How to Potty Train a Schnauzer

Medium
1-6 Months
General

Introduction

Potty training is one of the most important things you can train your pup to do. Not only will this help keep your home far cleaner and fresher smelling, but it teaches him to respect your home in the same manner as he would his den out in nature. Potty training a Schnauzer can be challenging at times, but just when you think you can't get any more frustrated, your pup will suddenly figure it all out and start begging you to take him outside, so he can take care of "business".

Defining Tasks

The idea is to teach your pup that at no time is going potty in the house acceptable and that the only place he is allowed to go potty is outside. This might seem like it would be simple, but no matter which method you choose to follow, you should be aware there are going to be accidents. Unless you actually catch your pup in the act, there is no point in punishing him for the mess, he will have no clue why you are upset with him. The best way to succeed with this training is to use positive reinforcement methods. 

Getting Started

There are several things you can do to help the training process along, starting with carefully planning your training strategy. Proper planning is a vital part of any training program, as are supplying your pup with plenty of love, affection, exercise, and good quality food. Be aware that every dog has his or her own personality and you may have to adjust the training methods to suit. You will also need a few supplies, including:

  • A crate – For when you can't always have eyes on your dog
  • Treats – To reward your pup for getting it right
  • Leash – To take him outside on
  • Patience – You will need plenty of this if you want to succeed
  • Time – You need time to work with your dog every day until he is fully potty trained

In reality, the most important part of potty training your pup is your having enough patience and the willingness to work with your pup until he masters this skill. 

The Crate Training Method

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Step
1
Buy a crate
Pick up a crate for your pup. It needs to be just big enough for him to stand up in, turn around in, and lie down in, no more. Anything larger will give him enough room to choose a spot to pee or poop in while leaving the rest of the space to nap in.
Step
2
Find a spot
Choose a spot for his kennel that makes it easy for you to keep an eye on him. Find one that is in the same part of the house the family spends the most time in, so he feels like he is part of the family.
Step
3
Add one pooch
Get your pup comfortable in his crate and place him inside it between potty breaks.
Step
4
Get some relief
At first, take your pup outside every 30 minutes to give him a chance to go potty.
Step
5
Praise works
Be sure that every time your puppy goes potty when you take him outside to his spot on the lawn that you give him plenty of praise and a treat.
Step
6
Keep an eye on your pup
While your pup is loose in the house, keep a close eye on him. If he shows any indication that he is thinking about going potty (sniffing, circling, squatting, lifting a leg) take him straight outside. The longer you work with him, the longer he will be able to hold himself. Keep working with him and in no time at all, he will learn where he is expected to go potty.
Step
7
Never punish him
At no time should you punish your pup verbally or physically for making a mess in the house. If you catch him in the act, you can say "NO!" in a firm voice and take him outside to finish. Reward him when he is done.
Recommend training method?

The Quick and Simple Method

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Step
1
Watch your pup
Keep a very close eye on your pup while he is out and about in your home. If he whines, fusses, starts circling one spot, or gives any indication he needs to go potty, be sure you take him out immediately.
Step
2
If he goes
If you take him outside and he goes potty, be sure you praise him and give him a treat.
Step
3
Make a routine
Be sure to take your puppy out as soon as he wakes up in the morning or after a nap and shortly after he eats and drinks.
Step
4
Keep it real
Realistically, puppies can usually be expected to hold their bladder for about one hour per month of their age. Be sure to schedule potty breaks between meals and sleep times so your pup will be in the right place at the right time.
Step
5
Every day a little longer
Keep working with your pup extending the amount of time between trips outside. It will take a while, but in time your pup will learn to go potty out in the yard where his potty on the lawn happens to be.
Recommend training method?

