Do not stare at or talk to a puppy while it is eliminating. The mother dog avoids staring at the puppy during this time because she does not want to indicate danger, displeasure or concern and therefore remains detracted or aloof. Too many women become overly excited and praise their puppy for pooping outside. The puppy either becomes concerned, “Did I do something wrong?” or distracted and ceases to eliminate. Either way, the house-training instruction has been disrupted and will ultimately delay the learning process.
The mother dog’s verbal directives during house training sessions are kept to a minimum. She needs to keep her senses attuned to possible danger in the environment. It would be alien to her to verbally praise the puppy for performing a natural function. The mother dog resorts to verbal directives only if she becomes concerned or aware of danger. Her silence and detachment however provide the puppy with a peaceful and safe moment to eliminate.
Mother dog does not give her puppy a treat for performing a natural function because she instinctively knows most puppies are food motivated and likely to be distracted by the treat and not complete the task. A smart puppy, owned by a human knows it will receive a treat for eliminating. The treat becomes the stimulus and their sole motivation. Eliminating equals receiving a reward. The puppy may be savvy enough to know that by eliminating just a little, a treat will be in the offering. The owner, however, assumes the puppy has completed its business, gives the treat for a job well done and immediately brings the puppy back into their home.
Unfortunately, within a few minutes after their arrival the puppy makes a deposit on the Oriental rug. This time no treat will be offered and what becomes even more baffling to the puppy is why its trusted and loving owner has suddenly become so angry. “I pooped again, what’s the problem?”
• Provide a puppy ample time to eliminate outside. Don’t rush the process.
Female puppies will often urinate twice during a 10-minute outing and most male puppies have to investigate and play before getting down to business. Therefore, refrain whenever possible from allowing toddlers to participate in the outside house-training session because their exuberant cries and yelling might
distress the puppy or compel it to participate in the children’s antics rather than concentrate on the task at hand. Keep the environment peaceful and quiet.
Do not immediately clean the area where the puppy has eliminated. Women typically stoop or bend down to clean the soiled area. A puppy can misconstrue these actions as an invitation to play or a sign of submission. It is not uncommon for dominant dogs to attempt to mount or body-slam a woman when she is on her knees cleaning.
Remove the waste after the puppy has been safely returned to the home or carry colored Popsicle sticks in your pocket. Drop them near the puppy deposit. Perform this action when the puppy is distracted. The stick will indicate to the neighbors your intention to return and clean the area later and it will also make it easier to find the location. Continue to employ this procedure until the puppy is fully house trained and after you have established some degree of authority over the dog.
Never place a puppy’s nose in its own excrement. This house-training technique is never employed by the mother dog. You wouldn’t place a child’s face in a soiled diaper to teach the infant a lesson, so don’t do it to a puppy! This tactic is not only a form of animal abuse; it can make a puppy fearful of its owner.