I just welcomed my new Australian Shepherd puppy home, and while I am very excited about having her, I am also a little nervous about potty training her, how long it will take, and how to teach her are my interest.
Earlier today, while she was napping, I decided I would have a look and see what I find; here it is.
How Long Does It Take To Potty Train An Australian Shepherd?
It can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks or months to potty train your Australian Shepherd puppy. How long it takes to potty train an Australian Shepherd depends mainly on their environment, how consistent their pet parent is, and how quickly they learn.
Puppies have lots to learn right away, from socializing to chewing control, potty training to bite control, each puppy will go through at their own pace regardless of what breed they are. Some puppies may learn faster and pick up the idea quicker than others, and some may struggle; each is normal.
Australian Shepherds have a high level of intelligence, are eager to please, and were bred for work. This natural gives them the right mindset for performing various tasks and learning, which can make this process simpler and easier for the pet parent.
You may also find that your female Aussie is easier to train than your male. While this may not always be the case, females generally are easier to train than males.
Regardless, all dogs are not the same, and some within this breed may struggle or take a bit longer. The most critical factor in successful potty training is consistency.
If the pet parent isn’t consistent with any aspect of the potty-training process, it can be delayed; therefore, having a set schedule and sticking to it is essential. Setbacks and accidents are expected as the puppy learns what is expected of them and where they are meant to do their business, so pet parents should be loving and kind.
How long it takes to potty train an Australian Shepherd can vary from a few days to a few weeks or even months. Many things figure into the success of this training and how quickly it is accomplished.
Even still, setbacks will come in the form of accidents that pet parents should be prepared for, showing empathy and understanding and never abuse or mistreatment.
Harsh treatments during this or any training process can delay the process itself and make success harder to achieve, but they also affect the puppy’s overall health and well-being. On top of that, harsh treatments are shown to affect the connection and bond a pet shares with its loving pet parents.
Consistency is the most critical factor to success in any training. Being consistent in the methods used and the timing and schedule ensure that the puppy learns where to go to the bathroom and how to send cues to their loved ones when they have to go.
Pet parents should also be perceptive at this time of training and learn their puppy’s cues not to miss a moment and erroneously cause an accident to happen. This is why the pet parents must be ready for this process when the time comes.
Being at home during this time, limiting disruptions or distractions, and setting up the home environment for success can make or break this process, not to mention limit frustrations that may come.
Australian Shepherds are not all the same. While they boast a high level of intelligence and are a working, sporty dog that is eager to please, there are some who might still struggle.
Should this be the case with your Australian Shepherd, patience, understanding, and persistence make this milestone in your puppy’s life easier to achieve.
How Do I Potty Train My Australian Shepherd Puppy?
The first step in potty training your Australian Shepherd puppy is to make sure that the time is right. The younger the puppy, the harder it may be to potty train them or keep them potty trained without a few accidents here and there.
When your puppy is very young, they don’t have reasonable muscle control, which doesn’t come until months later. They also have a small but growing bladder that they cannot hold for very long.
This combination can make it hard for very young puppies to succeed, which is not their fault. Don’t have too high of expectations before they are 9 weeks old. You should be able to potty train your Aussie before they blow their puppy coat though.
Whatever time you begin training your puppy, it can be helpful to use a dog crate that will prevent them from going to the bathroom at night. This is an excellent way to begin the process without much fuss on anyone’s part because they will not go to the bathroom where they sleep if the crate is the right size.
So their crate should be big enough for them to lay down, sleep, stand, turn, and such but not leave room for them to have a spot to go to the bathroom.
Before bedtime, a ritual should be created, one that the puppy can quickly learn through the use of treats, praise, and a loving hand.
Perhaps the ritual will go like this…
Before bed, they get some playtime with mom or dad. After that, they get a few treats and some loving pets and holding. After that, it is time for them to go outside for a bathroom break. This time outdoors is for nothing else, no play, no social time, nothing.
Once they have done their business, perhaps another treat and loving pat can be given, followed by them going to their crate for rest time.
Pet parents should be prepared for their puppy waking them because they have to go to the bathroom and won’t use their crate. They might cry, or they might whimper or whine.
Whatever they do, when they do it, it is time to take them outside. This will likely happen a couple of times per night.
When they come inside, they should be returned to their crate, no fuss, after a treat and some loving praise, of course. It can be helpful to cover the crate as puppies will have less trouble sleeping if they can’t see their pet parents or home environment.
During the day, there can be a few ways potty training can be accomplished, and no one way is suitable for everyone or every situation.
Some pet parents might opt to use the pee pad method; many report either loving or hating it. This method can work for pet parents who can’t be at home often enough for their dog to use the bathroom.
This method would teach them that there is a proper place to go to the bathroom inside the house if you must. But coincidently, your Australian Shepherd won’t know that this is only in emergencies.
It can, however, be used in the early phase of a puppy’s life, and then later on when they are older, they can relearn to use the outdoors all the time when they can hold their bladder longer.
Having a schedule is a suitable method for during the day. This schedule should be consistent and take into account exercise, diet, sleep, and potty breaks.
As a guide up to a year of life, puppies can hold their bladder for their age in months, an example being an eight-month-old puppy could hold its bladder for eight hours.
Reasonably speaking, though, it can still be difficult for that to happen. Look at us humans and how often we find we need to go to the bathroom sometimes.
Everyone and their situation are different from day to day, even Australian Shepherd dogs.
In the beginning, when first making the schedule, it can be helpful to watch your puppy and see how things go. Begin by taking them out right away in the morning when they come out of the crate.
After that, they might have some breakfast and spend some time playing and snuggling. Then at this point, they might go outside to use the bathroom again.
It might be nap time, and they go to sleep for a bit, then they might wake, and you should take them out to the bathroom again, followed by a treat or two and some playtime or training, whatever fits into the day.
They should be taken out numerous times throughout their day, usually after eating a big meal (not treats), after they wake from a nap after they have played quite a bit, and of course upon waking and then before bedtime.
The schedule should be consistent and workable for the pet parent doing this training. It will be as unique as the individual situation, and there is no right or wrong way to go about it.
During the first few days of training, while the pet parent is learning about their puppy and his or her bathroom habits, things may need to be adjusted as they watch for cues for a need to use the bathroom.
Whatever method is chosen, success will happen provided the schedule is consistent, and there is time, patience, and understanding.
Australian Shepherd Potty Training
While potty training can be a stressful process, it doesn’t have to be that way.
Having a consistent schedule and being patient but persistent can bring success sooner rather than later for the Australian Shepherd puppy and pet parent.
Whatever method is chosen, consistency is the key to success, that and a few well-placed treats, of course!