The Most Common Potty Training Mistakes to Avoid with Your Shih Poo
Embarking on the journey of potty training your Shih Poo can be both exciting and challenging. As a pet owner, it is important to recognize the significance of potty training in ensuring a harmonious coexistence with your furry friend. Proper potty training can help you avoid messes, unpleasant odors, and behavioral issues with your Shih Poo. However, it is important to approach the process with care and patience, as common potty training mistakes can lead to setbacks and frustration for both you and your pet. In this article, we will explore the common mistakes to avoid, tips for success, and solutions for common challenges. By following these tips and avoiding mistakes, you can make potty training a positive and rewarding experience for you and your Shih Poo.
What is a Shih Poo?
A Shih Poo is a small designer dog breed that’s an adorable and fun-loving mix between a Shih Tzu and a Poodle. This breed is known for being intelligent, loyal, and affectionate, making them an ideal choice for families looking for a low-shedding, hypoallergenic companion. Shih Poos come in a variety of colors, including black, white, gray, and apricot, and typically weigh between 8 and 20 pounds.
Potty training your Shih Poo is an important aspect of owning a new puppy. By nature, Shih Poos are fast learners and can generally be easily trained with patience and consistency. However, like any other breed, they can exhibit certain challenges during potty training. By avoiding common mistakes and following expert tips, you can efficiently potty train your Shih Poo and ensure a healthy and happy relationship with your furry friend.
If you want to know more about Shih Poo potty training, check our Shih Poo Potty Training Tips article. For understanding your dog’s basic needs, kindly follow our guide on Shih Poo Potty Needs. If you have limited space and need to know how to potty train your Shih Poo in a small space, please refer to our article on Potty Training a Shih Poo in a Small Space. Finally, for an additional potty training technique, see our article on Shih Poo Bell Training.
Why Potty Training is Important
Potty training is an essential task for any Shih Poo owner. As such, it’s important to understand the benefits of potty training and why it’s necessary for your pet’s well-being. Let’s take a closer look in the table below:
|Hygiene||Potty training helps in maintaining proper hygiene in and around the house.|
|Good health||When a Shih Poo is consistently trained to use the designated potty area, it helps to minimize the chances of infections and diseases.|
|Reduced stress||A properly potty trained Shih Poo will not experience the stress and frustration of being scolded for leaving messes around the house. This can lead to a happy and healthy pet.|
|Bonding||Potty training is a great way to build and strengthen the bond between owner and pet. It involves spending quality time together and reinforces positive behavior with rewards and praise.|
|Saves money||When a Shih Poo is potty trained, it means less money spent on cleaning supplies and potential damage to carpets and furniture in the house.|
As seen in the above table, potty training has numerous benefits, including hygiene, good health, reduced stress, better bonding, and even cost savings. These benefits are achieved through consistent and diligent training, as well as patience and positivity.
Mistakes to Avoid
As a pet owner, it’s important to recognize that potty training your Shih Poo can be a challenging task. However, avoiding common mistakes can make the process smoother and more successful. With that said, let’s take a closer look at some of the most common mistakes that you should steer clear of when potty training your furry friend.
Mistake #1: Inconsistency
One of the most common potty training mistakes Shih Poo owners make is not being consistent. This can lead to confusion for your pet and make the training process longer and more difficult for both of you. Inconsistencies can include changing the designated potty area, using different commands, and not sticking to a regular feeding and potty schedule.
To help you understand the importance of consistency in potty training your Shih Poo, let’s take a look at the following table:
|Consistent Approach||Inconsistent Approach|
|Designate one specific potty spot outside or on the pee pad.||Change the designated potty area frequently or allow your pet to potty anywhere.|
|Use a consistent command, like “go potty” or “do your business”.||Use different phrases or commands for potty time.|
|Stick to a regular feeding and potty schedule, which will help your pet know when to expect potty breaks.||Feed your pet at different times each day and take them out at random times.|
Consistency is key when it comes to potty training your Shih Poo. By providing a clear routine, your pet will know what to expect and what is expected from them. This will not only make the training process easier, but it will also help avoid confusion and frustration for both you and your furry friend.
Mistake #2: Punishing Accidents
One mistake many Shih Poo owners make during potty training is punishing their dog for accidents in the house. Punishing your dog for accidents is counterproductive and can actually hinder the potty training process.
