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Hi everyone,
We have a tiny toy poodle and so far we have been trying mainly to get him to go outside to potty. I have been taking him out every hour during the day unless he is sleeping and will use the wee wee pad only if he is in his exercise pen and I am away from home.

He is only 9 weeks old and we've had him for only 10 days. But he is so small and I am wondering if that is the right decision for him and for the family. Right now, I am at home but I plan to go back to work in a year or so. I am hoping our dog will need to go only once or twice when he becomes an adult. Is that reasonable for me to hope for? If he goes more than that, I might regret having him trained only for the outside since I may be gone longer than his "schedule" permits and hopefully by then, he won't be confined to a play pen.

Is there a way to train the pup to go on the pad when he is indoors and go outside once or twice a day too, or am I going to completely confuse the puppy? And if so, HOW DO YOU DO THAT???

I guess I am hoping to leave both options open till we know what he will do as an adult... Are there other people out there that are doing both???? And finally, how long does potty training last? A month, two, 18 months? I have conflicting answers and not sure what to truly expect.

Thanks in advance for your help.
 

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I'm in the minority here, but I believe you can train a dog to do both. I have trained my dog to use pads when I'm not home. When I am home, he goes outside.

Quick question: does he consistently use the pad when he's in the X-pen? If so, then you're really well on your way.

If not, get a spray that attracts your dog and makes him want to pee. Spray it on the pad, and praise him when he uses it. The softness of the pad will also be an attraction. To start, use several pads and overlap them. Change the pads every day or so. Once he seems to be getting the hang of it, remove the pads one at a time until you're down to one or two. I have two pads in the corner of a room. This is good to try in the middle of the night when your dog needs to go, or when you're in a hurry and don't have time to go out.

At other times, take him outside and praise him when he goes there.

Some people believe this confuses the dog, but it's worked fine for me. When I'm here, Cupid knows that outside is the place to go. When I'm not, he has another place, and he knows where that is. I do keep him confined to one area while I'm away. I don't know if I would try this with a dog that has the run of the house.

You've probably heard conflicting answers about potty training because every dog is different. Some dogs pick it up very quickly--in a matter of weeks. Others take months. Eighteen is a bit extreme. Plan on three or four months, give or take.
 

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I'm of the opinion that doing so is confusing to the dog, but that's just an opinion and we all know what opinions are like.

I can tell you that adult dogs can hold it for 8-9 hours a day while you're not around. There's no need for an adult dog to have a place to go in the house. If you take the dog out before you leave and once you get home in the evening you'll be fine. If you can come home over lunch or have someone stop by mid day and take the dog out that's even better.
 

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I have been wondering the same thing. About 2 months ago, I adopted a CKCS/Bichon mix. I live on the 15th floor of a high-rise so taking Bailey out first thing in the morning or in the middle of the night in the dead of winter just wasn't working for me. As a result, I've been bringing him out during the day and using the peepee pads at night and early morning. Actually (and I'm sure I'm wrong in this) I leave a pad out all the time.

Typical day is like this: I wake up, Bailey uses the pad. At noon or so I come home (or the dogwalker comes), let him out of the crate, and bring him outside. He goes back in the crate until 3 or 4 when I bring him outside again. After I get out of work I feed him dinner and we go outside for a long walk/playtime. Then I bring him out again before bed. He knows the potty command and usually goes right after I ask him to. So far, my system is working well, he knows to use the pad and doesn't have many accidents. Actually he's never had a poop accident, only pee. But, I really don't want my dog to use pads forever and want to know how I can train him to let me know he needs to go outside. I know that over the past 2 months I've shown Bailey that potty inside is ok but I'm hoping as he's a little older now (4.5 months) he can hold it longer and I can eventually take the pad away.

Sorry to be so long-winded but any help is appreciated :)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you for all your replies. I am learning a lot here in the forum and truly appreciate all your thoughtful responses. I am sooooo new to this that everything seems like a mystery, even after reading several dog/puppy books and watching countless hours of dog training shows.

Please keep any additional ideas/advice coming.

Thanks again!
 

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I have been wondering the same thing. About 2 months ago, I adopted a CKCS/Bichon mix. I live on the 15th floor of a high-rise so taking Bailey out first thing in the morning or in the middle of the night in the dead of winter just wasn't working for me. As a result, I've been bringing him out during the day and using the peepee pads at night and early morning. Actually (and I'm sure I'm wrong in this) I leave a pad out all the time.

