The easiest method of housetraining a dog is to set a
Housetraining a dog
using a schedule requires that an owner remember two things.
1. The digestion process
Regardless of breed, size or lineage, a puppy
cannot control their urinary or bowel movements before 11-12
weeks of age. The muscle control has not yet developed to
the stage where they can hold it when they feel the urge to
urinate or defecate. When a puppy 12 weeks of age or
younger feels the need to void or defecate, they need to go
NOW! If your puppy is younger than 12 weeks of age, have
odor nutralizer, paper towels, carpet cleaner and other supplies
handy, because at this age, they are not able to control their
bladder or bowels more than a few short seconds when they feel
the need to go.
A puppy processes and digests its food, just
like people do. This is an important factor to remember because
many house training mistakes are made by owners who don't
understand that it takes a puppy approximately 4 - 6 hours to
digest their food. If your puppy has a bowel movement
shortly after eating, this bowel movement will not be the
digested food that he consumed in his meal just a short time
earlier. It takes a puppy approximately 4 - 6 hours to
digest his food to the stage where it will be expelled via a
Schedule Based Training: A Pugs'
Pugs are sensitive little creatures. All breeds
of dog are eager to please to be sure, but Pugs are people dogs.
They are a social breed that needs human interaction and because
of this, your Pugs psyche plays a strong role in successful
housetraining. None of these concepts need explanation, but read
on anyway just to get an idea of what a Pug puppy wants out of
Your Pug puppy wants only to please you. In
return for pleasing you, she gets to be the one place she truly
wants to be...Next to you. Whether your Pug likes to sit on your
lap, next to you on the couch, or at your feet, she wants to be
with you. At 12 weeks of age, a Pug puppy already knows that if
she does the right things, you'll welcome her presence next to
you. Your Pugs' mentality is to do whatever it can to stay on
your good side, but don't forget, at under 12 weeks of age, a
Pug can't control whether it makes inside or outside. Because of
this, your young puppy without this control really has no idea
that making in the house is wrong. It can't help it, it can't
stop it and it doesn't yet know that making outside is the thing
A close second to being next to you in a Pug's
eyes is food...I like to think Pugs care more about love than
food and until proven otherwise, I'll insist they do. Beyond
your company, a treat for doing something good, like making
outside is a big motivation for your Pug. Petting and hugs and
verbal praise are high on the list of a Pug too, but food,
that's where the action is!
So let's take the Pug's physiology and mentality
and put it all together to create a Schedule Based Training plan
that will work for both you and your Pug!
The Schedule Based Training Plan
What you'll need: You'll need
commitment and consistency, a bottle of odor neutralizer, a
supply of your Pugs regular chow stashed away near the door, a
pocket to put the chow in, an umbrella by the door, and a sense
Until your Pug is 12 weeks old:
It's an excellent idea to condition your Pug by rewarding him
for making outside even if before he's able to hold his urges.
Get him used to being rewarded, even if you can't yet expect him
to make on the schedule you create. Until he's able to control
his urges to make, take him outside every two hours until he
makes, and at least 15 minutes no matter what.
Examine your schedule: Before
you can create a outside schedule for your Pug, you have to
figure out what schedule will suit you. The goal here isn't to
develop a schedule that suits your Pug, it's to create one that
will suit you...With SBT, you bring your Pug to your schedule,
not the other way around. You'll need to give yourself 20 extra
minutes every morning, and also in the evening. For example, if
you normally wake up at 7am in order to get to work on time, now
you must wake up at 6:40.
Two meals a day: Pugs do not
need to eat 4 or even 3 times a day. Our temptation is to feed
them more than twice a day because we always worry about them
being hungry. But Pugs are chow-hounds. They love to eat, and
just because you feed them 4 times a day, doesn't mean they
won't be camped outside your kitchen around dinner
time...They'll camp there anyway. Feed your Pug twice a day
based on your veterinarians' recommendation. This will make for
less need on your Pug's part to have to go outside.
Before before Before: The SBT
method works best when you take your Pug outside before either
of it's main meals
The numbers game: A Pug, once
able, can go 4-6 hours comfortably between making. Yes, they can
go longer, and as they get older they will, but we're talking
about waiting and being comfortable. Given this time range,
using a "5 hour" schedule is a good number of hours in between
making and it will optimize the SBT you're going to use.
The sample schedule: This
schedule is only a sample. It may be perfect for you, or it may
need tailoring based on your own personal schedule. If you alter
it to suit your needs, just remember to stick to the "5 hour"
rule, feed them twice a day, and feed them after they go outside
What you'll see here is a Pug puppy that goes
outside 4 times a day, no more than 5 hours in between trips
outside (except for the final trip which is six hours) and a
schedule that makes use of the knowledge you now have of the
Pug's Physiology. Here it is:
Why it works: This schedule
works for a variety of reasons. First and foremost, it does not
force your Pug to work at holding their urges to make. Second,
it covers the digestive process of your Pug putting them outside
when they'll absolutely need to make. Finally, it has two built
in conditioning/motivating elements...Your Pug will not put up
much of a struggle to avoid going outside if she knows there's a
meal waiting for her when she goes inside after making. Believe
me, it won't take long for your Pug to figure that out!
