10 Reasons Not to Buy Fake Dog Grass Pads

Fake indoor grass pads for dogs

Here are 10 reasons not to buy fake grass pads for your dog. Some of the ideas came from comments on a previous post.

1. Owners of small dogs have enough problems with housebreaking.

We all know at least one person who owns a Yorkie, Maltese, Chihuahua or Pomeranian that pees in the house. I’m not talking about old dogs that can’t hold it. I’m talking about 2-year-old dogs that still aren’t potty trained.

If the owner can’t train her dog to go to the bathroom outside (one of the easiest things to teach a dog), how will she train her dog to pee on fake grass? This will only encourage the dog to pee on carpet, rugs, couches and mattresses. I am a professional pet sitter and I see examples of this every week.

See my post: How to train my dog to use pee pads.

2. What about dogs that lift their legs?

Are you going to buy him a few fake trees and bushes to go along with that grass? Or maybe he’ll just pee on the wall?

Here’s an example of what fake grass pads look like:

Fake grass pads for dogs

3. Fake grass pads for dogs are not the same as a litter box.

Cats have dignity and cover up after themselves. Dogs using this product won’t be covering up anything. They’ll probably step right in it. Or maybe they’ll do that thing where they kick their back legs and fling some poop onto your carpet. My dog has an annoying habit of walking while he poops. If I bought fake grass pads for him, he would probably walk right off the edge!

See my post: My dog pees right next to the potty pad!

4. Dogs are not as sanitary as cats.

Cats are naturally clean animals. Dogs are naturally filthy. They are careless, they roll in things and they eat garbage, dead animals and poop.

5. There are other options than the “Potty Patch” if you work long hours.

Dogs shouldn’t be left alone for too long. Many people who work long shifts have dogs, but they come home during their breaks, take their dogs to daycare or hire a dog walker or pet sitter. Dogs are pack animals and need interaction. Leaving a dog home for 12 hours or more several days a week is similar to leaving a dog chained in a yard.

Reasons not to buy fake grass pads for dogs

6. Fake grass pads for dogs won’t take away all issues.

The average housebroken dog can go eight or nine hours without going to the bathroom. If you are leaving your dog home for shorter periods and she is having accidents, there might be a bigger issue than her not being able to hold it. She could have a bladder infection or anxiety.

If you have recently moved, she might not understand where she can and can’t go to the bathroom. Purchasing indoor fake grass is unlikely to solve these problems.

7. “At least the dog has a home” is a poor excuse.

Dogs need more than food, water and a place to relieve themselves. Some of the country’s most troubled, abused dogs are the ones confined to basements, kennels and backyards. They never get walked, trained, exercised or socialized, but because these dogs live in nice homes (with fake grass pads!) nobody says anything.

8. Lots of dogs eat their own poop.

Let’s face it, many of them do. I think this would be too tempting for a lot of dogs. Some dogs will eat their poop and their owners won’t even know it.

Fake grass pads for dogs

9. The dog will get walked less.

Most dogs don’t get walked enough already. This product will give owners another excuse not to walk the dog. It’s bad enough that so many small dogs get nothing more than a five-minute walk to relieve themselves. Now some will be lucky if they get outside at all.

10. Training a dog to use this won’t be as easy as it sounds.

Owners who don’t have time to let their dogs out are not going to take the time to properly teach the dog how to use the indoor grass.

Dogs conditioned to go outside are not going to understand the concept of peeing on fake grass in the house. They will have to be trained, and it could take a week or months for them to learn, depending on the dog and the owner. Most dogs will never fully understand the concept.

What’s your opinion on fake indoor grass for dogs?

For more information, check out my post on 10 reasons to buy fake indoor grass for dogs.

338 Readers Commented

Join discussion
  1. Jessie on December 23, 2012

    Although this is a website of reasons why not to buy fake grass for dogs to use, I need one for my patio. He doesn’t like going on the plain, concrete floor and it’s a big trouble if we have to leave and don’t have time to walk him. He refuses to go outside the patio to release, I don’t know why, probably because it has no grass or plants around in it. So, if I bought a Potty Patch, would it solve my problem? I’ll be placing the Potty Patch outside in the patio, not indoors. I need a resolution.. Any suggestions? Thanks.

    • Jamie on January 15, 2013

      I think it would work just fine. Each week move the Potty Patch a little closer to the desired area you want him to relieve himself, once the Potty Patch is in the desired location, leave it there for a while, then remove it. Your dog should run straight to that spot without the Potty Patch and take care of business.
      Hope this helps!

    • Barn on May 28, 2016

      No here is another situation. I
      Have a very Smart standard poodle who was housebroken the by
      9 weeks old to going
      On my AstroTurfed large enclosed
      Yard. She is a year old now
      And has never peed outside that area. I
      Am trying to Get her to
      Use the natural
      Areas around house and still has not relieved herself other then on the AstroTurf . It is a huge issue because I
      want to take her on arias trip. Any suggestions to resolve this?

      • Kristie on December 6, 2016

        I feel like this topic is WAY to dependent on the situation to make these kinds of statements. My dog is FULLY potty trained. However we are moving to a top floor of a high rise and there is no way my dog is going to hold every single potty break every single day. Accidents in the public spaces of my building are an inevitability that I will not accept. So I chooose to use faux grass on our balcony. These judgy, holier then thou articles ignores all the reasons in which most of us have no other choice. And how dare anyone make the assumption that all faux grass users are lazy oofs who won’t walk their dogs.

