Potty training a puppy is already a challenge and this weather. The icing on the cake. We recommend not to start the training during this time of the year. (it’s better to not even get a puppy when bad weather is around the corner) Potty training a puppy in bad weather is doable; you have many options for different dog breeds in different scenarios. Let’s discuss.
Problems Arising While Potty Training A Puppy In Bad Weather
When the sky is becoming harsh, many problems arise while potty training your puppy and even if he is completely trained to go outside, he might get regressed and give you a hard time.
(Read more about puppy potty training regression; and how to deal with it).
Here are some of the most common problems:
1- Dog doesn’t want to go
Your puppy/dog might not want to go outside to relieve himself. Of course! He doesn’t like the bad weather.
– Negative associations
He must have had a bad feeling when being outside. He might have felt cold or wet. So he associates the bad weather with something negative. Or you have yelled at him for not going outside?
– You presented weather as a bad thing
How do you feel about the weather? Do you model it as a bad thing?
– You started yelling
You’re standing with him and feeling cold. You started shouting; “do it faster! Man!’ As we said, yelling can make things even worse. It is another form of negative association.
– You don’t let him go outside and play in bad weather
He is only expected to go out when he needs to potty. You are not taking him for walks and not letting him play outside.
2- Puppy’s feet freeze
If it’s too cold or snowy! His feet might be freezing and if he has arthritis or any condition; he might feel pain.
Related article: It’s too cold for a puppy to pee outside, (how to manage the things?)
3- Potty spot covered with the snow or water
Where he goes to relieve himself; a bunch of snow or water due to rain is covering the area.
4- Dog becomes anxious because of thunder sounds
If it’s the season of a thunderstorm; the sound of thunder might put your dog in anxiety and he might get regressed.
We have discussed it in detail in this article.
Tips To Potty Train Your Puppy During Bad Weather:
Here are some tips to help you keep your doggy on track while the weather is not a friend.
– Create A Shelter
If that is possible for you, creating a small shelter right next to the exit door is the best option. Try to keep it covered to save it from snow or water etc.
– Make him wear warm clothes or rainy jackets
There are doggy sweaters and doggy raincoats available. You can get a sweater if it’s too cold or snow or a raincoat if it’s rainy.
(These supplies are listed below)
– Buy dog booties
Dog booties are a great way to save your dog’s paws from being cold.
– Use socks on his feet and tie a rubber band when it’s cold
As an alternative to dog booties; if it’s too cold outside, you can put socks on his paws and tie them with a rubber band or pony.
– Be with him
When he is outside to relieve himself; make sure to be with him. It will make him brave. He will do a better job when a human friend is with him. So have your sweater or raincoat ready.
– Remind him
When he is doing the deed; remind him with your specific cue to completely relieve himself.
He might be in a hurry and goes back home without emptying his bladder.
After a few minutes, he will ask you again and an accident might happen too.
– Reward him
If your puppy is fully potty trained; and you are no longer providing him with treats or rewards, you must do it now.
When he does the deed outside in the harsh weather, it’s good to give him a treat and praise. It will help him to keep up with the encouragement.
If nothing mentioned above is not enough for you; here are some other options you can choose from. Especially if you are okay with letting him use the bathroom in the home.
– Set up a bathroom for him indoor
You can set up a toilet for your dog in the home.
1- Use a dog house and place it on a “not so busy” corner of the home.
2- Place a grass pee pad with a tray in it and train your dog to go potty in it.
3- Use the basic method to train him. Here’s the complete guide to house train your dog.
4- Later on, when the weather becomes fine, you can shift the shelter outdoors and train him again to go on the grass.
– Set up an area in the balcony
You can set up a similar bathroom for your dog on the balcony. Or simply use pee pads and train him to go there.
– Use puppy potty pads
If you live in an area where the weather is always angry. You can choose to use puppy pee pads to potty train him.
Here’s the method you can use to potty train him using pads.
– Don’t change the routine to adjust with weather
Some people recommend changing the routine like feeding the dog when the weather is fine.
But we recommend keeping up with the routine otherwise the dog (or you) might get confused and it may also cause the “puppy potty training regression.”
– Be patient – don’t be harsh on him
Yes! It might be hard when you have to go outside with him, but remember that you will have to stay patient otherwise your dog might get frightened of you. Of course! He doesn’t understand why you are yelling at him.
Here’s how you can stay patient with your animal.
This post contains affiliate links, read our full disclosure here.
Here are some tools and supplies you’d love to use during the bad weather:
Following is a list of supplies you can use additionally to deal with the housebreaking of your dog when the weather is bad.
1- Dog House:
A dog house can be turned into a dog toilet, whether it’s indoor or outdoor.
In harsh weather, you can set up an indoor toilet for your dog.
Just place it in a corner, where no one spends most of the time, put in some grass pads (grass pads are especially helpful when your dog is used to pee outside, on the grass), and train the puppy to go there.
You must be able to understand his schedule and the cues he shows before going to the potty, and if he tells you, that’s even better. Just take him to the dog’s house when he needs to go. Yes! this is some responsibility but it’s better as compared to taking your dog outside.
If you are already using a dog house; make sure the one you choose for the toilet, is different. So the dog doesn’t get confused.
Check out this Starplast Dog House Kennel:
It’s very easy to assemble, durable, and has a system of proper ventilation.
It should be a good choice for dogs of all sizes. Enough space to place some grass pee pads.
You can place this dog house outside as a shelter too. This means you can set up an outdoor toilet for your animal, too. It’s just your choice.
2- Grass Pads:
You will need some grass pads to place inside the house.
There are some that come with trays and replacement pads. Just make sure your puppy knows that it’s not a toy. Neither does it is for taking a nap.
Always clean these grass pads with suitable enzyme cleaner! (Here’s the one that suits artificial grass)
Check out PETMAKER Artificial Grass Puppy Pad.
Get this portable grass puppy pad. Some people place a disposable pad on the tray before placing the grass pad, just for the ease of cleaning.
We highly recommend using something like this, because of the fact that the dog will stay comfortable in relieving himself on grass and you will not face any problem while you are outside.
3- Dog Sweater:
A really helpful tool when it’s too cold and your dog is of a breed that really feels cold.
Check this Jecikelon Pet Dog Sweater.
it’s made up of woolen, it’s easy to wash and dry.
It’s not suitable for large dogs, for them try these hoodies on Amazon.
It is available in many colors.
4- Dog Rain Coat:
A great supply for the rainy season. check this nacoco dog raincoat:
Made up of professional material; this raincoat will help your dog to stay dry.
there are elastic leg straps and an adjustable belly strap for secure & comfortable fitting.
This one is for large dogs. For smaller breeds, try this one.
This raincoat is available in many colors.
5- Dog Booties:
When your dog doesn’t really like cold paws; you can get him some booties to stay comfortable during harsh weather.
Here are QUMY Dog Boots Waterproof Shoes:
Many people love these because of their great features.
It’s secure and adjustable. provides stability & traction.
They have rugged soles.
Here’s the complete list of supplies you will need to potty train your puppy.