2014 21/04

5 tips for potty training the toddler or the puppy

I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting (#MC) for Pull-Ups. I received product samples to facilitate my review and a promotional item as a thank you for participating.

Apparently I am a glutten for potty-training punishment!

Still knee-deep in potty training with Talon, but definitely on the tail-end of the journey, we decide to get a puppy. Meet Dexter:


As cute as he is, this means we’ve entered a whole new set of potty training! And, truth be told, potty training a puppy is pretty similar to potty training a toddler!

So, as we continue to navigate the world of potty training, here are my five take way tips for potty training your toddler or your puppy:

1. You can lead the kid to the potty but you can’t make him pee. 

And, the kicker is that 5 minutes after you take them to the potty and they swear up and down that they don’t need to go pee, they’ll finally need to go pee or they’ll pee in their pants. Or on your floor. Which both boy and puppy have done today. But keep trying.

2. Set a timer.

Yes, I just said you can’t make them pee on demand but using a timer to remind them to try gets them used to making trips to the bathroom. Eventually they won’t need the timer and will just go when they feel the urge. Hopefully. They timer that worked for us was the built-in timer in the Pull-Ups Big Kid App. I’m able to set it for however long I liked and Talon gets to decide whether we get the reminder from Mike or Sully. I love it because it’s on my phone, which is always with me no matter where we are (home or out and about) and Talon liked that it was Mike or Sully reminding him, not mom. And, when timer goes off now, Talon gets to tell Dexter it’s time to go outside for his potty break!


3. Role models.

I think, hands down, the best advice I can give to potty training parents is to say “The second or third will be easier!” Ok, that may not be entirely true, but I will say that Talon is way more interested in pottying because he has two big sisters who use the potty. He wants to be “big” just like them so he is all about using the “big potty”. And, funny enough, the puppy is the same way! Because we have Jasper, our 5 year old Boxer who Dexter follows around like a little shadow, I think he’s understanding the potty training thing a little more than Jasper did as a puppy. Having role models makes the potty training thing seem a little more acceptable to both Dexter and Talon!

4. Rewards.

I’ve said this before — Rewards are where it’s at! They will probably be different for every kid, but they love getting that reward for a job well done! For Talon, he’s all about Smarties and Candy Corn. And a little sucker if he does a #2 on the potty. Oh, and being able to pick out what underwear he wears during the day (Minions, Thomas or Cars). Find your kid’s preferred reward and go for it! {Dexter likes his treats, too. And lots of praise.}

5. Make your “on the go” plan!

Potty training at home is one thing (almost endless supplies of underwear and dry pants and instant access to laundry). Potty training on the go is a whole other ballgame! For our short jaunts to take the girls to school, we’re underwear-ing it and praying he’ll make it those 20 minutes without an accident. For longer trips we’re in the Pull-Ups. I still encourage Talon to tell me when he needs to go but we have that security of knowing that an accident won’t completely throw our outing for a loop. When we were potty training the girls, I would actually bring a portable potty with us in the car. Of course, now with 3 kids in the car we don’t really have the room for that but it was a great option when we did! Whatever your plan is, be ready for the unexpected. Pack a long some extra clothes, maybe a towel for the carseat, some Pull-Ups, and a plastic bag to transport the wet stuff! And the towels come in handy for the puppy, too!

If you need a portable potty, for the car or at home, be sure to check out The First Years. And, for a limited time, you’ll get a pack of Pull-Ups with your The First Years potty seat purchase!

Hopefully Talon and Dexter will encourage each other to take huge leaps in potty-training and we’ll be done in no time!


One can hope!

Need more help with your potty training journey? Be sure to check out the Pull-Ups website for products, tips, forums and more! You can also connect with them on Twitter and Facebook with questions or your success stories!

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