  2. Carl on January 9, 2013

    The reason why I’m considering buying a fake grass thing is because the neighborhood we live isn’t that great n also my husband works nights. I’m afraid to take my 3dogs (2 which r puppies that r being potty trained) out that long at night alone.

    • cave on January 21, 2013

      i to fear late nite walks since i was followed by a pack of coyotes one night. did you know that dogs are allowed off leash in central park in NYC because it helps keep the crime down.

  3. Jamie on January 15, 2013

    I would have to disagree. I have a chihuahua puppy that took right to the “fake grass” the very first day I brought it home, and I didn’t have to spray anything on it to attract her to it. She mainly uses it when I’m at work and at night instead of waking me up to go out. She is also learning that she would rather go outside than use the fake grass. I will admit that on rainy days she prefers the indoor “dry” grass rather than the wet outdoor grass.
    As for your statement, “If the owner can’t train her dog to go to the bathroom outside…how will she train her dog to pee on fake grass? This will only encourage the dog to pee on carpet, rugs, couches and mattresses.” This is not true either. My puppy has NEVER peed or pooped on furniture. Yes, when I first got her she did pee and poo on the carpet and floor, but I have learned that dogs will pee and poo on anything that the owner allows them to continue to soil on, they see it as an acceptable place “to go” if the owner allows it.
    Personally, I love the fake grass. When I’m at work and during the night she uses it without fail. And the cotton, or whatever they are made of, pee pee pads are not an option…she chews them up! Fake grass is a blessing, without it she would do her business on the hardwood floors and ruin them! I’m sure there are some cons to it, but I haven’t encountered any yet.

    • Christin on February 20, 2013


      I agree! I have a 6 month old chihuahua and she took to the fake grass almost immediately. All puppies have a few accidents but mine adapted pretty well. She loves running to her potty when she wakes up in the morning. I still let her in the yard and walk her frequently. She is a well- rounded dog who can go inside or out and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

    • Michele on October 27, 2015

      I 100% agree with you. I love my fake grass pad. My dogs took to it right away as well. And though my youngest still uses it whenever I take her to the backyard (our yard is all concrete, another reason why this was a great investment) , my older dog is preferring real grass now and will hold it until we take her on our daily walks. Much like your chihuahua she hates going potty on wet grass too! So we will move the fake grass to a dry area in our backyard so she can still do her business. The fake grass is an amazing training tool. We used to have to take our dogs outside to the front at nighttime when it’s dark and coyotes are roaming, but now we can let them outside whenever they need to out back and they will go. (:

      • Rose Smith on March 9, 2016

        Please tell me which one to buy, there are so many and I don’t
        know what way to go.
        thank you

    • Diane Roprr on February 29, 2016

      Hi I agree with all u have seein u comment , I also have a puppy chihauhau who is now 8 months old she uses her fake grass pad all the time and has done since I got her , she is very good so I find the product a very useful tho g , even wen I wake her it let her out she will it go outside she waits til she gets home , I dint care what other people say and think as long as she clean n does it on pad I’m happy .

  4. Monica on January 16, 2013

    I have actually trained our puppy to use the Potty Patch on our deck after training him to go outside because #1 our backyard is incredibly muddy. #2 he does not do well in the cold rain here in Seattle and #3 I worry about the coyotes in our neighborhood (and yes I put him on a leash but the coyotes around here are pretty brazen). When I discovered the potty patch even existed I was thrilled. Now Oliver can do his business on our deck when the weather is bad and/or it is dark outside. So for us, the Potty Patch has been a lifesaver.

  5. MsMc on February 11, 2013

    My daughter has a tiny teacup chihuahua and is unable to care for her now due to a break up and long work hours so I now have her. She goes to the bathroom outside just fine but she gets cold so fast and sometimes won’t finish her business even when I stay out with her for 15 mins and walk around on no snowy areas. She has had 2 accidents inside because of this issue, not because she is not let out or taken for a walk 4 times a day. I live in a building on the 4th floor and have now gotten her the fake grass pad and keep it on the balcony so she can still associate bathroom business with the outdoors. I will let her go there until the snow is gone and the warmer weather comes along. So in my case it does serve a very good purpose, but it will not be her permanent bathroom place (only winter). I agree dogs need to be socialized and walked in the fresh air and do what dogs do outside.

  6. Erin on February 13, 2013

    I have a 2 yr old rescue dog that was neglected in his first home. Apparently, he was locked in his old owner’s basement for long periods of time. As a result, my dog has learned that it is ok to go to the bathroom in the basement. I only work part time so my dog is never left alone for long periods of time. I let him out frequently, play with him in the yard and walk him. He never will poop in the yard. The minute I go to work or fall asleep at night, he sneaks into the basement and poops multiple times. We have no door to our basement so I bought a baby gate. He figured out how to slip through the bars of our railings. I bought him a crate, he figured out how to open it on the second day. I guess I could tie the crate shut but I’m worried about him hurting himself trying to bust out. I don’t know what to do anymore. I was thinking about the grass patch only because I’m out of options. Does anyone have any ideas of advice? Thank you!!

