Don’t use puppy pads

My tip for the day:

Throw away the puppy pads and train your dog to pee outside. Puppy pads create an extra, unnecessary step in housebreaking.

If the ultimate goal is to get your dog to pee outside, then why do people insist on training the dog to pee inside? No wonder so many small dogs are confused about where to go to the bathroom.

Newspapers are a bad idea. Puppy pads are a bad idea. Fake indoor grass for dogs is a bad idea.

Cats use litter boxes. Dogs pee outside.

What do you think?

(This pup is my mom’s dog, Sophie.)

For help on potty training, see my post on how to potty train a puppy.


Puppy potty training, springer spaniel puppy, don't use puppy pads for potty training

69 thoughts on “Don’t use puppy pads”

  1. Agreed. The reason I always push my clients to avoid puppy pads like the plague is two-fold:
    1- It’s often very difficult to train dogs to use the pads in the first place. Dogs like a bigger area to eliminate.
    2- Many dogs that initially do well with the pad training will often revert as they get older. Many dogs will start to realize “why go all the way to the other side of the house to go potty?” and they’ll start to go around the house. They’ve been taught to go in the house so many will stop discriminating about where.

  2. Lindsay Stordahl

    I’m so glad you agree! I see so many little dogs that have puppy pads. They do use them, however the also pee everywhere else in the house.

  3. Hello Everyone! I disagree with this article because i’ve used puppy pads to potty train 2 pets successfully. In order to teach the dog to pee outside, i gradually moved the pads to the door and the outside! Puppy pads also worked for my friend who lives in NYC. Sometimes she can’t bring her dog outside due to weather, but the dog doesn’t feel guilty about going on the pads in the house.

    Make the decision for yourself!

  4. I had never used puppy pads until we got Biggie. He came trained on puppy pads, which was nice at first but he also went on newspapers that were left on the floor and also doormats or small carpet mats on the floor.

    Generally I agree with your post about puppy pads, I think it adds unnecessary confusion to the dog, which some dogs get over and some don’t.

    In NYC with a puppy, though, you have to use your best judgment. Depending on your neighborhood, some sidewalks are FILTHY and having a pad when the pup hasn’t finished his shots can sometimes be really helpful. Or maybe it just gives Mom some peace of mind.

  5. I so smiled at this… being an Aussie, I thought only Americans can come up with this… why would you put a nappy on a dog!To be honest I have never heard of such things

    but then I read the last two and thought there may be some benifits in different environments. I also have the luxury of wide open spaces…

    Good post Lindsay and great feedback from the readers

  6. Lindsay Stordahl

    I’m spoiled as well. We open our back door and we have a large field. Me using puppy pads would be ridiculous!

  7. I feel as though I have to use puppy pads right now. My puppy is recovering from parvo so we have to keep her in the house for a while now

  8. I just moved into an apartment with my blue heeler who has always had a yard. She’s a little paranoid cos she used to be a pound puppy. So she does her business next to the pads. I do walk her multiple times a day pooper scooper in hand and she’s gone outside twice in four days. Baby steps:-)

  9. I’d get rid of those pads and take her outside, but I trust that you’re doing what’s best for your dog and situation.

  10. It’s not a permanent solution. Just so she has a place indoors for release when I’m not there. I’m thinking of nixing them altogether.

  11. I won’t give my dog permission to go to the bathroom indoors under any circumstances. It’s a good way to create bad habits. But every dog is different.

  12. Disagree. I have a 4lb chihuahua that is crippled and cannot walk. It’s best to us pads or paper for her. Pads and paper are a great solution for super small dogs and people, like myself, in apartments with no quick outdoor access.

  13. your dumb. some people have this thing called a life. you know where they have to leave all day and go to work or school or whatever the situation is, and nobody is home to take their dogs out? yeah well puppy pad are actually good for this type of thing. maybe you should think a little more before you post dumb things 😉

  14. I have a 3 month old pit/boxer mix and I live in a apartment I have used the puppy pads for the simple fact that while we are working on potty training I would rather her release herself on those instead of on my carpet. She is very good about only going on those. She is crated all day while I am at work so when I let her out she runs right to the puppy pad then I take her outside.

