How to Potty Train a Puppy German Shepherd: The Basic Steps

Being able to teach a German Shepherd puppy to the potty spot at the right time and in the right place is one of the most important steps that need to be taken for a long and happy life together of a pet and owner.

German Shepherd puppies often spoil furniture or pollute the apartment. Few people are willing to put up with a German Shepherd puppy that stains the mats and floor or leaves an unpleasant odor that you need to get rid of after a hard day’s work.

That is why it is so important to study in advance how to potty train a puppy German Shepherd at home and think about how to do it correctly in your case.

How To Potty Train A Puppy German Shepherd in 5 Basic Ways

Basic ways to potty training a puppy to the toilet

Let’s see what basic steps are needed to accustom your puppy to the bathroom. We’ve got five basic steps to think about for potty training. Some things you can think about in advance, even before your German Shepherd puppy arrives at your home.

1) Accustom the German Shepherd puppy to a certain place in the apartment

You can close your kitchen with a child’s or German Shepherd puppy gate or choose another room during house training. This is necessary during the first few months, because keeping a German Shepherd puppy in one potty area allows you to look after them so that you can immediately take them outside when they show signs of needing to relieve himself.

If they have too much freedom, they will end up going to the bathroom before you can catch your pup to take them outside.

Your German Shepherd puppy is ready to spend time in the rest of the apartment after puppy learns to signal to you that they need to go outside, either by moving to the door or looking at it. You will also know that puppy is ready when they have very few accidents in the apartment.

2) Think about having a bathroom seat

If your apartment is on the top floor in your building, it can be difficult to get outside in time for your German Shepherd puppy to go to the bathroom with potty area.

If you have a GSD puppy that makes controlled messes, you might consider training your dog on paper instead of taking her outside every time.

Cover part of the room with newspapers or special potty training pads that you can buy at a pet store. Use the same potty training method that you would use for an outdoor bathroom, every time the German Shepherd puppy needs to go, take it to the newspapers. Reward her when she succeeds.

You can also use the turf crate training as a place to train your German Shepherd puppy. Fill a shallow dog crate with turf or pet litter and put it on top of newspapers.

When you clean up after an accident that happened to your German Shepherd puppy, you can put dirty paper towels or rags in a specially designated place so that the smell of urine is associated with your German Shepherd puppy with a stain in the bathroom.

By the way, you may find this video by @eHow on how to make your own dog litter box helpful:

3) Keep the German Shepherd puppy in a cage at night and during your absence

Dog actually like the feeling of being in a small, cozy crate training – it makes them feel safe and secure. For this reason, you should never use the crate as a punishment; it should be your German Shepherd puppy personal safe potty area.

German Shepherd puppy do not like to dirty their living space, so be sure to take the puppy outside so that he can go to the bathroom right before putting him in the crate training.

If you’re trying to prevent a puppy from chewing on things or having an accident at night, you can use a tether in your bedroom so they’re free to move about in a small space but can’t wander off while you’re asleep.

How to crate train your dog or puppy by The Humane Society of the United States

German Shepherd puppies can sleep for about 4 hours before they need to relieve themselves. However, very small German Shepherd puppy house can wake up from barking, so you should cover the box with towels in case your German Shepherd puppy home gets into an accident at night.

If you hear your German Shepherd puppy barking in the box, take him outside to relieve himself and put him back in the box. Be sure to reward her when she relieves herself.

If the puppy is very small, then you can use puppy pads. At night, they will help to avoid unpleasant surprises. But it is worth choosing very high-quality puppy pads, also carefully monitor the hygiene of the adult dogs after their puppy pads.

Keep the German Shepherd puppy in a cage

4) Eliminate accidents immediately

If your GSD puppy has an accident in his box or elsewhere inside, be sure to clean it and disinfect the place so that it no longer smells of urine. If the room smells of urine, the puppy will instinctively want to relieve himself again in the same place.

Do not scold your pet, as blunders are part of basic training. Basic training is not always successful. Full bladder control appears in adult German Shepherd.

