Answer: Dog urine is powerful stuff, and the smell can linger for years after the dog is gone, enticing any new four-legged family member to use the smelly spot as a “potty spot”.
Use an enzyme based cleaner (we recommend Nature’s Miracle) and follow the directions on the label.
Tip: Do NOT use an ammonia product, or bleach. The smell simulates the smell of urine, and the dog will continue to use that area for a bathroom.
In an ideal housetraining situation, your puppy will never have an accident, because he’ll never be unsupervised in the house, unless he’s in his crate or ex-pen. And, in this ideal world, your schedule is such that your puppy never has to be alone in the house long enough that he has to eliminate inside, in his long-term confinement area. However, this is not an ideal world, and accidents do happen, so you need to know how to handle them.
It’s No Big Deal
If you find a mess in the house and you haven’t observed it taking place, don’t say a word about it. It does you no good to reprimand your puppy after the fact. Don’t take your poodle to the spot or tell him how bad he is. Instead, silently clean it up.
If you catch your pup in the act, calmly and gently scoop him up, hustle him outside to the potty spot and put him down. With any luck, he’ll finish the job there and you can give him a reward and bring him back in the house to play or chew or nap. If the interruption makes him forget that he had to go, just bring him inside and put him in his crate. Twenty minutes later, take him outside and try again.
Don’t be harsh with your dog if you catch her in the act of eliminating in an inappropriate spot. If you are, she’ll do everything in her power not to eliminate in front of you. You don’t want her sneaking away and urinating in a hidden spot!
The Big Cleanup
When you discover an indoor accident spot, you have to clean it up and clean it up well. Dogs are drawn to urinate in the same spot over and over. So it’s essential that you get rid of the faintest smell of urine.
The challenge lies in the fact that your dog’s nose is much more sensitive than yours. So even if you can’t smell urine, unless you completely eliminate the odor, your pup will probably be able to smell it.
To prevent your poodle from creating an indoor toilet area of his own, use a product designed for pet urine and feces that uses enzymes to completely eliminate the smell. Just deodorizing doesn’t do the trick. Remember, the goal is to eliminate, not mask, the odor. Don’t use ammonia to clean up after your dog, either. Urine actually has a slight ammonia odor, so using ammonia will actually encourage your dog to use the spot again. Liquid products like Petastic (formerly called Nature’s Miracle) and Simple Solution, as well as a powder you mix with water called Odor Mute, have been on the market for years and stood the test of time. Be sure to keep plenty of odor eliminator (and paper towels) on hand.
Using a paper towel, clean up the mess. Then use the odor-eliminating product, following the label directions. If your pup has gone on a rug or carpet (which they seem to be fond of doing), be sure to soak the carpet with the solution, following the directions on the product’s label.
If you’re not sure whether an area is clean, a black light will illuminate any urine spots you’ve missed. Pet-supply stores sell lights specifically for this purpose, but any black light will do.
Some people schedule vacation time around their puppy’s arrival. If you can do that, keeping your pooch on a strict feeding and eliminating schedule, you can probably instill the housetraining ethic in a couple of weeks. However, it’d be best to keep that schedule up when you go back to work, hiring someone to come in during the day, if necessary.