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Puppy House Training with bell

Housetraining some dogs can be especially challenging because they do not learn to clearly signal when they need to eliminate.  Teaching a dog to ring a bell when it needs to go outside can be a huge help when housetraining.  It takes time but is relatively simple if you follow these steps:

Purchase a small bell, set it near the door through which you usually take your dog outside for elimination.  Ring the bell immediately before opening the door to go outside with the dog. Your dog should already be leashed so that you can step outside with her as soon as you ring the bell.  Do this for several days every time you take him / her outside.  Allow him / her to only explore the designated elimination area, otherwise your dog may associate ringing the bell with play time instead.

Next, suspend the bell at the height of your dog’s nose right next to the door.  Gently touch the bell to your dog’s nose causing it to ring every time you take him / her outside.  Repeat this step for several days.

At this point, depending on how quickly your dog makes associations, she may begin approaching the bell on his/her own when they need to eliminate.  If he / she doesn’t, smear a little bit of cheese or peanut butter on the bell each time you prepare to go outside and use this to lure your dog towards the bell.

Allow your dog to lick the bell, causing it to ring, and then praise him / her as you take her outside.

Once he / she begins ringing the bell on their own, you must take them outside every time so that he/ she learns that making the bell ring reliably predicts being allowed outside to eliminate.

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