How to Housetrain a Lab

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    • 1). Establish an area where your Labrador retriever will use the bathroom and take it to the same spot each time you take it outside. That way, it will smell its own urine and feces and be encouraged to go.

    • 2). Come up with a word to use each time the dog is taken out to use the bathroom. For example, say "go potty" several times until the dog goes. Then, reward the dog verbally. Give it a small treat in the beginning, until it begins to grasp the concept.

    • 3). Establish a routine for taking the dog outside. Take it out as soon as it wakes up in the morning or after a nap. Take it outside about 10 minutes or 15 minutes after meals. Watch for signs that the dog needs to go, such as circling, sniffing the ground or appearing as though it is looking for a spot to go. You need to take small puppies out much more often than adult dogs.

    • 4). Pick up the Lab and take it outside immediately when you see it having an accident. Do not scold the dog, spank it or punish it at all. This will only confuse the dog. Simply take it outside and let it finish its business in the appropriate spot.

    • 5). Clean up the mess immediately when the dog has an accident inside. If you do not catch the dog in the act, do not bring it to the mess and show it to the dog, as this would only be confusing. Simply leave the dog alone and clean up the mess completely, removing all odor. If the dog smells its urine or feces in the house, it will be encouraged to go there again.

    • 6). Place the dog inside a crate when you have to leave the home. Dogs are den animals, so they are not likely to use the bathroom inside their crate. This will help the dog learn that it should not use the bathroom inside and should wait until you come home and let it go outside.

    • 7). Maintain consistency with these steps and do not get frustrated with your Labrador retriever. The dog will master the concept eventually.

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