Typical day is like this: I wake up, Bailey uses the pad. At noon or so I come home (or the dogwalker comes), let him out of the crate, and bring him outside. He goes back in the crate until 3 or 4 when I bring him outside again. After I get out of work I feed him dinner and we go outside for a long walk/playtime. Then I bring him out again before bed. He knows the potty command and usually goes right after I ask him to. So far, my system is working well, he knows to use the pad and doesn't have many accidents. Actually he's never had a poop accident, only pee. But, I really don't want my dog to use pads forever and want to know how I can train him to let me know he needs to go outside. I know that over the past 2 months I've shown Bailey that potty inside is ok but I'm hoping as he's a little older now (4.5 months) he can hold it longer and I can eventually take the pad away.

Sorry to be so long-winded but any help is appreciated :)
Do you have a balcony? Could you put a box with some turf or sod in it on the balcony? It would be easy enough to scoop the poo and you could spray it with a bleach solution to clean it when it got too smelly.
 

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Like Thracian, I've trained Mojo to use pads when he's inside and to go outside when he's outside. If he needs to go and there isn't a pad available (if we're visiting somewhere for example) he'll make huffing noises that indicates we need to give him somewhere appropriate so he can potty (either put down a pad or take him outside).

Mojo has handled it fine I think. I don't really consider him fully housetrained yet because we don't give him access to the entire house without supervision and that's my gold standard for calling a dog houesbroken but he's had maybe half a dozen accidents in the five months we've had him which isn't bad for a puppy. We have hardwood floors and rugs so I don't believe that he's been "confused" by puppy pads although I do use a litterbox (with a pad inside) so that might have helped prevent any confusion about where he was allowed to potty while inside.

Mojo has access to his litterbox any time he's not in his crate (which is when we are sleeping or not at home). We've been off our normal routine the last couple of weeks due to illness, but he averages about 75% of his time outside his crate.
 

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I have 3 pit/rot puppies that we are training right now. They are all 8 wks old. We used pads for the first few weeks, because of holes in our fence. We now have it fixed, and take them outside as much as possible. I make sure to let them out in the morning, and when they get up from their naps. But, if we aren't able to let them out, they are really good at going pee on the pads. As long as the pads are in the same place all the time. As they get older, maybe we can get rid of the pads all together. :)
 

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Both of mine are pad trained, but if we are outside they will go without hesitation. I do have friends though who diligently pad trained and their dogs decided they preferred to go outside and will not use the pads any longer.

I've found with my two though is that they pee a lot since the pads are always available - they can get costly if using the disposables. There are reusable washable pads that are available, but I can't get past the idea of putting them in the washing machine.

Oh, I wanted to add that the pads made for humans that are available at Sam's Club are the most economical I've found. Also, the most absorbent.
 

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Secret dog door into the neighbors apartment?
Haha good idea! I guess I'll just stick with bringing him out, praising him like crazy and giving him treats when he potties outside. I usually give him mild praise when he uses the pads but never any treats. Maybe he'll eventually decide that he'd rather go outside--we can hope!
 

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I had the same sort of problem as the original poster. I started with pads, and my puppy was using them, but then when I tried to take him outside, he would hold it and not go until we came back inside (on the pad). So... I started all over again, completely removing the pads. Now he goes outside when we take him.

The only problem now is, when we left him the other night for about 4 hours in his fenced off area, with a pad inside of it, he went on the kitchen floor and not the pad!

He'll be home alone tomorrow night, so I guess we'll have to see how he does then.
 

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I believe it is possible. I had a tiny chi a few years ago and he did both because he just couldn't tolerate the -50 F weather. He would literally step outside and fall over screaming. So during the winter, inside on potty pads, during the summer,outside.

He never messed in the house, and understood it was alright to go inside during the winter on a designated area, and knew to sit at the door during the summer.
 

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It can be done. My can use both. It's not that easy to train though, you have to be diligent. I trained her to go inside first before all her shots were done. After that I trained outside and only rewarded the outside pees.
 

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I agree with what others have already said here, it can be done, however, it is hard to do. Mine were pad trained first and will use their pads in the middle of the night or when they need to pee and I am not there to take them out. However, they do seem to prefer going to the bathroom outside if the weather is nice, if it's raining or terribly cold, they don't do as well and just seem to go on the pads all the time :rolleyes:
 
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