House training a Siberian husky is easiest if using a crate. Trainers should recognise two things about the breed. 1) Husky dogs have been bred and trained to be responsive to people. They respond well to verbal praise. 2) Huskies are very athletic, active dogs and should be well exercised.
How it Works
Crate training gives the dog a den-like place to call home. This is a safe place where the dog only has positive associations. The dog's natural instincts is to keep its den clean. Most dogs will hate to eliminate in their crate.
A wire crate will allow more ventilation for double-coated huskies. It should be large enough for the dog to stand up and turn around in. If you buy a larger crate you will need a divider that can be removed as the dog grows. Do not leave a collar on an unsupervised dog while he is in a crate. A flat buckle collar and a 4- to 6-foot leash are the best choices for teaching the puppy.
Getting Used to the Crate
Encourage him to go in by himself. Toss some treats in and praise him if he retrieves them. Only shut the door when he is comfortable in the crate. Do this briefly, and slowly extend the periods the door is shut. If he is acting up in the crate, wait until he is quiet, then open the door. The crate should be placed in a central location. He will be happiest if he can watch the family without feeling isolated.
Dogs hold their bladder for roughly one hour for every month of life, but this is just a guideline. You should start by taking your dog out at thirty minute to one hour intervals and adjusting as he gains control.
Take your dog out first thing in the morning, after every meal, before bed and at least every hour in between. Put him on a leash and take him to a dedicated potty spot. Give the "go potty" command. If he does not eliminate, or is playing, take him back to his crate and try again in a few minutes. When he goes praise heartily.
When you are not taking him to his potty spot, he should be in his crate, getting exercise or tethered to you.
Feed his last meal early in the evening and put him to bed after he has eliminated.
If your dog is holding his bladder for several hours at a time, recognises and eliminates in his potty place, and is "asking" you to go outside, you are well on your way to having a house trained dog. Allow him more freedom but don't stop everything you have been doing. If he has an accident, don't be disheartened. Just go back a step and refresh what he has learnt.
Food for thought
A tired dog is a good dog. Dogs who are stimulated mentally and physically will focus better and listen better than dogs who are house bound and stir crazy. Go for brisk walks, find off-leash parks and use stimulating toys to keep your husky busy.
Dogs who were raised in an unclean environment can have "dirty dog syndrome." This happens most often to dogs kept full-time in kennels where they are forced to eliminate in their homes. This environment overrules their natural instinct to keep the home clean. Don't be too discouraged if you think this has happened to your dog. You need to be particularly diligent and patient. It can take longer for these dogs to be house trained, but they will get there.
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