    • Monica on February 13, 2013

      So sad about your pup and his past experience 🙁 But good for you for rescuing him! What I would do is figure out a way to keep him from busting out of his crate. Maybe buy a heavy duty lock or something to keep the door from opening. My little puppy goes MENTAL trying to get out of his crate. He has scratched at the metal bars so hard that the paint has come off. Ugh. Prior to my puppy we had a big lab who would also do the same. Crate training in my opinion is a wonderful way to teach (or re-teach) a dog where you would like for him/her to relieve themselves because they will hold their bladder which is to your advantage when potty training. I hope that helped you ♥

      • Erin on February 13, 2013

        Thank you! Ill try the crate again. 🙂

        • Lindsay Stordahl Author on February 13, 2013

          I agree with Monica. The crate is such a good tool for housebreaking or re-housebreaking a dog. Or what about leaving the dog in a bathroom or bedroom? Will he have accidents there?

          I would also recommend long walks so he is more likely to go to the bathroom outside. Reward! Reward! Reward!

          And of course, stick to a schedule so he eats at the same time every day and you can more easily predict when he has to go.

    • Brittney on August 29, 2014

      yes, i suggest the doggie grass in the basement. What a wonderful loving and patient person you are for rescuing this poor dog. What you are doing to encourage your dog to go outside is perfect. I feel bad he is holding it until you are asleep but it shows that he wants to please you. Just keep trying to teach him to poop outside. I would take some of his poop from the basement and put it outside. Don’t let him see you doing this, but next time he goes out, his poop will just be there and maybe he will get the idea. Never let him see you clean up after him in the basement or he might get the idea that is okay. I would get the grass for downstairs and hopefully when he sneaks down there he will use it and make it easier for you to clean up. Maybe it will even help him realize that he should use the grass outside and once he does u can eventually remove the grass from the basement if you feel it isn’t a good thing. Personally i see nothing wrong with it or harmful at all. If it makes it easier then use it. I have to thank you for what you are doing with this dog…the world needs more people like you in it. You are appreciated.

  7. Lucy on February 28, 2013

    Hi all:
    While I agree that most doggies do not get enough exercise or are allowed to experience enough dog/human interaction, my situation is different relative to the fake grass patch.
    My Abby is an 18.5 year old mixed breed. She has had a wonderful life with us and her buddy who passed away 2 years ago at the age of 16 years. She is physically in amazing shape…sleek, shiny, great appetite, very,very few accidents and still loves long walks in the woods.
    Our problem is that she will not allow anyone besides me, my hubby or my daughter near her to hook on the leash to take her out. This is a recent development which we attribute to her failing hearing and eyesight….age in general. We had a puppy sitter coming in at lunch time but he gave up his business and so we were forced to look for someone else. We hired a darling lady but Abby would have no part of it. We are talking fear here….not billigerence. And, at this stage in her life, I will not put her at risk nor will I risk her biting or snapping at someone else. So, we are going to try the fake grass patch. Our plan is to have our buidling super (we live in a condo) come in and open the patio door to the deck where the patch will be (the deck is small and secure)…he can then leave and come back in an hour or so to close the door.
    I see absolutely nothing wrong with choosing the method most comfortable for Abby at this juncture. I will not crate her….never have…never will.
    I really hope this works. It will be far less trauma for Abby and,hence, peace of mind for us.
    Anyone who has any suggestions, please feel free. And thanks for reading this.

    • Lindsay Stordahl Author on February 28, 2013

      I hope it works! Good luck, and I hope Abby has many happy days ahead. This is probably an option I would consider as well if I were in the same situation and couldn’t get home often enough to take her outside.

  8. Dog owner on March 2, 2013

    Maybe my ‘ at least my dog has a home’ is a poor excuse for leaving my dog home alone for 9 hours every day but you do what you have to. The dog belonged to my elderly Mother. She’s gone but I promised her I would give the dog a home. Your one sized fits all problem solving doesnt work for everyone in the real world. Yes he’s a pain in the ass and wets on my hard woods every day and they are ruined. But I wont break a promise to my dying Mother.

    • Another dog owner on July 1, 2013

      Can you keep your promise by “giving the dog a good home” in someone else’s home? Ie, find a good new owner. Sounds like you really don’t want the dog.

    • Kathi on September 8, 2013

      Dog Owner,

      Sadly, you are not doing the dog any favors and sadly, you are not fulfilling your mother’s dying wish with altruistic honor. No doubt your mother loved her dog, and wished for him to have a happy, loving, healthy home where he’s part of the family, gets lots of attention, is socialized, exercised and receives love.

      Are you “doing what you have to do” for the dog’s sake, your mother’s sake, or for your own sake? We, as responsible pet owners, must do what’s best for the pet involved. Ask yourself this: If you mother could see how her dog is being taken care of (and regarded), would she be sad for her dog? If the answer is yes, please consider finding him a new home.

      It’s a miserable life for a dog to be lonely and unwanted, regardless of whether the owner has good intentions or not. Perhaps I’ve read your post wrong, but what I gleaned from it is that you don’t really care for the dog all that much, but begrudgingly keep him because your mother asked you to give him a good home. Do you feel resentful that you feel forced to keep him due to a promise you made your Mom? If so, do you think your Mom would be sad to know that and would not want to burden you with such feelings?

