How to Train a Dachshund Puppy to Potty Outside

How to Train a Dachshund Puppy to Potty Outside
Hard difficulty iconHard
Time icon1-6 Months
General training category iconGeneral

Introduction

As cute as they are, Dachshunds are notoriously hard to potty train. In fact, statistics show they are among the top 20 breeds considered to be the hardest to housebreak. While most Dachshund pups can be potty trained over time, some will never be completely housebroken, and you will need a crate for when you are asleep or not at home. Just keep this in mind as you work with your pup and be patient. Never punish him or scold him for accidents, instead use positive reinforcement techniques as they will be far more successful. 

arrow-up-icon

Top

Defining Tasks

The task at hand is to train your Dachshund puppy that the only place it is acceptable for him to go potty is outside in his designated area. Just remember, Dachshund puppies are notoriously hard to potty train, so you must be patient and willing to work your pup on a regular schedule if you want your training efforts to be successful. Also, keep in mind, your pup has a small bladder that will need to be drained frequently in comparison to, say a Bull Mastiff or Doberman that has a much larger bladder. 

arrow-up-icon

Top

Getting Started

To get started you need to make sure your pup has a collar and is used to wearing it. You will need this to attach his leash to in order to take him outside to his designated potty spot on the lawn. You must be prepared to provide your pup with constant supervision or have him in a crate when you can't. You also need a couple of additional supplies, including:

  • Leash – To take him outside
  • Crate – For when you can't watch him
  • Treats – A good way to let your pup know he is doing a good job

The last two things you will need to successfully potty train your pup are plenty of time to work with him and a large supply of patience, as this process is not going to be easy. You will be using standard training methods, but you will need to work just that little bit harder if you want to be successful. 

arrow-up-icon

Top

The Signs & Signals Method

Most Recommended

5 Votes

Ribbon icon

Most Recommended

5 Votes

Ribbon icon
1

You first

The first thing you need to learn is how to recognize the signs your pup needs to go potty. With Dachshunds, this could be as simple as your pup getting overly excited for no apparent reason or running around the house. Be prepared to run him outside at any of his signs.

2

Set a schedule

One of the best ways to potty train your pup is to put him on a set schedule. Take him to the same spot in your yard every 20 to 30 minutes at first. His bladder won't hold for much longer than this when he's very young, and having him outside when the urge strikes will set him up for success.

3

Potty break

Each time you get ready to take your pup outside, be sure to use your chosen cue, such as "Potty break!" This will help him associate the cue with the action.

4

Watch out

Keep an eye on your pup for signs and signals between scheduled potty trips. Make sure he gets outside as soon as possible!

5

Rewards for getting it right

Each time you take your pup outside and he goes potty, be sure to praise him and give him a nice treat.

6

In case of accidents

If you happen to catch your pup in the middle of going potty on your living room floor, tell him "NO!" in a commanding but not angry tone. This should stop him mid-track. Take him outside to let him finish what he started. Clean the mess up thoroughly and resume training, adding more time inside until your pup learns to let you know when he needs to go.

The Perfect Spot Method

Effective

2 Votes

Ribbon icon

Effective

2 Votes

Ribbon icon
1

Check your schedule

Before you decide to bring that adorable Dachshund puppy home, you need to check your schedule to make sure you have time to potty train him. The less time you have, the longer it will take and the harder it will be to succeed.

2

You need "the spray"

Hit your local pet supply store and pick up a bottle of "puppy potty training" spray. Yes, they do make it. This chemical imitates the smells dogs leave behind when marking their territory and will inspire your pooch to cover the scent with his own.

3

Go home

Go home and mark a spot in your yard that your pup will be able to use as his "private bathroom."

4

Add one Dachshund puppy

Hook your pup to his leash and take him out to the area you recently marked. Give him no more than 15 minutes to sniff around and go potty. If he won't go, take him inside and give him a few minutes before going out and trying again.

5

On with the show

Or on with the training. Keep working with your pup until he starts to let you know when he needs to go potty and once outside will head straight to his "bathroom". When you get to that point, you are done. Congratulations!

