Thursday, March 5, 2015

Col. Potter Training Tips: Easy Housetraining!

Contributed by a Col. Potter Volunteer

Your little Cairn can positively be trained well, but sometimes it is wise to also use belly bands or panties as insurance when in doubt - and be sure to clean all accidents thoroughly!  Borax works really, really, really well!
Are you thinking about adding a new Rescued Cairn to your family?  There are many things to consider, and lots of planning to do.  You can expect to get many great tips to help you integrate your New Cairn into your home, so it is good to know that some of this advice will also will apply to your current resident dogs.  Housetraining is a great example.

Think Ahead about your Dog’s Housetraining Needs!

  • Expect confusion and mistakes for the first few days even in a trained dog
  • It is vital to use a crate and/or a confinement area so as to not allow opportunities for accidents in the first week or twoSet your dog up to succeed.
  • If using a crate, it should be just large enough for your dog to turn around in and stretch out.
  • If using a confinement area, confine to one un-carpeted room (the kitchen is ideal) with pet-proof gates.
  • You can always relax the regime later, but initially, be consistent in your schedule.  Set your dog up to succeed in the early weeks.
  • Provide extra opportunities to eliminate outside:
                        *First thing in the morning
                        *After eating
                        *Every 2-3 hours
                        *Last thing before bed
                        *If dog doesn’t eliminate on any particular outing,
                          try again an hour later

  • Accompany dog to eliminatego with him rather than sending him outside so that:
                        a. You know whether he’s gone or not, and
                        b. You can reward at the right instant – praise or 
                             a small food treat as he finishes

  • Go to the same spot to make it easier, or at least the same kind of surface
  • Praise and reward all outdoor elimination for the first few days – later can stop but it is ok to continue praising if you want.
  • Interrupt him (“Ah! Ah! Let’s go outside!”) at the start of any mistakes indoors, then hustle him outside to finish.  If he finishes outside, praise and reward.  Note: interrupt him, do no punish him.  Punishment is not a good idea early in a relationship with a new dog, and of dubious value at any time in housebreaking.  And, even more importantly, if the dog makes a mistake unsupervised, it is your fault not the dog’s fault.  Never punish your new dog for making a mistake somewhere if he is unsupervised – there is zero connection to the act that happened in the past.
  • Clean all accidents thoroughly!  Borax works great!
  • Add one extra room of your home to your dog’s allowed area every few days if your dog is successful.  Supervise closely every time a room is added.
  • Gradually extend the duration between opportunities to go out, adding a half hour per week.  It is reasonable to expect an adult dog to hold on for 4-5 hours.  Of course, many dogs can hold on longer but it is always more humane not to have to (except at night)
  • Sudden onset of indoor elimination in a trained dog may indicate a medical problem – consult your veterinarian immediately before getting behavior help.
Getting a puppy?  The same rules apply, except you will need to make more frequent trips outside to the potty spot in the beginning, stretching the intervals slowly as the puppy grows and matures.  Consistency is the key!   You need to make an appropriate schedule and stick to it to create patterns that will set your puppy up for success.

Good luck! And thank you again for opening your heart and home to a rescued Cairn!

Rescuing one Cairn will not change the world,
but it will surely change the world for that one Rescued Cairn

Read More About It:

It’s Always Best to Start at the Beginning!

I’m Not Sure we’ve been Properly Introduced!

Toto: The Other Side of the Story!

And the Oscar goes to…

Col. Potter Needs a Few More Beginnings! 
Please Volunteer to Foster and help us help give a new start to every Cairn in need!

Please  Consider being a CP Volunteer!

CP Foster Home Application form:

CP Transport Volunteer Driver form:

CPCRN Volunteer form:

Col. Potter’s Name a Rescue Cairn Program


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