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It seems like it'd be nice to train my dog to use a litter box for the rest of his life. I live in an apartment. He wouldn't ever have to hold it in, and I wouldn't have to let him out besides for walks. What would be the pros and cons of this? Is there a good litter box out there that people can recommend?
 

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I personally would never litter box train and I have a small dog. First I wouldn't want the smell of the litter box inside the house. Secondly, what happens if you need to board your dog?
 

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I am not against it, I have cats that both go outside to potty when let out and have a litter box. If I had a small breed dog and training could be successful, it would be an option for me. Not safe to have a dog door with the air and ground predators we have both day and night here.(for unsupervised outdoor access when i wasn't home) Working in a boarding/kennels for most of my life, we would have no problem in accommodating for it. At least working in places that i had my own wing of dogs to care for I wouldn't have a problem in accommodating a boarding client to have a litter box in their kennel.
 

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My smaller dog uses washable pee pads. She can go outside and knows to wait when the pads aren't available. It's honestly less mess and less trouble than a cat as long as I feed her good quality food.

Dogs don't need litter because they do not have the instinct to bury their waste that cats do. There is nothing to buy,nothing to sweep up, and no unpleasant smells.

All that is involved is flushing the poop, changing the pad once or twice a day, and a couple of extra loads of laundry during the week.

I wish my larger dog would use them too. I haven't gotten serious about teaching her yet but it would make life so much easier. My next door neighbour has big dogs, but they still remember what potty pads are and can use them in an emergency.

Both of my dogs were already housebroken when they came to me but you can use the search bar at the top right hand corner to search for threads about how other members of the forum train their puppies to usepee pads.

hth
 

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The idea of having a companion pet is to enjoy the species you choose (dog or cat) for what it is. Just as most people wouldn't take their cat (collar & leash) out for an extended walk the opposite is true for canines. Obviously there are compromises for restricted living situations, owners and pets (health, ability). But dogs are natively scent oriented, and gather a lot of information by investigating their surroundings. They're pack animals, meaning they study groups (their behavior) which is important to them. They instinctively navigate, protect, scavenge for food (even though they get a daily handout). If a person enjoys "dogs" why get one that conforms to the habits of cats. Get a cat.

One thing I noticed about my dog is that he will urinate on a limited basis the more confined an area is. He seldom unloads his tank (which you would think would be added comfort) in one or two spots on the patio. But just relieve himself enough to get by. When I take him for a walk, he comes back almost dry. He's expended his scent among others, which is about marking territory (and yes, even if a dog is neutered, females will do the same). The more frequently a dog urinates and empties his bladder, the more it aids health, and gets toxins out of the system. Remember, even though cats are trained to a litter box, outdoors they do multiple eliminating as well.

If you're going to get the dog a "litter box" for your dog (and I'm suspecting you will in spite of what's said here) consider the fake grass, that drains well into a tray beneath, and make it as large an area as you can. And so the grass can be hosed down frequently. Remember you're going to have to scrap off the poo as well (yuck). Dogs (usually) do not like to step into their own pee, or onto feces, and when outdoors will be mindful to step around it.
 

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It's a good way to get a dog that pees on rugs, papers, and other soft surfaces. Dogs aren't always great at differentiating.

Some people do make it work.
 

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I had a chihuahua for almost 16 years. She was litter box trained for the entire time we had her, starting at 7 weeks.

We used a normal cat litter box, and wood pellets ($4/bag at lowes), and no problem with her. She was an inside dog. She never went out. She was only 4lbs, best little dog ever.

Picture is her an hour before we put her down.
 

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