The Training Crate Method

Least Recommended

2 Votes

Ribbon icon

Least Recommended

2 Votes

Ribbon icon
1

One crate

You need a crate for your pup that is just big enough to give him room to move around, but no bigger. If you buy a bigger crate he may make his bed at one end and use the other for a potty. You do NOT want this.

2

Relieve himself

Take your pup outside to relieve himself and then put him in his crate. Time starts now!

3

On time every time

While he is a little pup, set the timer for every 20 minutes. When it goes off, take your pup out to his spot on the lawn. When he goes, be sure to praise him and give him a puppy treat.

4

Add time

Add time in 20-minute increments to his time in the crate. Once you reach two hours, you can try leaving him out in the house, but be sure to keep a close eye on him.

5

Use the same method

Along with keeping a close eye on your pup, set a timer to remind you to take him out on schedule. You can't afford to set your pup's training back. The rest is all about working with your pup until you no longer have to worry about messes in the house.

By PB Getz

Published: 03/02/2018, edited: 01/08/2021

Training Questions

Have a question?

Training Questions and Answers

Dog nametag icon

banana

Dog breed icon

Dachshund

Dog age icon

3 Months

Question icon

Question

Thumbs up icon

0 found helpful

Thumbs up icon

0 found helpful

User generated photo

he is very stubborn and pees in the house

July 11, 2022

banana's Owner

Expert avatar

Caitlin Crittenden - Dog Trainer

Recommendation ribbon

1133 Dog owners recommended

Hello Hannah, I recommend a combination of the Crate Training method and Tether method to limit pup's freedom when their bladder isn't completely empty to help them learn to associate your home with cleanliness. You can find those methods in this article. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

July 11, 2022

Dog nametag icon

Alfy

Dog breed icon

Dachshund

Dog age icon

7 Months

Question icon

Question

Thumbs up icon

0 found helpful

Thumbs up icon

0 found helpful

User generated photo

Hello, We brought our dog (dachshund breed) when he was 4 month. He was potty trained at home, so he is well accustomed to this. Last 3 month we have bern trying a lot of methods to potty train him outside. But no any results unfortunately. We took him outside in the morning as soon as he finishes his first meal. Tried every in half an hour. Also we took him out even for whole day but still no result. As soon as he was back he is doing it at home. We think the reason could be his mentality. Because when he is outside he seems to be very stressed and nervous, looking around all the time. Smelling everything, barking, jumping. He is not relaxed. Even with dogs are aggressive. Barking and biting every kind of dog. Also we tried to give him meal outside but he is not eating it. Because of stress and anxiety. Overall our puppy is very very lovely and joyful. He is not aggressive with people. So maybe you can give some helpful advise for this issue. Thank you in advance David

April 6, 2022

Alfy's Owner

Expert avatar

Caitlin Crittenden - Dog Trainer

Recommendation ribbon

1133 Dog owners recommended

Hello David, I would see if there is a G.R.O.W.L. class you can attend with pup to help desensitize them to other dogs, to reduce the stress around other dogs. I would spend time sitting outside with pup to desensitize pup to that environment. Take treats and pup's favorite toys, and in a pesticide/car fluid free area you can also play treat hiding games. At first, simply sit outside with pup for an hour at a time and read or do a similar calm activity - pup probably won't be interested in treats or games at first but don't give up on those. As pup gets used to just hanging outside regularly with you their desire for those things should increase, and the use of those things make the training speed up even more. Do this for 30-60 minutes as often as you can, with at least an hour break back inside between. If there are several family members who can manage pup, take turns doing this. Once pup is interested in treats after spending time outside chilling, then also reward pup for any curious, friendly, or calm responses to new things around you. Start this in as calm an area as you can find, and gradually move areas to ones with a little bit more distraction as pup improves. You can either continue with indoor potty training for the next month while you work on reactivity toward other dogs and getting more comfortable with being outside, or start all of the above at the same time. If you start everything at the same time it will just require a bigger time commitment upfront and more patience with pup, but the end result should come quicker in the long run. For the potty training itself, I recommend crate training, and utilizing the crate the confine pup when their bladder hasn't been emptied outside during the past 2 hours. This means that when you take pup outside if they don't go potty within 15 minutes of being out there, you bring pup inside and crate for another 30-60 minutes, then take pup directly back outside (carrying pup if needed to prevent an accident on the way). You will repeat this cycle every hour until pup finally goes potty outside - at which point you reward and praise pup (if they won't take the treat then just praise genuinely). Once pup does go potty outside, they earn 1-2 hours of freedom out of the crate. Generally 2 hours unless pup has accidents before that point. Since pup is not a young puppy, you can add 30-60 minutes to the times listed in that article to make up for pup's increased bladder capacity. You may find pup goes 8 hours without pottying the first week. That's okay. Pup needs to learn that its okay to go potty outside. You may even want to put a pee pad outside for pup to use at first if that's what pup used to use inside. You can then gradually cut away the pee pads size until they are gone and pup going potty on just the ground that was underneath. Crating is usually the key with this transition though. The pee pads can help but for many dogs crating is needed too. Crate Training method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside If pup's never been introduced to a crate, I would go back to pee pads for the next month while you work on dog reactivity, getting pup comfortable being outside, and introducing a crate. Pup doesn't have to be 100% on these things to start potty training with a crate outside though, just having a bit of familiarity will make the process less stressful for everyone probably. Introducing a crate -Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