Here are some reasons why:
- Punishing your dog can cause fear and anxiety, which can actually lead to even more accidents in the house. Your Shih Poo may become too scared to go potty in front of you, which can prolong the potty training process.
- Your dog may not understand why they are being punished. Dogs live in the moment and may not remember what they did wrong, so punishing them after the fact can be confusing and ineffective.
- Punishing your dog can damage your relationship with them. Your dog looks to you as a source of love and comfort, and punishing them can make them feel unloved and not trusted. This can lead to behavioral issues and make it more difficult to potty train them in the long run.
Instead of punishing your Shih Poo for accidents, try these tips:
- Supervise your dog closely and watch for signs that they need to go potty. Take them outside immediately and praise them when they go in the appropriate spot.
- If you catch your dog in the act of going potty inside, interrupt them with a firm “no” and take them outside to finish. Again, praise them when they go in the appropriate spot.
- If you find an accident after the fact, simply clean it up with an enzymatic cleaner to eliminate the odor and prevent your dog from going in the same spot again.
Remember, potty training takes time and patience. Punishing your dog for accidents will only make the process more difficult and stressful for both you and your Shih Poo. Stick to positive reinforcement and consistent training, and eventually, your dog will be potty trained successfully.
Mistake #3: Too Much Freedom Too Soon
One of the most common mistakes in potty training your Shih Poo is giving them too much freedom too soon. It’s natural to want your furry friend to explore their surroundings and feel comfortable in their new space, but allowing them too much freedom before they’re fully trained can lead to a host of accidents and setbacks.
Here are some specific examples of how giving your Shih Poo too much freedom too soon can be detrimental to their potty training progress:
- Roaming around the house unsupervised: Allowing your Shih Poo to wander about the house without supervision can lead to accidents in corners, behind furniture or in other hard-to-clean spots. This can make potty training much more difficult, as your pup may start to associate the whole house as their personal bathroom.
- Access to carpeted areas: Restricting your Shih Poo’s access to areas with carpeting, like the living room or bedroom, is crucial during the early stages of potty training. Carpet stains are tough to get out and the smell can be difficult to eliminate, so it’s best to avoid them entirely until your pup is fully trained.
- Unrestricted access to toys and treats: While it’s important to keep your Shih Poo entertained with plenty of toys and treats, doing so during unsupervised play can lead to accidents. When your Shih Poo is unsupervised with their toys, they may forget their potty cues and use the space around them as a bathroom.
It’s important to remember that potty training is a gradual process, and your Shih Poo needs plenty of guidance throughout the journey. Giving them too much freedom too soon can set them back significantly and make potty training much more complicated than it needs to be.
Mistake #4: Not Sticking to a Schedule
One of the biggest mistakes pet owners make when potty training their Shih Poo is not sticking to a schedule. This mistake can cause confusion for your dog and make it more difficult for them to learn the appropriate times to go potty.
What happens when you don’t stick to a potty schedule?
When you don’t stick to a potty schedule, your Shih Poo will not be able to develop a routine for potty breaks. This may cause them to have accidents in the house, as they may not realize when they are supposed to go outside. Additionally, inconsistent potty breaks can cause your dog to become anxious or stressed, as they may not know when they will have the opportunity to relieve themselves.
To avoid this mistake, create a potty schedule and stick to it as closely as possible. This should include specific times for feeding, potty breaks, playtime, and sleep. Use an HTML table to help visualize your schedule:
|6:00 am||Wake up, potty break, and breakfast|
|8:00 am||Potty break and playtime|
|12:00 pm||Potty break and lunch|
|3:00 pm||Potty break and playtime|
|6:00 pm||Dinner and potty break|
|9:00 pm||Potty break and bedtime|
By following this schedule, your Shih Poo will become accustomed to a routine and learn when they are supposed to go potty. This will make it easier for them to understand when they should go outside and reduce accidents in the house.
Perplexity: It may seem daunting to create and stick to a schedule, but it’s an important part of potty training. Without a consistent routine, your dog may become confused and anxious, leading to more accidents in the house.
No repeating n-gramms: Avoiding this mistake requires discipline and consistency. By creating a schedule and adhering to it, you can help your Shih Poo develop good potty habits and decrease the likelihood of accidents.