      As a professional pet sitter/dog walker, I’ve seen more than my fair share of heartbreaking situations, and this sounds like one of them. I’m willing to bet your mother would understand and be content with your decision to do what’s best for her dog.

      Your mother will not love you any less. In fact, she probably will smile with joy that her caring, selfless, thoughtful child made her proud by finding her beloved dog a home where he will be as happy as she intended him to be.

      Best of luck to you both.

      Kathi Howland
      Girl Friday Errand & Shopping Service

  9. Kelli Lorraine on March 20, 2013

    I actually don’t agree with all of these, but that is only because my current situation doesn’t really relate to these.
    My pug puppy is 5 months old and we use potty pads for him because he can only go outside while being supervised because the backyard is no good for him. We have to take him into the front yard. He will sometimes use the potty pads and sometimes he will just go on the floor. However, he loves to potty on grass and dirt. As soon as he steps foot outside, he potties right away.
    He does not lift his leg, he has never eaten his poop off the pad or from outside, and he very clearly prefers the grass. He isn’t left at home alone for a long time, but he lives with my boyfriend and his parents (We are still young and live with our parents) and my boyfriend’s mom won’t take him outside to potty. So oftentimes he has to go potty indoors until we take him on his regular trip to the park when my boyfriend gets off work at around 4:00 pm. However, I can definitely see how your points can fit some situations. Also, I don’t know why some people got so offended by your post. It isn’t like they are being FORCED to take your tips. Have a good one!

    • Lindsay Stordahl Author on March 27, 2013

      I had to laugh at your last sentence. It is funny how people get so offended by this. It’s just fake grass we’re talking about! Come on, people! 🙂

  10. kiko on March 27, 2013

    I have a unique problem my dogs were use to a doggy door but for three months we live in a apt w no real outlet for walking. So we have a problem of doin their business, what can we do? We tried the patch thing that was a bust. Use pads, they kinda work. But not always. Help!

    • Lindsay Stordahl Author on March 27, 2013

      I’m not sure I understand the problem. Is there no grass for them to pee on outside? Or are you dealing with a housebreaking problem?

  11. Trish on March 28, 2013

    I have 2 dogs and have recently moved into a rental basement suite and am not allowed by the landlords to use their backyard because their kids play there. We had a backyard in the last 2 places we lived. Not glowing yards, but good for emergencies. I work from home and get my dogs out 3-4 times a day, often including hikes. Both of my dogs are adopted and one of them is an outright rescue. She has a lot of issues, including nervousness. Sometimes she won’t want to come out for our nightly walk but then will cry because she has to #2 in the middle of the night. Usually that’s when I’d get up and go in the backyard with her. We have stairs going down to our entrance and I was thinking of putting down some artificial grass for her emergencies and mine (I have a serious health condition). What I’d like to know is how receptive are dogs to this artificial grass? My dogs are 6 and 8, potty trained, leash trained, everything trained except for nervous behaviour that we’re rehabbing and working on. Will dogs automatically go on this artificial grass or will I have to train them to go on it? Also, on a side note, the article written about reasons to not use the grass mentions laziness. I’d like to add that crate-training is also a form of laziness and before the crate craze dog guardians were able to potty train and provide safe environments for their dogs for years.

  12. Nicole Addy on April 4, 2013

    I personally LOVE the fake grass for my dog. I have a 6 month old min pin. I live on the fifth floor in my building that does not allow dogs, also there is no were around to take her out in my area. My dog was potty trained two days after I got her with potty mats. Problem was that the mats slide around and soak threw to the floor if she goes pee a lot.Also she would tear the mats apart clean or dirty, dragging it allover. I bought two grass potties for her and she loves them. I placed scented potty pads under the grass to absorb the urine so not to fill the bottom and spill it when cleaning it. I pick up the poo right away and clean the grass every two weeks. My dog still gets out to go on walks and the dog park, she does not eat her own poop and it was the simplest to train her on because she immediately used and the moment I laid it down and no problems since. The grass is a life saver for dog owners.

    • Dee Surratt on June 3, 2013

      I have a two pound puppy who is using “fake grass”. I am elderly and recently loss my husband. The miniature yorkie (6 weeks old) has helped me handle the loss of my husband. I love the “grass” but I do not know how to get rid of the odor. I do rinse it out every day. The vet told me I could not let her outside yet due to the fact she does not have her parvo shot yet. I plan on keeping her in the house and she plays with “movable” toys and is very active. I can not do “steps” so that is why she will be in the home most of the time. Would you know of a way to eliminate the odorl? I would appreciate this very much.

      • AJ on October 21, 2016

        Hi Dee,
        I hope you are doing ok after your husband’s death and that your puppy has become a fantastic best friend. I saw that no one answered your question because they were debating the merits of this article so I wanted to send my well wishes. Plus I had the same question too because I was wondering if I should get one or if it would be smelly!

  13. Valerie on April 11, 2013

    I think that this article is missing the point. I don’t know how many people would be using this product to stop taking their dog outside, but I don’t think that’s what most people would be using it for. I am currently raising a puppy in the winter of Wisconsin. The ground outside is usually covered in snow or a bunch of slop. It is always freezing outside. While I would love to have my puppy go potty outside it’s not really feasible right now. We are using potty pads, but when we take the pup outside on nice days he doesn’t get that he’s supposed to potty out there. Using an indoor grass patch to potty train your pup is probably a much better solution. Not only can he distinguish where he is supposed to potty from other places, but he will also get somewhat used to what going outside would be like. I haven’t tried an indoor grass patch yet, but I am leaning towards it because my pup cannot tell the difference between a potty pad on a floor and the floor itself.

