So we picked out our labradoodle this past Sunday and brought him home. Things have been ok - a few accidents that were our fault for not paying attention and because we still haven't figured out his schedule. He seems to take almost an hour or so to poop after eating. And I learned this morning that he doesn't like to pee on wet grass (any tips on how to break that?). But onto my real question....
How do you train pups to use a potty pad and is it possible to train them to only use the pad when he's confined because no one is home?
Situation: I work out of the house. I'm gone about 12 hours a day. My DH is a full-time firefighter so he's on a 24 hour shift every 3rd day. So he's home two days at a time. We have a nanny (basically a babysitter) who comes the mornings DH goes on shift and the mornings DH comes off shift to get the kids ready and off to school. (sucky train schedules issues preclude me from being the one to get them to school those mornings) So at the most, 2 days a week Cody will be left for about 10 hours. We have looked into a dog walker and right now, its not in the budget. We do make sure Cody gets out to play in the morning and in the evening during the week (and the days DH is home he gets lots of time to play). Now, yesterday was the first time we had to leave Cody alone and I cut my workday short to go home and see how he did. He was alone for a little over 6 hours. My DH had instructed the nanny to put Cody's crate in the kitchen, but leave the door open so he could get to his water dish and whatnot. The kitchen was gated off from the rest of the house. I came home to two puddles and some poo. Cody seemed fine, but the mess was everywhere.
So how do we go about teaching him to pee and poo on a potty pad? We only want him to use the pad when he's penned for the day.
I don't think its fair to expect him to hold it all day in a crate for 10+ hours, but I can't keep cutting my workdays short either. Friday is coming soon and though I could leave early if need be, I really shouldn't if I can help it.
I realize training will take time, but I'm stumped as how to even begin since we'll be teaching him to go outside when we're home. I don't want to confuse him.
Cody is 7 weeks and 5 days today. (we thought he was 8 weeks when we got him, but that's what we get for not looking at a calendar and the breeder never said anything) He's healthy according the his vet check - 13# 6.5 oz and looks good. He is being treated for worms of some sort for the next 3 weeks, but we hear that's common.