House training your Shih Poo

Welcoming a new Shih Poo puppy into your home is an exciting experience. However, one of the most important things you need to start working on immediately is house training. While it might seem difficult and overwhelming at first, with some dedication, patience, and the right techniques, you can successfully train your Shih Poo to be house trained in no time. This step-by-step guide will walk you through the process of house training your Shih Poo and help you avoid common mistakes, so you can build a strong and loving bond with your furry friend. So, let’s get started!

Why house training is important

Why House Training Is Important
Nobody wants to come home to a soiled carpet or the smell of urine lingering in the air. It’s essential to have a clean and welcoming home, and that’s why house training your Shih Poo is crucial. Not only does it prevent accidents in the house, but it also helps you develop a strong and trusting bond with your furry friend. Imagine never having to worry about cleaning up after them or dealing with unexpected surprises. In this article, we’ll go over the importance of house training your Shih Poo and how you can achieve success in the process. For more tips on training your Shih Poo, check out our article on teaching obedience to your Shih Poo.

Preventing accidents in the house

One of the most important reasons why house training your Shih Poo is necessary is to prevent accidents in the house. Here are some tips to prevent accidents:

  • Supervision: Keep an eye on your Shih Poo at all times, especially when he is out of his crate or designated potty area.
  • Frequent Potty Breaks: Puppies have small bladders and need to go out more frequently. Take your puppy out every two hours during the day and after naps, playtime, and meals.
  • Establish a Routine: Having a routine can help your Shih Poo understand when it’s time to go out. Take him out first thing in the morning, after meals, and before bedtime.
  • Use Commands: Teach your Shih Poo a potty command like “go potty” or “do your business” so they understand what is expected of them.
  • Clean Accidents Immediately: If there is an accident inside, clean it up immediately with an enzymatic cleaner to eliminate the odor. If your Shih Poo can smell it, they will likely go in the same spot again.
  • Keep Doors Closed: Be sure to keep doors closed to rooms that aren’t puppy-proofed, including bathrooms and bedrooms.

By implementing these practices, you can avoid any unwanted accidents and help your Shih Poo develop good habits. However, accidents can still happen, especially during the early stages of training. Don’t get discouraged, be patient, and consistent with your training methods.

If you want more help with crate training your Shih Poo, click here. For tips on how to socialize your Shih Poo, click here. To learn how to leash train your Shih Poo properly, click here. And for advanced training techniques like agility, click here.

Developing a strong bond with your Shih Poo

Building a strong bond with your Shih Poo is an important part of house training. When your furry friend trusts and feels comfortable with you, they’re more likely to follow your commands and feel safe in their new home.

Here are some ways to develop a strong bond with your Shih Poo:

Spending quality timeUsing positive reinforcementBeing patient and consistent
Set aside time each day to play with your Shih Poo and show them affection. This will help them feel more comfortable around you and strengthen your bond.Using positive reinforcement, such as treats and praise, when your dog follows commands or exhibits good behavior can help reinforce the bond between you and your Shih Poo.House training can take time, and there may be setbacks along the way. It’s important to stay patient and consistent with your training to avoid confusing your dog and to help build trust in their relationship with you.

Remember to always show love and patience towards your furry friend. This will not only make house training easier, but also strengthen your bond for years to come.

Setting up for success

Setting Up For Success
Before beginning the house training process with your Shih Poo, it’s important to take a few strategic steps to ensure success. By setting up the right environment and routine, you can make the training process much smoother and help your furry friend develop good habits faster. The key to successful house training is to be consistent, patient, and positive. Let’s dive into some important steps you can take to start your house training journey off right.

