Training an older dog to use a pee pad can be a great solution for various reasons, including:
✣ Age-related health issues: Senior dogs may experience incontinence or have difficulty holding their bladder for long periods.
✣ Limited mobility: Arthritis or other conditions might make it challenging for older dogs to reach outdoor potty spots.
✣ Adverse weather conditions: Extreme hot or cold weather might deter senior dogs from going outside regularly.
While it might require more patience and understanding compared to training a puppy, teaching an older dog to use a pee pad is definitely achievable. Here’s a guide to help you get started:
How to potty train adult dog - 7 Steps:
1. Choose the right pee pad:
- Size: Opt for a pad large enough for your dog to comfortably lie on and do their business.
- Absorbency: Select a pad with high absorbency to prevent leaks and ensure hygiene.
- Leak-proof backing: Choose a pad with a waterproof backing to protect your floors.
- Attractant scent: Some pads come with a built-in scent that attracts dogs to use them.
2. Designate a potty area:
- Pick a quiet, easily accessible location away from high-traffic areas.
- Place the pad against a wall or in a corner to provide a sense of security.
- Use a non-slip mat underneath the pad to prevent it from moving.
3. Introduce the pad gradually:
- Let your dog sniff and explore the pad without any pressure.
- Use a positive and encouraging tone when they approach the pad.
- You can even place some treats on the pad to make it more appealing.
4. Establish a routine:
- Take your dog to the pee pad frequently, especially after waking up, eating, drinking, or playing.
- Use a verbal cue like “go potty” or “pee pad” to guide them towards the designated area.
- Be patient and consistent, as it may take some time for your dog to understand the purpose of the pad
5. Reward and praise:
- Offer immediate and enthusiastic praise when your dog uses the pad successfully.
- Reward them with treats, petting, or playtime to reinforce the positive behavior.
- Avoid scolding or punishing your dog for accidents, as this can create anxiety and hinder the training process.
6. Clean up accidents promptly:
- Use an enzymatic cleaner to remove any traces of urine or feces, as lingering smells might attract your dog to go in the same spot again.
- Replace the pad regularly to maintain hygiene and prevent bad odors.
7. Be patient and consistent:
- Remember, training an older dog takes time and patience.
- Don’t get discouraged by setbacks, and remain consistent with your routine and positive reinforcement.
- Consult your veterinarian if you encounter any difficulties or suspect underlying health issues.