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Consistency is key in housebreaking your puppy

People frequently ask why their puppies potty in the house. Puppies must be trained to know where they can go to the potty. If they go inside the house, they will know they are in trouble but won’t know what they did wrong. If you are having trouble house-training a healthy pet, it usually comes down to one thing: consistency. If your pet has been pottying in the proper place and suddenly no longer does, the first thing you should do is have it checked by a vet. There might be a health issue that caused the change. The dog may not want to go but has no choice physically. If it is physically well, read on. If you have a puppy that you are trying to train, crate training can be your friend. The key with crate training is not to get too big a crate. Then make a schedule for the training. For instance: Get up in the morning, immediately take the puppy outside on a leash, and as soon as he goes potty, immediately praise and treat the dog. Immediacy is the key -- you only have one to three seconds to reward him for doing good. After the three-second window, you are rewarding him for something else, and it might be something you don't want to reward him for.

As for a crate, don't think of this negatively for you or your pup. Make it a happy place and reward your dog for going in. Then, when he gets older, he will want to be in his crate. Another important thing to know when house-training your puppy is that he can hold it longer when he is asleep. When he is awake, a good rule of thumb is one hour for each month of age plus one. So a four-month-old puppy will not be able to wait more than five hours before he has to go when he’s awake. As with anything, if you are having challenges, contact a certified dog trainer.

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