    I believe these have saved my carpet a many messes.

  15. Lindsay Stordahl

    If it works for you, then that’s fine. I hope it goes just as smoothly when you try to transition to the dog only going to the bathroom outdoors. Many people fail to train their dogs to stop using the pads, but sounds like you won’t have that problem.

  16. I agree and disagree. While it is the goal to get them to go outside, it’s just often to difficult to do so when they are young and dont have full control over their bladder. I live in the city on the 10th floor. Lola is just 4 months old and needs to go many times a day. I dont have the time to watch her every minute to get her outside. I despise our fake grass pad, but its a necessary evil for a few more months. I think Ive read most dogs dont gain full control of their bladder til 8-10 months old.

    1. Lindsay Stordahl

      I’ve always had the luxury of having quick access to the outdoors, so I can’t criticize someone who lives on the 10th floor in the city for using puppy pads. However, I really think if I were in your situation I would still be taking the pup outside and not using the pads or fake grass.

    2. Hi Justin,

      I agree. I live on the 15th floor in my apartment and taking my pup out all the time can be a bit overwhelming. The pads do come in handy sometimes. If I had a house things would be different.

  17. Well guys i have to agree that the pads are a huge mistake in many situations, and yeah I train dogs for clients so nope I’m not just talking from a 1 dog owned stand point. I have always discouraged people from allowing a dog to potty in the house, pups will have accidents its a given but you should make it a goal to get fluffy outside. case in point, my soon to be mother in law who owns not one but two chi-weenies. She is a busy woman and initially adopted a male who had accidents but was really making progress, then we rescued a female chi-weenie puppy whom she just had to have. Well a lovely trainer whom she chose do to the fact that she did no agree with my strict kennel training tactics (she considers it abusive for any dog to ever be put in a kennel for longer then it takes to transport them from point A to point B in her car) informed her puppy pads were the way to go, cuz her poor little dogs couldn’t possably stand the cold. Now keep in mind she drops these little CUTEYS off at our house or her daughters while she works every day. Now her daughter and her son and I all have kennel trained dogs, but when her dogs are at our places we are expected to allow her menaces (table climbers, destructive and bitey) to run through out our homes where we have no pee pads. Consiquently both of our homes are covered in their filthy discusting urine and we cant get it out, they have crapped in my foster sons room, peed on his bed, on my carpet in our entire house and after a while no matter how you scrub you have freakin stains, and we had to all lay the law down and say NO MORE! so now instead of training them she is getting rid of them and blaiming everyone but herself. She sais Its my fault for being a trainer and not training her dogs, well when someone wont listen there’s no teaching them. HERE”S ANOTHER HUGE POINT: I have worked with countless pound pups of the small and large variety who were once pee pad trained, and never can find a perminent home because they like to whiz and poo in their new owners home and at 5 and 6 years old good luck breaking the behavior, its a long hard road and most people dont want the work. Its flat out sad! If something should ever happen to you or you had to give your dog up are you gonna be able to find someone who will stand for pee and poo in the house, whether on or off a stinky pad? IT IS DIRTY! I had one client loose her kids for a week when a worker came into her home and there was a fresh log on a poo pad by her door, even if it is Cleaned quickly you are still smelling it.

  18. Lindsay Stordahl

    Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. I couldn’t agree more with every single word you said.

    I’m sorry you’ve had to deal with those dogs at your house. And I’m even more sorry that they had to go to new homes. Unfortunately they are going to have a hard time getting out of the “rescue system.”

  19. I’m considering using potty pads for my already-housetrained 3 year old Dachshund. I live in an apartment. The dogs (I also have a Border Collie mix) are crate trained and get plenty of exercise (lake swimming, dog park, outdoor fetch) every day.

