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Help needed: puppy training in a condo

Spartacus52
August 30th, 2010, 07:47 PM
Here's our situation:

We are in a 690 sq ft condo and into week two with our 8-week old Bichon Poo boy puppy. We were told by our seller that we should keep him indoors until he's had his third set of shots (mid-October). We've set up an area of approximately 100 sq ft for his kennel, food and water dishes and a pee pad. We don't keep the crate door closed when he is sleeping at night to give him access to his pee pad. So far, he will only pee and poo on the pad when he is shut in his area. However, when he has access to the rest of the condo, he goes wherever he pleases. We've been trying to take him to his pee pad every two hours but there are still mistakes.

Questions:
1) Does this set up seem like a good one, considering we will both be back to work full-time (9 to 5) next week?

2) When we are able to start taking him outside, do we get rid of the pee pads completely and rely on crating only?

3) He seems to be better at peeing at the pad than pooing. How do we encourage him to poo in the designated area?

Thank you so much in advance for your advice.

BenMax
August 31st, 2010, 08:55 AM
Having a puppy regardless of the size of your living space is always a challenge. The fact that you have this pup and will be working regular hours may be even more of a challenge as you cannot correct behaviour once it comes down to toilet training your little one.

The advice that you were given in regards to not taking the dog out until the 3rd round of immunization is actually very sound advice. Though not ideal as you want to train, the advice is good.

Now back to the training. Firstly let me point out that certain breeds are a little more challenging to house train. Don't get discouraged but keep up positive reinforcement. Never yell, hit or show any signs of aggressiveness when correcting (I am sure you know but I just wanted to emphasize). I would definately continue paper training and when you 'see' the signs that the pup is going to go either one or two, bring the pup to the paper and give a command (which ever command you wish). Once the pup actually does his/her business, make a big deal. Your pup will learn quickly that he/she will be rewarded by going where he/she should.

To be honest, your pup being a small breed may not take kindly to the cold weather (winter) so I think that paper training is a good idea. I for instance have a min pin that cannot go outside during the winter even though I tried bundling her up as much as possible. The cold is just too much for her.

As for the crate, this is very important. I would continue crate training but for a puppy all day in the crate, this will not help get him/her clean. If you can close the pup off (with a baby gate if possible) in an area with the paper, you may reinforce the fact that the business should be done on the paper.

Others may have stronger input. Try to get a hold of TenderFoot by PM if this person does not log on. The information from this person is very sound. There are other members as well that can assist such as LuckyPenny who fosters puppies and also is a wealth of information.

Best of luck to you and your pup.

Spartacus52
August 31st, 2010, 01:20 PM
Thanks BenMax,

You are making us feel more confident in our puppy training practices. The peepads are working a lot better than anticipated. We currently free feed but we are thinking of switching to schedule feeding as a means to increase the regularity of his movements. Do you think this is a good idea?

BenMax
August 31st, 2010, 01:24 PM
Thanks BenMax,

You are making us feel more confident in our puppy training practices. The peepads are working a lot better than anticipated. We currently free feed but we are thinking of switching to schedule feeding as a means to increase the regularity of his movements. Do you think this is a good idea?

Free feeding is not a good idea at all. The pup should be on a routine in order to regulate when he/she actually goes. By free feeding it does not regulate the body and he/she will go whenever. Some people feed pups 3 times a day. Morning, afternoon and dinner. Since this is not something that you will be able to do, I would feed morning and night. Please read the feeding quantities on the bag. What brands are you feeding and are you feeding kibble and can or are you feeding raw?

TeriM
August 31st, 2010, 07:28 PM
Excellent advice from BM regarding potty training but I"m afraid I need to jump in here and really question the advice about keeping the puppy only in the apartment for another six weeks :eek:. That would make this puppy 3.5 months old with having basically zero opportunities for socialization which is a very bad idea as the next few months are key socializing ages. If you have already had the pup for two weeks then that means the pup was actually fairly young (actual recommend 8-10 weeks) when you got it so socializing is a real issue.

http://www.dogstardaily.com/training/raising-puppy This is an excellent site with lots of information for raising puppies.

You need to be smart and avoid high dog traffic areas (dog parks etc) but you should be meeting vaccinated, healthy dogs where possible and meeting lots of people and seeing different sights.

Good luck and we'd love to see pictures of your puppy.

luckypenny
August 31st, 2010, 10:17 PM
8 week old puppies should be fed at least 3 meals per day.

As early as 10 weeks, you should also be looking into puppy socialization classes.

I strongly agree with TeriM that early socialization is crucial for young puppies. Here is an article that will provide you some information on the risks vs. benefits of early socialization in a class environment.

http://veterinarymedicine.dvm360.com/vetmed/article/articleDetail.jsp?id=646902&sk=&date=&pageID=4

BenMax
September 1st, 2010, 09:04 AM
Excellent advice from BM regarding potty training but I"m afraid I need to jump in here and really question the advice about keeping the puppy only in the apartment for another six weeks :eek:. That would make this puppy 3.5 months old with having basically zero opportunities for socialization which is a very bad idea as the next few months are key socializing ages. If you have already had the pup for two weeks then that means the pup was actually fairly young (actual recommend 8-10 weeks) when you got it so socializing is a real issue.

http://www.dogstardaily.com/training/raising-puppy This is an excellent site with lots of information for raising puppies.

You need to be smart and avoid high dog traffic areas (dog parks etc) but you should be meeting vaccinated, healthy dogs where possible and meeting lots of people and seeing different sights.

Good luck and we'd love to see pictures of your puppy.

I totally agree with you, but I have to say that the pup should not be brought to a dog park or a high animal traffic area only due to the immune system not being strong enough just as of yet. There have been instances as you know of giardia, coccidia and even parvo. I personally would consult with a vet before. I thought however that the 2nd set of shots provided enough protection?

Mirela
September 1st, 2010, 10:02 AM
Some socialization ideas / places to take puppy that worked for us before Leo had all his shots:
- all our friends that own dogs were invited over and we vent to visit - safe because we know the dogs - and lots of fun and possibilities of exploring.
- car rides in and out of town - the chances that to "catch something" are nil but puppy gets exposed to new smells and gets used to the car
- short visit to my workplace - new people and no other animals around - plus lots of petting and "ohh-ahh-ing" :D
- conservation areas - we went out of the beaten path to minimize the risks
- any store that does not specifically say" no pets allowed" but NO PET STORES for now - too risky. ( if somebody complains, just pick puppy up, smile and leave...no harm done...)

Have fun and try not to stress :-)

TeriM
September 2nd, 2010, 02:53 AM
I totally agree with you, but I have to say that the pup should not be brought to a dog park or a high animal traffic area only due to the immune system not being strong enough just as of yet. There have been instances as you know of giardia, coccidia and even parvo. I personally would consult with a vet before. I thought however that the 2nd set of shots provided enough protection?

Agreed :thumbs up.