Potty Training Your Goldendoodle Puppy –
It’s always so awesome and exciting to take your new little puppy home for the first time! But the newness wears off a bit when you come home from work to find your sweet pup has left disasters all over the new carpet.
Now it’s likely you’ve already put some thought into training your pup to go potty outside – however in this easy to read guide, we’ll help you actually Get Started with some simple goals and steps to take!
Important Understanding About Potty Training:
Potty training your Goldendoodle puppy is all about being consistent and patient. Your goal should be to build a loving, trusting bond with your puppy.
Your Goldendoodle loves to please you, and using lots of positive reinforcement will be your biggest key in getting him to go potty Outside the house instead of on the living room carpet.
Normally it can take several months of consistent effort to become fully potty trained, however Goldendoodles are frequently known to catch on must faster. Another factor, time-wise, can be your pup’s previous training and habits, especially if you’ve waited until he was older before you started training. You may find it necessary to help your puppy break old habits at the same time you are establishing new ones.
And don’t get discouraged if he doesn’t pick it up right away! As long as you maintain a consistent regimen for feeding and taking him outside, he’ll eventually catch on.
Potty Training Your Puppy – Initial Steps
A well established fact when beginning potty training, is to keep your Goldendoodle in a smaller area such as a playpen, small room, or a leash. This taps into your pup’s instinctive desire not to go potty where he sleeps.
As he grows older, and more advanced in his training, you can gradually give him more freedom to roam about your house.
Potty Training Initial Steps – Cont.
As stated earlier, routines and schedules are important to your pup. Goldendoodles (and dogs in general) are very habitual creatures, and your job will get much easier the more scheduled you can stay.
When beginning your potty training efforts, follow these steps:
✔ Feed your pup at the same time every day (For example, morning and evening). Take away his food between times to help him control his digestive system.
✔ Take your pup outside to go potty the first thing in the morning. Then again after every meal, and when he wakes up. Finally take him outside to eliminate before he is left alone for any amount of time, and every night before he goes to bed.
✔ Make sure you always take him to the same spot outside for his potty break. The smell of his previous – shall we say “conquests” – will stimulate him to go potty there again.
✔ Watch your pup carefully and the minute he’s done going potty, heap on the praise and positive reinforcement such as a favorite toy or a treat. Goldendoodles love to please and frequently respond especially well to this type of training.
Using the bell potty training system is a quick and easy method for letting your pup alert you that it needs to go outside.
Potty Training Using The “Bell Method”
The “bell method” is an excellent and highly effective way for quickly helping your pup associate going to the bathroom with ringing a small bell hanging near your door. This also helps you know when your pup needs to go – the minute he’s ready to go.
Also keep in mind, patience and repetition is your friend. Keep your training sessions to 15 or 20 minutes at a time to keep your pups attention and keep it fun for him. Your ‘Doodle will likely not get it the first time around – just be patient and as he masters each of the steps outlined below, go to the next step.
1. Getting used to the bell – Get your Goldendoodle used to the bell by first holding the bell close to his nose. Once he touches the bell, say “Yes!” and treat him with a small reward. If needed, encourage the puppy to touch the bell by holding a treat behind it or using a bit of peanut butter dabbed on the bell.
Repeat with your puppy until he readily touches the bell with his nose. Give him lots of praise and/or a treat each time. Once he confidently touches the bell as soon as you present it, add a simple word such as “touch” or “bell.” Then start to hold the bell a little farther away, so as to make your pup walk a few steps to touch it.
2. Ringing the doorbell – Once your ‘Doodle has mastered touching the bell on command, fasten the bell at nose height on the door you would like him to go out. (Hang it from the doorknob or use the easy to install mounting bracket most bells come with)
Encourage your puppy to bump the bell with his nose, and as soon as he does, say “Yes!” and reward him. Once again, repeat the process until your pup readily touches the bell at your cue. Reward him with very enthusiastic praise and treats!
3 – Ringing at the right time – In this step, we’ll move on to teaching “Shadow” to ring the bell only when he needs to go potty. Bring your puppy to the door, point at the bell, and say your cue word, “touch!” or “bell!” As soon as he touches the bell, say “Yes!,” then open up and take him outside. With enough repetition, your pup learns that you’ll open the door when he touches the bell.
With that down pat, your puppy is likely to begin ringing the bell just to go outside to play. To make sure he only rings the bell at the right time, you need to teach him that ringing the bell is only for potty breaks. As soon as he rings the bell, take him outside on a leash, to the place you want him to eliminate. Give him a few minutes, and if he does his business, give him lot’s of praise and rewards. If he doesn’t, or just wants to play, take him right back inside.
Important! Remember your puppy’s training needs to be a fun game with much praise and tiny treats. Make sure everyone around the puppy follows the same training method to avoid confusion to the puppy. Goldendoodle puppies have a short attention span, so brief training sessions several times a day, work better than one long, drawn-out one. When he demonstrates that he’s caught on, reward him with a jackpot of several tiny treats!
PRO TIP: The best training method for Goldendoodles is lots of positive reinforcement for good behavior, and a kind, but firm “No” for undesirable behavior.
More Potty Training Methods For Your Puppy
There are a variety of other puppy potty-training methods including the use of a litter box, using a crate (Crate training) etc.
Using a crate and/or litter box entails that you watch your puppy carefully and as soon as he shows signs of needing to use the potty, take him out of his crate and take him outside or take him to his litter box until he learns to hold it back.
For Crate Training
- Ensure your crate is large enough for the puppy to lie down, and move freely around, but not so big that he’s able to use a corner as the bathroom.
- When using the crate for more than a couple hours at one time, make sure your pup has adequate fresh water in a dispenser you can attach to the crate or a dish he can’t spill over.
- Don’t use a crate if your puppy already has a habit of eliminating in it. Eliminating in the crate means he may not be getting outside enough, the crate is too big; or he may be too young to hold it in.
Some More Potty Training Wisdom
Signs Your Puppy Needs To Go – Your puppy may whine, circle, sniff, bark, or, if unconfined, even bark or scratch at the door, when he needs to go. Take him outside or to his litter box as soon as you can.
Potty Training Setbacks – It’s absolutely commonplace for your pup to have accidents occasionally. There could be any variety of reasons for accidents, from incomplete house training to changes in the puppy’s environment.
When the inevitable happens and your puppy does have an accident, simply keep on training. Although uncommon, if it still doesn’t seem to be working, you might consult your veterinarian to rule out any medical issues.
Some Final Puppy Training “Do’s” and “Don’ts”
There’s a few things to keep in mind in your puppy potty training efforts:
Don’t – Do not harshly scold or punish your pup for having an accident. It can lead to your pup fearing you instead of bonding with you.
Do – If you catch your puppy in the act, say “No” or clap loudly so he understands he did something unacceptable. Calling him or gently pulling by the collar, take him to your litter box or outside. Once he’s finished, shower him with lots of praise and/or give him a small treat.
Don’t – Don’t vent your anger or impatience at your pup when you discover an accident, after the fact. Your Goldendoodle puppy generally won’t be able to connect your displeasure with his booboo – Instead focus on more training to eliminate the undesired behavior.
Do – Staying outside longer with your puppy can help him curb accidents. Naturally curious pups may need a bit of extra time to explore before they relieve themselves.
Do – Focus more on bonding well with your pup and rewarding its good behavior, than on punishing unwanted ones. This taps into your puppy’s natural instinct to please his owner, and motivating him to do his best for you.
FINAL PRO TIP: Use an enzymatic cleaner rather than an ammonia-based cleaner to clean up accidents. This helps minimize odors that might attract the puppy back to the same spot.