    But I am starting a new job soon and husband and I will both be gone for about 10 hours a day. I don’t want to crate them that long, but the Doxie can’t hold it for that long either. She is good 90% of the time, but when we are gone all day, we usually find a pee spot. They are good about everything else, don’t get into trash or tear things up.

    I was thinking about putting the pads on our private patio, I have a lot of plants and it is obviously outdoors. I would leave the sliding door partially open which I do most days anyway. Do you think this would mess up the housebreaking, or maybe not because it is outside?

    I just think crating all day is too much. They sleep in their crates and then I crate them when I’ll be gone for a few hours. I don’t want them to be crated for 18 hours in a 24 hour period.

    1. Lindsay Stordahl

      I do think this could work for them. Just remember you will have to train them to use the potty pad. They won’t automatically know to use it. As of now, they’ve never been allowed to go to the bathroom on the patio. Another option I hope you’ll consider is to hire a dog walker to come take them out once a day while you are gone.

      1. Unfortunately at the going rate for dog walking services, I’d be paying a couple hundred a month. Just can’t justify that, and I don’t trust any neighborhood kids enough to let them in my house while I am gone. Plus the Dachshund is kind of territorial.

        I know it’ll take a while to train them, I have a few months until I’ll be gone, which is why I’m starting to look into it now. Another option I have considered is building a low planter for sod with lots of drainage (we have a drain in our patio) and just replacing the sod once or twice a month. If I have success in that venture I’ll post back here. I think it could be a nice alternative to pads, because they are still going on grass. Thanks!

  20. I have an italian greyhound puppy (a year and a few months now)..infamous for being very hard to potty train. Boy do I agree. I initially lived in an apartment with carpet and started by putting her in the bathroom and using puppy pads while I was gone. Unfortunately she has now gone to peeing on two of my area rugs in my house that I have moved in to. She’ll even go on the rug in my laundry room, which is outside of my house, when I let her outside to pee. Since I have a house with a back yard now I can just let her outside to do her business. I wish I could train her to go outside 100% of the time but what she does is she slinks off when I’m not looking and pees somewhere random in the house. She’s potty-shy and doesn’t like me watching her go. I’m at a loss as to how to train her, I’ve looked at multiple websites and everyone makes it sound very easy, but I can’t seem to get her to understand. My older dog scratches on the door when she needs something (food, water, or to go out) but little one has not picked up on the habit. I don’t even put down pads anymore when I leave the house because half of the time she will ignore them and pee somewhere else or even right next to it. The main problem is I got her from a pet store where they can just pee and poop in their cages – thus my failure with crate training. She’d just go and have a ball in there and I’d have to come home and clean it AND her up. Does anyone have pointers for me to teach her how to tell me she needs to go out? When I’m home I just leave the door open but sometimes she’ll still slink in and pee in the room near the back door. I personally taught my older dog how to open an already cracked open door with her paw so I think that’s how she got the idea to scratch when it’s closed. I don’t think little one will pick up on this either..she’s not the brightest 😉
    I can say she’s much better than she used to be. She used to pee on my bed. But most of the time I expect to come home to something to clean up, and check my rugs for urine.

  21. Lindsay Stordahl

    Unfortunately this happens a lot with pet store puppies. They have no issue with peeing in their kennels since for the first part of their lives they had no other option.

    I’ll tell you what I would do if this were my dog. This certainly is not going to solve the problem 100 percent but it might help.

    If she has success with not going to the bathroom in the kennel for short periods (like under 4 hours), I would continue to kennel her when I leave. I would make sure to come home and let her out during my lunchbreak every day. On days I can’t make it home, I would have a dog walker or pet sitter lined up to take her out for a half-hour around noon.

    If she seems to pee or poop in the kennel no matter what, I would keep her confined to a small room, preferably a room with no carpet. I would use my laundry room because it has a linoleum floor. That way, when I come home, the mess is easy to clean up, and I will know exactly where she has gone. I would not use the puppy pads at all.

