I have a 14 week old Havanese-Maltese puppy that I am trying to potty train. I work 8 hours a day and keep her in a crate when I am at work or sleeping. As soon as I come home/wake up I take her outside to use the bathroom.

She uses the bathroom just fine, the problem is I don't know when to take her out again. I read that I should take her out as soon as she is done eating, but I don't know when after that. Should I take her out every couple of hours? Last night, for example, I took her outside, she peed, and 15 minutes later, she peed in the house without any indication she needed to use the bathroom. I tried using puppy pads, but that didn't work either. When she does use the bathroom in the house, I make sure to take her out directly after (I don't know if that is a good practice or not). Any help will be appreciated.

1 Answer 1


It is hard to know when to take a puppy out to use the bathroom, as they don't have a lot of control over their bladder when they are very young. At one point, my two-month old puppy was going to the bathroom about every half hour, so we let him out frequently when we were home.

From The Kennel Club:

Puppies have very poor bladder control, and need to urinate at least every hour or two. They can urinate spontaneously when they get excited, so take your puppy out frequently if it has been active, playing or exploring.

It is really important that you are taking out the puppy from its crate as soon as you get home, and as soon as you wake up in the morning, as you are doing now.

Eventually as they get older a pattern will develop, and they will also learn to warn you when they do need to go outside (from my personal experience - whining, automatically going to the door, or a combination of the two) to go to the bathroom.

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There is a good Wiki-How article on how to house train your dog, as well as how to properly deal with it when they have accidents inside.

  • 1
    Great article! Thank you for helping me with both of my questions. Commented Apr 29, 2014 at 18:54
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    Good info only things I would add are take them out immediately after playing, they always have to go then and often wait to long to have time to indicate they need to go since they were to busy playing. And normally by 10 to 12 weeks they can sleep through the night without needing to go out. If you are having problems with your puppy waking you up in the night you may have accidentally given it the message that sometimes you will play at night.
    – Beth Lang
    Commented Apr 30, 2014 at 5:30
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    Thanks again Beth. Luckily our puppy sleeps peacefully throughout the night. I will start taking her outside after playing, just so she doesn't have another accident in the house. Commented Apr 30, 2014 at 13:43

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