Welcome to your new furry family member! Adopting a rescue dog is such a rewarding experience. However, it does come with some challenges as how to train a rescue dog to pee outside these dogs likely did not receive proper house training in their previous home or shelter environment. Getting a rescue dog trained to go potty outside takes patience, consistency, and positive reinforcement. With time and effort, your new pup will learn where it’s appropriate to go.
In this extensive guide, I will walk you through the training process step-by-step. I’ll go over everything from creating a routine to selecting the proper equipment to coping with accidents indoors. You may have your rescue dog reliably eliminated outside in no time if you implement the strategies suggested here. Let’s get started on house training success!
Preparations and Equipment
Before bringing your new rescue dog home, some preparations need to be made. Setting yourself and your pup up for success right from the beginning will make the house training process go much more smoothly. Here are some key things to take care of:
Puppy-proof your home. Remove any breakable items, electrical cords, plants, shoes, trash cans or anything your new dog may be tempted to chew on or have accidents on.
Choose a household cleaning product. Opt for an enzymatic cleaner that breaks down pet odors on a molecular level. This will assist in avoiding recurring mishaps in the same locations. Some good options include Nature’s Miracle, Rocco & Roxie, or Angry Orange.
Gather potty supplies. Keep leashes, poop bags, treats, and your preferred cleaning product close to hand.
Set up an indoor potty area. If necessary, limit your dog to an easily cleanable area near the door using newspapers or puppy training pads during training. This allows your dog to eliminate indoors at first.
Designate an outdoor potty spot. Choose a low-traffic grassy area in your yard or community that you will consistently take your dog to. Consider adding a potty post as a reminder.
Obtain crates. Crates provide a den-like retreat for dogs and are invaluable for housetraining. Choose a sized one that allows your dog to stand up and turn around.
Stock up on treats and toys. Positive reinforcement is key to housetraining success. Have small, soft treats on hand, as well as some interactive toys to reward your dog and keep them occupied inside.
Now that your home is prepared, it’s time to focus on the schedule and technique aspects of housetraining. The next sections will outline the step-by-step process to get your new rescue dog consistently eliminated outside.
Setting and Sticking to a Schedule
Establishing a routine for your new dog is imperative for successful housetraining. Rescue dogs especially need structure and predictability. Having a schedule allows you to anticipate bathroom needs and catch your dog in the act of rewarding the behavior. Here are some schedule basics to implement:
Feed at set times. Try to space feedings 8-12 hours apart. This regulates your dog’s potty schedule.
Take out right after meals, play, and naps. Because digestion encourages excretion, have these “potty cues” ready.
Take out first thing in the morning. Most rescue dogs must depart right away after waking up.
Set a standard elimination time, like right after work. Sticking to this helps regulate your dog’s habits.
Take out every 1-2 hours when home and every 30 minutes during play/training. Provide opportunities to eliminate.
Take out right before bed. Ideally, your dog will have had a few opportunities prior without accidents.
To maintain consistency, step outside through the same door each time.
While at first your rescue may need frequent trips outside on their new schedule, stick to the routine faithfully and your dog learns to both eliminate and wait. Mark successful outings with praise to reinforce the habit. Be patient—it usually takes 3-6 months to thoroughly housetrain a dog.
Walking the Dog Like a Pro
Following a schedule is just as crucial as how you handle outside toilet breaks. Here are some pointers for properly handling these outings that help to understand how to train a rescue dog to pee outside:
Use a leash for control so your dog associates you with bathroom time.
Go straight outside when taking your dog out. Don’t play and stimulate them inside first.
Take them to the designated potty spot each time for consistency.
Give the simple command “Go Potty” – Say this cue before taking them outdoors to let them know it’s time to relieve themselves.
Watch for signs they need to go like sniffing or circling. As soon as they start to eliminate, use cue words like “Hurry up” or “Go potty”.
Mark and reward with multiple treats and praise once they finish going. Party for successes here.
Leash up again immediately after and head inside. Don’t play until the next scheduled trip.
Clean up any accidents promptly with an enzymatic cleaner to remove all traces of odor.
If no success within 10 minutes, head inside and try again after another scheduled activity.
With practice and patience, you and your dog will become a well-oiled bathroom team! Consistency in this area will educate children on where and when elimination is most effective.
Dealing with Accidents
Despite your best efforts at scheduling bathroom trips, it’s common for accidents to still happen how to train a rescue dog to pee outside. Here’s how to handle them positively:
Remain calm and neutral when finding an accident. Getting upset can stress your dog.
NEVER punish or rub their nose in it, as this often worsens behaviors.
Do NOT scold or yell, as dogs associate this with you, not their bathroom behaviors.
Simply say a basic “Ah ah” sound and take them outside, even if the deed is done.
Clean the spot thoroughly with an enzymatic cleaner to fully remove all odors.
Reward heavily if they go outside after an accident for positive reinforcement.
Go back to the basics of scheduling and supervision if accidents are frequent.
The goal here is for your dog to associate you and the outdoor area as their potty place – not a particular spot indoors. Stay positive, as setbacks happen. With time and consistency following these tips, they will learn proper elimination habits.
Puppy Crate Training Tips of How To Train a Rescue Dog To Pee Outside
Using crates is one of the best ways to housetrain dogs and provide them with a den-like safe space. Here are some pointers for puppy crate training tips:
Start with short increments of confinements and work up to when you cannot watch a puppy.
Provide comfortable beds and always keep water available.
Feed all meals inside the crate to help it become associated with good things.
Use a command like “Crate” when placing them inside and “Okay” for release.
Constrict at first during naps or when leaving the house for errands.
To promote calm behavior within the crate, provide praise and incentives.
Stay nearby at first to prevent excessive crying/barking while they are crated alone.
Never use the crate as punishment, as this creates negative associations.
Begin by leaving for 5-10 minutes at a time, gradually increasing your alone time.
Take straight outside when releasing to relieve themselves.
With crate training, your rescue gains confidence in their safe space while you maintain control of their housetraining. Always praise successes inside the crate.
Handling Submissive/Excited Urination
Stress urine as a result of submission or over-excitement is a common issue during a rescue’s adjustment to your household. Here are suggestions to help with puppy crate training tips:
Give plenty of space when greeting. Let them approach on their terms to feel secure.
Limit interaction to calm activities like petting when first arriving home. Exercise comes later.
Keep a grooming wipe on hand to spot clean any accidents right away without scolding.
Treat calm conduct near you rather than excitable/jumpy behavior.
Have them sit to calm down before initiating any handling/petting. Reward calmly sitting.
Management – keep them leashed in-house until they settle; limit access to rooms where stress may arise.
Desensitization training – start exposing gradually to stressful stimuli like strangers/kids, working up duration tolerance. Reward relaxing.
Consider anti-anxiety supplements if struggling with composure under vet supervision.
With patience and positive management/conditioning, your dog’s stress levels will stabilize in their new home over time. Make the transition comfortable for them.
Training Command Cues
Having strong command cues to utilize during toilet training reinforces good elimination practices. These commands help how to train a rescue dog to pee outside :
“Go Potty” – Say this cue before taking them outdoors to let them know it’s time to relieve themselves. Reward heavily for compliance.
“Hurry Up” – If they start eliminating but aren’t finishing, this gently encourages completion so you can reward/praise more.
“Okay,” said said after a successful elimination as one walked inside. Let them know outside time is over and play or food comes next.
“Leave It” – To teach that outdoor time is solely for toilet, not play, to stop habits such as sniffing after excretion. Redirect.
“Good Potty” – Marker phrase to use alongside lavish praise when they use the designated spot properly.
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