    When I am home with her, she will be on a leash and in my sight at all times. She will have no opportunities to sneak off and pee anywhere in the house. She might get some “freedom” only after I have just seen her go to the bathroom outside. Then she would get a half-hour or so of not being “tethered” to me.

    Every time she pees outside, she gets a favorite treat like a piece of jerky or chicken or hotdog.

    I will give her more freedom when I’m home after she has gone at least six weeks without sneaking off to pee.

    I might never allow her full freedom when I am gone, however if she can go six months with no peeing in the laundry room, I will try leaving her loose for half the day while I am at work. I will keep coming home during lunch to let her out. If she has even a single “accident,” she will go back to staying in the laundry room every time I am gone for at least another month.

    I won’t feel bad at all if she never gets the privilege of being free in the house like the other dog. It’s not worth the stress of coming home and searching for a mess every day. I’d rather relax after work.

  22. I just got a Springer Spaniel puppy from a pet store a week and a half ago. She has no problem pooping outside, has only had 2 or 3 incidents with that. Peeing, on the other hand is getting to be a little frustrating. She pees in her kennel over night, every night. When I put her in her kennel tonight, she peed within the first hour. I had let her outside to go to the bathroom, but with no avail. She does pee outside, more times than inside. But she pees in her kennel. I picked up some puppy pads but I’m very reluctant to use them. Since she was in a pet store for 2 weeks, she has no problem laying in the kennel after she’s peed in it. I don’t know how to tell her that peeing in there is bad, without watching her in there constantly waiting for her to pee and say NO. There are only so many baths that I can give her before she starts to dry out. Help please!!!

    1. Lindsay Stordahl

      Unfortunately you have to ignore her when she pees in her kennel or she will just learn never to do it in front of you. Instead, take her outside at least every hour when you are home and every three hours or so at night. If you can come home from work at lunch to let her out and have someone come over once in the morning and once in the afternoon, that will help too. Just keep taking her out often and rewarding her with a treat immediately when she goes outside. If she pees in her kennel, just ignore it. The pads aren’t going to help you out at all. And I would keep using the kennel even though she pees in it. You don’t want her learning to pee in other areas of the house.

      Just be patient. It’s not her fault she was kept in a cage at the pet store. Keep being consistent and positive and you should be able to break this habit. The more you can take her outside, the better so she has fewer opportunities to pee in her kennel. Take her to the exact same spot outside every time so she starts to associate the area with peeing.

  23. Well I just got 2 toy aussie puppies and they are only 6 weeks old. They don’t really have control of their potty habits and they understand not to pee on the couch and stuff but we’ve been using pee pads and they’re starting to get it but sometimes they miss. Eventually we want them to go from the potty pads to the grass, we live on 20 acres so getting them outside isn’t a problem, we take them for walks several times a day, they just don’t know to go outside. How do we teach them to just use the grass? Pick them up and carry them and get poo everywhere in. The process? We would rather not use potty pads we just don’t see any other options!

  24. Lindsay Stordahl

    You take them outside to the same spot every hour or so at that age. I highly advise you to do away with those pads completely before it’s too late. You are only confusing your dogs by teaching them they can pee in the house. Here’s my post on puppy potty training. I hope it helps. Let me know if you have any other questions:

    http://www.thatmutt.com/2009/08/25/dog-housetraining/

  25. I think everyone’s circumstances are difference. When we got our 2 month German Shepherd the vet told us not to take her outside until she’s had all her shots. So we had to train her to poop and pee indoors. She only poops and pees on the pads indoors, which is great, however now that she’s had her last set of shots I don’t know how to get her to go outside. What do I do? Help! Thanks.

  26. Lindsay Stordahl

    You’ll have to start all over and train her the same way you trained her to use the pads. Take her to the same place outside every time and give her a treat for going. If she goes indoors, it’s best to just ignore her rather than scold her.