Mistake #5: Neglecting Positive Reinforcement
One of the common mistakes pet owners make when potty training their Shih Poo is neglecting positive reinforcement. Positive reinforcement is one of the most effective methods for encouraging good behavior in dogs. If you only focus on punishing your dog when they make a mistake, you might end up creating a negative and stressful environment that can affect your pup’s progress. Instead, try to incorporate positive reinforcement into your potty training routine.
Here are some ways to use positive reinforcement:
- Offer your Shih Poo a treat immediately after they successfully go potty in the designated area.
- Praise them with a happy and encouraging tone after they go potty outside.
- Give them their favorite toy as a reward for following the routine and going potty outside.
- Use positive body language and give them a gentle pat or a belly rub to show them that they did good.
Remember, consistency is key when implementing positive reinforcement. Make sure to reward your Shih Poo every single time they follow the routine correctly. With enough repetition, your pup will associate the act of going potty outside with positive experiences, and as a result, will be more likely to repeat this behavior in the future.
By neglecting positive reinforcement, you may be missing a crucial opportunity to make potty training easier and more efficient for both you and your Shih Poo. So make sure to embrace this method and make potty training a positive and fun experience for your furry friend.
Tips for Successful Potty Training
So, you’ve learned about the common mistakes that can hinder your Shih Poo’s potty training progress. Now, let’s focus on some tips that will help you achieve success in this important endeavor. Below are some practical suggestions that you can implement to establish good potty habits in your furry companion. Remember that patience, consistency, and positive reinforcement are key when it comes to potty training. With these tips, you’ll be well on your way to a well-trained, well-behaved Shih Poo that goes potty where they are supposed to.
Tip #1: Establish a Regular Feeding Schedule
One of the most important tips for successful potty training with your Shih Poo is to establish a regular feeding schedule. This ensures that your dog’s digestive system remains consistent, making it easier for you to predict when they need to go potty.
But how can you establish a regular feeding schedule? The easiest way is to feed your Shih Poo at the same time every day. You should choose a time that works best for both you and your dog, and make sure to stick to it. Consistency is key when it comes to establishing a regular feeding schedule.
To help keep track of your dog’s feeding schedule, consider creating a simple table that outlines the times and amount of food your dog needs. This will help you avoid overfeeding or underfeeding your Shih Poo, which can cause digestive problems that can interfere with potty training.
|Time||Amount of Food|
|7:00 AM||1/2 cup|
|12:00 PM||1/2 cup|
|6:00 PM||1/2 cup|
It’s also important to make sure you’re feeding your Shih Poo the right type of food. High-quality, nutrient-dense food can help prevent digestive issues and promote optimal health. Consult with your veterinarian to determine the best diet for your dog.
By establishing a regular feeding schedule for your Shih Poo, you’ll not only make potty training easier, but you’ll also provide a sense of routine and predictability that can help reduce stress and anxiety in your furry friend.
Tip #2: Use a Crate or Playpen
One helpful tip for successful potty training with your Shih Poo is to use a crate or playpen. By providing a confined space for your puppy, it can help them learn to hold their bladder and avoid accidents in the house. Here are some key considerations for using a crate or playpen:
Benefits of Using a Crate or Playpen
- Encourages good behavior: By keeping your puppy in a crate or playpen, you are helping them learn good potty training habits. When they are let out, they will be more likely to go potty outside.
- Reduces accidents: Confined spaces limit your puppy’s movements, which means they are less likely to have accidents in the house.
- Safety: A crate or playpen is a safe and secure space for your puppy when you are not around to supervise them.
Choosing a Crate or Playpen
When choosing a crate or playpen, you need to make sure it’s the right size for your Shih Poo. It should be big enough for them to stand up, turn around, and lie down comfortably, but not too big that they have plenty of room to use one side as a bathroom and the other for sleeping. A guide to the size is that it needs to be big enough for your puppy to lie down and stretch out fully.
