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Dog Training/House breaking


Hello and thanks in advance for answering my question.

My boyfriend and I  bought a Shih Tzu/Bichon  cross puppy. We got her at 12 weeks old and she's currently 16 weeks old. Heres the problem, we live on the 4th floor apartment and my bf absolutely refuses to take her outside to go to the bathroom. He strictly wants to just train her on her pee pads in the spare bathroom. Now she has no problem going on the there to do number 2, but as for urinating she does it all over our hardwood floor about 10 times a day on average. She very rarely uses the pee pads. He doesn't want to train her to go outside because its inconvenient for him (he works from home, I work outside the home so I can't help out)

It seems she hasn't learned since we got her period, she continues to urinate on our hardwood floors and although it gets cleaned up immediately, it doesn't always if we don't see it in time so I am worried what it will do to our floors.

I told him its not a good idea to get a puppy whilst living in an apartment and that it needs to go outside to be potty trained  but he won't listen.

My question is, is it possible to pee pad train her? or is this futile?
Theres been no change in the month we've had her.

Thank you!

Hi Sylvia.  You need to get a crate and/or an exercise pen for your puppy so she stops making mistakes on your wood floors.  She should be crated whenever she's not being monitored 100% of the time.  So, if he's working at his desk, she needs to be in the crate (or ex-pen).  

When she wakes from a nap, take her directly to the pee pads and stay there with her until she finishes. She should also be taken there after a play session and every 20-30 minutes when she's awake during the day. Keep her out of the rooms where she's had accidents.  You could even use a baby gate to confine her to the bathroom as an option.

The longer she continues to wet on your wood floor, the harder it will be to break this habit.  You have to confine her and monitor her constantly until she actively is going to the pee pads on her own for at least 3 weeks.  After that, you can give a little more freedom in the house.

Let me know if you have questions.  Good luck!

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Barb Gadola, CPDT-KA, KPA CTP


I can answer questions related to problem dog behaviors, teaching polite manners, puppy raising, and any type of training-related issues. My website page, offers a wealth of information on training and behavior issues as well.


I've been training dogs since 1989 and own and operate Distinctive Dog Training LLC in Keller TX. I specialize in providing practical and positive solutions for families through personalized training in their home.

Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partner
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Association of Pet Dog Trainers
Association of Animal Behavior Professionals
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BS in Education
Graduate work in Behavioral Psychology
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