Training A Chihuahua – Housebreaking

photo by dahlSome chihuahua owners do not take an interest in training a chihuahua to eliminate outdoors. Since the dog is so small, they prefer to use methods such as indoor paper training, puppy pads or litter boxes. While it may seem that there is nothing wrong with these options, the fact of the matter is you are not doing any favors for yourself or your little chi. If you allow him to do his business indoors you are setting yourself up for negative ramifications, such as accidents in your home and an un-socialized dog.

Sadly, the main reason why certain chi owners do not take their dog’s out is because they are too lazy, leave their pet home alone for extended periods of time or find housebreaking training a chihuahua a difficult task. Do not let yourself use any of these excuses as reasons to not housetrain your pooch. You can housebreak your pet as long as you are committed to doing so, and the following is exactly what you need to achieve this goal:

  • Routine - Take your chi out to do his business at the same time every day. He will become familiar with this schedule and respond accordingly. Canines thrive on routines. Take him out:
    • After he wakes up
    • Before he goes to bed
    • 5 - 10 minutes after eating or drinking
    • After playing or exercising
    • After exciting situations (i.e. visitors)
  • Frequency - In the beginning, training a chihuahua takes plenty of dedication and patience on your part, especially considering you will need to take him out very frequently in the first few months of his life while his bladder is still growing and he is learning control. Therefore, you will want to take him out every hour until he has reached 9 weeks of age and then after this point every two hours.
  • Take him to the same spot outside - Your chi will be more likely to relieve himself in an area where he can detect his own scent, as he will want to mark his territory.
  • Provide him with a crate - Having him sleep and rest in his crate helps him to resist the urge of eliminating in your home. The reason is dogs do not like soiling their den where they sleep. This will help him control his bladder, especially at nighttime.

Lastly, as with any training a chihuahua instruction you teach, be sure to praise your pooch when he eliminates outside. However, make sure you do not yell at him when he has an accident inside. If you catch him going, tell him "No", pick him up and take him outdoors to reinforce the acceptable bathroom environment. Never give him the idea that relieving himself is wrong.

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