If your dogs are anything like my little prince and princess, they sometimes put up a fuss about going potty outside, ESPECIALLY in yucky winter weather. And honestly can you blame them? I don't want to go outside either! But, if you give in and allowed your dog to use your home as a potty, bad habits are easily created and difficult to break
There are a few ways to conquer this chilly problem.
- Is your dog properly attired? Take a look at your dog. Does he or she have a short coat? Or perhaps they are a smaller dog? Smaller dogs or shorter haired breeds are more apt to have a harder time in the winter because they don't have as much fur or body weight keeping them warm as other breeds do. You may want to invest in a warm coat, or fleece, for your pet.. If your pet doesn't like putting on clothing a blanket coat could be a good option for you as its design makes it more comfortable for dogs that don't like or aren't used to the sleeves of a traditional coat.
- Keep to a schedule. Dogs do best with structure and routine. So if you take your pet outside right around the same times each day, it will be easier to keep them from having accidents in the house.
- Rewards for good work. Does your dog have an extra special treat or toy? Make is exclusive to post-potty time. Bring the special treats along and offer one to your pup immediately after they potty outside. Don't give these extra special potty treats to your dog any other time of day - make them look forward to it. Positive reinforcement works! By the way, this won't work with just any everyday treats - you gotta use something REALLY GOOD. Ask us for suggestions!
- Try another method. We carry "Doggie Bells" to hang on your door - teach your dog to ring them when he needs to go out so you can avoid long walks when he doesn't! Many customers have had great success with puppy pad training for smaller dogs. If absolutely nothing is working, cleaning up a mess on a designated absorbent pad is definitely preferable to cleaning up all over the house!
There's a fine line between giving your little guy a break because it's so cold and encouraging bad habits - with these tips and lots of love you'll get through the winter together!