One of the most daunting tasks for any new pet owner is to potty-train or house-break the pet. This task can be even more burdensome if your new pet is a Coton de Tulear. As a small animal, a Coton requires more frequent trips to the bathroom than a larger dog. Think of your Coton as a small child; the younger it is, the more often it has to "go". The house breaking process with your new Coton can be a real test of patience, but there are certainly ways to make it easier.
When you first bring your Coton de Tulear home, make sure you set a regular bathroom schedule as this will definitely help you prevent an unfortunate mess. Typically, Cotons need to use the bathroom once every 2 to 4 hours, so you should stick as closely as possible to this schedule during the first six months after you bring your Coton home. If you are unable to maintain a regular schedule, make sure you're able to let your Coton out during crucial times like first thing in the morning, after meal time, and just before bed. This will get your Coton in the habit of "going" at these times.
Communicating with your Coton
An equally important point to mention is that you should also make sure that you understand when your Coton is telling you, "I need to use the bathroom". In the beginning, practice the route to the door where you take your Coton out to let it relieve itself. This will help familiarize your Coton with the route to the "bathroom", and it will certainly lessen the chance of a mess occurring inside your home. If you have a backyard that is available to your Coton, always use the same door to avoid confusion. If there is a special spot which you want your Coton to "go", lead it to that spot until it learns to get there on its own. If you live in an apartment and you need to take your Coton outside for bathroom breaks, do something similar all the time to let it know that it's "bathroom" time, like grab the leash and call your dog from the door.
Praise is Good
If you want to potty train your Coton, encouragement is vital for your Coton's success. When you open the door and your Coton obediently exits, make sure you offer praise with a pat on the head or a snack. This positive reinforcement will give your naturally affectionate Coton an incentive to remind you when it's time for the potty! Remember, your Coton probably won't catch on right away, so be patient and find a way to let your Coton know that it is not allowed to do it on the floor. A good practice for this is to firmly show your dog what it has done and say firmly "no", repeat if necessary.
It can take up to six months for your Coton to become fully house broken.