If you are the proud new owner of a Dalmatian you are probably wondering just how difficult house training your pet is going to be. Dalmatians are incredibly intelligent dogs but it will take some time and much patience on your part to housebreak your dog. Here are a few suggestions to make the process easier.
An accident on the carpet isn't just messy for you to clean up; it can also mean a major setback in training your dog. Dogs can smell things that we can't and will often return to the scene of the crime because they associate it with relieving themselves. To prevent this you will need to allow your pet the chance to go often and regularly, especially after meals and before you retire for the night. Puppies will need to go more often than adult dogs and yes, they will likely need to go during the night.
You will also need to watch for signs that your pet needs to use the bathroom. Dogs will usually sniff around the door, whine, and circle when they need to go. Ignoring these behaviors will definitely result in accidents and major setbacks in housebreaking your dog.
If an accident does occur reprimand your dog right away. Don't scold him for something he has done an hour or even five minutes before because he won't have any idea why you are upset with him. Clean the area as quickly as possible with a product designed to remove pet odors and try to be more attentive next time.
The very best way to prevent accidents is to make certain your dog doesn't have the opportunity to use the bathroom anywhere except the designated location. Placing him in a crate when you are out and at night will help to teach him to control his urges to go. Dalmatians don't like to use the bathroom where they sleep so as long as you return home within a reasonable amount of time your dog will learn quickly not to go in the crate.
Provide your dog with a crate large enough for him to move around comfortably and make sure you let him use the bathroom before placing him inside. You will need to keep in mind that puppies can't hold their urine for very long so even crate training will not prevent accidents if you are gone for extended periods of time. A puppy can hold his bladder for about one hour for every month he has been alive, so you will need to have someone come by and let your puppy out if you will be gone for long stretches of time
Every time your dog goes in the designated area you should offer praise, affection, and maybe even a treat. Dalmatians love this special attention and it won't take too long for him to associate proper elimination with attention and praise.
Housebreaking is a challenge no matter what breed your dog is, but the friendly and eager to please attitude of the Dalmatian can make it a little less painful. Be patient and consistent and you will have a well trained dog in no time!