    I suggest you follow the tips outlined in this post:

    http://www.thatmutt.com/2009/08/25/dog-housetraining/

    Let me know if you have any questions. Thanks for your comment.

    1. Our puppy will be three months on the 9th and we never take the water and food away, she’s always drinking and eating (like a lot). So do you think I should still go forward with this plan? It sounds right.

  27. Thank you this is very helpful. Do I keep her in a crate overnight (with her water and food) with her and the moment I wake up, take her outside? Is it safe to leave her in the crate all night though? Or maybe, put her in the crate the moment I wake up with her water an food, to make sure she doesn’t go until I’m ready to take her out.
    I’ve read the article, it’s super helpful however that part I wasn’t too clear on. As always, thanks!!

  28. Lindsay Stordahl

    I would keep her in a crate overnight to make sure she doesn’t have any accidents. How old is she? If she’s been holding it all night already, then she should be fine for 8 or so hours in her crate at night. I wouldn’t give her too much water before bed, though.

    For feeding, I recommend you only feed her during specific meal times that are the same every day (such as breakfast and dinner). That way you always know when she will have to go to the bathroom if you know what I mean! Don’t leave food out for her at all times or she will not be on a schedule and you’ll never know when she has to go. But maybe you already have her on a feeding schedule.

    So, for putting her in her crate, I recommend putting her in there all night for now and also when you are not home or if you are home but unable to supervise her. Another option is to keep her on her leash but close to you so you always know what she is up to 🙂

    Give her freedom after she has gone to the bathroom outside and you know she won’t have to go for awhile. She should catch on very quickly but may be confused at first because she has been taught to go to the bathroom indoors.

    1. Our puppy will be three months on the 9th and we never take the water and food away, she’s always drinking and eating (like a lot). So do you think I should still go forward with this plan? It sounds right.

      1. Lindsay Stordahl

        Yes. Definitely start giving her specified meals. You can do three meals per day if you want. You just want to keep her on a schedule. If she doesn’t eat all her food within five or ten minutes, just put it away for the next meal. Don’t feel bad. She’ll be hungry and will eat it at her next meal. If she is not on a schedule, you will not know when she has to go to the bathroom and that will make your job very difficult.

        1. I am so happy I found you and your site. I was so bothered I didn’t know any of this information.
          Are you based in New York? I would be happy to pay you to train our puppy. She is an absolute landshark and it’s on the brink of dividing our family apart. Literally nothing is working.

          1. Lindsay Stordahl

            No, I live in North Dakota 🙂 Let me know if you have any specific questions about training and I’ll do my best to help.

  29. Thanks Lindsday. Right now our biggest qualm is the constant biting, nipping on our legs, chins and clothing. I can’t tell you how many of my shirts and pants are now ruined. I don’t stress enough how we’ve tried everything, from redirection to toys, to yelping, to crating her but we are at a loss. She’s super persistent. Please note that she hasn’t had all her shots so we aren’t taking her outside. Could that be contributing to the issue? And when will she finally grow out of it??

    1. Lindsay Stordahl

      Thanks for all your comments on my blog.

      I’m sure she has a lot of pent-up energy. Puppies nip and bite anyway when they are teething, but they also do this as a form of play and to get attention. She needs a way to get rid of all that energy.

      I really think you should be taking her for walks as soon as possible. It’s not fair to be upset with her when she has all that energy and nothing to do with it. If you can’t take her for walks outside, then play tug of war with her (using her toys!) in the house or leash her up and practice some heeling around your house. Play games with her by hiding treats under cups or buckets. Get her some interactive toys like Kongs. You can put treats in these and she will work to get them out.