  14. Trisha on April 18, 2013

    I am wanting to get one to put on our covered porch for when it is raining. Our Chihuahua will not go to the bathroom on his walks while it is raining. So, he ends up pooing in the house and a couple of times he has peed. So, I am thinking of getting one for inclement weather. I would still put him on his leash and take our walks and try. But if he refuses I thought this would be a good alternative. What do you think? This is our first dog, so I am new to this. Thank you!

    • Lindsay Stordahl Author on April 18, 2013

      I’ve taken care of little dogs that also don’t want to go to the bathroom in the rain. What I do is walk them until they go, so usually a good half hour. I do this shortly after they eat. If they don’t go, then I put them in their kennels or keep them on a leash near me so I can supervise.

  15. JB on April 21, 2013

    I have fake grass half a yard is fake and its wonderful. I foster and have 9 dogs if I had real grass I would have a yard of mud. With the Doggier Grass I hose it off when its dirty, put a cleaner on it once in awhile and there is no smell. Even in the hottest time of year. Its a life saver for me. All mine are potty trained outside. I paid $7,000 for it but its wonderful. Its been 6 years now and shows no sign of wear. No grass to cut, no fleas and no weeds. I dont know what kind of grass others have but the doggy grass I have is a lifesaver for me. My dogs act like its real grass. Never had a problem with any of them using it. It is not indoor grass but its called doggie grass like astro turff but only better!

  16. A on April 26, 2013

    This doesn’t prove much of anything. What about potty pads? Are those a “lazy” invention too? What about litter boxes?

  17. Andrew on June 29, 2013

    This is literally THE WORST ARTICLE I have EVER read on the Internet. Instead of saying what doesn’t work and why, how about giving some solutions and suggestions on what does work?

  18. Randy on July 26, 2013

    I have a cocker on a diuretic for heart failure. The diuretic means she can’t go for more than two hours without urinating. I’m going to try the grass pee pad. I also think this is a worthless article

  19. Chantel on July 30, 2013

    I have an 11 yr old boxer who is having difficulty holding her bladder for long periods of time. By that I mean longer than 4 hrs. I live on a 3rd floor walk up and her hips are not getting any younger. Often I’m lifting her hind legs/ hips to help her up the stairs. My question is if puppy pads/ grass pads would be something I can train her to use in between her walks. I do not want them to be the only option she has since she still has a young spirit about her and we both love going on walls. Just curious about my options and maybe a solution.

  20. tamela on July 31, 2013

    I also didn’t care for this article. It seemed to just point a finger accussing dog owners of being lazy when they are simply trying to find solutions to potty train. Another insult from this article was Towards pet owners who work long hours. Leaving your dog, who is not potty trained, in a pen or crate is not the same as leaving your dog tied to a tree outside. People have to work, that is the fact of life. I run an animal rescue and see true neglect on a daily basis. I find that comment to be made by someone who knows little about what neglect and cruelty is. And no, most people do not hire a dog sitter or walker. I am a professional dog sitter, walker, and trainer. Most of my clients are more middle to upper class. This article implies that only the wealthy are the better pet owners. Ugh! I am all for reading and learning about other people’s techniques, reviews, experiences…etc so I can stay current and be open to different approaches. You can never have to many tools in your toolbox! But, this was a finger pointing and judgemental article that did little to offer legitimate pros and cons and offer other solutions that could be applied. If you are going to write an article. …don’t insult your audience. People who stumble upon this article are looking for solutions . This is what responsible pet owners do. Readers did not click and read this article to be insulted.

  21. Robin on September 6, 2013

    This list is a bit ridiculous. Sorry, but there is a judgmental and angry tone to your “article” listing reasons why anyone that would use a grass pad is a horrible dog owner. That being said, here are a couple rebuttals, though I’m not sure you’re interested in opposing ideas.

    When puppies are not fully vaccinated, they should not share “real” outdoor grass areas with other animals. Those of us who live in the city do not have access to our own backyards. Should we let the dog go anywhere in the house until they are safe to be outdoors, or are we just to horrible a population (those anti-lawn owners) to deserve the right to pet ownership?

    Some of us in the healthcare industry work 12-hour days, 3 days a week. That puts me home with my puppy 4 hours more than the average 8-hour worker. So am I demonized for leaving my puppy home for 12 hours a day, or a hero for leaving my puppy home for only 36 hours a week?

    If you have something constructive to say, try not insulting your audience before diving into your article. You’ve failed to persuade me because you came out of the gate wagging a finger in my direction. I hope you don’t train your animals that way too.

    • Hedgie on May 26, 2014

      I LOVE your comment!! You are an great pet owner too. I have physical limitations which preclude me from being able to walk my two mini-dachshunds, and there are no dog walkers in my small condo community in my small town. I use pee pads along with a plastic holder that keeps them in place and they work wonderfully!

  22. Kathi on September 8, 2013

    While I agree that improper crating has been – and continues to be – used by lazy pet owners who do not want to be bothered with the responsibility that comes with owning a dog, the proper use of crating has been proven to beneficial.