In the event of an unforeseen accident, it may be necessary to wash the puppy, but don’t do it too often. Read here how to bathe your puppy properly.

5) Correct behavior

If your German Shepherd is relieving himself in your apartment, pick him up and immediately take him outside to a specially designated place for the toilet. When he has successfully completed her business there, reward him before returning to the house.

Never yell at your German Shepherd or slap him when you see that he has had an accident. You will teach your German Shepherd to be afraid of you, and it will not help him to learn what to do when he needs to relieve himself.

If you find a mess in your apartment after the job has been done, never poke the German Shepherd in it with your nose and do not try to discipline him. It doesn’t work; it just confuses the puppy. Just put things in order and take the German Shepherd outside more often to continue his training.

What to do if the dog pees at home

Positive reinforcement

Every time the German Shepherd copes with the task during house potty training – goes to the diaper – praise him, stroke him, and treat him with sweets. He will quickly understand why he is being encouraged and will try to please the owner.

But to scold if the pet “did not reach” or missed, it is impossible in any case. Do not shout, do not poke his nose into an unauthorized puddle, and even more so, do not beat. The only thing you will achieve with such rigor is fear.

The following algorithm will work in the dog’s head: the owner punished for the natural process, so next time, in order not to anger him, you need to try not to catch his eye. In general, the GSD pup will try to do his business in a more secluded place.

And this is even worse. After all, our goal is to teach the dog to go to the diaper.

In addition, if your puppy is from a month to two, he will often miss the diaper. It is ok. Little dogs don’t want to upset the owner, they just don’t control themselves.

Encourage your puppy immediately after proper toileting

How often do I need to take my puppy to the potty?

The bladder and intestines of babies are imperfect. They are still at the stage of development and are not able to cope with too large volumes of urine and feces. Also, the German Shepherd puppy body is distinguished by a faster metabolism, or metabolism. All these factors prevent long-term inhibition of urges, when compared with adult animals.

How many times a day do German Shepherd puppy go to the toilet?

In a small way

A newborn puppy pees very often, but it is almost imperceptible. All his secretions are immediately licked by his mother. The number of urinations can be counted only at the stage of getting used to the diaper. Up to 3-4 months, it is about 10 times a day, and then gradually decreases to 5-6 times a day. After 1 year, the German Shepherds pees about 3-5 times a day and easily restrains his urges for 8-10 hours.

An adult pet can drink a whole bowl and sleep peacefully all night without asking to go outside. The baby will have to relieve himself after 10-30 minutes.

In a big way

The frequency of bowel movements usually depends on the number of meals. Up to 2 months, it is 6-8 times a day, in 2-3 months – 5-6 times, in 3-6 months – 3-4 times, in 6-12 months – 3 times. At the age of more than 1 year, German Shepherds walk “big” 1-2 times a day. Even more rare emptying (1 time in 2 days) is typical for elderly pets and is associated with the natural aging of the body.

For more details according to age, you can see in the table

8 week oldevery 2 hours
10 week oldevery 2.5 hours
12 week oldevery 3 hours
14 week oldevery 3.5 hours
16 week oldevery 4 hours
At what age to potty train a puppy

German Shepherd puppy potty training schedule

It is important to follow the potty training schedule every day if you want to achieve results. This schedule is designed so that you need to spend all day at home or have a helper.

