When you bring home a new dog, it is an exciting time. You’re welcoming in a new member of the family, but it’s not all playtime and cuddling your new pet. Ensuring that your dog becomes properly house-trained is imperative. Here are three tips for conquering common house-training challenges.

Understanding a Dog’s Signals

The first step to successfully house-training your dog is knowing when they have to go. They’ll probably become fidgety and begin sniffing around for a suitable place. Their ideal spot will likely be a corner or behind a piece of furniture — somewhere out of the way. As soon as you see your dog signal their need to relieve themselves, you should take them outside to do just that. If you don’t have enough time, at least rush them to a pee pad or patch of synthetic grass designed for such use.

Soiling the Same Area Indoors

You’ve probably noticed that your dog soils the same place nearly every time they have an accident inside the home. Luckily, you can discourage this behavior. One way is through the use of dog deterrent sprays. Another way is through blocking off the area to make it inaccessible to your dog. Regardless of how you proceed, you need to get rid of the stain and smell. If their sense of smell tells them they’ve soiled an area before, they’re likely to do it again. It’s important to note that how you clean your carpet matters. Your best bet is to use an enzymatic cleaner.

Teach Your Dog to Signal

There’s an element of guesswork to knowing what your dog wants. For example, are they scratching at the door because they want to go potty or go play? Thankfully, you can eliminate some of the guesswork by teaching your dog to signal in specific ways when they need to go. This is particularly useful if your dog is smaller and not great at making their wishes known. The most popular signaling method is a potty bell. It’s exactly what it sounds like: a bell you train your dog to ring when they need to go out. There are even electronic options that will signal your phone.

House-training your dog can be frustrating. It puts a damper on the joy of bringing your new furry friend home. Just remember that it’s a challenge dog owners have always had to conquer. Armed with these three simple tips, you can, too.

To reward your dog when he responds successfully to training, try giving him some of our dog treats!