How to Housebreak a Dog When it is Stubborn

stubborn_dogLearning how to house break a dog is fairly simple for most people, once they have grasped the essentials of the process. For some pet owners, however, the process can be a nightmarishly frustrating clash of wills between the human and canine minds. Though there are a large number of dog breeds that are easy to train because of their natural desire to keep their living area clean and please their human companions, there are other dogs that can prove to be extremely difficult to house train. In general, any dog can be housetrained – with these stubborn breeds however, it will take more time and effort – and a firm commitment on your part to see the job through to its conclusion.

Among the breeds of dogs that prove the most difficult to housetrain are Pointers, Sight and Scent Hounds, Terriers, and Setters. Various Toy breeds and late maturing breeds can often be difficult as well. The key to learning how to house break a dog when it is stubborn or has special needs lies in understanding the characteristics of the breed and why it requires a modified approach.

Pointers and Setters, along with Sight and Scent Hounds, can all be difficult breeds to housetrain. In general, they all share a “hunting dog” status that leaves them prone to certain behaviors that are often at odds with the focus needed for a smooth house training regimen. Their one-track minds often cause them to forget all about eliminating their waste, as they catch a scent or sight of something else that distracts them from the task at hand.

Beagles, Dachshunds, Whippets, Wolfhounds, English Setters, and many others are all subject to these distractions. Some, like the Greyhound, are likely to chase after the first thing they see – whether it be a squirrel, cat, or car. For this reason, fenced in backyards are important to help these dogs focus. Where fences are not available, you should always keep these breeds on a leash to prevent running.

Knowing how to housebreak a dog when it is stubborn is an important skill to have, particularly when dealing with breeds like the terrier family. Independent, territorial, and willful to the core, these dogs will test your patience while housetraining, as their clever little minds will test your resolve continually. A good sound fence that is absolutely secure at the bottom is important with terriers, as they will roam from the yard in an attempt to expand their territory. They are also prone to marking, which can make learning how to housebreak this dog difficult at best.

The main problem that most owners have with the Toy Breeds has to do with their size – as you might expect. The two main difficulties in learning how to housebreak a dog of this kind have to do with their size and your reaction to it. Many people who own small dogs treat them as though they are babies, which can in fact inhibit their maturation. These dogs also need to be provided a place where they feel safe if you expect them to relieve themselves on command.

Finally, there are a number of late maturing breeds that often take several years to fully learn to control their bathroom habits. These dogs include Great Danes, Mastiffs, and some Wolfhounds. You have to have patience to learn how to house break a dog when it is stubborn or a slow learner, but they – like every other dog – will eventually learn this most basic of training requirements.


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