Using a crate

The importance of using a crate in house training your Shih Poo:

Using a crate can be an effective way to help house train your Shih Poo. It provides a safe and comfortable space for your pup to rest and relax while also helping to prevent accidents in the house. Here are some tips for using a crate in your house training routine:

  • Choose the right size crate: It’s important to choose a crate that is the right size for your pup. Your Shih Poo should have enough room to stand up, turn around, and lie down comfortably, but not so much space that they can use one end as a bathroom and the other end for sleeping.
  • Introduce the crate slowly: Your Shih Poo may not immediately take to the crate, so it’s important to introduce it slowly and gradually. Start by placing treats and toys inside the crate and leaving the door open so your pup can explore on their own.
  • Use the crate for short periods: In the beginning, gradually increase the amount of time your Shih Poo spends in the crate. Start with short periods of time and gradually work up to longer periods, but never leave your pup in the crate for longer than a few hours at a time.
  • Don’t use the crate for punishment: It’s important to avoid using the crate as a form of punishment, as this can cause your Shih Poo to associate the crate with negative feelings. Instead, make the crate a positive and comfortable space for your pup.
  • Take your pup out of the crate regularly: Be sure to take your Shih Poo out of the crate regularly for potty breaks and exercise.

Using a crate in your house training routine can be a helpful tool for both you and your Shih Poo. It can help prevent accidents in the house and provide your pup with a safe and comfortable space to rest and relax. With the right approach and a little patience, your Shih Poo can learn to love their crate and thrive in their house training routine.

Selecting a designated potty area

When choosing a designated potty area for your Shih Poo, it’s important to consider a few key factors. You want to select an area that is easily accessible for your dog, but also out of the way so that it doesn’t interfere with your daily activities. Here are some tips for selecting the perfect spot:

  • Privacy: Dogs prefer to go to the bathroom in areas that offer some level of privacy. Look for an area that is secluded or shielded from view, such as behind a fence or in a corner of the yard.
  • Consistency: Choosing a consistent spot for your Shih Poo to go potty can help to reduce confusion and make the training process easier. Whether it’s a specific corner of the yard or a designated area on a puppy pad, sticking to the same location can help your dog understand where they’re supposed to go.
  • Easy clean-up: Accidents happen, so it’s important to select an area that is easy to clean up. If you’re using an outdoor area, make sure it’s a spot that won’t pool or hold water, as this can make cleaning up more difficult.
  • Accessibility: You’ll want to choose a spot that is easily accessible for your Shih Poo. If you’re using an outdoor area, make sure it’s not too far away from the main entrance to your home. If you’re using puppy pads, place them in an area where your dog can easily find them.

Remember, consistency is key when choosing a designated potty area for your Shih Poo. Stick to the same spot and reward your dog when they use it appropriately. With time and patience, your furry friend will soon understand where they’re supposed to go and accidents in the house will become a thing of the past.

Keeping a schedule

Consistency is key when it comes to house training your Shih Poo. This includes setting and sticking to a schedule. Not only does it make the training process smoother, but it also helps your pup develop a sense of routine and predictability.

Here are a few tips for keeping a schedule:

  • Choose regular feeding times: Feeding your Shih Poo on a regular schedule can help regulate their bowel movements. Stick to a consistent feeding time and avoid feeding them outside of that designated time frame.
  • Take your pup outside frequently: Puppies have smaller bladders and require more frequent bathroom breaks. Take your Shih Poo outside every hour or so, especially after meals or naps. Gradually increase the time between potty breaks as they get older and better at holding it.
  • Use a consistent command: When it’s time for your Shih Poo to go potty, use a consistent command. This could be something like “go potty” or “do your business.” Over time, they will associate this command with the action of going to the bathroom.
  • Track bathroom breaks: Keep track of when your pup goes potty and what their bathroom habits are. This can help you anticipate when they will need to go next and adjust your schedule accordingly.
  • Be patient: House training can take time, and your Shih Poo may have accidents along the way. Remain patient and reinforce positive behavior with treats and praise. Remember, consistency and a positive attitude are key to effectively training your pup.

By incorporating these tips into your schedule, you can make the house training process less stressful for both you and your Shih Poo. Remember, consistency and patience are key when it comes to successfully house training your furry friend.

