Poop HappensAug 31, 2021
You have just become the proud new parent of the most perfect litter ever whelped!! This magical moment is filled with feelings of relief, exhaustion, awe, and unconditional love.
Fast forward three to four weeks later and reality hits...and it hits HARD! Your beautiful, perfect babies that mom so lovingly cared for poop...and they poop A LOT!!
This can easily become frustrating to deal with, as you have to spend countless hours cleaning poop off of things you never imagined possible. Who knew little puppy paws could spread so much fun!
Luckily, like you, your puppies do not like this kind of mess. Canines have a natural instinct to keep their dens clean, so they really do NOT want to relieve themselves where they sleep, eat, or play.
In the wild, a mother wolf will start teaching her pups to relieve themselves outside the den at only three weeks old...YES!! Three weeks old!!
Because your puppies aren’t out in the wild with mom, it becomes your responsibility to begin potty training them. Luckily, puppies are like little sponges, eager and ready to learn, as well as very impressionable.
To help you get started or continue with your potty training journey, we have put together our Top 3 Recommendations for Puppy Potty Training!
1. Assign the puppies an appropriate space to relieve themselves, designed with their age and size in mind. The potty space may start out looking like rolled-out paper or a disposable potty pad set right by the puppies’ bed. At first they may only take one or two steps away, and this is perfectly fine! As the puppies grow so will their potty area, getting further and further away from where they sleep, eat, and play.
2. Keep the puppies’ bedding CLEAN. If the puppies’ bed smells like urine and feces, they will think it’s a place they can relieve themselves. While this is frustrating for us, it is also frustrating for the puppies because it conflicts with their natural instinct to keep their dens/living area clean. To avoid this, keep the bedding fresh and odor free even if it means you have to change it multiple times a day as they learn.
3. Introduce your puppies to their litter BEFORE you start feeding them. It is easy for puppies to confuse their litter with their food, which is not a good thing for anyone. If the puppies are confused they will likely try to eat the litter, which can cause upset tummies and diarrhea - something nobody likes. So, if you intend to use wood pellets or any type of litter, PLEASE introduce it in the assigned potty space PRIOR to starting them on food; both you and your puppies will be thankful you did!
There is no 100% guarantee that your puppies will be perfect with the litter box, but I can say that I have had a lot of success when incorporating litter boxes the right way and using the tips above.
And remember that nothing worthwhile ever comes easy… Poop Happens!
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