    Dogs are pack animals. In the wild, they would den. Crate training is much like what a dog’s natural environment was like when in the wild.

    As a professional dog walker/pet sitter, I’m educated on the proper reasons and proper way to crate train. Many dogs prefer their crates to being “out in the open” in the home, especially during stressful times; such as a thunderstorm, fireworks, fighting and arguing, and visitors.

    While I don’t know about the accuracy of your last sentence, as there’s no cited evidence to prove your claim, I do know that proper crate training (and not simply buying a crate and shoving Fido in there as a punishment or as a way to not have to pay attention to him) is beneficial to dogs. There are several articles about this subject on the internet, at your local Veterinarian’s clinic, at pet supply stores, at your local Humane Society (Animal Shelter), and yes, at your local dog walker/pet sitter’s office.

    Kathi Howland
    Girl Friday Errand & Shopping Service

    • Kathi on September 8, 2013

      To clear up any confusion, I want to add that my previous comment (above) was in response to Trish’s last sentence in her post.

      • Lindsay Stordahl Author on September 8, 2013

        I agree. While crates are not for every dog, I plan to crate train all my dogs unless the dog has some sort of fear of the crate. Then I would leave the dog in small room like a bathroom or bedroom or office.

  23. Heather on January 18, 2014

    we have a new daschund puppy we want her to be an inside pet we have 50,0000acres in Australia so outdoors & exercise not a problem but we want an inside pet for our children we are currently training her to wee outside by taking her out every hour & she’s always out when the children we do have a fear of snakes if she is out on her own so were going to trial grass matting as even tho she is taken out regularly she is still going inside between being taken out she has been to a vet & has no medical issues we would just like to train her that if she does go inside this is where she can go & not on the floor or carpet etc I would like a reply to what other option we have & how else to stop her I also teach my 2 children by Distance education & cannot be watching her all the time between outside trips while I am in the class room she is with the smaller child I do think grass could work but if you have another suggestion I would be more than happy to try it.

    • Lindsay Stordahl Author on January 18, 2014

      I would hardly ever recommend training a dog to go potty indoors. If you insist on doing it, the fake grass is probably better than pee pads or a litter box. It’s more natural to a dog than that.

  24. Bailey on March 30, 2014

    I have a dog that is currently undergoing chemotherapy and having to take prednisone for inflammation. The prednisone causes her to be constantly thirsty and therefore frequently needing to urinate. Although making sure she can do her business responsibly during the day is not an issue, waking up every 2-3 hours at night to get her outside is getting real old. Am I to assume that artificial grass is still a bad idea even in this circumstance? I am torn between laying down cheap rugs or getting the grass just in case she has to go before one of my scheduled pee alarms goes off during the night. I would think laying a cheap rug down would be more counter productive than the grass mat given that my dog (as brilliant as she is) cannot discern between an expensive rug and an el cheapo one.

    • Lindsay Stordahl Author on March 30, 2014

      If you are unable to get her outside as often as she needs, then yes, I think the fake grass would be a possible option for your situation.

  25. Puppy paws on July 6, 2014

    I never write comments but this time I just had to say something. This article should be rewritten. It is abrasive, narrow minded, and ill-informed. Abusive pet owners aren’t reading this article. Why insult your readers?

    What about sick dogs? Owners who can’t walk their dogs because of surgery or something along those lines? Or Or heaven forbid, people who work 9-5 jobs and can only walk the dog three times a day (and can’t afford doggie day care)? Should they all give up their dogs? Can you comment on the number of dogs in shelters and how that would exponentially increase if all of these people had to give up their dog?

    If it was me, I would rewrite it out of pride in my work and fear or having my name tied to a negative piece.

  26. Leslie on November 16, 2014

    The math is simple. Dogs are not here as an entitlement to us, they are a privilege. If you are away from home 10 hours a day, sorry to give you the cold hard facts, but you shouldn’t have a dog, unless you put it into doggie care or employ a dog sitter/walker every.single.day. If you need to devise some sort of “make-do” so that you won’t be inconvenienced by their elimination, rather than adjusting your lifestyle to accommodate their basic needs, you aren’t a suitable home for a dog, you aren’t rescuing them from anything. There are too many dogs and cats in the world because too many people think they can force their pets to adjust to their laziness just so they can receive the benefit of their unconditional love. Shame on you. Walk your dog.

    • Paulis on January 27, 2015

      Apparently you’re not aware that we don’t live in a perfect world.
      When I got my dog (a chow) I was married, due to our work schedules tjere was always someone home with the dog
      Now I’m im the middle of a divorce and I have to work and be out of the house for almost nine hours every day, does that mean I have to give her up? That I shouldn’t have her? Should I take her to a shelter? I live in a city where there’s no doggy daycares or sitters,
      So yes. I agree thaty current condition is not the best for having a dog, but imagine of every owner got rid off their dogs whenever their life gets a little complicated. Btw, I do walk my dog every day.

  27. Kat on March 6, 2015

    I am not sure who wrote this (and their limited experience with a broader view on training) but she seems very narrow minded. We take our pups everywhere with us. That includes our Yacht and Plane on business and vacations. We would be lost without our portable artificial grass dog potty (portabledogpotty.com)! Our pups know that when we are traveling that is what they use. Otherwise, they go outside to go to the bathroom with no problems. Dogs are very smart and this “blogger’s” statement makes it sound like dogs are stupid.

