Housetraining Your Shiba Inu

Shibas are a very clean breed and many practically housebreak themselves. In some cases, the accidents that the puppy has are merely byproducts of the owner not taking the puppy out soon enough.

Chances are that your puppy will have accidents in the house. If you don’t catch it in the act, clean up the mess, kick yourself for not paying attention and carry on.

By the time you finish saying, “Gee! I guess I should have taken Puppy out sooner! I wonder how much it’ll cost to replace the carpet? Don’t come downstairs for a few minutes, Honey.” your little darling has forgotten his escapade and is focussing on more important things, like your shoes.

If you do catch Puppy in the act of decorating the floor, keep in mind that Puppy is very young. A gentle shake and a stern “No!” is enough for puppies.

I have never understood the people who advocate rubbing a puppy’s nose in their mess. First of all, dogs sniff and even eat feces all the time. They don’t view it as disgusting as humans do, so it’s not exactly the best deterrant. Second of all, a very young puppy is on the same mental level as a very young human. One does not take a toddler’s diapers and shove them in his face when he messes them. If you think it’s such a great training tool, by all means use it on yourself when you do something wrong, but leave your puppy alone.

One rule of thumb is that your puppy’s age in months, plus one, is the number of hours your puppy can “hold it” until it needs to go again. So, a two-month-old puppy will probably be able to go for three hours before it needs to go out again. This is not an exact science, however.

Crate training is a good way of accelerating your puppy’s housebreaking. The crate prevents your puppy from going anywhere or do anything except lie down and perhaps play with a chew toy. Since dogs have a good den-sense, meaning that they don’t like to foul where they sleep, a crate helps prevent accidents.

But you have to be smart about it. A crate isn’t a drawer where you shut a puppy up for hours on end. In fact, I like the combination of crate and exercise pen to encourage the puppy to sleep in the crate at night and play in the exercise pen during the day. The crate only works when you don’t overestimate a puppy’s ability to hold its water and listen to what the puppy is telling you.


  1. For the most part my Shiba is hands down the embodyment of her breeed- except for when it comes to housetraining. She rarely pees in the house but when she does my little angel will either pee on her bed or worst- mine! Any suggestions to break her of this habbit? i don’t think it is a matter of not letting her out enough, but I think she is trying to get my attention- regardless it needs to end!

  2. I had that same problem– an animal behaviorist told me it was a dominance thing exacerbated by other animals in the house. The cat proved too much for me, and once I rehomed it, all Shiba incidents of peeing on the beds stopped immediately.

  3. My puppy is seven months old and has been house broken for awhile now. But I recently moved, and now he will poop on the floor in the dinning room. He will not anywhere else in the house. He knows its wrong, and when we chatch him we tell him no and take him outside. But he continues to do it. I have no idea why or how to stop this behavoir. Any help?

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