The training process

The Training Process
Now that you’ve set up your Shih Poo for success by creating a designated potty area, establishing a consistent schedule, and introducing a crate, it’s time to begin the actual training process. This can often feel overwhelming or daunting, but don’t worry – with a positive attitude and some patience, you’ll have your furry friend house trained in no time! Let’s dive into the details on how to effectively train your Shih Poo.

Using positive reinforcement

House training your Shih Poo can be a challenging process, but using positive reinforcement can make it a lot easier. Positive reinforcement is a training method that involves rewarding your pup for good behavior, rather than punishing them for bad behavior. This approach has been proven to be much more effective and humane than using punitive methods.

Here are some examples of positive reinforcement techniques you can use to train your Shih Poo:

TreatsWhen your pup goes potty in the designated area, give them a small treat as a reward. This will help them associate going potty in the right spot with something positive.
Verbal praiseWhen your Shih Poo does something right, such as going potty in the designated area or sitting on command, give them lots of verbal praise. Tell them “good boy” or “good girl” and give them lots of love and attention.
Clicker trainingClicker training is another form of positive reinforcement. When your puppy does something right, such as going potty in the designated area, immediately click the clicker and give them a treat. Over time, your pup will learn to associate the sound of the clicker with receiving a treat and will be more likely to repeat the behavior.
PlaytimeAnother way to reinforce good behavior is to give your Shih Poo some playtime after they successfully go potty in the designated area. This will help them associate going potty in the right spot with being able to play and have fun.

Remember, consistency is key when using positive reinforcement. Make sure to reward your Shih Poo every time they exhibit good behavior, and remain patient if they have accidents along the way. With time and dedication, your pup will become house trained and develop a strong bond with you through the positive reinforcement training process.

Puppy pads vs. outdoor training

When it comes to house training your Shih Poo, one of the biggest decisions you’ll need to make is whether to use puppy pads or opt for outdoor training. Both methods have their pros and cons, and ultimately the choice will depend on your lifestyle and living situation. Here are some factors to consider:

  • Convenience: If you live in an apartment or have limited outdoor space, puppy pads may be more convenient. They can be placed in a designated area inside your home, and your Shih Poo can use them as needed without requiring a trip outside. On the other hand, if you have easy access to a yard or nearby park, outdoor training may be more convenient and save you the hassle of constantly changing and disposing of soiled puppy pads.
  • Cost: Puppy pads can be a cost-effective option in the short-term, particularly if you purchase in bulk. Outdoor training may require investments in items such as leashes, waste bags, and possibly even a fence for your yard or property.
  • Cleanliness: Using puppy pads can make cleanup easier and minimize the risk of accidents staining your floors or carpet. However, if not changed frequently, puppy pads can emit odors and attract pests. Outdoor training requires diligent waste cleanup to avoid similar issues, but fresh air and more natural materials can lessen the odors and overall cleanliness of your home.
  • Training duration: Some Shih Poo owners opt for puppy pads as a temporary solution while their puppy is still too young to be taken outside. Others use puppy pads indefinitely, while some transition to outdoor training as soon as possible. Outdoor training can take longer to fully establish, as it involves teaching your Shih Poo to signal when they need to go out and building good habits over time.

Ultimately, the choice of puppy pads or outdoor training will depend on your individual needs and preferences. Whichever method you choose, consistency and patience are key to successfully house training your Shih Poo. With proper guidance and positive reinforcement, your furry friend will soon become a pro at doing their business in the right place.

Dealing with accidents

Accidents are inevitable during the house training process, but there are proper ways to deal with them. Here are some steps to take when dealing with accidents:

Step 1:React immediately.
Step 2:Use an enzyme cleaner to neutralize the odor.
Step 3:Do not punish your Shih Poo, as this will only confuse them and make them afraid of you.
Step 4:Revisit the training process and consider adjusting certain elements. Perhaps your dog needs more frequent potty breaks or a more consistent schedule.
Step 5:Stay patient and positive. House training takes time, and setbacks are to be expected.

