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Discussion Starter #1
Ok experts, here's another question for you. It feels like Bear and I are starting to get the hang of this housetraing. Now I need to know how I will know it's time to try him outside of his crate. Also, how do I teach him to let me know when he needs to go out or is that something that comes natural? He does usually come to the door outside when he's finished doing his business to let me know he's ready to come in.
 

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Well, it depends on what you mean by not needing the crate. Do you mean when you're not home, at night, or when you're at home but not playing with him? I stopped crating Stella at night when she was about 5-6 months old. But generally if your dog never goes in the house, and hasn't for a few weeks, then give it a shot.

In terms of letting you know, it depends on the dog. Some dog will scratch at the door or bark at you. Some literally just hold it until you let them out, or do a mix of the two.

Give it a test run to see how Bear does one afternoon or evening and go from there. Also, how old is he? That can be an indicator as well.
 
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He does usually come to the door outside when he's finished doing his business to let me know he's ready to come in.
This concerns me. Your pup should not be going outside without you. Especially because bear is only 10 weeks old or so. A HUGE part of the housetraining process is teaching your pup where is acceptable to go. Right now you're doing this by limiting his options and movement, once he starts getting some freedom around the house he's not going to have a solid connection to going outside. In order to build this connection up you need to be outside with him and IMMEDIATELY after he pees or poos you give him a treat, and a bunch of praise. That way he will associate peeing outside with great things. After a few months of this it will be ingrained in him that peeing outside is the best thing ever.
 

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I guess I didn't word my comment correctly. I will NEVER let Bear go outside without me as he is a teacup and I would be afraid something might happen to him. Anyway, we have a couple more weeks to go before he's ready to roam free in the house. He's just started really getting the hang of pottying outside.
 

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If he is just ten weeks old then that is far too young to stop crate training. Sometimes small dogs can even take longer to housetrain as well. Your pup could be the exception but just a warning. You're also right to never let him out alone, as tiny dogs are commonly stolen or eaten by predators.
 
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I guess I didn't word my comment correctly. I will NEVER let Bear go outside without me as he is a teacup and I would be afraid something might happen to him. Anyway, we have a couple more weeks to go before he's ready to roam free in the house. He's just started really getting the hang of pottying outside.
Ok. That's good!

Just a heads up that it's going to be a lot longer than a few weeks before Bear should get free run of the house, even when you're home. It'll vary, but with small dogs your looking at around 9-10 months old before they can be trusted. My pup was 6 months old before I let him have access to the whole house with supervision and just shy of 10 months when he got free roam when I was out of the house.
 

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Wow! I had no idea it would take that long. I was thinking 3-4 was. Shouldn't I at least try him after 3-4 wks or is it pretty much a given on how long it will take ?
 

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Wow! I had no idea it would take that long. I was thinking 3-4 was. Shouldn't I at least try him after 3-4 wks or is it pretty much a given on how long it will take ?

The crate should be a den/haven. When does a dog no longer need to be crate trained? When their first response (before you indicate) is to go into the crate and wait patiently until you make a move.

For a tiny puppy like yours, however, I'd still crate when not at home and night for a loooooong time. Night especially because you could easily sleepily step on him if he decides to curl up near your bed and you don't see him on a middle of the night potty run
 

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Seeshoreduck, you are so right about keeping him crated at night for a long time. I can't even think about maybe stepping on him in the night! Thanks for your advice.
 

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Wow! I had no idea it would take that long. I was thinking 3-4 was. Shouldn't I at least try him after 3-4 wks or is it pretty much a given on how long it will take ?

There is no given for how long it will take to house train a pup. Every dog is different.

You're going to need to be more specific in what you mean by him being out of the crate though. Are you talking about during the day when you're there to watch him constantly? Or are you talking about the pup being home alone? or some other scenario?

Here's a run down on what I did with my pup for his first 10 months that will hopefully help you out.

8 weeks to 3 months - When I was home he was either tethered to me, or isolated to a room with me. He would sleep in his crate at night with a potty break during the evening if he whined in his crate. When I was at work he would get a walk and 1hr play session in the morning, in a play pen with a bed, blanket, toys, food, water and pee pad. (he was about 3-4lbs at this age, and in a 3'x3' pen) He would get a walk and play at lunch for 30-45mins either by me or dog walker, then back in his pen for the afternoon, I was home around 5:30-6pm

3 to 4 months - Eliminated pee pads from pen, still got lunch time plays, remained in pen when I was at work. Slept in crate at night. Got free roam of house with constant supervision. (I mean constant, I spent many evening just following the little fur ball from room to room) If I was watching tv or cooking dinner or my attention was divided he would be tethered or in his pen.

4 to 6 months - Playpen during the day. He would get morning walk and play, playpen while I was at work (8:30-5:30) Free roam with supervision. Slept in bed with me at night. Free access to crate whenever he wants it.

6 to 8 months - Got free roam of bedroom during the day. Free roam of the house when I was there with partial supervision (not a very big house). Slept in bed. His crate is set up in my bedroom and he can use it when he wants. He'll take treats in there to chew or sleep in there during the day. (He also has a kid's sized couch he lounges on) or if there is too much commotion in the house he'll go into his crate to relax or nap or hide from visitors.

8 to 10 months - free roam of bedroom and sectioned off living room during day. free roam of house with partial supervision.

10 months - free roam for most of the house. (not allowed in 2nd bedroom or bathrooms - not a house training issue, he's a sock thief. lol)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I have never been able to use the pee pads bc he plays with them. I'm still waiting on a harness that I ordered for him. You can't find much stuff where I live suitable for a teacup. I can't use a collar and leash bc he could very easily get a collapsed trachea if he pulled too hard. When it comes I think things will get even better with his training.
 

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I only used pee pads because of my schedule. If I was able to take him out every 2 hours I would have just stuck with taking him outside.

You can try a kitten harness to start, That's the only think I found that fit my guy when he was super little.
 
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