View Full Version : Housebreaking with SNOW!!!

September 23rd, 2008, 09:38 AM
okay I feel dumb. I have had dogs before in California. Now we live in Colorado and are getting a new puppy. How do I housebreak / crate train a puppy when there is no grass for him to use. I would prefer the puppy to use a doggie door during the day when we are not home and go out to use the lawn for it's needs. But once winter hits that just seems mean, and the lawn will be covered with snow. Do I set up a litter box in the garage? Sorry, I am just confused how this works! I have only had outside dogs, this will be our first indoor puppy!
Thank you for your help! :)

September 23rd, 2008, 09:57 AM
Hi, Laura!

What kind of puppy are you getting? When I lived in Pennsylvania, my dogs always went outside, even in the snow. I think you'll have pretty good success, particularly if you're able to do a lot of work on your housebreaking before the snow starts. When it starts to snow, take your dog out for walks and play with him in the snow so he's comfortable marching around in it. I think good basic housebreaking manners and being acclimated to the snow will probably make for smooth sailing in wintery weather! :)

If there's really deep snow, you might want to stake out an area close to the house that you can try to keep as clear as possible to create a convenient potty spot.

If your puppy is a small, delicate breed that won't do well in cold weather, you might need an alternate potty area in the garage. If you think you'll need to do that, I'd suggest teaching him to potty there (as well as outside) from the beginning so there aren't adjustment problems when the snowy weather kicks in.

September 23rd, 2008, 12:32 PM
Thank you Rebecca, It feels like a dumb question, I just have never thought of it before. We are getting a Maltese. IT was supposed to be a Christmas present, but we like the idea of starting the training before the snow hits. Being he is going to be a cute, small puppy, should I train him to go outside and in the garage or laundry room? As long as our winter is not a bad one, I should be able to clear sections of grass if that make him more comfy!
Thank you again! I have a feeling I will have more questions once we get our little guy and start the training!

September 24th, 2008, 07:05 PM
Oooh... a Maltese! They're such cute little suckers... might not even be able to find the little thing in the snow!

Any chance there's a covered patio or something in the area where his dog door will be? If there's any way of having him go outside only, it would be ideal, but he'll be so tiny that deep snow could be a big problem...

If there's not a reasonable outdoor option, training him to use pads or a potty box makes sense. Does he have direct access to the garage from the house? If not, the laundry room would be a better option, so he doesn't have to brave the elements to get to a detached garage.

Again, I'd suggest introducing the indoor and outdoor potty areas early on, rather than trying a sudden transition from outdoors to indoors in the winter.

Keep us updated!