A Word From... Dr. C.A. Heller III DVM

Housebreaking Your New Puppy

There are many issues involved in training a puppy. The first thing that must be accomplished is house-breaking. This is a reasonably easy procedure when you routinely with your puppy. They should be let outside to relieve themselves about every hour during the first few weeks, gradually increasing the time as your puppy is able. Additionally they should be let outside first thing in the morning, right before retiring for the evening and after every meal. When you take them outside, try to take them to the same area. They will begin to recognize this area as an “elimination area”, which will also be helpful in the house-breaking process. When you are unable to be with your puppy at all times, the method of training the is most widely recommended is “crate training.”

This method of training involves keeping your puppy confined to a crate at times when you are not available to take your puppy out as often as necessary, and also during the night. Being confined to a create encourages your puppy to hold their urine and feces until you are able to let them outside. The crate should be large enough for the puppy to have plenty of space to move around, but not so large that are able to get a great distance away from any mess. Using the crate at night also lets your puppy understand that it is now time for settling down for some rest. (Probably much needed!)

“Paper-training”, where your puppy would be encouraged to go on newspaper, is not gen- erally recommended any longer as it confuses your puppy into thinking that is acceptable to go in the house.

Enjoy your puppy! You will be best friends for life! Also, please remember during this holiday season, that giving a puppy as a gift is a present that is not always well received. The decision to acquire a pet should be a thoughtful choice made by the family themselves.

Happy Holidays!

C.A. Heller III, DVM
Animal Care Clinic

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