Please Don't Ring The Bell!
Potty Bell? Cute, but...
Ever think of teaching your dog to ring a bell to go out to potty? Well, you may want to think twice about that.
For one thing, what happens if he can't get to the bell? Like if the room is closed off? Or if he rings the bell, but you don't hear it because you are in another room or in the shower or listening to loud music?
Generally, these kids will just potty near the bell.
Here is one of my students, Sheba. We finished our self-calming lesson yesterday, during which Mom became convinced to remove her potty bell.
"Sheba was great at letting us know when she had to go," Mom Ericka says. "But if there wasn't a bell around, she would go in the house." Ericka says problems arose when they had her in the basement (the bell was upstairs at the back door) and that it was especially frustrating when visiting friends and family.
Better than a bell, is to teach your dog that when she needs to go out, she should come to you wherever you are in the house. Teach her to “tell” you by giving you a specific cue.
But, that is not even what I teach in my housetraining lesson, because there is something even better. (Well, actually, I DO teach it, but only as a backup.)
But here's the primary thing I teach:
Never rely on a dog to tell you when she has to go out. You take her out on a schedule appropriate for her age and size. You.
Be proactive, never reactive. (Especially with puppies under the age of five or six months old, who cannot even control their bladders.)
Be in charge, set the schedule, initiate, lead the way. SHE doesn’t tell you when to go out, YOU tell HER. It’s much better!
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