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Old 03-15-2012, 07:08 AM   #1
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Confused What is the best strategy for training Lucy? [Giving up hope...]

Hi there,

I have read through this forum and a few books and picked up lots of strategies for potty training a puppy, but I must say after 1 and a half month we are on the verge of giving up hope with this one. It seems that Yorkies are just impossible to potty train. Even some of our friends with older yorkies, just sigh and says its impossible. But we don't want to give up with our first puppy.

I will explain our our surcumstances and I hope that someone would be able to give me a realistic strategy that we can follow.

Here we go:

We have an almost 3 month old Yorkie female, Lucy. Me and my wife got her when it was 8 weeks old. We live in a 1 bedroom house with a study. My wife is at work until about 3PM, but I am working at home the whole day in my study.

We didn't want to give the dog access to the outside area, because she was so little, but she can have free access to outside now. THe thing is - she doesn't associate outside with potty. She sees it as a chance to explore and have fun. First we tried to watch for her signs and take her outside to do her business, but this doesnt work, as she just wants to play. Then when we come inside, she pees. Because I am also working the whole time, it is difficult for me to watch for her signs, even though she is in my study most of the time, while I work. So the outside pee doesnt work. We try take her outside when its pee time, like after meals, after waking up etc, but this hardly works. She just pees inside when she comes in.

Then we started getting doggy pads and now have 3 pads in our house. 1 Just outside our bedroom and study door. One in the front of our living room and one on other side of living room, where the dining room table is. (this is where she use do her business most of the times.)

The pads are scented and she pees and poos by herself on (or close to) the pads about 60% of the time. But we have 3 pads, and she still can't get it that she needs to pee on the pad. We want to reduce the number of pads, but I am not too sure it will work. The times I do catch her doing her business on the pad, I reward her with a treat and "good", but this happens only once or twice a day, so it isnt a big incentive for her.

We don't want to keep her in a crate, as she cries too much when not close to us, and we don't know how else we are going to train her. It is not feasible for me to watch her constently for her signs when I work during the day. And when my wife comes home, she still has free roam of the small house and although we spot her sometimes, we cannot watch her all the time. You keep watching him and then just suddenly he sneaked away for a quick poo or pee.

What are we supposed to do? How are we going to reward him for peeing on his pads if he never does it while we are looking? Also, we want him to pee outside. How are we going to transition this?

If anyone can taylor made a plan of action for our household that is realistic, or give us good advice for a dog that just doesn't seem to care where she does her business, we will appreciate it so much.

Thank you,

Bertus and Dorita
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Old 03-15-2012, 08:51 AM   #2
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first congrats on your new puppy.
and yes yorkies are notorious for being difficult to housetrain but it can be can done.
i have a 6 month boy and he just now starting to consistently use his litterbox.
you say she is in the office with you, well get an x-pen put a couple potty pads in there with her bed , toys, food & water.
keep her there while you are working just check on her when you can.
when you are in another part of the house in the evening move the x-pen into the living room...
just use her crate at night for bedtime.
keep in mind that she is only 12 weeks old , she will not learn this all at once.
you just need to be patient and consistent with your training..
trust me , i know how frustrating this can be but she will get it....

Last edited by MY OSCAR; 03-15-2012 at 08:53 AM.
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Old 03-15-2012, 11:42 AM   #3
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Hi and Welcome to YT!

Do you have one day off that you could commit to training her?

For Outdoors:

The night before your day off, take a used peepad and some poop outside and put it in the yard where you want her to do her pottying. Rub a pee spot on the pad onto the grass to get the urine scent on the grass.

On that day, wake up, put some treats in your pocket, take her outside on a leash and walk her till she pees. If that doesn't work, walk her into the house then take her right back out to try again. You said she comes into the house to pee, so this may trigger her need to 'go'.

When she does pee, whether inside on a pad or outside in the grass, as soon as she begins to stand up, you say, "Good Girl" or "What a Good Girl" in your best falsetto babytalk voice, give her a treat, clap your hands and do a Happy Dance, until she (the puppy) looks at you like "What are you doing? Is this about me? That looks like fun" and she may jump up as if she's trying to join in the celebration. Then in an hour or so, try to get her to repeat this. This is the important part, and a few repetitions, back to back. Also add 'Let's go potty' on the way to the pad or outside. Celebrate like crazy when she does right. No punishment at all if she slips up. Punishment will make them want to hide their potties, because they don't understand that 'where' they went is wrong, they think that the 'pottying' is wrong.

Stick to doing this at the key times, wakeup AM, after meals, after playtime, after naptime, and sometimes after a big drink, and every two hours regardless. In one day she will know what you want.

A 3 month old is too young to have the run of the house. She will do best on a schedule and in a puppy proofed room with one pad.This prevents them from sneaking off to 'go' somewhere else. Once she is very consistent, expand her space to two rooms. When she's consistent in two rooms, you can try letting her have the run of the house. If she slips up, take it back to two rooms till she gets it right. You can use baby gates or an X pen... either will do the job.

If you have the weekend off, repeat the above the second day also. It should be easier if she's getting it. Yorkies respond better to high pitched voices, till they really begin to understand you. The more animated/exaggerated you can celebrate the quicker she'll catch on.

You do need to put this time in for her to get trained, and be commited and positive about it.
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Last edited by kjc; 03-15-2012 at 11:46 AM.
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:05 PM   #4
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Those scented pads dont work, just buy some Adult pads from the Dollar Store they are way cheaper...when she poops, just pick up the poop with a piece of paper towel and smear a little bit on the new pad and take her to the pad and she will smell it. Tell her "GO POTTY HERE"...That is what I did with Bella and when I put her on the pad and I say GO POTTY she does her thing. Sometimes she go on her own and sometimes I have to lock her behind the babygate until she uses it. Tell her good girl and give her a treat. Bella is still in the process of learning. For a few weeks she would go to the pad on her own no help or coaching at all then one day she decides she just going to pee on the floor. It just takes patience and consistency. Bella is 17 weeks old I got her when she was 8 weeks...It seems like she understands the words "GO POTTY" because she look at me when I say it and she squats and do her business...Good Luck
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Old 03-15-2012, 11:09 PM   #5
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Thanks for all the useful advice. I am trying to buy a kind of x-pen, but don't get that a lot here in South Africa. And its kind of expensive if you buy a normal human baby one.

Will continue to take the dog out every hour and try to make her do her business and follow the above advice. Will keep you updated.
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Old 03-16-2012, 12:12 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bertuseng View Post
Thanks for all the useful advice. I am trying to buy a kind of x-pen, but don't get that a lot here in South Africa. And its kind of expensive if you buy a normal human baby one.

Will continue to take the dog out every hour and try to make her do her business and follow the above advice. Will keep you updated.
Maybe try a 2nd hand store or consignment shop would carry gently used baby items....
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Old 03-16-2012, 11:40 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kjc View Post
Maybe try a 2nd hand store or consignment shop would carry gently used baby items....

or try Craigslist I seen somewhere where somebody say they bought one for $10
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