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Thread: Litter box training a dog?

  1. #1
    Gold Member haggard's Avatar
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    Default Litter box training a dog?

    A friend of mines dog just had puppies and she asked me if I would like to have one. I TOTALLY would, so I told her that yes, I would love to have a puppy. So in about 6 weeks or so I will have a brand new puppy!

    Which brings up the problems of house training. I live in an apartment and therefore have no yard to let the dog out into when it needs to go potty when I am at work or something. I have read some things on Purinas website about dog litter and box training small dogs which seems like an ideal solution for me (the puppy is a chihuahua, so dont be thinking I'm trying to litter box train a labrador or something )

    Its something I think I will try because I think it will be easier on me, and less stressful for the pup if it doesnt have to wait til I get home to take it out...but my question is, does anyone have any experience with this? I'm kind of flying blind here because this will be my first time having a dog in an apartment, and also my first puppy in about 10 years...
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    A*O
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    Honestly?? If you are going to be out working all day, every day then it's not fair to leave a dog home alone anyway. I guess you could try litter training but it's not something a dog would use naturally (unlike cats) so you would need to spend a LOT of time training, training, training. Sorry to be so negative but dogs are very social animals (unlike cats).
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    Gold Member haggard's Avatar
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    Its not all day every day that I would be gone. At the most I work away from the house about 5 hours a day maybe 5 days a week. But for a small dog with a small bladder having to wait 5 hours to go potty would probly be torture, hense me wanting to do the box training.

    I know dogs are social animals. I have had dogs previously, but I adopted them as adults so they were already house trained and I lived in houses at the time. So I havent done puppy training in a while. The only real firsts I'm having is my first time with a dog in an apartment (which isnt unheard of because other people in the complex have dogs as well) and my first small dog.
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    Elite Member silver024's Avatar
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    theres no way you could take the lil guy/girl to work with you is there? When i first got my lab, my boss was nice enough to let me bring her in with me so she didnt have to be alone, or hold it as long. A*O is right, if your not going to be home a lot its not fair to the animal. Five hours really isnt that long, once their bladders grow, they learn to hold it just like we do. Ive only ever had big dogs, so im not really sure if little dogs have to go more frequently or not. I dont know if you work close to home, but maybe you could leave work quick and go home, let him out and then come back to work? Ive actually never heard of litter training a dog, but i could see a small dog doing it no problem. They learn to go on newspaper when they are puppies, why couldnt they learn to use the litter box? I say give it a try.
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    Elite Member McJag's Avatar
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    A litter box might be too chunky. I have friend with 2 maltese females & while they also get a nice walk before & after work, are trained to go on those puppy pads. They are 5 & 7 years old. They (the couple that owns them) have a small business and take the "girls" to work,keeping them in a baby bassinet! I think puppy pads would be cheaper if you order in bulk & less hassel to change out.
    The 2 malteses are a little bigger than your doggy & this idea for them is bliss!

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    Gold Member haggard's Avatar
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    I agree that it wouldnt be fair to him if I were going to be gone a lot, but honestly, I dont think 4-5 hours a day is that long. I know when he gets older he'll probably be able to hold it, but from what my friend is telling me chihuahua puppies go potty every 30 minutes to an hour, so I would really like him to have a place to potty without me worrying that hes soiling up my carpets.

    And no, I couldnt take him to work with me. I work in a department store, and they're very strict on their rules. I get my 15 minute break and thats about it, so leaving to come home is pretty much out of the question as well.

    I've been reading some sites online and from what it looks like it would be pretty similar to paper training...and the fact that they make and sell dog litter means I'm not the only one with this issue.
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    Mistress of Dick All Elvira's Avatar
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    If you can paper train a dog, this should work too. Do you have an area in your apartment that can be enclosed while you’re gone, until the pup is trained? This person used a piece of lattice to block off an area. http://www.kturby.com/litter/litter.htm
    Good luck with the training.

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    Gold Member haggard's Avatar
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    Lol no tinkerbelles for me. I know I am getting one of the boy puppies so I'll have to think up some boy names...but I figure I'll wait til I get him and get to know his little personality before figuring out a name.

    I figured I would put him in my room with the half bathroom while training...that way my cat wont decide to use the puppies box and then potentially confuse him.
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    A*O
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    Puppies are like human babies - they have no bowel/bladder control and just 'go' when necessary. To minimise the mess I think you'd have to keep the dog in the bathroom/kitchen so you can clean up easily. You will also have to provide plenty of toys and chews so the dog doesn't destroy the apartment. I know the dog's only tiny but you'd be surprised how much damage a bored dog can do.

    My only query is that in order to train a dog you have to actually BE there to witness when it needs to pee/poo and direct it to the box/pad every time. In fact you have to watch them like a hawk during those early weeks of house-training so they associate the need to pee/poo with the box/pad. If you aren't there they won't have a clue so it will be very difficult.
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    Elite Member KrisNine's Avatar
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    I crate trained my dog when she was a puppy. She only had accidents when I was home. The vet said it was because puppies spend most of their day sleeping. But, as soon as I got home, BOOM, she would tinkle everywhere. I would have to scoop her up and book out of the house so she could pee.

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    Gold Member haggard's Avatar
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    Like I said before, the majority of the day I will be home with it. I am only gone about 5 hours out of the day, so if it isnt able to be trained the other 8-10 hours a day that I am home and awake I will have to wonder...
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    Elite Member KrisNine's Avatar
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    If you're only gone for 5 hours a day, I would go the crate training route. They typically love the crate and won't want to go potty in it because it such close quarters. Once your home, puppy bladders are like thimbles and anything sets them off. Once they drink, take them out within 5 minutes, let them pee and then crate them. Go to work, come home, take them out immediately for a pee. Offer up some water again and another potty trip. I got my dog when I was in an apartment and it was a workout

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    Elite Member Dean James's Avatar
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    We trained our dog to use a box. We live in a 3 story walk up so trotting outside every hour for her to go pee was not an option. I picked up a plastic tub with low walls and laid fresh paper in it. We just gave her treats and praised her heavily everytime she peed in the right place and she caught on real quick. If you're able to be on top of them when they do the right thing, it should be real easy to get your dog trained in no time. Good luck!
    Last edited by Dean James; May 25th, 2007 at 12:05 AM. Reason: grammar
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  14. #14
    Elite Member Picara's Avatar
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    ^^That's a good idea Dean James.

    We've been using the pee pads. Our puppy is 5 months old. She pretty much has the potty training down, but does have slip ups. She's always able to go outside, but her favorite spot to pee in on the kitchen floor. Which many a person has stepped in early in the morning.

    Good luck with your puppy Haggard! I've heard that chiuahuas are pretty smart, so maybe you'll have any easy time.

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