It is important to remember that accidents are not the fault of your Shih Poo, but rather a natural part of the training process. Reacting calmly and positively is key to helping your dog understand and learn from their mistakes. Always praise your dog when they do well and continue to provide consistent training and positive reinforcement.

Troubleshooting common issues

Training your Shih Poo is not always a linear process, and, often, unexpected challenges may arise. Of course, it’s normal for your furry friend to stumble along the way, and as their caregiver, it’s your job to help them through the hurdles. In this section, we’ll explore some common issues that may arise during the house training process and provide guidance on how to troubleshoot them. We understand that each dog is unique, and every issue may require a different approach for resolution. So, let’s delve into these roadblocks with an open mind and learn how to help your Shih Poo succeed.

Barking at night

It’s not uncommon for Shih Poos to bark at night, and this can be a frustrating experience for both you and your dog. However, there are some steps you can take to address this issue and help ensure a peaceful night’s sleep for everyone involved.


  • Tire out your dog: One reason your Shih Poo may be barking at night is because they are not getting enough exercise during the day. Try taking them for a longer walk or playing a more intense game of fetch before bedtime to help tire them out.
  • Stick to a routine: Dogs thrive on routine and consistency, so try to establish a set bedtime routine that signals to your Shih Poo that it’s time to sleep. This may include a final potty break, a comfy bed, and some quiet time with you or a designated toy.
  • Limit stimuli: It’s important to create a calm and quiet environment for your Shih Poo to signal that it’s time to sleep. Limiting stimuli such as loud music, television, or bright lights can help promote a peaceful atmosphere in the home. Similarly, consider getting blackout curtains or a white noise machine to help limit external noises that may be triggering your Shih Poo’s barking.
  • Consider crate training: If your Shih Poo’s barking is becoming excessive or disruptive, you may want to consider crate training. This can provide them with a safe and cozy space to sleep, while also limiting their access to places they may bark, such as windows or doors.

Addressing your Shih Poo’s barking at night may take some trial and error, but by establishing a routine and creating a calm sleeping environment, you can help promote a peaceful night’s sleep for everyone involved.

Resistance to the crate

Resistance to the crate

If your Shih Poo is resistant to the crate, it may take some time and patience to make them comfortable with it. Here are some tips to help ease their discomfort:

  • Start small: If your Shih Poo is not used to being in a crate, start by leaving the door open and placing their favorite toy or blanket inside. Encourage them to go in and out on their own.
  • Positive reinforcement: Rewarding your Shih Poo with treats or praise when they enter the crate on their own can help them associate positive feelings with being inside it.
  • Gradual increases: Gradually increase the amount of time your Shih Poo spends in the crate, starting with just a few minutes and then gradually adding more time. This will help them adjust to being in the crate for longer periods.
  • Familiar smells: Placing a piece of clothing or blanket with your scent on it can help your Shih Poo feel more comfortable and secure in the crate.
  • Never force: Forcing your Shih Poo into the crate may cause them to be more resistant. Encourage them gently and reward positive behavior.

If your Shih Poo continues to resist the crate, it may be beneficial to consult with a professional trainer or behaviorist for further guidance. Remember that patience and positive reinforcement are key to successfully crate training your Shih Poo.

Excessive accidents

Finding that your Shih Poo is having excessive accidents inside the house can be frustrating and overwhelming. However, it’s important to approach this issue with patience and understanding. Below are some possible causes and solutions for excessive accidents:

  • Inconsistent schedule: Shih Poos thrive on routine, and if their schedule is inconsistent, it can lead to confusion and accidents. Make sure to establish a regular schedule for feeding, playtime, and potty breaks, and stick to it as closely as possible.
  • Medical issues: If your Shih Poo is experiencing frequent accidents despite following a consistent schedule and training routine, it’s possible that there may be an underlying medical issue. In this case, it’s important to take your dog to the vet for an exam.
  • Underestimating bladder control: Young puppies have limited bladder control and may need to go out more frequently than older dogs. If you have a young Shih Poo, make sure to take them out for potty breaks every few hours. As they get older and develop more bladder control, you can gradually increase the time between potty breaks.
  • Improper use of positive reinforcement: If you are only rewarding your Shih Poo for going potty outside, but not addressing accidents inside, they may not fully understand what is expected of them. Make sure to consistently reward good behavior and address accidents with gentle redirection rather than punishment.
  • Overwhelming stimuli: Shih Poos can become overstimulated or distracted, which can lead to accidents indoors. If your dog is having trouble focusing during potty breaks, try finding a quieter or less distracting area.
  • Unpleasant associations: If your Shih Poo had a negative experience while going potty outside (e.g. a loud car honk or a sudden thunderstorm), they may develop an aversion to going outside altogether. In this case, try to counteract the negative association by rewarding your dog for going outside and creating positive experiences.

Remember, excessive accidents are often the result of something that can be fixed with time, patience, and consistency in training. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, don’t hesitate to seek advice from a professional dog trainer or behaviorist.

Final thoughts

As you wrap up your Shih Poo’s house training, it’s important to reflect on the journey and celebrate your successes. House training a puppy is no small feat and deserves recognition. Remember to be patient, consistent, and above all, loving towards your furry friend.

One thing to keep in mind is that every dog is unique and may have their own specific challenges or strengths when it comes to house training. Don’t be discouraged if the process takes longer than expected or if there are setbacks along the way. You and your Shih Poo will get there eventually.

Additionally, continue to reinforce good habits and use positive reinforcement techniques even after the house training is complete. This will not only help maintain your pup’s good behavior but also strengthen your bond and deepen your relationship.

Finally, don’t forget to enjoy the process and have fun with your Shih Poo. Training can be a great opportunity to spend quality time together and build a stronger connection. With patience, consistency, and love, you and your furry friend will have a successful house training experience and a happy and healthy relationship for years to come.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does house training a Shih Poo take?

The process can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months, depending on the individual dog’s learning speed and consistency in training.

What is positive reinforcement training?

Positive reinforcement is a training technique that rewards desirable behavior with treats, praise, or other positive stimuli to encourage repetition of that behavior.

Can indoor potty training methods confuse my Shih Poo?

Indoor potty training methods can cause confusion and make it harder for your dog to differentiate between appropriate and inappropriate elimination areas. It is important to establish a designated potty area outdoors.

What kind of treats should I use for positive reinforcement training?

Use small, soft, and tasty treats that your Shih Poo enjoys. Cheese, boiled chicken, and hot dog slices are popular options.

At what age should I start training my Shih Poo?

Start training your Shih Poo as soon as you bring them home, ideally between 8 to 12 weeks old, when they are most receptive to learning.

How often should I take my Shih Poo outside to potty?

Take your Shih Poo outside every 2-3 hours during the day, and more frequently if they show signs of needing to go, such as sniffing around or circling.

What should I do if my Shih Poo has an accident in the house?

Do not punish your dog. Instead, clean up the mess thoroughly with an enzymatic cleaner designed for pet messes. Take your dog outside immediately afterwards to reinforce the appropriate potty area.

Can using a crate be harmful to my Shih Poo?

A properly sized and used crate can be a safe and effective aid in house training, and provide a comfortable space for your Shih Poo. However, leaving your dog in a crate for extended periods of time can cause anxiety and discomfort.

Why is a consistent schedule important in house training my Shih Poo?

A consistent schedule helps your Shih Poo learn when and where they are supposed to go potty, reduces accidents, and helps establish a routine for your dog’s daily activities.

What if my Shih Poo barks excessively at night in the crate?

Try placing the crate in your bedroom or in a cozy area close to you to help your dog feel more secure. Provide a comfortable bed and some calming background noise, such as a fan. Consistent crate training during the day can also help reduce nighttime barking.


Britta Thygesen

Britta Thygesen

A passionate dog owner and a full-time certified dog trainer. Aspires to make DogCareHacks a go-to place for all the doggo info. Shares personal experience and professional knowledge.

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