      When she bites or nips at your hands or clothes, I suggest re-directing her with her own toys. This is when playing tug is appropriate. It’s a great game to help a dog release energy. Don’t keep her toys out all the time or she will lose interest in them. Get them out for 10 minutes here and there and rotate which toys are out. If she is nipping at your clothes, then offer her something appropriate to chew on such as a rope toy. When she is biting your hands or clothes, you can try giving her a very firm “NO!” But if she seems to enjoy the attention (even bad attention), I recommend that you get up and walk out of the room without saying anything. Ultimately, she is biting as a way to get your attention and to interact with you. If you leave the room whenever she bites, she will learn that if she bites, she gets nothing. Return after about 30 seconds. If she jumps and bites, turn and walk away again. Give her attention whenever she is calm, like when all four feet are on the ground or when she is playing with something appropriate such as her own toys.

      So yes, a lack of exercise is a big part of the problem. She should grow out of the habit if you work on re-directing her and not giving her any attention for biting. Most pups lose their puppy teeth at around four months. So she is probably in that teething stage and getting ready to lose those puppy teeth and get her adult teeth.

  30. I have a 10 week old shorkie. I don’t know what to do we have been doing both the potty pads and outside. Mostly outside. I find he can’t hold his bladder during the day for very long. If he does have an accident in the house he’ll usually go on the pad but not always so I never know where he’s going to go. He is good to go outside when we take him but then 5 mins later he’ll go again in the house. I don’t know what to do. I have been very persistent and watch him like a hawk. I’m thinking I’m going to leash him in the kitchen so he cannot have free range of the house. He’s really good in his crate and never goes in there and can go through the night. What do I do to make it more consistent? So frustrated. He’s hating me restricted him to the kitchen he just whines the whole time. Help me!!!

    1. Lindsay Stordahl

      I think the tips in this post should help you out: http://www.thatmutt.com/2009/08/25/dog-housetraining/

      Let me know if you have any questions after reading that. Basically take him to the same spot outside every time and give him a treat when he goes. If he doesn’t go, then put him back in his crate for 20 minutes and then take him outside again. Repeat as necessary. Once he’s gone, then let him have a bit of freedom. But then keep him in your sight at all times, like on a leash “tethered” to you. Ditch the pads completely. They just confuse a dog. I know way too many little dogs that pee on rugs, pillows, towels, anything on the ground that resembles a “pad.” If you are consistent and patient, he’ll catch on with time.

  31. Hi there,

    I am about to get a female german shepherd puppy, i have not toilet trained a dog or pup ever as all my previous dogs have been out in the yard.
    so yes i have been reading alot trying to find the best method because i would like to have a dog living in the house with us.
    i to thought about puppy pads, crate training,.
    now my pup will only be at home on its own 3 days a week for up to 5 hours max….i do understand and agree that crate training is not harmful when done the right way, but for me i dont think i could leave a pup or dog in a tiny crate, thats just me. because some one will be at home most of the time to watch for the signs and be able to take her outside it is only the 3 days a week im thinking of. so here is my question….the goal in the end is to have my pup use a doggy door to let her self out (sliding door type) i had an idea along the same lines of crate training, by getting a small play pen and putting it around the doggy door, i have read that dogs do not like to pee or poop where they sleep, so for the first while i will make that the pups bed just big enough for a pillow, or something to sleep on. so what im aksing is will this work? i figure i will be killing to birds with the one stone, im not locking her into a small crate for hours when im not home by alowing her to come and go through the door, and also teaching her to go to the toilet outside? eventually moving the pups bed else where, or maybe starting off by making the play pen alitter bigger step by step till she gets the idea.
    to me this sounds like a good idea that will work, but i could be wrong…any comment please:)

    1. Lindsay Stordahl

      If I am understanding you correctly, you plan to have her bed penned into a small area connected to a dog door that leads out to a yard? Your plan is that she will automatically choose to go potty outside when no one is home and she is kept in this enclosure? Yes, that sounds like it could work if the enclosed area indoors is only about the size of her bed – not much bigger than a kennel. I think she will choose to relieve herself outside rather than in the area she sleeps. Of course, you will also be home most of the time to reinforce where you want her to go potty.

      Keep in mind the pup may be afraid of the doggy door at first. She might actually learn to pee on her bed if she is afraid to go out into the yard through that door. So make sure she understand how to use the door and realize it might take her some time to get used to it.