Day timeAction
7:00 amWake up. Take the puppy outside. Dogs need to go as soon as they awake.
7:15 amMealtime. Take food up if not eaten within 20 minutes.
7:30 amOutside time. GSD puppies need to go out within 10 to 25 minutes after a meal.
7:45 amIndoor time. Play with your puppy so they can get his energy out and interact with you.
9:00 amOutside time. Before you leave for the day, offer the last potty training.
11:30 amTake your dog out. You can hire a dog walker to come home to let your pup out.
12:00 pmMealtime. Take up food within 20 minutes if not eaten.
12:30 pmTake your pup out. Young puppies need to go after meals.
2:30 pmPlaytime. If you need to go back to work or out again, confine your pup for their safety. A puppy check-in from a GSD pup walker lasts 45 to 60 minutes and includes letting them out, playtime, and fresh food and water refills.
3:30 pmTake your dog outside. When you return home, your puppy will need to go out immediately.
3:45 pmMealtime. Puppies need to be fed 2 to 4 times a day.
4:00 pmTake your dog out. Your puppy needs to relieve himself after meals.
4:30 pmInteraction time. This is a good time for potty training, training positive, socializing, free play, and very short walks.
6:15 pmOutside time. Play with your pup. Explore new areas of your yard. Praise them when they potty.
6:30 pmSupervised play. Monitor your pup for any potty behaviors. Play, light and gentle exercise, and time with family are good in the evenings.
7:30 pmLast meal. Make sure your puppy eats 2–4 times a day.
7:45 pmOutside time. Let your puppy stretch his legs and explore the yard. Strengthening the back legs should be started at a very early age.
8:00 pmSupervised time. Take up the water. Restrict water only before bedtime to avoid overnight accidents.
10:00 pmOutside time. Be sure your pup gets praise when he potties outdoors.
10:15 pmSupervised time. Keep our puppy leashed to you if you need to move around the house. Remember to pick up any food or water left out, as these can contribute to your pup eliminating during the night.
10:45 pmPotty training. Take your pup out right before you put him in his night area for bedtime.
11:00 pmYour puppy goes to bed. Make sure your pup’s area is safe for the night and you develop a nighttime routine, so your pup learns their bedtime habit.
Let your GSD puppy stretch his legs and explore the yard

What can and cannot be potty trained for your puppy

You can during house training:

  • have a dedicated area for pots.
  • use the mailbox.
  • use the command word.
  • stick to a regular schedule.
  • watch out for signals that they are ready to go potty.
  • stay outside longer if necessary to prevent accidents.
  • clean up accidents with an enzyme-based cleaner.
  • praise them when they go to the right place.

Not allowed during house training:

  • use an ammonia-based cleaner, as it will not reduce the smell.
  • start a mode that changes randomly, as this can potty accident your puppy and make the learning process longer.
  • use punishment as part of potty training process.
  • it is forbidden to shout and scold the puppy because of potty accident because the puppy does not bladder control.

Sprays for potty training a puppy to the toilet: how to apply

To speed up the process of potty training the puppy to the toilet tray, you can use special sprays and lotions. They contain special components that develop the animal’s ability to relieve itself in a certain place.

You can spray the product on a piece of paper and place it in the tray. After the pup goes to the toilet, replace with another piece of paper sprayed with the same composition.

Sprays for potty training adult dogs to the toilet are absolutely safe for animals and people. They can be sprayed on any surface where the German Shepherds can relieve himself.

At what age should a German Shepherd be potty trained?

German Shepherd puppies should be home-schooled at about the age of 12 to 16 weeks. This is a good age because their bladder is big enough to hold most of the urine, and they are also mentally ready for learn potty training process.

Baby German Shepherd is to be potty trained

Choosing the right tray

Potty train a German Shepherd are different. In terms of design features, they are identical to cats.

When choosing a potty spot accessory, consider:

  • the size of the puppy – the potty train a German Shepherd pups should not be too small and uncomfortable;
  • the floor – special trays with an elevated column have been invented for males, on which the new pup will urinate, instinctively raising his hind leg;
  • the sides of the toilet should not be high so that the new pup can easily get into this useful device.

Why does my German Shepherd puppy pee so much?

