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Housebreaking your puppy can prove quite a challenge if your dog eats her training pads. More than once while cleaning up shredded pee pad and yellow puddles, you've probably wondered if there is an easier way. Good news - there is! There are several things you can do to make torn pee pads a distant memory and get your sweet puppy on an easier potty training path.
A pee pad holder
Half the pee pad battle involves locking the pad in place so your puppy can't easily move or chew it. Some brands of pee pads have accompanying plastic trays or holders to keep them secure and make them more difficult to rip apart. This Puppy Pan is like a low-sided litter box, with low sides for small legs. No mess on the floor with this one, as any liquid not immediately absorbed by the pee pad stays in the pan. The Frisco Training Pad Holder is a simpler, more minimal design that is like a frame to hold the pad. It is elevated off the floor and made non-skid by rubber feet. Clips on the edges of the frame hold the pads in place. Even more minimalist is the All-Absorb Silicone Training Pad Holder. This one sits on the floor and is just an easy-to-clean, simple tray that's the perfect size for a pee pad.
Others, such as the Bulldogology Premium Puppy Pee Pads come with adhesive strips on the bottom to keep them secured in place. If your pads aren't that fancy, grab some double-sided tape and make your own adhesive strips.
Consider going green
If your puppy keeps ripping up pee pads, try using cloth ones rather than disposables. Cloth pads are very absorbent and difficult to shred. As long as you're doing laundry anyway, these use-and-wash pee pads such as Green Lifestyle's Washable Underpads have a waterproof backing and are reinforced to be machine washed again and again.
There are also litter boxes designed specifically for dogs, like the Blyss Pets Klean Paws Indoor Dog Potty. Similar in design to the boxes that hold the pee pads, this one instead holds a plastic grate that sits above a litter pan. Liquid falls through the grate and gets trapped below, keeping both your floor and your puppy's paws clean and dry. Synthetic or real grass mats can also serve for indoor potty training. These reusable pad alternatives produce less waste and are better for the environment, which is a bonus.
Keep it positive
If your puppy has an accident or rips apart a pee pad that she went to the bathroom on, don't punish her when you find it. Simply lay out a new fresh pad and offer her a chance to go on this one. It's important that you keep your cool. Yelling at your dog and chastising her will only teach her that she should toilet when you're not around and it's safe to do so.
After sweeping up the shredded pee pad, clean any soiled areas with an enzyme-based cleaner such as Nature's Miracle, following the label instructions carefully. It is critical to neutralize the scent of your puppy's waste so he doesn't relieve himself in the same spot again.
Your puppy could be bored
It's important to note that chewing, shredding, and ripping behaviors sometimes stem from boredom. Make sure your pup has lots of interesting toys to play with and ways to stay busy when you can't entertain her. Give her lots of exercise, too. A tired puppy is a well-behaved puppy.
Don't be bitter
Taste deterrents such as bitter apple sprays and hot sauce do an excellent job of keeping puppies away, which is why you should never use them on pee pads. Your goal is to teach your puppy to stop shredding his pee pads -- you don't want him to avoid them altogether. Using products like these will send your puppy mixed messages and make the training process more confusing.
Pee pads for dogs
Pee pads aren't just a good fit for puppies; they can be useful for dogs as well. Older, sick, or disabled dogs may benefit from pee pads as well as dogs who live in apartments, get left alone for long periods, or can't go out due to harsh weather conditions.
You can prevent your puppy from shredding their pee pads by following a few tips and have them using it. Your pup can save the ripping and tearing for squeaky toys and stuffed animals.