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How to Train Older Dog to Use Indoor Potty

How to Train Older Dog to Use Indoor Potty

If you live in an apartment and don’t have access to a yard, potty pads are essential, even for your older dog. However, teaching new rules and techniques can be challenging at first. Pet owners must learn practical strategies on how to train older dog to use indoor potty.

Let’s assume you have recently moved to a place where you don’t have an outdoor yard and can not take your dog whenever it needs to go potty. In such a situation, you must teach your older dog new rules to use indoor potty pads.

Can You Potty Train an Older Dog? 

If you’re thinking about potty training your older dog, you might be wondering if it’s even possible. The answer is yes, it is possible! According to Irith Bloom, the owner of The Sophisticated Dog, LLC, the process is relatively simple, though she doesn’t say that it will be easy. 

Older dogs can learn new tricks, although they are slower to catch on than puppies. It’s because they’ve already developed certain habits over the years. So, it would be best if you kept patience with your adult dog. Take your time, and you’ll eventually see results.

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How to Train Older Dog to Use Indoor Potty: Detailed Steps 


Potty training for your older dog involves two key steps. First, you must teach your dog a designated area for potty purposes. Second, you must help your dog overcome any anxiety about peeing indoors, which has always been discouraged in the past.

That being said, you may consider following these steps: 

Find the Right Potty Spot at Home

You need to select a suitable location to lay down the pee pad. Ideally, you should not put it in some busy place at your home. The pee pad should be far from where your dog eats and sleeps.

It’s important to note that once you’ve chosen the spot, you must stick with it. If you change the potty pad spot to a new location every day, your dog will become confused about where he should go inside.

Keep a Close Eye on Your Dog 

Look at your dog frequently to avoid unwanted accidents. Look for signs if it is barking constantly, digging on the ground, or sniffing continuously; you should take him to the potty pad immediately. Even if you don’t see any of those signs, take him to the spot every one or two hours.

Keep Your Dog Confined

Confine your dog within a playpen, a pet gate, or possibly in a single room. Make sure there’s enough space for your dog to walk and play. This can be effective as most dogs avoid eliminating waste where they sleep.

Use a Specific Phrase when Your Dog is Going to the Bathroom

While your dog is eliminating, use phrases like “go potty” or “go pee.” It will eventually remind him of his routine and familiarize him with the indoor spot he is supposed to eliminate.

Praise Your Dog for Using the Potty Pad 

Every time your dog uses the indoor potty pad, praise him in a way so he can realize that he did a good job. You can say “good boy” or give him a belly rub. Your dog will feel appreciated this way.

Don’t Lose Your Temper 

If you catch your dog eliminating somewhere in your home out of the designated place, you should never get tough on him, punish or beat him. Instead of that, you should do something to startle him. Let’s say you clap your hands so he gets a feeling that he is not doing right. Yelling or getting angry will make the situation worse and perish your efforts for his potty training.

Take Him for a Walk Regularly 

Even if you train your older dog for indoor potty training, it doesn’t necessarily mean you don’t have to take him for walks anymore. Your dog needs social interaction, exercise, fresh air, and maintenance to eliminate outside. You can maintain it with your schedule, for example, in the morning.

Frequently Asked Questions 

We noticed that pet owners especially feel anxious when it’s about an older dog and teaching him new things. How to train older dog to use indoor potty, would it be possible, how much time it will take, and so many identical questions.

Q:1 What are Indoor Potty Pads?

A: Dog potty pads are moisture-absorbing pads that offer an absorbent, safe spot for your dog to go potty inside without ruining the floors of your apartment.

Q:2 Can I Potty Train My Dog, who is Older and has Never been Trained to Indoor Potty?

A: Yes, you can! You have to patiently teach your dog the tricks and follow our mentioned strategies. Many pet owners move to a new place and require doing so.

Q:3 How Much Time Will it Take to Potty Train an Older Dog?

A: The time to train a senior dog varies for every dog individually. It depends on factors like health condition, willingness to eliminate under a roof, and whether it previously received potty training. 

However, in most cases, an older dog takes three to six months to get potty trained from scratch. The time can be longer or shorter according to the dog’s condition. As a pet owner, you must be persevering.

Q:4 What Challenges Might I Face to Potty Train My Older Dog?

A: While older dogs tend to have better control of their bladders, some dogs may also tend to pee wherever and whenever they want to. Suppose you adopted an older dog who didn’t receive proper care at an early age. He might have been eliminated anywhere. In such a case, the training for this dog will likely take more time and effort.

Any older dog who spent his young age in acres of fields, open areas, or in a yard will be challenged to teach indoor potty training.

So, the key to successful training is patience and consistency. We encourage pet owners to treat their dogs’ mistakes as they would do with their children.

However, if you encounter serious issues with your dog’s health during potty training, you’re advised to go to a veterinarian.

To learn more about how to train older dog to use indoor potty, email us at info@metopet.com. You may also ask your queries and guidance you require.

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