House and potty training any dog can be a hair-pulling experience and Cocker Spaniels are no different. Peeing in the house is one of the most frustrating parts of having a new puppy in your home so what should you do?
How to stop a Cocker Spaniel from peeing in the house? Crate training is the best way to house and potty train a Cocker Spaniel or any other breed of dog. Your Cocker Puppy will not want to mess in his own space which is why crate training proves so effective.
Using a crate may be the most effective method to stop peeing in the house but that doesn’t just mean you can rush out, buy a crate and problem solved. Oh no, you need to know how to properly use the crate to best train your puppy.
You also need to understand why your Cocker is peeing in the house, especially if your Cocker is already house trained and not a puppy.
Read on and discover my top tips and recommended methods so we can get your new Cocker Spaniel properly house trained.
If you are interested, go check out this our review of this fantastic online training resource. They have free material for you to go through too.
Why Does My Cocker Spaniel Pee In The House?
The main reason behind any dog peeing in the house is usually because they are still a puppy. I know older dogs can have a peeing problem and I will address that in a minute but for now, we will be concentrating on puppies.
Just like babies, they can’t really control when they need to go to the toilet. Thankfully, dogs learn to pee in the correct places at a much faster pace than humans……Imagine still trying to toilet train your Cocker Spaniel when they are 18 months or older.
Now one of the main reasons for a puppy to continue to have accidents in the house even when you are training him to go outside is because he can still smell urine in the house from previous accidents.
I know what you are thinking. You cleaned it up using your best bleach and can’t smell a thing. Well not only do dogs have a much-heightened sense of smell compared to humans, but most household cleaners contain ammonia.
Ammonia is found in dog urine so to your new puppy, the cleaned area still smell of pee and your dog will be tempted to wee there again due to the familiar smell.
Quick Tip: To thoroughly clean an area where your dog has peed you need to use a cleaner that does not contain the already mentioned ammonia. The best there is on the market today is certainly the Rocco & Roxie Cleaner, specifically designed for pets.
Adult Cocker Spaniel Peeing In The House
Now unfortunately fully grown Cocker Spaniels can still be known to pee in the house.
If your dog is not a puppy but you are having toilet issues with him then it is due to submissive/excitement. This is pretty common in many breeds of dogs.
Submissive urination usually occurs when a dog is getting punished or is trying to please the owner. It also often occurs when meeting people or other dogs for the first time and the dog feels intimidated somewhat.
Excitement urination occurs when a dog is excited, self-explanatory really. This does usually occurs in younger dogs, mostly under the age of 2 when they are still slightly underdeveloped and most dogs usually do grow out of this problem.
This usually isn’t a problem once a dog is fully grown but can be an issue for the minority
Marking Their Territory
I’m pretty sure you have heard of a dog marking their territory with wee. My Cocker Spaniel pees in pretty much all the same place when we go out for a walk. He also has the same spots where he regularly poo’s.
If your dog is still peeing in the house and usually in the same few spots then you really need to get a bottle of the best cleaner as I mentioned above. Here it is again in case you missed it.
Crate Training A Cocker Spaniel
The very best advice I can give any new dog owner is to get a crate from the very beginning. Not only will the crate make it easier to train your new puppy but your puppy will learn to love the crate because it’s his own.
You can read my review of the crate that we used by clicking here.
Most dogs end up using their crate as their escape, their safe place, sometimes just as to have a lie-down and a peaceful snooze. It becomes their den, their own bedroom even.
Initially, though, your puppy may not feel like that, especially if you don’t introduce the crate from the very beginning.
So why is crate training usually so effective? Imagine you have a puppy who isn’t house trained. Maybe he isn’t trained at all yet. You don’t have a crate and there are things in the house that you need to do.
But you dare not take your eye of your new pup or he will be pooing and weeing everywhere, chewing the kid’s toys or worse still, your best shoes.