Here’s a comparison table of popular crates and playpens for your Shih Poo:
|MidWest Homes for Pets||24L x 18W x 19H inches||Two doors, removable washable plastic pan, divider panel|
|SmithBuilt||24L x 17W x 19H inches||Single door, slide-out ABS tray, dual slide bolt latches|
|Pet Trex||24L x 18W x 20H inches||Single door, removable ABS plastic tray, folding design|
|IRIS||24L x 18W x 19H inches||Removable mesh roof, non-skid rubber feet|
Introducing Your Shih Poo to the Crate or Playpen
It’s important to introduce your Shih Poo to the crate or playpen gradually. Start by placing treats and toys inside and encouraging your puppy to spend short periods of time inside with the door open. Gradually increase the amount of time they spend inside and eventually start closing the door for short periods of time while you are in the same room. Make sure to praise and reward your puppy when they go potty outside and are well-behaved while in the crate or playpen.
By using a crate or playpen, you are helping your Shih Poo establish good potty training habits while ensuring their safety when you can’t supervise them. With patience and persistence, your Shih Poo will be fully potty trained in no time.
Tip #3: Designate a Potty Area
When it comes to potty training your Shih Poo, one tip that can make a big difference is designating a specific area for them to do their business. This can help your pup understand where they are supposed to go and make the process more consistent and effective.
Why Designate a Potty Area?
Having a designated potty area can help eliminate confusion for your Shih Poo. When they know exactly where they should go, it makes it easier for them to do their business quickly and efficiently. Additionally, a designated area can also help to contain any mess and make cleanup easier for you.
How to Designate a Potty Area
To designate a potty area, there are a few steps you can take:
|1||Choose a specific spot in your yard where you want your pup to go.|
|2||Take your pup to the designated spot every time they need to go potty.|
|3||Use a consistent phrase, like “go potty,” to help your pup understand what they are supposed to do in the designated area.|
|4||When your pup does their business in the designated area, be sure to reward them with lots of praise and maybe even a treat.|
How Designating a Potty Area Helps with Potty Training
When you designate a specific potty area, it can help your pup understand where they are supposed to go, which can make potty training more successful. Additionally, if you consistently take your pup to the same spot every time they need to go potty, it can help to reinforce the behavior and make it a habit for your pup. Over time, your Shih Poo will know exactly where they are supposed to go and potty training will become easier and less stressful for both you and your furry friend.
By using this simple tip, you can help make potty training your Shih Poo more successful and less frustrating for everyone involved. Remember to be patient and consistent, and soon enough, your pup will be fully potty trained and ready to enjoy a happy and healthy life with you.
Tip #4: Consistently Reinforce Good Behavior
One of the essential tips for successful potty training is consistently reinforcing good behaviour in your Shih Poo. Using positive reinforcement is an effective way to encourage your pup to go potty in the designated area.
To reinforce good behaviour, you can use a reward system for every successful potty trip. It could be a small treat, a kind word, or a pat on the back (or belly, in this case!). Creating a consistent reward system will help your Shih Poo understand what is expected of them and motivate them to continue going potty in the designated area.
The table below provides some examples of positive reinforcement that you can use to reward your Shih Poo for good potty behaviour.
|Treats||Small, bite-sized treats that your pup loves can be an excellent way to reinforce good behaviour during potty training.|
|Praise||Positive verbal reinforcement, such as saying “good boy/girl” or “well done,” can let your Shih Poo know that they did a good job.|
|Attention||Some Shih Poos are attention-seekers, so giving them a pat on the back or some belly rubs can be an effective way to reinforce good potty behaviour for them.|
|Playtime||For some Shih Poos, playing with their favourite toy or going for a short walk after a successful potty trip can be an excellent reward.|
Using consistent and positive reinforcement is a crucial element of successful potty training with your Shih Poo. Remember to be patient and persistent, as every pup learns at their own pace. With time and the right approach, your Shih Poo will master their potty routine in no time!
Tip #5: Be Patient and Persistent
When it comes to potty training your Shih Poo, one of the most important tips to keep in mind is to remain patient and persistent. This process can take some time and there are likely to be setbacks along the way, so it’s important to stay committed and not give up. Here are some ways to practice patience and persistence during the potty training process:
- Set realistic expectations: Understand that potty training takes time and your Shih Poo may not be fully trained overnight. Be patient and don’t expect your dog to be perfect right away.
- Stick to the plan: Once you have a potty training routine in place, stick to it as much as possible. Consistency is key when it comes to potty training success.
- Don’t get frustrated: Accidents are bound to happen, so don’t get too frustrated when they do. Instead, stay positive and reinforce good behavior whenever possible.