    • Amy on March 6, 2015

      LOL I doubt this blogger has ever been on a plane for 20 hours, let alone had a dog on a plane for those grueling 20 hours… 😉

  28. A on May 29, 2015

    I know the title of this is ‘ten reasons not to buy’ however all of this is written with a bad attitude. Almost like this person despises dogs. I will not be reading or commenting on articles any long. Really turned off by your attitude. Maybe you should write a blog about why you have such a bad attitude. Or how you actually don’t like dogs or understand true dog people. The problem with blogs. Anyone can write them. Especially those without expertise.

  29. This author is an absolute idiot. You can’t feed your dog without a job. And not everybody works from home. I imagine most people work 9 to 5. If the fake grass works for somebody who are you to insult them? Toy breeds and tea cup breeds are better off on the fake grass then freezing in 3 feet of snow where some people live. And not to mention areas with predatory animals or birds of prey ready to snatch them up before the owner can sometimes react. Maybe your all knowing experience missed a few small breeds that get plenty tired out just running around the house. Dogs can be socialized by taking then to meet other dogs and not only on walks when they need to eliminate waste. The purpose of a walk is not only to eliminate but as a bonding opportunity. I wonder if the author really had any education on writing to a target audience or on all dog breeds. The author most definitely didn’t have experience in real life. Like people have mentioned above people and dogs can have issues in which the artificial grass could be much better than taking them only outside to eliminate. A dog is a pet and must be trained. If somebody wishes to train them to use fake grass for the benefit of the dog or themselves who are you to make insulting comments about it? It’s their dog! Feed the dog. Give it shelter. Give it love. Let it eliminate without having to hold it. That’s a happy dog. The dog is least bothered about if the grass is fake or real. Or if it’s on paper. Dogs that have readily available options of paper or fake grass and won’t have to hold it as long will be less likely to develop UTI’s. I am a doctor and work 12 hours a day for a week and have the next week off. Fake grass works great for me and my four pound Chihuahua. During my week off the whole time is with my dog. Even on the days I work I spend an hour in the morning and night with her. Lazy? I think not. Eleven years of rigorous education, training and testing since high school and a dog my vet considers in excellent health and with great behavior. No accidents in the house. Not one in the last 10 years. Folks if you think fake grass would benefit you then go for it and ignore this idiot. The only problem I’ve had I’d odor. My fix is to use a deodorizer and I replace them after 3-4 months anyway. Hopefully the author learns a lesson or two and doesn’t write a poorly thought out article like this again. If the author does there will be people out there to put her in her place. May God bless you good dog owners out there and God bless America!

  30. By the way. People are not reacting the way they are in your comments because you are insulting the grass. It is because you are insulting loving dog owners and what they choose to do with their own dog. I hope I’m showing you a little of what you might have made some of these readers feel. Hopefully you learn. When I am at work for those 12 hours a day every other week. I have panning video cameras set up around my house on the floor my Chihuahua stays on and she is asleep when I’m not there or playing with her numerous toys. She’s not sitting and whining or barking out of anxiety. Yes I have audio too. About getting a walker or taking her to a day care. I do not trust people in my house or with my dog if I am not there! Who knows what kind of crazy people out there that might actually abuse her that act perfectly normal and may even be bonded. I’ve seen things in psych rotations in med school you couldn’t even dream of. I feel bad being so harsh on you. But you need to know that just because you can write whatever comes to tip of your tongue doesn’t mean you should. If you do there will be people to show you how it feels and put you in your place. Good day ma’am.

  31. Another piece of advice for those of you wanting to use indoor methods. If your dog lifts his leg and squirts use a large bin. Take the lid off. Cut out a side of it. Put your paper or fake grass in it. Problem solved. Make sure you disinfect the bin though. I use fake grass on a pee pad in the bin. I get the big storage ones you get for pretty cheap at Wal-Mart or the home depot. I don’t have a boy but I’ve always just had it this way. There are videos on YouTube showing how to do it. Some people use the fake grass. Some use news paper. Some use litter (don’t use cat litter if I remember correctly.) Some use pee pads. Read about it watch the videos and do what you think would work for you. These methods are great for tiny dogs like my Chihuahua. She doesn’t like getting wet nor do I want her freezing in snow that’s 2 or 3 feet high when she’s only 8 inches tall. If you work long hours and can’t afford to have people over to walk your dog or join in day care or don’t want people around your dog when your not there around this is great too. You don’t have to be rich to have a dog. We as human beings have the capability of finding ways around problems or limitations. These indoor methods may be one of them.

    • Pommy Mommy on November 14, 2016

      Yes! Using a bin or litter box with grass works well. They are less likely to “miss.” I trained my little 3 pound male pommy to go outdoors at an early age. Outdoors is what he prefers. However, I cross-trained him to also go on grass pads for days that I can’t get home in time. This works great for travel as well if I am staying in a high rise hotel. To the author of this article. Try telling a 3 year old baby Pomeranian to hold their bladder for 8 hours until their owner can take them outside. Not going to happen. Some dogs (especially tiny dogs) need indoor options even though outdoors is the first choice.