The Potty Spot Method

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Step
1
Choose your schedule
Start by setting up a potty break schedule for your pup, he will do much better at potty training if you follow the schedule very carefully and make sure he gets outside every hour or so.
Step
2
Spray the spot
Using puppy potty training spray available at your local pet store, choose a spot in the yard that your pup can use as his personal toilet and spray your chosen "potty spot" liberally with it.
Step
3
Bring on the Schnauzer
Put your pup on his leash and take him out to the spot. Let him have about 15 minutes to wander around on the leash and go potty. If for some reason he doesn't go, don't worry. Take him back inside and wait a little while before trying again.
Step
4
Times to take him straight outside
There are a number of times when you need to take your pup outside, even if he has gone recently. These include when he wakes up in the morning or after a nap, after a meal, after he drinks a lot of water, and right before bed.
Step
5
Work hard
Continue working on this training until your pup starts to let you know when he needs to go potty. It may take a little time, but your pup will learn to master this important skill even if he does it just to make you happy at first.
Recommend training method?

Success Stories and Training Questions

Training Questions and Answers

Question
Daisy
schnauzer
9 Months
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Question
0 found helpful
Daisy
schnauzer
9 Months

Our dog is not house trained. We tried but our schedules become difficult at times. She sleeps in a cage and has a bed in there. It has enough space for her bed and one single training pad. However, she is playing with the pad and also pooping and peeing in there EVERYWHERE at different times of the day. When we first got her, she was not like this. She never went in her cage. What should be our next step?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
274 Dog owners recommended

Hello, In order for crate training to work the crate needs to be just large enough for the dog to stand up, turn around, and lay down. There also shouldn't be anything absorbent in there, especially a pee pad. She has essentially been trained due to circumstances to go potty in the crate. Check out the article that I have linked below and follow the Exercise Pen method. The article mentions a litter box, but I suggest using a real grass pad instead, so that it more closely resembles grass outside. I suggest stopping pee pads because some dogs confuse pee pads with other fabric inside, like carpet and rugs. Exercise Pen method: https://wagwalking.com/training/litter-box-train-a-chihuahua-puppy Real grass pad (only purchase real grass ones - opposed to fake turf): https://www.amazon.com/DoggieLawn-Disposable-Potty-Real-Grass/dp/B00EQJ7I7Y/ref=asc_df_B00EQJ7I7Y/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=309806233193&hvpos=1o8&hvnetw=g&hvrand=1534281773762755126&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=m&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=1015431&hvtargid=aud-645589642778:pla-572651300532&psc=1 Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Carl
schnauzer miniature mix
3 Years
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Question
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Carl
schnauzer miniature mix
3 Years

Hello, i adopted my dog 2 weeks ago. He seems to be trained before because he does not pee or poop every where. We waits for me to take him either outside or does on 2 spots he chose inside the house. Whenever he pees, he holds it too much no matter if I take him outside morning and before going to bed. He waits almost 5 hours and then pees whenever he cant hold it anymore. Yet, i let him finish. After he is done, he knows he did something wrong because he did it inside so he goes and lays next to the door for me to clean. My schedule will baries starting June. How can I make him comfortable enough to let me know when he needs to pee? Also, I know whenever he wants to poop since he is walking around and following his tail but I still do not know when he really wants to pee.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
274 Dog owners recommended

Hello Arley, Check out the crate training method from the article linked below. I suggest strictly following that imethod ncluding the treats for going potty. If he seems afraid to go potty in front of you, then I suggest taking him on a long 15-35 ft leash (not retractable, length depending on his fear and how much space there is) and tossing larger treats over to him when he goes potty until he gets more comfortable going near you and you can gradually coil up more and more of the leash until you can use a 6 foot leash. Since he is older, take him potty every 3-4 hours when you are home (he should be able to hold it for longer in the crate if you work and he has to). Once he goes potty outside, give him two hours of supervised freedom out of the crate if you think his bladder is empty. After 2 hours put him back into the crate until time to take him potty again. Return him to the crate if he doesn't go potty when you take him outside. Crate Training method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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