5. When Accidents Happen - Accidents Do, and Will, Happen!
He’s a puppy! And since he’s a puppy, he will have accidents.
Don’t expect miracles right away. In fact, you may have several days of no accidents, and then he’ll feel he has to pee, and without thinking, squats.
Or, you haven’t paid attention to the time between his meal and going out, and he’ll pee. He still hasn’t learned to alert you and run to the door…or how to use the doggy door!
When he had an accident in his den, his mother used to clean the floor or pad, and his puppy butt. But now he’s on his own, and looks to you for help! You need to train him where to go, and not go…and when he has an accident, show him what he needs to do the next time!
One word that is not a “positive” word, but still can have a positive impact, is: NO. It doesn’t have to be said harshly. It can be said in a constructive and loving way so your puppy doesn’t get upset by an angry tone in your voice.
When your puppy has an accident, and if you see him have the accident, then you need to:
• Show him the spot and say “no”.
• Don’t rub his nose in it! That’s a mean and angry action that can backfire and cause him to become wary of you.
• Once you show him the spot, take him to his spot where the papers are or outside and say “yes”!
• If he urinates and/or defecates, then say “good boy!” and give him a treat. Let him know he did GOOD!
What to Do If You Find a Spot
Most of the time you won’t catch him in the act. You’ll find a wet spot and wonder how old it is. Rule of thumb: if you don’t actually see him have the accident, JUST CLEAN IT UP. Don’t try to show him the spot and expect him to remember when he did it! By the time you find it, he’ll will have played, slept and ate and won’t remember he peed there.
If you take him to the spot and say “No”, he’ll wonder what he did wrong. And that could cause him to get scared….wary….confused…and maybe even mad. Remember: association. If your puppy does get upset, he’ll associate your actions going forward and the word “No” as a scary thing.
This will make your housebreaking more difficult as he becomes scared to work with you; and this will continue into his adult years. and by the time you find the spot, he won’t remember going there and will become confused, scared or angry if you rub his nose in it.
Making Sure it Doesn’t Happen Again
The best thing to do when you find a spot is clean it up immediately! If it sits for a while, it will soak into the rug, furniture, etc and be harder to get out. And by cleaning it quickly and thoroughly, you’re apt to get rid of the scent and make sure your puppy doesn’t pee or defecate on that spot again.
Another mistake some owners make during housebreaking is moving the papers or piddle pads away from the original spot. Don’t do that! Make sure you keep them in the same location, otherwise puppy will get confused and start peeing all over the place.
How To Get Rid of the Stain
No matter where the stain is…on a rug, hardwood floor, tile floor, sofa etc….the main thing to remember is: get it wiped up as quickly as possible!! There are many products on the market that helps to eliminate odors, but if you don’t have any in the house, two other products that work are white vinegar and hydrogen peroxide.
Vinegar will eliminate the odor, while hydrogen peroxide not only gets the scent out, but the
Steps to Say Adios to Stains
• For urine, blot with towels to soak up the urine. If feces, pick it up but don’t rub the stain in the rug.
• Use a diluted dish detergent (clear!) or rug cleaner and saturate the area. Put towels over it for about 1-2 hours.
• Gently blot the area with a sponge with water.
• Soak the area with club soda for ten minutes, then blot that up.
• Cover with towels and let it soak up any residual moisture.
• Once just damp, but not moist, spray with one of the products you can purchase from a pet supply store that helps eliminate odors and stains.
• For wood or hardwood floors, wipe up the stains, then mop if you need to.
• Never use ammonia or ammonia-based products. Vinegar is good to get rid of urine scent on tile.