An average puppy under 8 months old can hold her bladder in hours about equal to her age in months plus one. Once your puppy gets near the one year mark, however, or if you adopt a 1-year-old dog, that rule no longer applies. Consider several factors before determining how often your 1-year-old should go pee.
Puppy to Adult
If you’ve raised your dog since she was a young puppy, and she’s been progressing with recommended house-training methods, your 1-year-old should be able to hold her bladder eight to 10 hours. Adult dogs need to go outside a minimum of three times per day, but five opportunities is better for her health and well-being. All dogs should have a potty break upon waking, after eating and playing and before bed. Asking her to hold it for extended periods of time can lead to accidents in the house as well as urinary tract and bladder infections.
If you've just adopted a dog around 1 year of age, the rules are a little different for her until she learns the ropes. She may or may not have been housebroken in her prior life so you’ll need to train her just as you would a young puppy. Start with taking her out every hour during the day as well as upon waking, after eating and playing, before bed and about three times through the night. Once she is consistent with no accidents in the house or her crate, you can incrementally increase the amount of time between potty breaks by 30 to 60 minutes, working up to eight to 10 hours.
Breed and Size
Consider the breed and size of your dog. Smaller dogs have smaller bladders and need more frequent potty breaks than larger dogs. Some dog tend to be difficult to house-train, so you may need to continue taking her outside every few hours well into adulthood.
According to dog trainer Cesar Millan's website Cesar’s Way, the daily output of urine for most healthy dogs is 10 to 20 milliliters. If it seems that your 1-year-old is producing more urine, going frequently or having accidents in the house, has trouble urinating or has blood in her urine, she may have a urinary tract infection, bladder stones, diabetes or some other health issue. Take her to a vet quickly, especially in the case of bladder stones, which can prevent her from urinating at all, leading to death. Diet changes can also cause an increase or decrease in urination. Foods higher in sodium usually increase thirst, so if she’s taking in more water than usual, she’ll need to go outside more often.
Jodi L. Hartley has been a writer and public relations professional since 1992. Her experience includes public relations and marketing for a pet service/retail business, as well as volunteer work with animal rescue organizations. Hartley holds a bachelor's degree in journalism and an M.B.A.