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puppy potty training


Caryl Wolff

is the *only*
dog trainer
in the world who is concurrently certified or endorsed by these organizations, having passed their examination requirements.


International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants

IAABC certified dog behavior consultant


National Association of Dog Obedience Instructors

National Association of Dog Obedience Instructors


Certification Council for Professional
Dog Trainers

Certification Council for Pet Dog Trainers


Association of
Animal Behavior Professionals

Association of Animal Behavior Professionals


American Kennel Club Canine Good Citizen Evaluator

Certified CGC Evaluator


Puppy Evaluator

akc star puppy


She also is a professional member of these dog training organizations.

Association of
Pet Dog Trainers

Association of Pet Dog Trainers


International Association of Canine Professionals

IACP dog trainer




Copyright 2008 by Barbara McClatchey and used with permission

1) Neonatal stage (~birth to 2 weeks). Puppy urinates and defecates only when stimulated by mother, who cleans it up.

Toddler stage (~2 weeks to 5 weeks). Puppy begins to "go" on his own, and when allowed, tries to do so away from the "nest." [Instinct for cleanliness?]

"Pre-school" stage (~5 to 9 weeks). Puppy begins to want to "go" in a particular place, frequently a place having the right "smell," but sight picture often enters in. Most puppies leave "home" at this point and lose that favorite place, which can result in confusion.


Sometime during the "pre-school" stage, the puppy is ready to begin the journey into housebrokenness. Some puppies/dogs do not get the opportunity to progress, and may be stuck in the toddler stage even, due to lack of opportunity or because of inadequate response by the owner. From now on, the stages in housebrokenness are the same, whether for a puppy or for an adult dog, and knowing the stage the dog has reached can suggest the best approach to learning. Progression will vary depending on breed, individual dog, owner attention, etc.

4) Dog does his business away from his own bed and feeding area.

5) Dog has a preferred spot for doing his business. (Never mind that it is the middle of the dining room carpet, it's a preferred spot!)

6) Dog understands that the "preferred spot" is outside on the grass, and when he *needs* to go and is *taken* there, he will do it there.

7) Dog understands the preferred spot and will let the owner know when he needs to go out.

8) Dog learns to "hold it" until taken out by owner.

9) Dog learns to do it on command, whether or not he greatly needs to go.

10) Dog will not release it unless in the right place or under command.

Some time between 6 and 9, the dog learns to “do it” in approved locations away from his “preferred spot.”

I am not talking here about HOW to accomplish all of this, just the recognition that housebreaking is not an either/or proposition.

***Submissive or excitement urination has little or nothing to do with housebreaking, and must be addressed separately.

Copyright 2008 by Barbara McClatchey
Permission to distribute is given, but copyright must remain attached.



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