How To Train Your Dog To Go To The Bathroom In One Spot

How To Train Your Dog To Go To The Bathroom In One Spot

Training your dog to go to the bathroom in one spot is a fairly simple and incredibly useful task. You may have many reasons for wanting to do so, from keeping the yard clean for kids or visitors to avoiding brown spots from dog pee to avoiding parasites spread through poop. 

Regardless of why you choose to do so, training your dog to go in a designated area of your yard will surely be beneficial. Here are a few simple steps you can follow to help your dog learn where and how to eliminate in one spot in your yard. 

How To Teach Your Dog To Go In One Spot

Leading with a leash

Teaching your dog to go in one spot is easy to do without help. Of course, there are tools such as a pee post you can use to attract your dog to the area. However, you’ll find that if you follow these simple steps, training your dog is an easy task. 

1. Select a Spot

First things first, choose a spot where you would like your dog to go. This should be somewhere they can easily get to without your help but that is out of the way and won’t stink up the whole yard. You may want to fence off a small area with a barrier that the dog can get over to make it look a bit neater, but it all depends on how you design your yard. 

2. Prepare for Poop

Dogs tend to go where they can smell the scent of their own waste. If you want them to use a specific spot, you may want to set a pile of poop in the spot to show them that this is an appropriate place to go. 

Because of your dog’s instinct to go where they have gone before, you’ll also need to ensure that you keep the rest of your yard clean. Always pick up poop immediately and use a hose to spray down urine if your dog goes somewhere else. 

3. Lead with a Leash

To get started, put your dog on a leash and lead them to the spot where you want them to eliminate. You want to watch for cues that they need to go (such as sniffing, circling, squatting, etc.) and use those cues to direct you to action. Lead them to and keep them in the right spot until they go—but avoid watching them too closely as that may make them uncomfortable. 

Don’t allow your dog to play in the rest of the yard until they have done their business. If they escape and pee or poop somewhere else, you want to ignore it, take them immediately back inside, and clean the area thoroughly. Keep taking them back to the spot until they go there, then reward them. 

4. Work with Words

It can be helpful to use a command word that signals to your dog it’s time to go. If you’re already working on housetraining your dog, you may have established a “go word” such as “Go potty” or “poop time,” etc. Use this word to signal to your dog that they need to go in this area of the yard as soon as possible. 

5. Tantalize with Treats

Once your dog eliminates in the spot you want them to use, give them a treat as a reward for their good behavior. You can offer an edible treat, bring out a favorite toy, or simply allow them to play outside a little longer and enjoy the rest of the yard. Whatever you do, just ensure that it’s something your dog will appreciate. 

Further Tips for Helping Your Dog Go In One Spot

Rewarding Your Dog

If you follow the steps above, training your dog to go to the bathroom in one spot should be an easy and quick task. Simply repeat the steps as many times as needed to ensure your dog gets the idea and makes the connection between peeing and pooping and that spot in your yard. 

There are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind as you train your dog to help the process go more smoothly. 

  • Keep the dog’s spot clean. You’ll want to scoop the poop in your dog’s area on a fairly regular basis. If it gets too filthy, your dog is likely to look for a clearer area in which to eliminate.
  • Don’t scold your dog. Verbal or physical punishment never helps. Instead, ignore your dog’s mistakes and end their playtime immediately. Juxtaposed with the offer of a treat and/or extra playtime for going in the right spot, your dog will pick up on what you want pretty quickly. 
  • Feed your dog at an available time. You want to have time to take your dog to the bathroom yourself after feeding, so be sure to feed them with plenty of time before you have to leave the house for work or other activities. 
  • Try pee sticks or sprays. If you have to be gone from home or if your dog is confined to an apartment, you may want to try using one of these tools to encourage your dog to go in the right spot. Often, you’ll use these in conjunction with a pee pad if your dog doesn’t have regular access to the yard. 
  • Choose a spot that encourages elimination. For example, dogs are likely to prefer grass, dirt, or sand to a man-made area like concrete or carpet. However, every dog differs and you should be able to teach them to use any spot if you work hard enough and follow the appropriate training steps. Do make sure there is plenty of light in the spot so the dog can see and doesn’t feel uncomfortable while going.
  • Remember that accidents will happen occasionally. No dog is perfect right off the bat, but if you continually take your dog to the right spot, they will soon get the hang of things. 

Keeping a Clean Yard

Keeping a clean yard is crucial for taking appropriate care of your pet and your family. However, if you’re busy and don’t have tons of time in your schedule, it may be difficult for you to manage picking up all the poop in your yard.

Our team at Idaho Poop Scoop can help. We offer weekly and bi-weekly service options along with one time clean-ups and, for select areas, 2x/week services to help you keep your yard clean and ready for anything. If you’re interested in regular, dedicated, effective poop-scooping services, don’t hesitate to connect with us