QUESTION: We bought a 7-week-old puppy, two days ago. I am so frustrated with him. He is pooping and peeing all over the house. Floor, carpets, you name it. I put him out every hour and have been rubbing his nose in it and still he won’t stop. Is he just a bad puppy? Should I lock him up somewhere?

ANSWER: WHOA, you have only had this 7-week-old baby for two days? A puppy takes time to house train! They do not even have full control of their bladder and bowel until 4 months of age.

The first couple of days a puppy is in a new home don't expect miracles. New home and new people on top of missing his mother and litter mates, so give him a couple of days to adjust before cracking down on the house training. Give the puppy a chance to bond with you first. That is only fair.

Rules To Remember: When a puppy wakes up he has to pee, then shortly afterwards, pooh. So immediately when a puppy wakes up, put him out and watch that he accomplishes one or both missions. Then let him back in and praise him LOTS for a job well done. Then through out the day, let him out every two or three hours. Especially when playing hard, just like when waking up, they will have to urinate and perhaps pooh. Last person up at night, puts the puppy out one last time.

Puppies truly believe Man made carpets to go to the bathroom on. So block him off from all carpeted areas. Kitchens (family areas) with Linoleum/Laminate/hardwood are the best for a puppy. Put his bed, food and water in one corner and newspaper (or pee pads) down in another corner. He will need that newspaper (pee pad) until fully house trained, especially at night when no one is awake to let him out.

Never lock a puppy away in a bathroom or laundry room or basement with the door closed as that is like putting them in SOLITARY CONFINEMENT (JAIL). If you must keep him somewhere besides the kitchen, then use a baby gate so he can at least see out. Kitchens are preferred, as the humans are often in there for much needed human companionship.

Rubbing a puppy’s nose in his excrement or urine is Abuse and doesn't teach the puppy anything except to be AFRAID of the owner. Animal Behaviorists have known this for years but still the Myth persists that this is the way to punish the poor creature and teach him.

If you must go with crate training, please remember no dog should be locked in a crate over TOTAL 8 hours a day out of 24 hours. No more than 4 hours without being let out of it to go to the bathroom and play and be played with. So take the 24 hours in a day and figure out which 8 he is going to spend in there. If you work, come home on your lunch break and let him out for an hour. If your locking him up at night, get up in four hours and let him out. Please do not be one of those irresponsible Pet Owners who never stop to think and the puppy or dog ends up locked up for the majority of 24 hours per day. Think about it, locked up while your out of the house for work or shopping or visiting, locked up while your sleeping, there goes most of 24 hours!!!

House training a puppy is no different than Potty-Training a young child. Work at it diligently and fairly without being cruel to the child and suddenly "The Job Is Done". Force the child before it is mature enough (age varies with all children and all puppies) and nothing but problems and a fearful or resentful child or puppy.

REMEMBER THE BIG 4 WHEN TRAINING ALL ANIMALS: Patience, Kindness, Consistency and Repetition. All four combined never fails to work and no truer words were ever spoken when it comes to house training. Patience, Kindness, Consistency and Repetition.  

QUESTION: I have a darling, tiny, four-month-old puppy. I just love him to pieces. But ever since my husband and I bought him, he barks and cries all night long until I go to him. He keeps it up for hours. Also he really loves me the most and flips out if I am out of his sight, even if my husband is right there beside him. He also has started doing his business on the floor instead of just his newspaper or pee pads. Is it to late to teach him to go outside? Have I spoiled him too much?

ANSWER: It sounds like he is a bit spoiled, but he is suffering a form of Separation Anxiety when you leave him alone.

It is not to late to change this puppy’s behavior. First puppies cry the first two to four nights because they are in a new territory with new humans. They are also missing their mother and littermates. If completely ignored, they do stop because they do not get any attention for crying. Even bad attention such as hollering at the puppy is better than no attention at all is what they think so they continue to cry and whine. Just ignore him completely. Don't even talk to your husband because then he knows you’re awake and keeps it up. This does work if you stick to it and IGNORE him totally. It may take awhile but is well worth it in the end.

Puppies will begin soiling elsewhere in the house unless their bathroom site (newspaper or pee pads) is changed all the time and kept fresh. Not to late to teach him to go outside to the bathroom either. When a puppy wakes up, first he has to pee, then pooh shortly afterwards. So whoever gets up first in the morning takes the puppy out. And simply stays out until he does both jobs. Then tons of praise to reward him. Same throughout the day, when he wakes up and or plays, take him out. He may not have to pooh all the time but will pee for you outside. Then lots of praise again. Last person up at night, takes the puppy out.

To curb the beginning separation anxiety, ignore him totally. Walk away from him and do not speak to him or look at him until he settles down and quits. It is just like the crying at night, if he gets absolutely no response from you, he will stop it. When training any animal, remember the big 4. Patience, Kindness, Consistency and Repetition. All four combined never fails to work.

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