potty training a puppy with a bell

Potty Training a Puppy with a Bell

Potty Training a Puppy with a Bell

If you’re struggling with ideas for how to properly house train your puppy, you might want to think about potty training your puppy with a bell. Teaching your puppy to recognize the ringing of a bell to go outside and do its business is a fantastic trick that anyone can do. 

Most people agree that potty training a puppy with a bell is much better than having your puppy bark at the door or simply loiter at the door while waiting for you to let them out. 

Today, we’re going to teach you how to properly potty train your puppy using a bell by following three easy steps. 

Check out our Havanese Training Guide for 2021

Table Of Contents

How to Potty Train a Puppy with a Bell

Step 1

The first step begins with the bell and your puppy. Place the bell close to your puppy’s nose and when the puppy touches the bell, tell them yes and give them a treat. Be sure to encourage the puppy to touch the bell as enthusiastically as possible. If necessary, hold a treat behind the bell or smear some peanut butter on it. 

Repeat this process until your puppy associates touching the bell with being rewarded. Once your puppy begins to touch the bell automatically when they see it, start adding a word. For example, when the dog touches the bell, say a command. Something like: “bell.”

The last step is to hold the bell farther and farther away, making it so the puppy has to move farther each time to touch it. 

Step 2

Now that your puppy is touching the bell on command, you want to hang the bell from the doorknob on whichever door the dog uses to go outside to the toilet. Continue to encourage the animal to touch the bell using positive reinforcement. When you give the command word, your puppy should automatically go and touch the bell to get their prize. 

Step 3

Step three involves teaching your puppy to ring the bell on its own at the right time. Do this by taking your puppy to the door where the bell is hanging from the knob, say your command, and when the puppy touches the bell, give them instant encouragement and pull the door open. Then take your puppy outside and let them use the toilet. 

By repeating this process over and over again, your puppy will eventually learn that touching the bell results in you opening the door. Whenever your puppy needs to use the bathroom, it will ring the bell instead of barking. 

Extra Steps

One problem that you may encounter while training your puppy is that it might ring the bell just to go outside and play. In this case, you need to teach your puppy that ringing the bell is only for using the toilet. This is actually quite easy to do.

When your puppy rings the bell, clip on their leash and take them to the spot where they’re supposed to use the toilet. If the dog doesn’t use the toilet, take them immediately back inside without any treats or positive reinforcement. But when the puppy does go to the toilet, be sure to offer praise and give a little treat. 

This extra reinforcement will teach your puppy that the bell is only to be rung when it’s time to go potty. 

How Long Does It Take to Bell Train a Puppy?

By following these steps and reinforcing the use of the bell each time your puppy needs to go to the toilet, your puppy will be properly trained in no time. In fact, your puppy will catch on to the system in as little as just two weeks. 

The most important part is that if your dog or puppy begins ringing the bell on their own when you’re not around, you stop whatever you’re doing instantly and go to the puppy. Praise the dog and open the door, even if they don’t have to use the toilet. 

Always respond to your puppy, always practice positive reinforcement and never negative training methods, and within two weeks your puppy will be ringing a bell to use the toilet!

What is the Hardest Dog to Potty Train?

The hardest dog to potty train, depending on who you ask, is either the Jack Russell terrier or the Bichon Frise. Bichon Frise are frequently given up for adoption because of problems with potty training. One of the main issues is that these dogs are very independent and do not enjoy being told what to do, especially not in a negative way. These dogs also don’t like going outside when it’s raining or cold, and they often hide places inside the house to do their business rather than going outside and getting a bit chilly. 

As for Jack Russell dogs, they are some of the most stubborn in the world. The Jack Russell has a difficult time respecting its owners, and if you can’t get your dog to respect you, forget about bell training. You’ll have a hard enough time just getting your Jack Russell to go outside in the first place. 

But no matter what breed of dog you adopt, it is possible to complete potty training and even Bell training. Just keep in mind that you always want to train your puppy as quickly and early as possible. The earlier you train your dog to use the toilet on command, either with a bell or something else, the less chance of your pet developing a negative habit – like peeing on the carpet.

Final Thoughts

Teaching your puppy to ring a bell instead of barking at the door is an excellent way to raise a well-respectable canine. Just remember that during the puppy’s training, you should exercise patience. Puppies have very short attention spans and can only handle short training sessions a couple times a day. 

It’s also important that everyone inside your house follows the same training protocol with the puppy, otherwise it will become confused and much more difficult to train properly. 

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