Puppy Pads – A Nightmare Training Tool

Puppy Pads are a massive massive pet hate for me… they cause me as a Dog Trainer so much stress, never mind the poor dog owners that end up with dogs peeing in the house at 12 months old, and refusing to go on walks.

Puppy pads are used as a way to encourage puppies to defecate in one place, they have a scent on them that encourages dogs/puppies to use them. This premise works well, I understand why people use them. Why not eliminate the problem of the puppy wandering off and hiding a poo behind the sofa or leaving a wee to step on when you come through the door. Encourage that puppy to poo in one place, no smells as well as the pads are scent absorbing so you might not even know they have even gone to the loo until you find it later on. Providing the puppy a place to go over night should they need to go. No mess on the floor to clean up as you just lift up and throw away, SIMPLE.

Now here is everything I find wrong with them:

Yes you puppy only goes in one places, great…one place, except THAT ONE PLACE IS IN YOUR HOUSE!!!!!…in your kitchen/living room/hall way…not in the garden or on a walk. You are encouraging your puppy to pee in the house, to pee where it sleeps if you put one in its crate or bed area. Some dogs get so obsessed with the pads that they refuse to pee anywhere else….no where else but on the pads in your house….

Peeing in your house! Why would you want your new puppy to think it is ok to pee in the house at any point, never mind repeatedly! The puppy needs to learn to go outside. Letting them go inside is lazy behaviour on your part. You can’t make toilet training any quicker than it’s going to be.

The pads while encouraging your puppy to pee in a certain spot, they also permeate the smell about your home, making carpets, rugs and furniture smell like a place to pee. So even when they have been removed the puppies will try and pee in places that smell like them…damaging your carpets, rugs and furniture.

Your puppy will often rip them up, as they smell of an odd urine to theirs. Wasting them, and just generally making a mess. They are at this point literally ripping up money.

Also think about it this way, the companies want you to use the pads in order to encourage your puppy to pee in one place. One place that means you need to keep buying puppy pads in order to keep that puppy peeing on the pads….round and round you go. Keep buying more pads to use, so the companies make money.

The solution to the problem is not that hard, any owner can do it…. GET UP AND OUT YOUR PUPPY OUTSIDE! Wait til it goes and reward, marking it with a command. Simple. Yes your puppy will have accidents, yes it will go out and refuse to pee and then come back in to pee. Yes it will require you to get up  every hour, after every meal time, after a big drink, after play and after sleep. But some effort now saves you months of work in the future.

Yes puppies forget, clean it up and get on with it. There is no quick fix to house training, its takes your dedication to your puppy to sort it out. Do not be drawn in by gimmicks such as puppy pads.

There are many ways to help puppies learn to pee outside, but they are specific for your home, puppy, and routine. The best suggestions come after seeing your home.

Kathryn Jones FdSc AAB

A Clever Approach to Dog Training and Behaviour


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