- Be persistent with positive reinforcement: Remember to consistently reward your Shih Poo for good potty behavior. This will help them understand what is expected of them and reinforce good habits.
- Don’t give up: Potty training can be challenging, but it’s important to not give up. Remember that every dog is different and your Shih Poo will eventually get the hang of things with time and patience.
By remaining patient and persistent throughout the potty training process, you can help ensure that your Shih Poo learns good potty habits and becomes a well-trained and happy companion.
Common Potty Training Challenges and Solutions
Potty training a Shih Poo can come with its fair share of challenges. From accidents in the house to fear of going outside, it’s important to be prepared for any obstacle that may arise during the process. In this section, we will explore some of the most common challenges that Shih Poo owners face when potty training their furry friends, and provide effective solutions to help you overcome them. Let’s dive in and learn how to conquer these challenges with confidence and ease.
Challenge #1: Accidents in the House
It’s common for Shih Poo owners to experience accidents in the house during the potty training process. However, it’s important to handle these accidents carefully to prevent any setbacks in your dog’s progress. Below is a table outlining the common causes of accidents in the house and the recommended solutions to these issues:
|Cause of Accidents||Solution|
|Not being able to hold it in||Take your dog out more frequently and gradually increase the time between potty breaks as they become more reliable. This will help your dog develop stronger bladder control.|
|Lack of supervision||Keep a close eye on your Shih Poo during the potty training process. If you can’t supervise them, use a crate or playpen to restrict their access to other areas of the house. This will prevent them from having accidents when you’re not around.|
|Nervousness or anxiety||Be patient and understanding with your Shih Poo. Provide them with a comfortable and safe environment and reward good behavior with treats and praise. You can also consider using calming aids, such as Adaptil or Rescue Remedy, to reduce their anxiety.|
|Inconsistent training||Stick to a consistent training schedule and avoid making exceptions, such as allowing your Shih Poo to go on furniture or in certain areas of the house. This will prevent confusion and reinforce good potty habits.|
Remember, accidents are a natural part of the potty training process and it’s important to remain patient and persistent. By following the tips and solutions outlined above, you can help your Shih Poo successfully overcome this challenge and become a well-trained and reliable companion.
Challenge #2: Fear of Going Outside
One common potty training challenge that Shih Poo owners may face is a fear of going outside. This can be due to a variety of reasons, such as loud noises, unfamiliar surroundings, or previous negative experiences.
To help your Shih Poo overcome this fear, it’s important to gradually acclimate them to the outdoors. This can be done by initially taking them outside for short periods of time and gradually increasing the duration as they become more comfortable. Another effective strategy is to associate positive experiences with going outside, such as offering treats or verbal praise when they do their business outdoors.
Additionally, pay attention to your Shih Poo’s body language and behavior when they are outside. If they seem fearful or anxious, try to identify the trigger and adjust accordingly. For example, if they are afraid of loud noises, avoid taking them outside during times when there may be more noise in the environment.
Here are some additional tips for addressing a fear of going outside:
|Tips for Addressing Fear of Going Outside|
|Desensitization: Gradually expose them to outside stimuli|
|Positive Reinforcement: Reward good behavior with treats or verbal praise|
|Identify Triggers: Try to identify what’s causing the fear and avoid that trigger if possible|
|Patient and Persistent: Overcoming fear takes time, so be patient and consistent with training|
Remember, toilet training a Shih Poo is a process that takes time and patience. Regardless of the challenges you may face along the way, it’s important to remain positive and consistent with your training efforts.
Challenge #3: Excitement Urination
Excitement urination is a common challenge that shih poos may experience during potty training. This occurs when your furry friend gets overly excited, usually during greetings or playtime, and they can’t control their bladder, which leads to accidental peeing.
The following table summarizes the challenge of excitement urination and potential solutions:
|Challenge #3: Excitement Urination||Solution #1: Limit greetings and playtime to reduce excitement levels, and take them outside more frequently to relieve themselves.|
|Solution #2: Use positive reinforcement strategies to encourage the desired behavior, such as giving treats or praise when they successfully go potty outside.|
|Solution #3: Teach your furry friend how to relax and calm down, using training techniques such as “sit” or “stay” commands, and rewarding them with treats or praise when they remain calm.|
It’s important to remember that excitement urination should be addressed with patience and consistency. Punishing your shih poo for accidents can create more stress and anxiety, making the issue worse. Instead, focus on positive reinforcement and gradually increasing their ability to control their bladder during moments of excitement. With time and dedication, your shih poo can learn to control their excitement and avoid accidents, resulting in a well-trained and well-behaved companion.
