 08:45 PM
What you are doing sounds great, just keep doing it. Small dogs can be hard to housetrain because their 'den' (kind of like their personal space in which they wouldn't soil) so to speak, is smaller than a large dog's would be. However, just be patient and consistent and your puppies will be fine. By the way, I have a Shih-tzu x bichon and she's a sweetheart. You will enjoy them!

With respect to the crate, if your puppies have been reliable in terms of housetraining, then you could seclude them in the laundry room. My brother did that with his two labs. Eventually, when they are 100% housetrained and they have earned it, you can give them free run of the house. The point of crate training is that the dog instinctively will not soil where he sleeps so that is why the crate has to just be big enough for the dog to turn around. But if you are sure that they are trustworthy, then try the laundry room. The crate is better than not knowing what they are getting into and possibly getting hurt. They probably sleep all day anyway as they are puppies.