Beagles are agile hunting dogs that also make great family pets. When you first bring home your beagle puppy one of the first things you will have to do is potty train him. Though many potential dog owners dread the thought of potty training their dogs, it can be a simple process. By using a crate to keep your beagle confined during your absence, you can prevent accidents while teaching your puppy that he is capable of holding his urge to go. If you follow the correct procedure, potty training can take as little as two to six weeks to accomplish.
Select a crate to use in potty training your beagle. The crate should be just large enough to accommodate your beagle's bed, and he should be able to sit, stand up and lie down comfortably in the crate.
Place the crate in an out-of-the-way location that your dog can access easily. Select a location where the crate will not be in the way so you can keep it there for the long term, even after your beagle has been potty trained.
Confine your beagle in the crate overnight and during long absences. Dogs have a natural aversion to soiling their own beds so keeping your beagle in his crate during these times will help to prevent him from having an accident in the house.
Do not put any food or water in the crate with your dog. If you need to leave your dog alone for more than eight hours, have a neighbor or friend come over to let the dog out and to give him some water.
Take your beagle outside as soon as you let him out of the crate and give him an opportunity to do his business. Many dog owners select a certain corner of the yard for their dogs to do their business, which makes clean-up much easier.
Praise your dog when he goes to the bathroom in the desired location and offer him a food reward. By praising your dog he will learn that you are pleased by his behavior and giving him a reward will increase the likelihood that he will repeat the behavior.
Be patient with your beagle during the potty training process. While he is learning to do his business outside, your beagle occasionally may have an accident in the house. Do not punish your dog because he will be unlikely to make the connection between the punishment and the behavior.
Be consistent in offering praise and reward. The more consistent you are in enforcing potty training procedures, the faster your beagle will learn.
Supervise your beagle closely while you are at home as an alternative to the crate training method. This method is best for people who work from home and those who have a schedule flexible enough to allow them plenty of time at home.
Limit your beagle's range in the house so you can keep a close eye on him. Close the doors to bedrooms and use baby gates to confine your dog to whatever room you are in at the time.
Watch your beagle closely for signs that he has to go. Your puppy likely will begin sniffing at the ground, walking in circle when he needs to go to the bathroom. Your beagle will most likely need to go within two hours of having a meal.
Take your beagle outside to the designated potty area as soon as he begins exhibiting signs that he needs to go.
Wait for your dog to do his business then praise him enthusiastically and offer him a food reward.
Take your beagle outside every hour or two and lead him to the potty area to do his business. If he does not have to go, take him back inside after a minute or two and try again later.
- Try incorporating a command phrase, like "go pee," when you take your beagle to the potty area in your backyard. By using this command phrase every time you take your dog to the potty area he will learn to connect the command with the action. Eventually, you will be able to let your dog outside, giving him the command, and he will go to the potty area voluntarily.
- Punishing your dog during training sessions not only could hamper his progress, but it also could result in his developing fear toward you. If your dog doesn't have a positive association with the training sessions and with you, he is unlikely to respond consistently with the desired behavior.
Katherine Barrington has written on a variety of topics, from arts and crafts to pets, health and do-it-yourself projects. She has a Bachelor of Arts in English with a creative writing concentration from Marietta College.