Deviation from the norm should not be ignored. First of all, it is important to understand why the puppy often urinates. To do this, it is necessary to observe his behavior and accompanying symptoms. Non- dangerous causes of such violations include:

  • A large volume of liquid consumed. Increased thirst is characteristic of hot weather. It can also be provoked by too salty food, for example, a piece of sausage stolen from the table, or an active pastime.
  • Severe stress. It occurs against the background of very vivid emotions: fear of thunderstorms, anxiety due to separation from his mother, joy at the return of the owner.
  • Age-related changes. They are characteristic of a hormonal jump in females during the first one.
  • Implementation of the territorial instinct. Occurs during puberty in males and encourages them to leave odorous marks.
  • Demonstration of discontent. A pet can leave a puddle in protest, trying to attract attention to itself.
  • Low room temperature. Dogs, like humans, tend to often run “in a small way” when they are cold.
  • The manifestation of obedience. A small pet can urinate in front of a stronger opponent: an adult dog or a person.

Factors that can provoke dogs into submissive peeing include loud voices, anger, changes in their daily routine, excessive punishments, and dominance. It can also happen when the dogs feel shy, excited, or threatened by someone or something. 

How To Stop Your Dog From Peeing From Anxiety, Medically reviewed by Dr. Zach Coston

Trying to solve the problem, act on the situation. Change the feeding regime, improve the conditions of detention, revise the current parenting process, or seek the help of a dog psychologist.

Puppy pads for house train

But if you prefer to use puppy pads, then you need a place where you always take the puppy when he needs to go to the toilet. It is advisable to place puppy pads next to the door through which you will eventually want them to go outside.

Put more pee pads than you think you need at first. This is because puppies don’t aim well and can also find a place they like better (other than the one you have chosen).

It is better to put more than necessary on a few pillows than to let them dirty the floors and leave a smell behind. After a couple of weeks, you can remove the extra pads until there are only two pads left on the floor in the main place where they prefer to walk.

Also puppy pads are appropriate if the winter in your area is cold. Here is a post on How cold it is too cold for German Shepherds and puppies.

Puppy potty training pads

Chapter FAQ

How long should it take to potty train a German Shepherd puppy?

Two, or three, or more few weeks, of course, is a record. On average, it takes up to four months to potty train a German Shepherd to go to a diaper.

This is provided that you have a very tiny monthly puppy.

But in any case, do not delay. Conversely. It is worth the plush paws of a pet to cross the threshold of your house, keep your ear sharp. Keep an eye on the young puppies, especially if it is not yet three months old.

How do I stop my German Shepherd puppy from peeing in the house?

Small puppies learn the world like children, and the task of the owner is to teach the pet good manners from the first day of appearance in the house.

Puppies are quarantined for the first 3.5 – 4 months of life, due to mandatory immunization against viral infections.

Accordingly, all this time they are in the apartment and are forced to get dirty in the house. During the isolation, the puppy develops a persistent habit of going to the toilet in his lair.

There are several secrets that will help to wean your puppy from accidents around the house:

  1. It is necessary to choose a separate room for the baby’s toilet – it is good if it is a balcony or a pantry.
  2. Cover the entire floor surface in the designated room with paper or a diaper.
  3. Every time after sleeping and eating, take the puppy for natural needs to the space allocated for the toilet.
  4. Do not let out of this room until the pet does its business.
  5. After the release of the intestines and bladder, praise the pet violently so that he understands that the owner approves of his actions.

During the day, carefully monitor the baby, and at the first prerequisites for the potty (sniffing, circling in one place) – immediately take the dog in your arms and take it to the room for defecation. It is impossible to grab a puppy when he has already started writing, they do not completely control this process until 4 months and cannot stop it.

There will be only one result – a frightened pet and a path of urine all over the apartment.

Gradually, a four-legged friend will choose one place for bowel movements in the designated room, then it will be possible to remove all other diapers and newspapers.

But you cannot leave the dog alone in a confined space for a long time, especially without light, this can lead to fear of loneliness or claustrophobia.

Puppies under the age of 4 months practically cannot tolerate if access to the room with diapers is limited (the door is closed), you need to be prepared for the fact that a puddle will appear anywhere.

Moreover, during this period, the baby may simply not reach the diaper if it is far away. You cannot scold the dog for this, this is a physiological feature of the body, there is no pet’s fault in this.