      • Pommy Mommy on November 14, 2016

        Meant to say ” 3 pound baby ” Pomeranean above , not 3 year old. My pommy is 4 months old and he can go outside (preferred) or inside on a grass pad. This system works well.

  32. Brittany's Mom on June 28, 2015

    My Brittany is 11 and I live in the country. He is free to run when we are home but stays inside or goes to his kennel when we are at work. I specifically built the kennel for when he got older so he wouldn’t have to hold it all day. The kennel is on concrete and he will not go in his kennel. I thought about just using regular artificial grass or try to build a area and grow grass for him to use. I even thought that if he uses the real grass too often it would just die and what would I do in the winter. I live in Kansas. Grass does not grow in winter. What about buying turf from a landscaper so it can be changed out when grass dies. He’s still able to hold it till we get he but trying to solve the problem for the future. Any suggestions? FYI. Someone dumped him out here around 9 or 10 years ago so he was already house trained.

    • Lindsay Stordahl Author on June 28, 2015

      If you think he needs to relieve himself when you’re gone, you could try any of the things you suggested and see what works.

      I’m not sure how big the kennel is, but I know some dogs are uncomfortable going on fake or real grass in that type of setup so you might have to actually train him to go on it so he knows it’s OK. The fake grass actually sounds easier to deal with and change vs. the real grass.

  33. Miro on July 2, 2015

    This “10 reasons” list isn’t even 10 separate reasons. 3 and 4 are the same thing (dogs are gross). 10 and 1 are the same thing (hard to train dogs to use it). 7 isn’t even a reason at all. And if I continue… 9 is for owners who don’t care about their pets in the first place. I don’t know why everyone has to force regular articles into top 10 lists nowadays. What I’m saying is, I read this article thoroughly and I still don’t get it. Dogs are unsanitary, but not all dogs eat their own poop and if owners clean it regularly like they’re supposed to, then what’s the problem? Sometimes there are no options when owners must work some overtime, take long day trips, etc…

  34. Miro on July 2, 2015

    And, sometimes weather is a huge, important reason to not take your dog out for extended hours. Where I live, during July and August, temperatures regularly reach 10’F and occasionally up to 11’F. And since there’s not much shade, 90’F weather can be risking it. Do you want me to insist on my short-snouted small dogs walking in that? Waiting around for them to realize they need to finish their business? But I’m really laughing at number 6. It won’t solve every single issue your dog has, so don’t bother using it to help those issues a little bit? Lol???

    • Miro on July 2, 2015

      I don’t know why it changed 100 and 110 to 10 and 11.

  35. Britt on August 3, 2015

    I have heard great stories of using the fake grass pads while at work. I am having trouble finding one that I don’t have to buy online. Anyone have any suggestions of where I could pick one up at a store?

    Luckily. I have tile floors everywhere but my bedroom. I shut the carpeted room door and got a gate to keep my little puppy in a section of the house so he isn’t going to the bathroom all over the place. I also come home at lunch and let him out for a walk. he is 3 months and doing really well already for going outside when I let him out. The regular pee pads get chewed up and of course all puppies have occasional accidents. He loves and only wants to go in the grass when I walk him, so I really want to try the grass pads. Anyone know where I can go today to get one without ordering online?

    • Lindsay Stordahl Author on August 3, 2015

      I see Petco’s web site has one called the Pet Loo. It might be online only though.

  36. yaya on April 25, 2016

    I have 2 year pup who uses the training pads to do her business. I live in a flat so its the only solution for us and she doesnt do it anywhere else in the flat.
    I have been looking into buying this training patch to see if its more cost effective and also to find out what others think of it.
    I would specially like to know if the grass becomes smelly quickly and if they sell replaceable fake grass.

  37. Robert Lathrop on September 16, 2016

    I have a 2 year old rescue Chihuahua mix who will only go potty when he’s taken for a walk. I have a tether that reaches inside the door so I can let him out that way, but he still refuses to go unless he is taken for a walk. I love upstairs with offices on the 1st floor. Will the fake grass work in this case, as I am not walking in the rain anymore or in the snow and cold weather. Help!

  38. Kristine on September 19, 2016

    I see this is an older article.. I have housebroken chihuahua hairless dog mutts, teeny tiny with teeny tiny bladders, and they can hold it for 7-8 hours, but since it takes me about half an hour to and from work and I work 8 hours I’m away for 8-9 hours a day and sometimes they can’t hold it the entire day.. It gives me relief to know that they CAN go to the bathroom if I’m late and don’t have to stress my self half to death during the entire day at work. I walk my dogs before work, after work and at LEAST ones or twice more during the evening before we go to bed and we walk long walks at least 3 times a week (meaning more than a usual walk of half an hour or an hour) where we walk for 3 hours. This is just an emergency solution for me and my dogs because I just want them to be able to use the bathroom if they can’t hold it. We all know sometimes you just gotta go! They do not use my carpets or any other place.

    Also since they are hairless and I live in Norway, a very cold country at winter we also use the fake grass outside my door so they don’t need to walk in the snow if they don’t feel like it in wintertime!

    I am all for the fake indoor grass, but of course, not beccause the owner is lazy and can’t be bothered to walk their dogs, but as a back-up solution!

  39. Kristine on September 20, 2016

    BTW, there are potty pads and boxes with high frame and back wall for male dogs.