Housebreaking your Shiba Inu

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If done properly, housebreaking your Shiba Inu does not have to be as much of a hassle as
some owners make it to be.
Your Shiba Inu is a creature of habit. If it is taught where you want it to eliminate, and you
control its food and water intake to regulate when it will eliminate, you will have a happy
relationship relatively free of accidents.

The biggest mistake made by Shiba Inu owners is inconsistency. It is important that you first
choose the method of housebreaking appropriate for you and your pet and secondly stick with
it. We know of many Shiba Inu owners who are impatient or inconsistent when housebreaking
their pets. The end result is a pet that is never fully housebroken.

So, remember the three P’s – persistence, patience and praise, and you are guaranteed success.

Here are the 3 methods you can use to housetrain your Shiba Inu:

The Paper Method

The paper method seems to work better with a puppy than with an adult
Shiba Inu, although it can be used on both.
To begin housetraining your pup with the paper method, first you must choose a location
where your puppy will be staying until housetrained.
Make sure the room is puppy proofed and that elimination on the floor in this area will not
cause permanent damage to your home.

A bathroom or small kitchen is usually a good place for this.
Once you have chosen an area, cover the entire floor with newspaper.
If you have a young puppy, it will eliminate much more often than when it is older. So, just be
prepared for many messes in the beginning.
In the beginning, it is important to replace the paper as soon as possible after the elimination
has occurred.
This helps your puppy establish the area as its own, and it will help you get a better idea of
where it favors doing its business.

As your puppy eliminates throughout the day, it may go in several different areas of the room.
But, as it gets a little more used to its room, it will choose a certain area where it prefers to
When its preferred area for elimination is established, begin removing the paper from the rest
of the room, only covering the area it uses.
Make sure you leave its papered area large enough so that it does not miss the paper.
If it misses the paper, the area is too small and you need to add more paper.
When it uses its papered area, praise it. The more your puppy associates a reward with its
choice of the paper instead of the linoleum, the quicker your puppy will be trained.
After it has established that it will use the papered area instead of the floor, begin moving the
paper towards the area (presumably somewhere outside your house) where you want it to go
when fully trained.
The paper should only be moved a little at a time towards this location. If moving the paper
confuses your puppy, you may only be able to move about one inch per day, until the paper
reaches its final destination. Once your puppy understands that it is to eliminate only on the
paper, and you have been able to move towards the area where it will eventually go outside,
monitoring its habits will be much easier. Once the paper is completely removed, it will go to
that area automatically and sniff or turn circles, letting you know it has to go out.

Crate Training

Crate training can be used on both a puppy and an adult Shiba Inu and is
probably the most effective and efficient way to housetrain your pet.
No Shiba Inu will want to eliminate in a place it considers to be its own and therefore, unless
left in its crate for too long, it will not eliminate in its crate.
Once every hour, place your Shiba Inu on a leash and walk it in the area where you want it to
go potty. If it has not gone in five minutes, return it to its crate for another hour.
After another hour goes by, the dog that did not go last time will most likely go this time.
When it does go, be sure and praise it profusely and return it to its crate. The excitement in
your voice when you are praising it will help it better understand that THIS is the place you
want it to go.
Once that is established, it will do its best to make you happy by eliminating in its designated
Once you feel it understands where it is to go to potty, you may lessen its crate time, and
begin opening up its area to more than just its crate.

Be sure and open up its area a little at a time so it clearly establishes the larger area as “its
area”, increasing the desire to keep its area clean.
Eventually, you will be able to open up your entire home, but this is only after a lot of time
has been spent training and proof that it understands.

Litter Pan Method

This method will have the best chance of success with an young puppy
but an older Shiba Inu may be able to litter train with success as well.
Similar to paper training, litter box training begins in a confined area such as a bathroom or
Although you may be able to use a traditional cat litter box for this purpose, pet supply stores
do sell doggy litter boxes. They are shaped a little different and are a bit larger than the
traditional kitty box. Also available are special litters and papers that should eventually be
used in the box.

Like paper training, the beginning stages have paper lining the entire floor of the room. You
continually change any soiled paper until the puppy chooses a place on the floor it likes to
Once the puppy has eliminated in an area about the size of a litter pan for approximately two
weeks, place a litter pan on the floor and paper inside the litter pan.
When it goes and does its business inside the litter box, make sure to praise it profusely. It has
got to establish this is the correct behavior before it will be comfortable with it.
Once it is used to the litter box with the paper, you may begin the change to doggy litter if
desired. As time goes on, you may add additional litter until eventually the paper is gone and
only litter remains.
If you choose this method, you must clean the litter box every time your Shiba Inu eliminates.
It will not go in a dirty box.

Failure to consistently clean the litter box will result in your
puppy reverting back to the floor.

Follow any of the above 3 methods consistently, and you should soon have a fully housetrained Shiba Inu!
There are dozens of other extremely important tips and techniques that you need to keep in
mind before you can start housetraining your Shiba Inu.
Plus, there are numerous mistakes that many new Shiba Inu owners make when they are
housetraining their pets, and there isn’t enough space here to cover all these mistakes.