Potty training your puppy can be a frustratingly long process. Even after years of training and positive reinforcement, some dogs still mark and go to the bathroom in the house when they know they shouldn’t.
I remember the first several times I dog sat on a popular dog sitting app. Every dog owner listed their dog as completely housebroken. Inevitably, though, their dog would find a place and go to the bathroom within minutes of coming inside my home.
The bottom line is, potty training your dog will likely be an up and down experience the whole time.
There are, however, things that you can do to reduce the number of accidents and keep the relationship between you and your puppy a positive one. Most dogs know that going to the bathroom inside the house is a no-no.
They don’t want to disappoint you, and angry reactions can create a negative feedback loop where your pet feels anxiety, goes to the bathroom as a result and experiences more anxiety after the fact.
Corgis present an interesting case when it comes to potty training. They are extremely smart dogs, but they also experience a good deal of separation anxiety when you’re not around.
Training your dog with these 9 tips and tricks will help your dog have confidence and give you peace of mind knowing no accidents are looming.
Watch Your Dog Closely
Every dog has a tell that reveals when they need to go to the bathroom. Each dog is different, so you’ll have to invest time into watching your dog’s behavior and learning to read their body language.
Whether they start walking in circles or disappear to different corners of the house, you need to jump in at the right moment to take them outside before an accident. If you’ve been training your dog for a while, they know they shouldn’t go inside but they may not know how to communicate that they need to go outside just yet.
Watch what your dog is doing and take them out in time.
Use Positive Reinforcement
Positive reinforcement works very well in potty training. When I was a kid, the thinking was that dogs needed to be punished after accidents in the house. My dad would move my dog’s nose close to the accident and yell, “NO!” loudly. It didn’t work very well.
Now, we know that positive reinforcement works much better. You’ve got to get out of your comfort zone a bit when you’re outside, but you should really go over the top in praising your puppy whenever they go potty where you want them to.
They’ll notice the reaction and will recognize that is what you expect. They want to please you, so let them know how.
Give Them Treats
Treats are a fantastic way to back up your positive reinforcement with words. Doggy treats offer an immediate positive feedback loop for your dog. They go potty outside, they get treats.
Using treats is a terrific way to train your dog how to sit, shake, go to the bathroom outdoors, or do whatever else you want to teach them.
Let Your Corgi Go a Couple of Times
You need to stay outside long enough for your corgi to get everything out. Some dogs hold urine inside because they want to mark their territory. It’s especially frustrating for new dog owners because you take your dog out, they pee, and then they still have an accident at home.
What gives? To combat this, you should stay out on your walk long enough for your corgi to go two or three times. It will train them so they know this is their one chance to get everything out.
Schedule Feeding Times
A dog’s digestive system tends to work like clockwork. They’ll need to go within a certain timeframe, and a regular feeding schedule trains them to know that, after they eat, they can expect outdoor time.
They’ll learn to hold it in and wait until after dinner or their first meal of the day.
Persistence Is Key
When your corgi is a puppy, you’re going to need to go outside frequently. It’s a lot to ask, but you have to put in the work to make sure your puppy learns that outdoors is where they should go to the bathroom. You can expect to be outside several times a day for weeks or months while they are small.
The good thing is that corgis are smart, so they will catch on quickly.
Crate Your Corgi
Another option, and one that will come in handy for folks who have to go outside and are worried about ruined carpets, is to crate train your dog.
Dogs typically don’t like to go to the bathroom in small confined spaces, so putting your corgi in a comfortable crate will reduce the chances of any messes. Try not to leave your dog in the crate for more than two or three hours.
It is not designed to be an all-day solution.
Go Out Right When You Get Home
Don’t push the envelope. If you’ve been gone for several hours, your corgi needs to go to the bathroom. Grab the leash and take them out the moment you step through the door.
Install a Bell on the Door
Corgis are smart, and sometimes dogs will learn to give you cues that they need to go outside. Some dogs will learn to hit a bell or scratch on the door to let you know they need to go to the bathroom.
You can train them to hit the bell before you go outside by giving them treats. They’ll catch on and realize if they want to get out, they have to let you know.
Potty training your dog is just as much about you as it is the puppy. You have to be committed to their learning, and they’ll respond in kind.
Stick with it, reward your dog, and give them the positive feedback they need to learn good behaviors.