If there was a “problem” and the dog went to the wrong place, although the owner tried his best and did everything right – in no case should you shout at the baby, punish physically or poke his nose into a pile (puddle).

This can lead to terrible stress and fear of the owner, as a result, the puppy will continue, but hide under carpets, pillows, bedspreads or even eat the object of the owner’s anger. Further, the owner’s fear will negatively affect the building of relationships and subsequent upbringing.

How do you train a German Shepherd to pee and poop outside?

A good owner should know exactly all the nuances of raising and caring for a dog. When a small puppy appears in the house, it is necessary to give him all the necessary vaccinations so that a dog walker in the puppy pad and contact with the outside world are safe for him.

All medical procedures should be completed by about 2.6 months, after which you can make the first outings on the street and puppy pad.

In a private house, it can be going out into the courtyard and getting to know everything that is there, and then a dog walker outside it.

All dogs are biologically arranged in the same way, which means that their reaction to certain things is as close as possible. To determine if a puppy wants to go to the toilet, you just need to watch him carefully.

Young puppies need to go out after every meal

What are the main signals that your puppy wants to go to the toilet?

  • slowing down a step, stopping at some place, taking a strange and atypical pose for a while;
  • pet whining, plaintive look, going to the far corner of the room;
  • fussy behavior, sniffing at the surrounding space;
  • a soft whine, a request that the dog be released into the street.

If at least one of these signs has been noticed, it is necessary to quickly go outside for potty train a German Shepherd so that he can relieve himself outside.

If you have time to respond to the requests and signals of the dog on time and systematically, then very soon the animal will understand that emptying the body should be done only on the street. To make it easier to go to the toilet, the dog needs to be walked after each feeding.

To potty train a German Shepherd to go to the toilet on the street, the easiest step is to walk frequently and encourage emptying. This option allows you to rebuild relatively quickly and relieve yourself outdoors.

It should be understood that it is impossible to demand emptying from a pet outside the house if he does not stand the time from walk to walk.

Aggressive behavior and shouting will not help to raise a dog, a strict tone and angry intonation are needed here. As soon as the dog tolerates the necessary period of time and asks to go outside himself, the process of training and toilet training can be considered completed.

Step-by-step instructions on this issue will look like this:

  1. arrange a place for a toilet in the room;
  2. teach the dog to empty in a given place;
  3. to establish a system of food and walks;
  4. stimulate emptying on a walk;
  5. praise for the fulfilled requirement, scold for going to the toilet in the house;
  6. do not use aggression and physical violence.

If you systematically follow these principles, then the puppy, growing up, will quickly get used to going to the toilet on the street and will please its owner with obedient behavior.

If there are any difficulties with the toilet outside, take a potty break. Perhaps a potty break will be able to reduce the stress of the dog, after which it will be possible to accustom the puppy to the street when a certain regime appears.

Why is my German Shepherd puppy so hard to potty train?

Too often they forget about the medical causes of problems with potty training routine. If your puppy only goes to the toilet, urinates very often and/or you see drastic changes in your dog’s toilet training habits, you should first visit a veterinarian to check for any underlying medical problems. Note that stress can also be one of the reasons.

Punishment and reprimand often make children feel bad and can delay potty trained. If a few more weeks have passed, and your child still does not get to the pot or does not show interest in the pot, he may not be ready for learn potty training routine yet.

Tips for Potty Training a German when things aren’t going well:

  • Look at your behavior and try to reduce the stress that you show as a parent.
  • Try incentives that kids can work on.
  • Look at where toilet training takes place.
  • Avoid words that accuse the child.
  • Take a few months off and try again.

Conclusion: How to potty train a GSD puppy

Train a German Shepherd so that it does not cause inconvenience. House train will help the puppy to get used to the necessary environment faster. Also, house train will favorably affect the psyche of the animal.

Malena Parker

I run this blog and I want to share with you useful information about the life, health, and care of a German Shepherd

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