Where did that come from? Or should we
say, when?: To further understand the idea of feeding
twice a day, combined with the physiology of the Pug, take a
second look at the schedule.
At 7am, your Pug will make outside, and what he
makes is "leftover" from the evening feeding before. At Noon,
what your Pug makes is the result of the morning feeding. At
5pm, what your Pug makes is the "leftover" from the morning
feeding. Finally, at 11pm, what your Pug makes is the result of
his evening feeding. Can it be this simple? Yes!
Neither rain nor sleet nor snow nor
driving rain...: Should keep you inside while you're
training your Pug. No matter the weather, your place during this
training period is outside with your Pug. By being outside,
you'll be a presence watching over your Pug, making sure she
makes and adding a tiny bit of pressure to make.
However long it takes: Though
you probably won't have to wait long at the 7am and 5pm trips
outside, it may not be so fast and easy at Noon and 11pm. Your
job here, and you'll do it more effectively if you're outside
with your Pug, is to send him a message; "We're not going inside
until you make". It may take a little time for your Pug to get
this message, but when he does, he'll understand this for life
and it will help speed up the process.
All work and no play: Many
people take their Pug outside to make and wind up playing with
them instead. Then, when they stop playing, their Pug doesn't
make...until about 3 seconds after he gets inside. Remember that
your goal here is to housetrain your Pug, not to play with her.
She already knows how to play.
Food rewards: Get a sandwich
sized zip-lock baggie, fill it with your Pug's regular chow and
place it near the door leading outside. As your Pug goes
outside, reach into the bag and snatch a piece or two, and place
them in your pocket. You're going to be the magical master who
can make food appear into your hands! When your Pug gets the job
done outside, reward her with a piece or two of the chow.
Initially, you'll do this at each outside time, but once your
Pug has figured out that two of those trips are followed by full
meals, you can restrict this reward to only the other two trips.
Physical rewards: To further
enhance this training, after rewarding your Pug with food, you
should also reward him with physical contact. We're not talking
about a quick tap on the head, or a bried short stroke across
the back. No sir, we're talking about heavy petting! Pet, rub,
hug and yes, once the deeds are done, you can also play a little
too. You know you want to!
Verbal rewards: To cinch the
deal, reward your Pug with one of it's most favorite
things...The sound of your voice. Pugs are extra-responsive to
their owner's voice and it gives them great pleasure. Make your
voice high in pitch, and give her lots of "good girls" and "good
puppys" while you're petting her.
Consistency: I just can't say
this enough; The SBT method, like all other methods, will only
work if you're consistent. You must be consistent in the times
you take your Pug outside, in the rewards, in always being
outside with him, and in your demeanor.
Your demeanor: I've said it
before and I'll say it again. You're going to have accidents no
matter what method of housetraining you try and the best way to
handle these mishaps is to stay calm, pick them up, clean them
up and be neutral. Don't yell, don't have a tantrum, don't scold
your Pug and most of all, don't hit her. Be calm.
Patience: Does the SBT method
work? Absolutely! Does it work overnight or in a matter of a
week? No. Housetraining takes time, and it can take as few as
3-4 weeks to work or as long as 3-4 months. Some of this depend
on your dog, much of it, even most of it in fact depends on you.
Logs: Though not a necessity,
it is useful to maintain a log of your Pug's movements outside
and inside. Writing down what they did and when and where they
did it may sound foolish or silly, but it can also be the place
where you find the key to the puzzle as to why your training
method isn't working. For example, you may use the SBT method
and find that your Pug has adapted well to it, except for one
particular time of day, such as the afternoon. Check your log,
you might just stumble across a pattern where your Pug's
accidents always seem to happen around 4:30pm for example.
Adjustments: Again, the sample
schedule above is just a sample. You need to create one that
suits your own needs. While the goal here is to bring your
schedule to your Pug, there may come a time when you realize the
schedule needs some minor tinkering. Don't worry about that as
long as it's just a minor alteration, such as 10 or 20 minutes
or even a half-hour. But if it's longer than that, you'll need
to re-evaluate the entire schedule.
That's all folks: Having helped
Pug owners to housetrain over 200 dogs, I've found the success
rate of the SBT method to be truly amazing. It works about 90%
of the time, and this is when dealing only with Pugs that have
failed to respond to being housetrained by their owners...Or,
maybe it's the owners who are behind the housetraining problems?
In many cases, a dogs' failure to grasp housetraining is the
result of mis-training where the owners need to be trained to
train. There's nothing wrong with that, it happens to the best
of people. Good luck!
are often very surprised to hear me recommend that Pugs should
be properly Trained in Good Manners and Obedience.