  32. thanks for the reply,
    yes that is just what i mean, and yes i will be working with her showing her that the door is ok and not to be scared off.

  33. I have had my little 3 month yorkie for a week, and I have been trying to crate train her. I take her outside in the middle of the night, first thing in the morning, after every meal, and whenever I see her sniffing around. She usually goes when we are outside- but she also still has accidents inside. I think part of the problem is that when I take her outside, I have to carry her out every time.. because we have to go out on the deck, and then down some stairs that are still too big and scary for her to go down on her own. So she is not learning to go out there on her own. I am wondering if there is anything you recommend to do about this? Should I place something on my deck so she can go out there while she gets big enough to go down the stairs on her own? or should I keep carrying her all the way down?
    Thanks in advance!

  34. I have a 6 week old puppy that I adopted 4 days ago. She was living in the woods with her mother (under a barn) and brother. Mother got hit by car, died, and owner didn’t want the pups anymore. For 6 weeks she was living outside under the barn, never inside a house.
    Good news: She poops and pees outside nicely when I take her, which is several times a day. (about every hour and half)
    Bad news: She poops and pees inside the house when I don’t take her out. How do I get her to tell me she has to go?
    When I am gone and at night, I put her in a crate. She does not soil it, she holds it till I get back (or morning) to take her outside..which is GREAT. But the bad part is, she cries and cries and cries and cries when she is in the crate..so much, that I can’t stand it. So at night, I let her out..roaming free in the house while i’m sleeping, and when I wake up..there is poop/pee on the floor somewhere.
    I tried ignoring the crying for the first 2 nights..but it just so loud and for so many hours..and i’m worried about my neighbors hearing it (i’m in an apartment)..so I let her out.
    So my questions:
    How do I get her to stop crying in the crate?
    How do I get her to tell me she has to go out when she’s not in the crate? i want her to go to the door and bark or cry..clearly tell me.
    And I’d like to ad…she likes the crate..she naps in their during the day just fine..with the door open. It’s when I close the door, that she starts to cry.
    THANKS!

  35. I will be getting a puppy in early January of 2013. I have an outdoor patio area (not very large, but it’s closed off from the house by a sliding door and is still outside). If I put a grass pad on it, and trained the puppy that it is it’s normal spot (unless on a walk in which case I will designate a spot on the walk) will that be too confusing? The plan would to have that patio spot only as an emergency backup in the cold/snow once she is old enough to hold it 8+ hours. It would also be one less flight of stairs to rush the puppy down if it begins to have an accident.

  36. Hi there. I have a 3 yr old male yorkie and I’m always taking him for walk . I take him out for his last walk at 930 befor I go to bed but for some reason during the night he is peeing in my bathroom. Is there any advice to what I can do about this .he has always gone outside to do I
    His stuff he is a vary well trained dog .. Thank u

  37. I have a four month old taco terrier, and she is great with using her potty pads. We live in an apartment and she always does her business on her walks, but if I am gone at work and she needs to go to the bathroom, she will go on her potty pad. Also, I have taken her to the homes of friends and family and I have never had a problem with her going anywhere but on the potty pad, or grass when I take her out for a walk.

  38. I used puppy pads when I adopted my first dog 6 years ago and I’m using them now for my 3-month old puppy (we are in the process of training him to go outside). No one has bothered to mention the fact that you shouldn’t (or aren’t supposed to) take a puppy who hasn’t had all their shots outside and put them on the ground. That’s how they can contract parvo, etc. So using puppy pads until they have had their shots is (in my opinion) necessary.

