Phone: 620-223-1770

Emergencies: 620-223-1770

Housetraining for the Working Parents

dvm (13)House training puppies when you are at work all day can be quite the challenge. The ideal would be for you to take your puppy with you to work, but this is not always possible. Other alternatives would be to take your puppy to your Mom's! (at least that is what my children did), or you could try any one of your friends or relatives that may be home all day. You may be able to find a doggie day care in your area. Of course even these suggestions may not be possible. In which case, what else can you do?

Be sure to review Puppy Central / Housetraining and Puppy Central / Housetraining for at home Parents. These pages along with Puppy Central / Crate/Kennel Training page will still be utilized, but with a few modifications.

Remember that your puppy is going to need to go to the bathroom one hour for each month of age; 8 weeks = 2 months, so every 2 hours. Also after they eat, drink and wake up from sleeping. The negative is you are not going to be home when this happens and a 8 week old puppy simply cannot be left in a pet carrier for 4-8 hours or more. Left in a carrier for longer than 2 hours, the puppy will have no choice but to go to the bathroom in it's crate. This is not only distasteful to the pup but also teaches him that going in his crate is acceptable. You also cannot let the little guy roam around freely in your house, not only will you have several spots to clean up, but likely you will find many things chewed on when you come home and also potentially endangering your puppy as it chews on electrical cords, etc.

You will need to have a puppy playpen. The one I purchased is a wire expandable pen that I can shape to fit the area and make as small as I need it to be. I got mine at Petsmart, but I have found one on Amazon called Petmate Exercise Pen I would also recommend wire vs plastic, plastic can be chewed on the through. You could shop second hand stores for a retired baby playpen, however they are usually plastic or net and may be escapable. If you have a small bathroom or utility room (puppy proofed of course) you may make it serviceable, however remember the smaller the area the better, wish is why I like the wire playpen.

You are going to cover the entire floor under the playpen (or room) with newspaper. I use newspaper because it is inexpensive. The goal is that the puppy develops a substrate preference for the paper, preferring to keep her bed/crate clean. You are going to put your pup's pet carrier in a corner of the playpen, either taking the door off or tying back so that it doesn't accidentally close and prevent your pup from being able to get this it's bed. You are going to leave a few toys and water (no food!). Next put the pup in the pen. At first your pup may play and chew with the paper, but in time that will become less so. While you are gone, if your pup uses the bathroom, it will be on the paper. You should note where in the pen your pup goes, this knowledge will allow you to make your paper coverage less, covering only the area where the puppy prefers going.

When you get home, the first thing you do is take your pup outside, just as with the AT HOME METHOD. I usually then put my pup in his crate for his meal (door closed) and while he is eating I clean up his play pen area, rolling up and disposing the paper and cleaning with a disinfecting cleaner. Once the meal is over, we go outside again. After that it is back to the direct supervision, umbilical cord method.

As your pup ages, she will be able to go for longer periods of time without needing to go to the bathroom and you can eliminate the paper and the the playpen.