But if you had a crate, you could easily get on with things while you leave your puppy alone. The reason the crate works for this is that despite your new dog’s eagerness to make a mess pretty much everywhere, he WILL NOT want to mess in his own bed.
That’s why crates are so good and not cruel, despite what some people say. Remember how I said your puppy will treat his crate as his own bedroom, well, he will be keen to hold his bladder rather than mess where he sleeps.
It isn’t all just about the crate though. You must get your new puppy into a routine. Regular toilet breaks at regular times.
Take him out for a walk, once he’s fully vaccinated, and give him plenty of time to have a toilet break. Because Cocker Spaniels are very energetic dogs, you may need to walk him up to 3 times per day.
Make sure you never leave your puppy in its crate for prolonged periods as that is just cruel. When your puppy is out of the crate, make sure to leave the door open and you will be pleasantly surprised to find your Cocker wandering back into the crate at his own free will.
The only time it’s acceptable to leave your dog in its crate is during the night. Expect a few sleepless nights as your puppy cries and you will have to get up to let the dog out for a wee a few times during the night.
Usually, a puppy can start going all night without needing the toilet from about the age of 6 months although often it can be a month or two younger
Always always always praise and reward good behavior from you, Cocker Spaniel. It’s one of the quickest ways to get them to learn and respond to you.
Don’t use the crate as punishment. You want your dog to learn to love its crate and treat it as its bedroom, not as a prison cell so never lock your puppy in the crate after telling it off.
To make the crate comfier and familiar to your puppy, make sure you line the crate with the dog’s favorite blankets and have some of its regular toys in there.
I can’t emphasize enough that you should never use punishment when training your dog. Whether you are crate training, sit and stay training or training your Cocker to stop pulling on the leash, punishment methods do not work.
Paper And Puppy Pad Training
When I was a kid, everybody used old newspapers when they got a new dog. They would put the newspaper down on a hard floor, usually in the kitchen and this would be where the dog would go to the toilet if it couldn’t go outside.
Looking back, it’s pretty disgusting and unhygienic really.
Then there are the puppy training pads. These are scented and are meant to attract the puppy to pee on them instead of elsewhere in the house.
Personally I have never had a good experience with either of these methods.
We had an absolutely gorgeous English Show-type Springer Spaniel before we got our Cocker and we tried newspaper and the potty pads, we didn’t get a crate until we got the Cocker.
We had to cover the whole kitchen floor with the newspaper of he would miss it.
We moved onto the pads but he would often wee next to them or just near them rather than on the pad itself. We were getting really frustrated.
Then I read a tip that dogs see the newspaper as a sign to go to the toilet in that area and how it’s a bad idea to have it down.
That night we said goodnight to our Springer and closed the kitchen door. He slept in the kitchen until he was fully house trained. This night was different though……we didn’t put a single sheet of newspaper down or a puppy pad.
The next morning we were woken up by the dog howling and crying at 5 am
I went downstairs opened the back door and he went out and had the longest and biggest wee I had ever seen. But guess what. He hadn’t had a single accident anywhere in the kitchen. I was so pleased and fully rewarded and praised him.
Eighteen months later we got Guinness our Cocker spaniel and immediately got a crate for him and not once did we put any newspaper or pads down.
I’m not saying these methods can’t or don’t work. They just didn’t work for us so I can’t recommend them.
How Long Can A Cocker Spaniel Hold It’s Bladder?
To be honest I have no idea and I certainly wouldn’t want to run a test as it’s pretty cruel and would probably just lead to an accident anyway.
I will say though that the longest we have had to leave our Guinness was 5 hours due to getting stuck in traffic and when we got back he hadn’t had an accident.
He was fully grown and fully house trained by this point though and no, he wasn’t locked in his crate.
If you have a new Cocker Spaniel or are thinking about getting one then I strongly advise you to invest in a crate for your new dog.
You will end up having the crate for the dog’s entire life and after you have used it for the full training benefits, it will provide a safe place for your Cocker spaniel to escape to and unwind in peace.