  39. I just wanted to send out an update. The porch potty was one of the best things I have ever purchased. It is OUTSIDE though 🙂 I installed a dog door to the closed-in patio, and now when the puppy (named her Reeses after the candy) needs to go to the bathroom, she just heads on downstairs, goes outside and does her business. I would definitely agree with not using pads though. It was a challenging first 4 weeks of regimented training, but we are almost now at 7 days accident free (inside her own house at least, she did pee out of excitement when out at a Lowes Hardware the other day…) She is also extremely well behaved. I couldn’t ask more of a 14 week pup 🙂

    http://i.imgur.com/UQuPWk4.jpg

  40. I have raised 4 chihuahua’s over the last 16 years. Strating with Chihuahua’s 1-3 in South Florida, where I was specificially taught NOT to let the Chi’s as puppies or Adults go outside to relieve themselves. The reason I was given was because of all the poisonous lizards,frogs,bugs,etc indigenous in the area that could harm them.
    Then I relocated to SouthWestern Pennsylvania …. Again, I can assure you more months than not, it would be almost impossible for MY tiny hairless 4pound Chi to sustain herself in this harsh inviorment. ( No matter how many layers I dress her in.)

    It would be much more helpful if you/ your article… instead of making blanket assumptions about situations you seemingly have not given thought to , instead consider some of the various senarios where people are telling you why they feel compelled to use puppy pads as the norm, but still need some advice overcoming a tempory issue.

    Xx
    Namaste : )

  41. Oh…BTW

    I take issue with the letter where the person stated “I once had a client loose their kids for a week….”
    When a worker came to the door and saw a ” log” …..on the puppy pad?
    What??? Give me a flipping break!!!! No one looses their kids for a week b/c a dog poops in a house….. All of America would be in jail! Obviously soooooo much more to THAT story!

    Ok beware all puppy pad users …….if you have kids….. Jail ……just around the corner!

    FYI…. My dog has her own “room” & most days you could eat off of any surface in my home.

    I lost a chi after 15 years …The chi left behind is a 4 year old rescue that is now experiencing separation anxiety . I suffer a spine injury , so am home bound most days. But the days I DO go out cause her great distress. The process of me getting ready causes her to start with symptoms.
    Only recently has she started to urinate “off ” campus. I came here hoping for advice …. Not scolding.

  42. You’re more than right. People who use them are just lazy/making excuses! I have a toy foxie that I rescued… She had bad separation anxiety and was resistant to training (she was 2 years old) but I just kept at it and she hasn’t had an accident since! My neighbors downstairs let their dog pee and poop “on” pads. It’s the most disgusting thing ever!!! I live in the upstairs apartment and am perfectly capable of taking my dog out 4-5 times a day! Their house smells so so so bad and there’s just no excuse for this behavior. Make all the excuses you want ppl, but if you can’t take care of a dog and keep it sanitary then do not have a dog!

  43. Do you mean that newspaper is bad for the health of the dog/puppy, or just for training? I guess what I’m trying to say is: would you still say that pads & newspapers are bad if THAT is indeed the ultimate goal of the trainer?

    As for me, I don’t really see a problem in letting your dog poop in your house AS LONG AS it has a designated spot, preferably in the bathroom, and you will clean it up (obviously). I mean, we eliminate in the bathroom so I don’t find it unsanitary for them to do the same. We once had a cat who eliminates in our bathroom every time (NOT in a litter box), but our bathroom did not reek of cat poo at all because we always cleaned it up – and you know how they say that cat poo is the smelliest of all!

    Also, I find that letting them poop or pee on newspaper easier to clean because you just fold the paper and throw it. It also lessens the risk of the dog getting dirty from going outside too much. And if we go to public places, we can just bring newspaper and let them do it there instead of letting them sniff around and find a spot to eliminate and the pick it up after.

    But that’s just me. I’m not saying it’s wrong to let your dog, or any pet for that matter, do their business outside. But I would appreciate it if you didn’t simply say that “Newspapers/Pads are a bad idea” (unless you’re saying it is harmful to their health) and that “Dogs pee outside.” It depends on the preference of the owner and maybe even the pet, the environment, and other elements that can affect their decision. Not everyone has a big yard or nearby park or whatever where they can take their dog to eliminate every single time.

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