5 Tips for House Training Older Dogs

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House training dogs that are older is necessary when renting an apartment. Owning a dog that isn’t trained can cost you your security deposit, and a place to live if your landlord is upset about damages to the apartment. It’s never too late to train a dog, but you’re dealing with special circumstances when you’re working with an adult dog. With select equipment, time and patience, house training your dog will yield you great results.

1 – Use a Crate

Crate training is recommended by the Humane Society of the United States, as long as you keep a few things in mind:

  • Don’t keep them in there all day and night
  • Keep the crate in the room you use the most whenever possible to prevent feelings of isolation
  • Let your dog go in the crate voluntarily, so that it doesn’t destroy your apartment afterwards

A crate made of metal and one that is collapsible is best for apartment use. It’s easy to transport from room to room or from one apartment to the next, and you can find one at major pet supplies stores.

2 – Paper Train Your Dogs

If you’re not comfortable with using a crate for house training dogs, then paper training is your next best option. Older dogs can be trained or retrained to go to the bathroom on newspapers, spread on the floor at a strategic location in your apartment. Choose one spot only, like a bathroom or laundry room. After they eat or drink, lead them to the spot so that they get the idea that you want them to go to the bathroom on the paper.

3 – Praises and Treats

Treats and high praises aren’t just for puppies. Older dogs are responsive to these as well, and when you’re consistent with rewards house training dogs will happen much faster. It’s not necessary to give your dog food, and you should avoid using it with older dogs because they gain weight quicker. Your enthusiasm and tone of voice is more than enough. There’s an entire industry involving dogtreats, and once you start down the road, you may have to keep giving your dog treats to get them to do what you want. In the end, you’ll be putting your older dog’s health at risk.

4 – Repetitive Training

House training dogs that are older is frustrating because the process can get repetitive. Younger dogs will catch on quicker, especially when you include praises or treats. However, it takes longer to train an older dog, and a lot of patience is required on your part. Don’t grow weary repeating the same commands and leading your dog through certain actions. You will see results if you hang in there.

5 – Examine Existing Habits

Older dogs have learned habits from somewhere, and you should know what those habits are. House training dogs involves a lot of common sense, and you shouldn’t use every tip at once or at all. You won’t know what tip to use if you don’t first take the time to figure out the bad habits you want to get rid of. It might take a weekend or a week, but make the time to figure out your starting point, and to assess the areas you need to train. You’re investing time upfront, but you’ll save time and pain in the end.

House training your older dog will make living in your apartment pleasant and comfortable. Use any of these tips that best suit your living space and situation.


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