Why You Should Not Use Pee Pads For House Training Puppies

Congratulations on your new puppy, you will want to buy many puppy supplies, but pee pee pads should not be one of those supplies.  These pads will tell the pup it is okay to piddle, or poop, in the house (on anything fabric).  Unless you want your dog to always urinate, and defecate indoors (as some apartment owners actually do) save your money and do not confuse your pup, do not buy pee pee pads.
The best way to house train a puppy is to crate train it. The crate is not used as a punishment, but rather as a den. The puppy does not want to mess in its den so is taken outside several times a day. As it gets older it can hold its bladder and bowels longer and longer.  Puppies can be crate trained starting at 8 weeks which is when they can start to hold their bladder for 8 hours.  Puppies should remain with their mother until they are 8 weeks old.
Even when a puppy is not crate trained, but is still trained to go to the bathroom outside, the pee pee pads are a silly waste of money.
Pee pee pads are sold under many names, Potty Pads, Puppy Training pads, and so forth. They are disposable and marketed for people training pups, but truthfully unless you want a dog to eliminate indoors all the time, they do not work and should not be used with pups older than eight weeks of age. They are okay to use when pups are young, but once training really begins, get rid of the pads.

Do not expect house training to be quick, easy, or “overnight”, expect accidents and never punish a puppy for accidents (typically accidents are because the owner is not watching the pup close enough).
When pee pee pads used the puppy never really understands why it is okay to eliminate inside sometimes, but not always. Why can it pee on this piece of cloth, but not that one? Why pee here, but not there? Sometimes they start playing with the pad rather than using it correctly.

shih tsu puppy art by author

shih tzu puppy art by author

To correctly house train a pup you should use rewards, soft treats; giving one immediately when the pup eliminates outside. You should be consistent and do this every time. This means you go outside too, every time, at least at first, otherwise if you give the treat when it comes inside, it thinks the treat is for coming in.

Pups need to urinate as soon as they wake up; they eat, then will need to run around for a bit, and then will defecate. They will need to urinate a few more times in the day. They will need to defecate again, particularly if on lower quality food (most adult dogs on premium food only defecate once in a day).

If you own a puppy, or are about to get one, save your money, don’t buy these silly gimmicky products (don’t use newspaper either). Read more on how to house train a puppy correctly, ideally crate training. It will save the puppy a lot of confusion, and will save you money (better to be spent on obedience lessons anyhow).


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