The blue heeler is an intelligent, loyal breed of dog. But like any other type of dog, you need to make sure that it is housebroken before you bring it home. The last thing that anyone wants to deal with is accidents left and right.
The good news is that training and housebreaking a blue heeler is relatively easy. Before long, you can have the peace of mind of knowing that your blue heeler won’t have accidents in your home unless it is a truly exceptional circumstance.
How to Housebreak a Blue Heeler?
The good news is that you can train your blue heeler quite easily. If that weren’t enough, there are multiple methods in which you can train your blue heeler, particularly as a puppy. The key, regardless of what method you choose, is consistency and persistence.
You will have to be diligent in taking them out. Start first thing in the morning, and continue doing so after meals, before naps, before you play, and right before bed. Before long, you will have your dog properly housebroken.
Perhaps the easiest and most consistently used method on how to housebreak a blue heeler is known as the “every hour” method. It is quite simple and centers around both consistency and positive reinforcement.
Once an hour, make sure that you take your blue heeler outside to the chosen potty spot. When you notice that they are about to do their business, make sure to use the keyword. It can be something simple; “potty” is usually fine.
When they actually do their business, make sure that you both praise and reward them. Blue heelers, in particular, do quite well with positive reinforcement. Yelling or scolding can lead to them becoming nervous or scared, and it won’t have the same results.
Should your puppy not do its business after 10 or 15 minutes, you can return back to the house and try again later. Just be sure to keep a watchful eye on your pup. There are signs—circling, sniffing, crying—that it has to go. When it shows these signs, make sure to take the puppy out right away. It takes a little bit of time and persistence, but this is one of the most proven methods there is.
Right up there with the “every hour” method is the crate method. Some people don’t like the idea of crating, feeling that it confines the dog to a small space. Keep in mind that the crate can be a welcome space for your pup, a safe haven when it wants to rest, hide, or get away from it all.
One of the biggest issues with the “every hour” method is leaving your dog unattended. Even if you are stringently looking after them, they can slip away and have an accident. It can add a layer of frustration to the potty training method.
This is where the crating method comes into the equation. When your puppy gets the taste of freedom, it can be more difficult to reign it in. Just make sure that you have a crate that is of the appropriate size for your dog. You don’t want to give your puppy its own apartment, but it should be big enough for the pup to turn around comfortably.
Start out by introducing the puppy to the crate. You want it to become familiar with it and take solace in going into the crate. From there, make sure that it goes into the crate when you aren’t able to keep an eye on it.
When you let your puppy out, take it to the designated potty spot, even if it has only been there a few minutes. Make sure that you use a cue word to let it know what it is doing, and be sure to praise the puppy when it does its business. Treats are definitely recommended.
Try to do this in 10–15 minute intervals, heading back into the house if the puppy doesn’t do its business. Keep this up for a little while, and you should see that the puppy goes regularly.
The Potty Spray
The final method is for the blue heeler that struggles going in a designated spot. This is where the potty training spray would be optimal, encouraging your heeler to go in a specific area. Just make sure that you know where that spot is and get them familiar with it.
As with the other training methods, if the puppy doesn’t go within 10–15 minutes, take it back inside and try again later. Praise and rewards are a must to get the pup familiar with the positive response when it does as it is supposed to. Repeat until the puppy shows consistency in going in its designated potty spot.
If you are wondering how to housebreak a blue heeler, the good news is that there are a few methods proven to work. You can choose the one that makes the most sense for you and ensure that you are consistent with it.
Before long, you can have the peace of mind of knowing that your blue heeler has been properly housebroken. You can then move on to other aspects of training to ensure that your blue heeler is the best listener possible.