It's in the midst of winter, when your pup probably wishes she was more like a cat and could just use the litter box. For her, finding a suitable place to pee in a yard full of snow is like trying to get comfortable during the Fourth of July. But a little shoveling and a lot of positive reinforcement go a long way.
Shovel out an area to serve as your pup's pee spot. Some dogs are simply no fans of having the cold snow touch their feet. So when the white stuff covers the ground, your pup might tiptoe around outside, do a little dance and then try to make a break for the door. Shovel out a large enough area for your pup to stand with all four paws on mostly dirt or grass, and bring her to that spot each time she needs to pee. Alternatively, you could set up a tent or other structure in your yard throughout the winter, keeping the area underneath mostly free of snow.
Put booties on your dog. Even with a shoveled-out pee area, your pup still has to make her way over there. That's bad news for those little feet, so outfit her in some stylish dog booties. The boots cover her paws and protect them from the cold and water.
Have some fun in the snow. Your pup thinks snow is a weird substance, especially if she's never seen it before. And some dogs view weirdness as something that's terrible. Instead of only shuffling your pup into the wintry air when she has to relieve herself, play with her outside. Throw snowballs, frozen sticks or just run around like crazy. Give her treats and make the entire experience wonderful for her. You might want to put a puppy jacket on her if she has a thin coat.
Stay out there until your dog pees. Dogs are not like cats when it comes to relieving themselves. Mess with a cat's litter box too much, and you might have a feline squatting on your floors. Your pup will likely not urinate in your house unless you take her out, bring her in when she didn't relieve herself and then not take her out again. She needs to learn that going back inside doesn't happen until she pees. If she doesn't care about her newly shoveled out area, take her somewhere else, like under a tree or another part of your yard.
Reward her for going potty. Every step you take in getting your little girl to go pee in the snow is important, but rewarding her for doing so is vital. Tell her what a good girl she is as she goes and when she's done, and feed her a treat.
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- If your pup wants to play in the snow more than she wants to try and pee, distract her by calling her name and taking her to a different area of the yard.
- If she stays out there for an extended period of time without urinating, go ahead and take her back in. But wait at least 10 to 15 minutes before you do. If you're sure she has to go, take her right back out in another 10 or 15 minutes.
- Try to avoid all salted pathways if possible. Salt can hurt your pup's paws.
- Do not yell at your pup, grab her by the collar or pull her harshly to a certain spot. Doing so will likely slow down the process instead of speeding it up.
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