Housebreaking any chow chow—puppy or adult—requires diligence, consistency and patience. While some dogs learn quickly, others may require a longer training period before they catch on. But getting your chow on a schedule and staying vigilant makes the process easier for both of you.
Create a space for your chow chow, such as a crate or small area confined by a dog gate. Choose an area with waterproof flooring, such as the kitchen or bathroom. The area must not be so large that he will automatically want to use part of it as his bathroom; the idea is to make it unpleasant if he has an accident in his living space. Dogs have a natural aversion to soiling where they sleep. This is where he will stay when he is not playing or being directly supervised by you during his training.
Place several layers or a small stack of newspapers in one spot in his space in the event that he does have an accident; the newspapers can absorb moisture and protect the floor or bottom of the crate. However, avoid training him to use the newspapers, as this will be easier for him than going outside.
Have the chow chow go outside every morning to a specified area to get into the habit of his morning potty break. If your dog is a puppy, carry him outside so he does not have an accident on the floor as he is walking.
Take the chow chow outside to the bathroom area every two hours during the daytime and wait until he goes. Praise him lavishly for doing so; a treat can also be given to reinforce his behavior. If you are working and unable to be home, it may be beneficial to have a neighbor or friend let the chow out for potty breaks.
Feed the chow chow in his crate and allow him to stay in it for half an hour before taking him outside to use his bathroom area.
Pick the chow chow puppy up if he begins to urinate on the floor, loudly say a firm "No," and take him outside to the designated area to finish going to the bathroom. For an older chow chow, pull him outside by his collar while saying "No," even as he is eliminating. This catches him in the act and allows him to understand the correlation between his action, your reprimand, and where he is supposed to go.
Allow the chow chow to go to the bathroom at night if he begins to cry or whine. This teaches him how to get your attention if he has a need to go off schedule, and also avoids accidents inside, which can then become habit.
Be consistent in your scheduled potty breaks, and in your praise. Consistency is the key to housebreaking your chow chow.
- Chow puppies under three months are unable to sense a need to go to the bathroom until the moment it occurs; while training can begin this early, they will more than likely have numerous accidents. Really you have to train yourself to be patient and consistent.
- Do not allow your chow chow run of the house until he is completely potty-trained.
Lori Lapierre holds a Bachelor of Arts and Science in public relations/communications. For 17 years, she worked for a Fortune 500 company before purchasing a business and starting a family. She is a regular freelancer for "Living Light News," an award-winning national publication. Her past writing experience includes school news reporting, church drama, in-house business articles and a self-published mystery, "Duty Free Murder."