April 7, 2022

Thank you dear Caitlin for those very detailed explanations and recommendations. We will try to do these things but without crate training. He is already 7 old we never used crate for him before. And as I understood from this topic, first we need to train pup to be accustomed outside environment to be more relaxed. And after that it will be easier for him to potty train outside. So can we say that the reason of not doing potty train outside is his mentality and stress? As regards for his aggression with other dogs, maybe you can give me more clear recommendations? Take him in environment with many dogs or just one dog? And second question: we want to leave pup sometimes alone at home. we started to train him in this way: We gradually increased time leaving him alone. At first 10-15 minutes, then 20-25, and now maximum 40-50 minutes. Actually we have some progress but he still seems to be nervous alone. At first he has been scratching the door. Now he is not doing this but he is barking and whining (crying). Even when we are at home and just keep him in another room with closed door pup starts to be nervous (tries to open the door). And finally if pup get accustoms well what is the maximum period we can leave him alone at home? Many thanks David

April 8, 2022

David S.


Thank you dear Caitlin for those very detailed explanations and recommendations. We will try to do these things but without crate training. He is already 7 old we never used crate for him before. And as I understood from this topic, first we need to train pup to be accustomed outside environment to be more relaxed. And after that it will be easier for him to potty train outside. So can we say that the reason of not doing potty train outside is his mentality and stress? As regards for his aggression with other dogs, maybe you can give me more clear recommendations? Take him in environment with many dogs or just one dog? And second question: we want to leave pup sometimes alone at home. we started to train him in this way: We gradually increased time leaving him alone. At first 10-15 minutes, then 20-25, and now maximum 40-50 minutes. Actually we have some progress but he still seems to be nervous alone. At first he has been scratching the door. Now he is not doing this but he is barking and whining (crying). Even when we are at home and just keep him in another room with closed door pup starts to be nervous (tries to open the door). And finally if pup get accustoms well what is the maximum period we can leave him alone at home? Many thanks David

April 8, 2022

David S.


Thank you dear Caitlin for those very detailed explanations and recommendations. We will try to do these things but without crate training. He is already 7 old we never used crate for him before. And as I understood from this topic, first we need to train pup to be accustomed outside environment to be more relaxed. And after that it will be easier for him to potty train outside. So can we say that the reason of not doing potty train outside is his mentality and stress? As regards for his aggression with other dogs, maybe you can give me more clear recommendations? Take him in environment with many dogs or just one dog? And second question: we want to leave pup sometimes alone at home. we started to train him in this way: We gradually increased time leaving him alone. At first 10-15 minutes, then 20-25, and now maximum 40-50 minutes. Actually we have some progress but he still seems to be nervous alone. At first he has been scratching the door. Now he is not doing this but he is barking and whining (crying). Even when we are at home and just keep him in another room with closed door pup starts to be nervous (tries to open the door). And finally if pup get accustoms well what is the maximum period we can leave him alone at home? Many thanks David

April 8, 2022

David S.


Training assistant
Need training help?

Learn more in the Wag! app

Five starsFive starsFive starsFive starsFive stars

43k+ reviews

Install


© 2022 Wag Labs, Inc. All rights reserved.