Where oh where has my puppy dog gone? Oh where oh where can he be?
I think he’s peeing behind the couch. Why do I think that? Ummm -because that’s what he Does.
And you know why? Because someone Lets him.
When I taught classes, there were always women ‘of a certain age’ who would come in with a new puppy and I’d ask ‘do you have any housebreaking issues or questions?’ And they would look at me as if I’d grown a third or fourth head and say NO.
To them it just wasn’t an issue. Dogs peed where they were told, there was no discussion. It took as long as it took. Yes, many of them did it in many different ways, but it was important and just a chore to be done.
Then I had a man come in with a twelve week old small puppy. He told me his wife was at home with their four kids under the age of five, and she was NOT doing a good job housebreaking this puppy. The puppy was peeing in the house, not in the unfenced back yard. I told him his wife was overwhelmed and no way could she house break this puppy with four tiny kids in the house to…do what with while she took the puppy out as needed? He didn’t understand the question.
And the rest of us fall in between.
So what do I do?
Most of my dogs are ‘housebroken’ in two rooms of the house. The Kitchen. The den. Two of them have run of the house, because they have proven themselves worthy. (And my son and I want a dog to sleep with)
The dogs know, if they need out, to let me know They go to the back door, They circle in front of me. One whines. But they all have a ‘way’. Its my job as mommy to figure it out. If -I- mess up -and I do sometimes – well – Sometimes I don’t pay attention, sometimes I’m lazy, sometimes my head is in another world – its a writer thing- but there is Zero excuse for that. They told me and I messed up.
I have them on a loose schedule, that probably should be tightened. They go out first thing in the morning, a couple more times during the day,when I’m home, and before bed.
The good thing about my dogs is they are confined. That doesn’t mean that they are in crates all the time – that’s just mean, and why have a dog, if not for fun? However – they are not the be all end all of my world. I have a job, volunteer work, I take classes, I have kids and grandboys, - and my grandboys are also allowed to have fun and toy play withouy cold puppy nose up…anything or chewing on their stuff.
So the dogs are confined to two well used rooms in the house.
Housebreaking is a step by step process. I don’t expect a two week old puppy to pee outside. I don’t expect an 8 week old puppy to be fully housebroken. Just like kids, they mess up. You did too. Just focus on the basics. Be calm, be patient, tell puppy what you want, when, where and how.
It can happen.