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Thread: Multiple Outdoor Potty Areas? Please help!

  1. Question Multiple Outdoor Potty Areas? Please help!

    Hi there - first of all, thank you for your amazing website...it's been such a help as I plan for the arrival of my new little boy puppy in a few days! I'm really trying to figure out the best way to housetrain him...I'm leaning towards crate/outdoor training, but I have a question.

    Is it possible to housetrain a dog and have 2 different outdoor potty areas? I live in an NYC apartment on the fifth floor, with no elevator. I also have access to the roof deck just a few steps up from my apartment. I'd like to be able to take the puppy out to use the bathroom both downstairs and also on the roof, depending on how much time I have, and also how urgent the situation is...

    Do you think this is a recipe for disaster? Will it confuse him? Should I stick to only one area? The thought of going up and down those stair about a dozen time A DAY makes me weary.

    Thanks so much in advance for your help!

    -John

  2. #2
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    I don't think that would be a problem at all. Many people train their dogs to go potty in the yard and while out on a walk, and this wouldn't be all that different.

    You didn't mention the size or age of your new puppy, but, assuming he's not a huge monster, you should definitely remember to carry him to his potty areas for quite a while before starting to try having him walk there... one of the most common problems with housebreaking an apartment puppy is that they stop to go potty in the hallway or the stairwell on the way to go potty!
    Rebecca
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  3. Unhappy

    Thanks so much for your quick reply, Rebecca. So, last night my partner and I had a realistic discussion about our schedules, and I'm now thinking that outdoor training might not be the best option for us. We're getting a small yorkie...he'll be 11 weeks. I'll only be able to come home once during the day - so that means he would be left alone from 9:30-1 (3.5 hours) and then from 2-7 (5 hours)...that's too long, right? (I feel like I know the answer to that question).

    Which leads me to thinking that indoor training (while not my first choice by any means) is the best option. I can set up a small area in the bathroom for him with his pads. Now for my questions:

    1. Should I really leave food/water in there with him? If I'm still coming home in the afternoon to take him out for a walk, I can feed him at that time, which means he'll still have 4 meals a day

    2. What's the end goal? By that I mean...is the ultimate goal to let him run freely around the house during the day when I'm gone, but he'll know to only go on the pad?

    3. What about at night? Should he still sleep in a crate near my bed? And then when he has to go, I'll take him to his area?

    Sorry for all the questions...he's coming in 3 days, and I'm basically freaking out because I'm making the last minute outdoor-to-indoor switch.

    Thanks in advance -

    -J

  4. #4
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    Don't freak out! I think you're making a good decision, to tell you the truth. Indoor training is a good option if you plan to do it permanently, since it will allow you a lot more freedom to not go into a panic if you have to be away from the house for a while and the dog can't get out to potty. It tends to work out really well for tiny apartment dogs!

    If the puppy will have access to his potty area, you CAN leave food and water down for him, since he can go potty whenever he pleases. However, it's also fine to feed him on a schedule if that works better for you.

    Yes, the end goal is that he would have the run of the house and only potty on the pads.

    Overnight, you can either crate him or put him in his confinement area (big enough only for bed, bowls and pads).

    You might want to talk to your breeder to see if he/she has started any pad training with the puppy... sometimes they do that before the puppy comes home.
    Rebecca
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  5. Default

    Do you think that I would be able to transition him to outdoor/crate training once he's a bit older and can hold it longer? Or will that completely confuse him?

    And actually, while I've got you, what do you think about doggy daycare? What's a good age to start him in it? And what type of potty training should he have before he goes to daycare? Will having the freedom of day care screw up any training at home? So could he spend all day in daycare and then also be trained to only go outside?

    Sorry for the billion questions...you've been so helpful so far...

    Thanks in advance,

    -John

  6. #6
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    I wouldn't do indoor training unless you plan to make it permanent. It's possible to make the transition from indoor to outdoor training, but it can be difficult and there's no guarantee it'll work 100% once you've taught him it's okay to potty in he house.

    I think occasional doggie daycare is great... gives your dog a chance to meet other dogs in a supervised, controlled environment. Sometimes I see dogs that seem to pick up bad habits at daycare, but that's usually when they go too often. A time or two a week should be fine, then you can do more if he seems to handle it well.
    Rebecca
    Please help us to continue to provide this free source of housebreaking information by bookmarking our products page
    and buying your pet supplies through our product partners!

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