Dorsetdog - House training / toilet training

Paper training is a great option if you are not able to be at home with your puppy to crate train. Start with a small area that you can confine the puppy to such as the kitchen.

It is important that there be no carpet in the area, and that the floor be easy to clean. Place a layer of newspaper or other paper over the entire floor area.

The puppy will simply go where the urge strikes him, but he will always be eliminating on paper. Clean the paper every morning and evening, or more often if possible.

You should begin to notice that the puppy only messes in certain areas of the room. Begin taking up the paper that is in areas that the puppy does not mess in. Gradually decrease the amount of paper in the room until you have a small, manageable area consisting of a few sheets. If the puppy messes outside of this area, simply cover that area with paper and start decreasing the size again.

Once the puppy is only using the paper that you have placed down, you can begin gradually moving it to the area of the house that you would like to use. I.E. move it towards the door or if in a kitchen with a direct door to the garden then place just inside the garden door. Once he has successfully got used to going by the door without any accidents, then move the paper to the outside but still next to the door. Once he has got used to asking to go out and successfully gone on the paper outside then you can move the paper to the area where you wish him to go. Once he is successfully going on the paper in the new area, then reduce the size of the paper by half on every visit until he is going on the grass, gravel or wherever you wish him to go.

REMEMBER to praise and treat him every time that he goes correctly on the paper and the new area.

Bear in mind that you will have to pay some attention and watch his body language once you have moved the paper out side. You can train him as to how you wish him to ask for the door to be opened once he is successfully going outside.

Remember that you may not always hear him scratching the door and accidents will happen. Consider restricting his eating time as this will give you a rough guide as to when he will want to go out.

Avoid allowing the puppy out of confinement until it is using the paper all the time with no mistakes.


Most older dogs already have bladder and bowel control. If your dog continues to soil inside the house, have a vet check the animal for any disease or existing conditions. Start the dog in a living area or den. Play with the dog in this area and feed and water the dog here. Most dogs will not soil their living area, as they are naturally clean animals.

Provide a toilet area as well, usually an outdoor area. Watch where your dog naturally goes to eliminate. Dogs that have been trained on gravel or grass will naturally want to go to these areas. Take advantage of the dog’s natural tendencies, and provide this area as the toilet area.

Take the dog out to the toilet area after eating, sleeping or exercise. Praise the dog for using the correct area and avoid punishment for accidents. If the dog is bored, it may drink excessive amounts of water, or may over eat if allowed free access to food.

Consider scheduling meals at regular times, and then taking the dog for a walk afterwards. It is important for any dog to have lots of fresh, clean water but you may want to remove water or limit the amount if they are drinking out of boredom. Try providing some toys or other distractions for the dog. Talk to your vet before restricting any water to the animal.

If the dog is messing in its living area, check to make sure that you are not unrealistic in your expectations of how long the dog can go without being toileted. Breeders, trainers and vets can provide appropriate guidelines for dogs of different ages and stages of development.

Remember that old dogs, like puppies, may experience difficulty in controlling their body functions.

Clink on this line to view a very good guide to housetraining


All animals need to go toilet. It is important that you show it where to go toilet and praise it when it goes in the right place. Do not shout at the dog if you find that it has previously had an accident somewhere, as the dog has absolutely no idea as to why you are shouting at it.

The key to all training is to anticipate what the dog is about to do and correct the dog as it is thinking of doing that act or thing. Never hit a dog or rub its nose in anything, but praise heavily when they get it right.