Potty Patch – Not a match…
|February 7, 2012||Posted by woof2069 under How-to guides, Training + Behaviour|
I love the “As Seen on TV” store. I went there just to try out the Slap-Chop, just to see if Vince was right about “slapping my troubles away” (I suppose he thought he could that in Miami…You know what I am talking about).
Today I dragged my friend in to see what’s new and we came across the Potty Patch. This is not new. I’ve seen similar indoor fake grass with a tray to let dogs go indoor at various pet stores and pet shows. While many possible conveniences come to mind, especially these days, cold January winters, the Potty Patch is like nearly all the products in that store – you don’t need it.
I am going to list some of the perceived conveniences that comes to mind and knock them down for you:
My work day is long and this way my dog can go when they need – FALSE
Most grown adult dogs are capable of holding for an 8 to 10 hour period and that is generally enough time for once before work and after work for most people. If your work and commute hours keep you out of the home for more than 12 hours at a time, consider hiring a dog walker – your dog will get their ‘business’ done and get their daily exercise. I imagine by the time you get home from a 12-hr day, a long walk with an over energetic dog (which most are when they haven’t seen you for the whole day), will be pretty low on the list.
My dog keeps going on the carpet, sofa, anywhere in the home! This will give them a place to do their business – FALSE
Another reason listed in their promo video. Why would your dog go on a limited patch of grass when they’ve already made the rest of your house their toilet? If your dog keeps eliminating around the house, having a simulated patch of grass will not solve the problem. This is a behavioural issue that needs to be addressed. Buy specialized pet crap cleaner, a black light, put on some gloves and get to work. Anywhere your dog has gone will now be scent marked as toilet in their minds. Clean, clean, clean and go back to potty training basics. Consult a trainer as well. Some will even do home visits to help set you up for success and create the right environment redirect this behaviour.
If your dog suddenly starts having frequent accidents in the home and you are considering giving this fake grass try, there might be some sort medical reason for these new accidents. Could be an infection in the bladder or urinary track. Check with your vet.
This can help potty train my puppy – FALSE
Eh, use the puppy pads. It is more hygienic and versatile. And do you really want to be washing a tray of pee everyday? It will be, everyday. I can’t imagine anyone wanting to leave a tray of pee out for more than 24 hours.
In their promo video, a lady said “We love Spot, but he is just too hard to train.” I’d say ‘You gave up lady! How’d you potty train that kid of yours sitting right next to Spot?” In truth, a fake patch of grass doesn’t do anything to help. Potty training is not that difficult, just a real pain in the ass (especially if you live in a condo, and I have potty trained a puppy in the dead of winter).
Consult a trainer or some online resources on potty training. When feeding and watering are properly timed, you will be able to predict when your puppy has to ‘go’ as they age. That way, you can make sure your puppy gets out when they need to. Start early, be consistent and diligent in those first few months of puppy-hood, and I guarantee you will have a happy and housebroken puppy in no time.
Here’s a great video by Cesar Millan, the Dog Whisperer, on puppy pad training
Great for winter! Won’t need to go outside? – FALSE!
I absolutely understand! We live in Canada, winter happens. Don’t get me wrong. I hate shoving my feet into the chunky boots and throw on the parka and then brave the cold so my dog can do his business. But it doesn’t have to be that painful.
This is a training issue. It really only sucks for those dogs that need a bit of walk in order to go. When you train your dog to eliminate at a designated area, all you need to do is to take them there. Some owners even train their dogs to go on command (if you want to take this route, pick your command words carefully! Don’t ever want it to pop up in regular conversation). Create a routine of designated go spots and/or command words, and you will shorten your exposure to the cold. Personally, I’d rather put on a parka and pair of boots and brave the cold for 5 mins than to have a tray of pee and a lump of poo on the Potty Patch to clean. Oh dear, a mental image of that tray spilling…gross!
I am sure this product will be of use to some people. It is not absolutely devoid of merits. If you have found this product (or a similar one) to be fantastic and irreplaceable in your life, please do share! The conveniences above are the common reasons people would consider something like this, and I just believe there are better options.