Challenge #4: Marking Behavior
Marking behavior, also known as territorial marking, is a common issue during potty training. This occurs when your Shih Poo tries to mark their territory by urinating on certain objects or areas in the house, even after they have already been potty trained. This behavior is more common in male dogs, but female dogs can also exhibit this behavior.
Causes of Marking Behavior
There are several reasons why your Shih Poo might engage in marking behavior. These may include:
- Inadequate training during the potty training phase.
- Feeling threatened or anxious in their environment.
- Changes in routine or environment that make them feel insecure.
- Social interactions with other dogs.
Solutions for Marking Behavior
Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to minimize or eliminate marking behavior in your Shih Poo. Here are some tips to try:
- Revisit Potty Training: Go back to basics with a refresher course on potty training. Reinforce training methods such as crate training and positive reinforcement to ensure that your Shih Poo understands what is expected of them.
- Reduce Anxiety: Create a safe and comfortable environment for your Shih Poo. Give them plenty of exercise and mental stimulation to reduce anxiety and stress. Consider using a calming remedy such as pheromone sprays or essential oils.
- Consistent Rules: Establish a clear set of rules for your Shih Poo to follow. For example, designate certain areas in the house where they are allowed to go, and firmly discourage them from marking in inappropriate locations.
- Professional Help: Consider seeking the help of a professional trainer who specializes in handling marking behavior. They can provide personalized advice and help you establish a customized behavior modification plan.
By taking a proactive approach to eliminating marking behavior, you can help your Shih Poo avoid reoccurring accidents in the house and prevent damage to your belongings. Remember to be patient, consistent, and persistent in your efforts to correct this behavior.
In conclusion, successfully potty training a Shih Poo takes patience, consistency, and positive reinforcement. It is important to avoid common mistakes such as inconsistency, punishing accidents, giving too much freedom too soon, not sticking to a schedule, and neglecting positive reinforcement.
Instead, it is essential to establish a regular feeding schedule, use a crate or playpen, designate a potty area, consistently reinforce good behavior, and be patient and persistent. These tips can help you overcome common potty training challenges such as accidents in the house, fear of going outside, excitement urination, and marking behavior.
Remember that each Shih Poo is unique and may require a slightly different approach to potty training. With time and effort, you can teach your furry friend to become a well-trained and well-behaved member of your family. So stay positive, stay consistent, and celebrate even small victories along the way to successful potty training.
Frequently Asked Questions
What age should I start potty training my Shih Poo?
You should start potty training your Shih Poo as early as 8 weeks old.
How long does it take to potty train a Shih Poo?
It can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months to fully potty train a Shih Poo.
What should I do if my Shih Poo has an accident in the house?
Stay calm and immediately take your Shih Poo to their designated potty area outside to reinforce the proper behavior.
Can I punish my Shih Poo for having an accident in the house?
No, it is not recommended to punish your Shih Poo for having an accident in the house as it can create fear and anxiety around potty training.
Do I need to use a crate or playpen for potty training my Shih Poo?
Using a crate or playpen can be helpful for potty training as it limits your Shih Poo’s freedom and allows for easier supervision.
How often should I take my Shih Poo outside to go potty?
You should take your Shih Poo outside to go potty at least every 2-3 hours or after meals, naps, and playtime.
Can I use treats for positive reinforcement during potty training?
Yes, using treats for positive reinforcement can be effective in potty training as it reinforces the desired behavior.
What should I do if my Shih Poo is scared to go outside?
Take baby steps and gradually expose your Shih Poo to the outside world, providing positive reinforcement along the way.
Will my Shih Poo ever be fully potty trained?
Yes, with patience, persistence, and consistent training, your Shih Poo can be fully potty trained.
What should I do if my Shih Poo continues to have accidents after potty training?
Take your Shih Poo to the vet to rule out any underlying medical conditions, and then reassess your potty training strategy for any needed adjustments.