How to Potty Train your Puppy

by Updated October 6, 2014

That feisty, cuddly bundle of fur may not seem very cuddly anymore after he just pooped on your new living room carpet or your newly polished floor. It is essential for puppies to be trained to potty at a designated place as early as possible. A combination of patience, continuous practice and the following steps can help you get your puppy potty-trained successfully.

  1. Designate the area where you want your puppy to potty, such as your backyard or specific areas in the yard. You can also designate an indoor spot by putting a litter box filled with sand, dry soil, kitty litter or wood shavings near the bathroom or back door, for example.
  2. Spend some time with your puppy outdoors, preferably after his mealtime or nap time, and observe his behavior before he goes to potty. This may manifest as actions like sniffing around, getting restless or even whining or squatting. When indoors, watch out for similar warning signs showing that your puppy is about to eliminate.
  3. A puppy will need to be taken out to potty at least 6 to 8 times a day. 
  4. Take your puppy out to go potty directly after every meal.
  5. Take your puppty out to go potty after playing with him.
  6. Take your puppy out to go potty first thing in the morning. And before going to bed at night.
  7. You will likely have to get up during the middle of the night to take him out to potty, if he is barking.
  8. Crate your puppy when you are not at home, but never leave a puppy in a crate for more than 4 hours.  Take him out to go potty after being in his crate.
  9. Upon seeing this signs, put your puppy in the designated area right away and wait until she eliminates. Praise her thoroughly or give her a little treat every time she successfully eliminates in the area.
  10. At night, when she becomes fidgety, take her out again to the designated spot. Make sure that the indoor designated spot is easily accessible to the puppy while you are asleep, unless you want to wake up every now and then to bring him outdoors.
  11. First thing in the morning, carry him outside immediately to decrease the chances of any further indoor accidents.
  12. Do this continuously until your puppy understands that he has to potty in the specific designated place and not just anywhere in the house.
  13. If he accidentally goes to the bathroom inside or you don't get him out just in time, clean up the mess quickly and thoroughly so he doesn't smell it anymore and won't think that he can still go to that same spot to relieve himself.
  14. Be consistent and patient, potty training may range from a few days to a few weeks, but your efforts will soon pay off, making you and your pet happier together.


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