Easily Housetrain Your Adult Dog

If you have an adult dog who has never been housetrained, or is just stubbornly using the indoors as an outhouse, you can easily correct this dog behaviour.

You may not know your dog’s history, especially if she was adopted or rescued from a dog shelter. As a result, you may be dealing with an adult dog who lived outside, was never housetrained at all, was insufficiently housetrained or even incorrectly housetrained.

Your adult dog may be dealing with some behaviors that have been reinforced through time and experience, so the most important thing to keep in mind is that you must be patient with your dog.

 You should keep an “eagle eye” on your dog and observe her actions when she is in the house. Does she head off to a specific room or corner prior to relieving herself?

 If so, you’ll want take her outside whenever she makes a move toward her "indoor outhouse."

 Once outside, give her time to take care of doggy business.  When she is done, give her a small treat and say “Good Dog !”. Your adult dog will start to associate going outdoors to relieve herself with getting a treat.

This technique has worked for us with multiple dogs. It does take time, several weeks to a few months of constant repetition, but your adult dog will catch on.

Once she is conditioned to go outside to relieve herself, you will have conquered  the task of housetraining your adult dog.

Here’s a few tips to help you easily housetrain your adult dog.  Need help to potty train your dog? Click here


  • Keep your adult dog under supervision indoors until  housetraining is accomplished. You may want her to prevent her from access to some rooms such as  the laundry room, bath rooms, bedrooms  or other places where she can cause a little doggy havoc. 


  • Don’t give her food and water late in the evening. If she needs to relieve herself during the night she may do so while you are dreaming of happy days at the dog park.  You want to be alert to her needs to go outside during the housetraining process. 


  • Look for ways that your  adult dog communicates when she needs to go outside.  One of my dogs will tap my foot with  her paw. Another will sit by the door. Each adult dog has her or his special way of “talking to you”. Listen to your do when she talks. Her housetraining will progress at a much faster pace. 


  • When you go outside, take your dog to the same area each time.   Your adult dog will start to associate that place as the designated doggy bathroom. She’ll become conditioned to using it and this will make your time outside for this activity  short and productive. 


  • When you take your adult dog outside, give her a verbal cue to  complete her task. We say “ Hurry Up” in an upbeat and happy voice every time we take our dogs out. They get the tone of your message and it will become part of the conditioning process that  tells them what you want them to do. 


  • Housetraining an adult dog is not as hard as some folks believe.  It simply takes  some time and patience. The rewards are certainly worth it, both for your and your adult dog. 


  • Never physically abuse or punish your adult dog or any dog. This is inhumane and counterproductive. Your dog will not understand what is happening as the event that provoked the punishment is already a past event for her. It is not on her mind and she can not relate to your anger. As a consequence, the unwanted housetraining challenge will get worse. So stay calm and show your adult dog love, patience and proper training. You and your adult dog will both be happier in the long run ! 

For Help With Your Dog Behavior Problem CLICK HERE


Does your dog pee in the house?  Does she come to you when you call?  Tear up the house or yard when you leave home?  For tips and help to solve  your dog behaviour problems



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