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Discussion Starter #1
I’m not sure what to do. Our puppy is only 9 weeks now but she starts staying home alone today. She’ll be home alone from 8 – 11 and then 11:30-2:30 so it’s not too bad. Now at night she is holding it about 3-4 hours with no whining and would hold it longer with no whining if I let her. I have to wake her lazy butt up at the 3-4 hour mark and force her out otherwise she will hold it in all night long. She’s very good in her crate, has been from the start. She’s never had an accident in her crate. She pees almost instantly when you take her out and give her the command. She’s had like one accident inside the house that was outside of her playpen so she’s doing very well with the whole potty training thing.
Now we also have a doggy play pen set up for her. It’s a 4’ x 4’ gated area with a plywood floor that I built for her in our dining room. She has never had an accident in the playpen while we’ve been there. Her typical schedule is play for 15-30 minutes then 2-3 hour nap. However, if we leave the house we’ve been putting a training pad in there so she has somewhere to relieve herself which she almost always pees on when were gone. She just naturally figured out that is where she’s supposed to go. Ok my questions coming I promise. The problem with this is two-fold…one she almost always chews the training pad up and makes a disaster of her crate. Two I’m not sure if this is training her right. It’s clear that she has the capacity to hold it and I’m not sure if I should even be training her to pee inside of her playpen even if it is on the pad. Would you guys go no pad or pad in her 4x4 pen for a 3 hour stint alone? I’m not convinced she needs it…and my hope is if I rip the pad away she’ll just hold it and we won’t even deal with pee/poop in the play pen? What would you all do?
 

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I would not do a training pad. No point in teaching her it's ok to go in the house when you don't have to.
 

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I would crate her when your gone and skip the training pad too- she may not know to pee there anyway and if she figures it out she may think carpet, area rugs, and other covered areas are okay for peeing as well. Crate her and have someone let her she'll do fine:)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Oh man...I hate putting her in her crate for that long..she's already in there all night long. I guess you all are probably right. So you're saying don't playpen her at all...instead put her in her small crate and that way she's forced to hold it. It makes sense...not sure why I didn't think of this. We'll give this a try tomorrow.
 

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I've been reading a few books/articles and most of them agree that using training pads will reinforce the wrong behavior in your dog (that it's ok to pee inside the house..even though it's on a pad)
 
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