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Discussion Starter #1
I've read a few articles about how it is possible to litter train small dogs to use the litter box (just like cats). I'm wondering if anyone here has tried it. Here are some links if anyone is interested.

http://www.kturby.com/litter/litter.htm
http://www.showpaps.com/litterbox.htm

I live in a third floor apartment, and I'll admit that Im lazy and don't want to take my dog up and down every hour or so to housetrain him, when I could be taking him out to my patio or even training him to use the litter indoors.
 

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Someone (I forget who) posted a pic recently of a converted sandbox. Basically, they took a sandbox, put sod in it and put the sandbox on their balcony. They then trained the dog to pee on that grass. Cleanup was easy and they could hose it down with bleach if the smell got too bad.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Just because I don't want to walk up and down two flights of stairs every hour to housebreak my puppy, does not make me a bad dog owner. That's why items like puppy pads, and litter boxes exist. They are for people like me who live in apartments and want a dog. It's not realistic for me to wake up in the middle of the night and get dressed just to take my dog downstairs to pee, not when there are other options like a box on the patio available.

I won't get my puppy for two more months, so if anyone here has tried the litter box thing with their dogs, please let me know how it worked out.
 

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I personally would not use litter. I would be concerned about a puppy eating it, digging/playing in it and tracking it all over the house. I wish my cats didn't need to bury their waste because I'd love for them to use pads instead of litter!

Are you looking to permanently train your dog to use an indoor potty area of some kind or just in need of a housebreaking aid?

Mojo uses a pad that is inside a dog litter box. We started with the box to protect against possible leaks but I also like that he steps in and has all 4 paws on the pad when he goes which eliminates potential messes from going on the side of the pad. When we are indoors and he has a pad available (at our home or when we visit friends and family) he will use the pad. If we are outside he goes to the bathroom outside. If we are indoors and he needs to go but there isn't a pad available, he lets us know he needs to go and we either put a pad down or take him outside.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Mojo-- I'm looking for a permanent place for my dog to use the potty. I want him to use the puppy pad (on the patio) and grass. While I'm housebreaking, he'll use the puppy pad a majority of the time, and once he's housetrained, he can go in the grass when we take walks, or use the puppy pad if we've already had our walk. I think you're probably right about the dog trying to eat the litter. I'm still researching the most economical and practical way to do this. Hulk mentioned a sandbox with sod, I loved that idea, but my husband said he will not build one. Our patio is way too shaded, the grass wouldn't grow anyway. I guess I'll look for a heavy litter box (a light one would blow away) and puppy pads that fit! Mojo and hulk, thanks for your input!
 

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I have my small dog litter box trained. It's fairly easy actually. I got a large crate...I think mine is 36". Half the crate is her bed (a blanket) and the other half is the litter box. That's it...there's no extra room anywhere. Since dogs will not use the bathroom in their bed, she has no other choice than to go in the box. I started out putting pee pee pads in the box. I didn't like the thought of litter in there. A pee pee pad folded fits perfectly and you can easily see if it's been peed on. Now, a year later, she pretty much holds it until I take her outside, so I keep a towel in the box. For times when I cannot get home in time to let her out. Its basically an emergency backup now. She chose to hold it on her own until we went outside.
 

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Someone (I forget who) posted a pic recently of a converted sandbox.
That was probably me, and I can post them again. Andreangil, the nice thing about this is that no one had to make a box. My friend picked hers up at K-Mart.



Here's a picture of my dog on the patch. He's 17 pounds (to give you an idea of the sandbox size), and in this picture he is sniffing for a spot. He peed just moments later, and he's used it several times before. It works.

 

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Mojo-- I'm looking for a permanent place for my dog to use the potty. I want him to use the puppy pad (on the patio) and grass. While I'm housebreaking, he'll use the puppy pad a majority of the time, and once he's housetrained, he can go in the grass when we take walks, or use the puppy pad if we've already had our walk. I think you're probably right about the dog trying to eat the litter. I'm still researching the most economical and practical way to do this. Hulk mentioned a sandbox with sod, I loved that idea, but my husband said he will not build one. Our patio is way too shaded, the grass wouldn't grow anyway. I guess I'll look for a heavy litter box (a light one would blow away) and puppy pads that fit! Mojo and hulk, thanks for your input!
The sandbox I referred to wasn't anything built. Someone (they posted a couple of pics) took one of the plastic turtle sandboxes you can get at Wal-mart and put sod in it. Very simple to put together. Teaches the dog to pee on grass. Whether the grass grows or not doesn't really matter.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I love it! Thank you Thracian for re-posting that picture! I'll have to talk it over again with my husband and see if I can get one on our patio. I love it because in the next year or so, we are moving into a house and then he'll already be familiar with his turtle box and it would be so much easier to have him go in that one area only.

Bellasmommy--what kind of dog do you have? Has she ever tried to eat the pad or anything? Did you show her how to use the box inside her crate, or was it just instinct?

Once again, I appreciate everyone's input.
 

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That was probably me, and I can post them again. Andreangil, the nice thing about this is that no one had to make a box. My friend picked hers up at K-Mart.



Here's a picture of my dog on the patch. He's 17 pounds (to give you an idea of the sandbox size), and in this picture he is sniffing for a spot. He peed just moments later, and he's used it several times before. It works.

That was it. TBH, if I knew about that before I got my dog, I might not have passed on the basset puppy I looked at. I could've easily set that up in my house and fixed an X pen so he would be able to pee on that grass instead of my floor. As he got older, making the transition to the grass outside once he was able to hold it longer wouldn't have been a big deal.
 
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