Tips To Potty Training Your Puppy In The Winter

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I’ve had many people ask me how long it takes to potty train a puppy, and I always give them the same answer: it depends. There are a lot of factors that go into puppy potty training success, including your puppy’s age, breed, and matter of preference.

That said, there are some general tips and tricks that can help make potty training puppies in the winter go smoothly.

How Long Does It Take to Potty Train a Puppy?

dog snow winter

The answer to this question depends on several factors, including the age of your puppy, the breed of your puppy, and how much time you will spend training your puppy. Generally, it takes anywhere from a few weeks to a few months to fully potty train a puppy. However, if you live in a colder weather climate that has lots of inclement weather, there are a few additional things you need to take into consideration.

For starters, puppies don’t enjoy going outside in the cold weather any more than we do. This means that you’ll need to be extra patient when potty training your puppy in the winter months. You’ll also need to be mindful of your puppy’s body language. If your puppy sniffs around or circles, that’s usually a good sign that he needs to go outside to relieve himself.

Another thing to keep in mind is that puppies have small bladders and can only hold their urine for so long before they need to go. This means that you’ll need to take your puppy out more often during the winter months than you would during the summer months. I like to set a timer for every two hours as a reminder to take my puppy out for potty time.

Tips to Potty Train Your Puppy

Winter and extreme weather can make potty training more challenging, but there are a few things you can do to make it easier on both you and your pup during even the worst weather conditions.

Take your puppy out frequently

Jack Russell Terrier puppy in winter

This one might seem obvious, but it’s important to take your puppy out often—even if it means braving the cold for a few minutes. Puppies have small bladders and can’t hold their pee for very long, so it’s important to give them frequent opportunities to go outside. If possible, take them out every hour.

Dress them warmly

Another obvious tip, but an important one. When taking your puppy out in the cold, make sure they’re bundled up in a warm coat or sweater. This will make your puppy comfortable—and more likely to actually do their business!

Use positive reinforcement

Whenever your puppy pees outside, give them lots of praise and treats. This positive reinforcement will help teach them that going potty outside is a good thing—and something they should continue doing.

Be patient

Potty training takes time and patience—two things that might be in short supply during the winter months! But try to be patient with your pup, and don’t get too discouraged if they have an accident inside. They’ll get there, eventually!

Get your puppy used to the cold slowly

Dog Puppy Winter Snow

If your puppy isn’t used to being in the cold, it’s important to slowly get them acclimated. Start by taking them outside for short periods of time and escalate the time they spend outdoors. This will help them get used to the temperature change and make potty training in the cold much easier.

Put them on a leash

When potty training a puppy in the winter, it’s important to put them on a leash, so they don’t wander off and get lost in the snow. A leash will also help you keep track of them and make sure they’re doing their business where you want them to.

Give them plenty of time to pee

When it’s cold outside, puppies need more time to pee. So be patient and give them plenty of time to do their business. If you rush them, they may not have enough time to go, and you’ll just end up having to take them out again later.

Reward them for going outside

Puppies love rewards, so be sure to give your pup a treat or some extra attention when they go potty outside. This will help reinforce good behavior and make potty training in the winter much easier.

FAQs

Is it hard to potty train a puppy in the winter?

A Puppy in Winter

No! It’s easy to potty train a puppy in the winter. In fact, it can be easier because there are fewer distractions and more opportunities for you to be inside with your pup to watch for cues that they need to go outside. However, there are a few things you need to keep in mind, such as making sure your pup has a warm place to sleep and access to fresh water at all times.

Do puppies not pee in the cold?

Puppies will still pee in the cold weather, but they may not want to stay outside for long periods of time. Therefore, it’s important to take your pup out frequently so they can get used to going in the snow. You may also want to consider getting a potty pad for the inside so your pup has a place to go if they don’t want to go outside in the cold.

At what month should a puppy be potty trained?

Most puppies can start being potty trained immediately, but this can vary depending on the individual puppy. Some may be ready earlier or later than others.

How do I get my puppy to pee in the snow?

Adorable puppy playing with ball

The best way to get your puppy to pee in the snow is by taking them out frequently and rewarding them with treats or praise when they go. It may also help to put their favorite toy or something else they really want outside, so they have the incentive to go there.

How long should you wait outside for your puppy to pee?

You should wait outside with your puppy until they go, but this can vary depending on how long they take. Some puppies will go right away, while others may take longer. If your pup isn’t going after a few minutes, try taking them for a walk or playing with them so they’ll have the urge to go.

Conclusion

Potty training a puppy is never easy, but it can be especially challenging in the winter months. From dealing with frigid temperatures to contending with icy conditions, there are a lot of things that can make potty training difficult during this time of year. But by following my tips, you can make it through potty training your pup—and come out victorious on the other side!

What do you think about potty training a puppy in the winter? Have you done it before? What are some tips you have? We’d love to hear them!

Meet our writer

Karen is a former pet business owner with 17+ years of experience in training and taking care of pets. She currently owns three dogs (a greyhound, saluki, and golden mix) and has gone through several types of programs to further her education in the pet world.

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