Puppy Pads: Everything You Need To Know

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Dog on puppy pad
Photo by Matthew Henry from Burst

Bringing a puppy home is an exciting time, but those first few weeks you and your new dog spend together will likely also be unnerving. Potty training will be high up on the list of things to get on top of straight away, and many dog owners decide to use Puppy Pads to toilet train their puppies.

Puppy training pads have many benefits; one of them is that you can literally set them up anywhere. Even if you don’t have access to a garden, you can still toilet train your puppy.

Toilet training takes time and patience, so with a new dog, you want to get started on toilet training straight away. It’s much easier to teach a puppy a new behaviour than having to un-teach a wrongly learned behaviour.

Table of Contents

Should I Use Pee Pads For My Puppy?

Many people ask themselves if they should use Pee Pads for their puppy. Opinions on this topic vary, and some people don’t need to use Pee Pads for their puppy. That said, there are several reasons why you might want to use them.

Bladder Control

Many new dog owners get their new dog when they’re just over 8 weeks old. On average, a puppy can control their bladder one hour for every month of age. That makes 2-3 hours at the time you get your puppy. So, unless you took time off work for your new puppy or have someone check in on your puppy regularly, it can really help to use Pee Pads.


Pee Pads make it easy to clean up after your dog, as you can simply pick them up and toss away.

Garden Accessibility

Many dog owners don’t have easy access to a garden, so it’s just easier to toilet train your puppy on Puppy Pads first.

Health Reasons

Pee Pads are also a good option for dogs who can’t go outside for health reasons. For example, if your puppy hasn’t had all his vaccinations just yet and you don’t have easy access to a private garden.

Weather friendly

For all those times where the weather outside is just so awful that neither you nor your dog will want to go outside, Pee Pads can give your dog an indoor toilet option.

What Is The Best Puppy Training Pad?

There are several Puppy Training Pad’s that you can buy. We’ve summarised them below, including the best Puppy Training Pad in each category.

  • Single-Use Puppy Pads

As the same suggests, these type of Puppy Pads are single-use, and you throw them away after your puppy has done their business on it. 

  • Reusable Puppy Pads

If you plan on using Pads for a long time, consider buying Reusable Puppy Pads. They’re better for the environment and they will also save you money in the long run. 

  • Artificial Grass Puppy Pads

If you prefer to teach your dog to do their business on a grassy surface, consider getting a Puppy Pad with artificial grass on top. You can clean it by rinsing the three layers it consists of, which makes it a reusable pad too. 

  • Real Grass Puppy Pads

You can teach your puppy to do their business on real grass only by purchasing actual grass puppy pads. 


Puppy sitting on Puppy Pad
Image by Amazon


Dog sitting on reusable puppy pad
Image by Amazon

Artificial Grass

Dog sitting on grass puppy pad
Image by Amazon

Real Grass

Real grass puppy pad
Image by Amazon

Are Puppy Pads Safe?

Puppy training pads are perfectly safe for dogs to use, but they’re not indestructible. If you don’t provide your puppy with enough toys as well as spending time playing with your puppy, there’s a risk of your dog becoming bored and using the Puppy Pads as a toy.

Shredded Pee Pads are no fun to clean up, so make sure you provide your puppy with enough opportunities for socialisation, play time, training and mental stimulation (don’t over-do it though, rest time is important too!). If your dog is shredding the Puppy Pads, there’s also a risk of them eating their Puppy Pads.

Is It Dangerous For Dogs To Eat Puppy Pads?

Yes, it can be dangerous for your dog to eat Puppy Pads. If it looks like your puppy ate a significant amount of their Puppy Pad, it’s best to call your vet.

What Happens If A Dog Eats A Puppy Pad?

Well, think about it this way: Puppy Pads have been designed to be absorbent. If they land in your puppy’s belly, they could absorb fluids from the gastrointestinal tract and grow in size. If they grow bigger, they might get stuck in your puppy’s body on the way out, and that’s not good.

How Do You Get A Puppy To Go On A Puppy Pad?

There’s an easy way to get a puppy on a Puppy Pad. Most new dog owners will set up a dedicated space for their puppy in the living room. For example, this can be a crate that’s surrounded by a playpen. In doing this, you provide your puppy with a safe place to sleep in, as well as a restricted area to move around, play, and eat in.

Dogs naturally don’t want to soil the area where they sleep and eat, so put the Puppy Pad on the opposite side of the playpen from where your puppy’s crate and food bowl is.

Using Positive Training To Get Your Puppy Used To A Puppy Pad

Use positive training to get your puppy on a puppy pad. Observe your puppy, and when your puppy looks like they’re about to do their business, put your dog on the Puppy Pad and say your cue word, such as ‘go potty’.

You may need to do this several times before your puppy will actually do their business on the Puppy Pad. Don’t get angry when your puppy does their business elsewhere. You don’t want your puppy to become fearful and stressed.

Stay persistent, and when your puppy finally goes potty on the Puppy Pad reward heavily. Check out this article if you want more in-depth steps: Puppy Housetraining – Victorial Stilwell

Note that dogs tend to pee in the same place again and again. Therefore, it’s important to quickly clean up and eliminate the smell in areas where accidents happened. Urine has a strong smell of ammonia, so be careful not to use cleaning products that contain ammonia. You could use white vinegar or an enzymatic cleaner.

Do Puppy Pads Attract Dogs?

Some puppy training pad brands contain an attractant which can encourage your dog to use them. They’re usually ammonia, pheromones, or grass scents. Attractants can be useful at the start of toilet training your puppy.

Should You Rub A Dog’s Nose In Pee?

You should absolutely not rub a dog’s nose in pee. It’s recommended to use positive training when toilet training your puppy. There’s no need to get angry or punish your puppy for having an accident. Puppies don’t do it on purpose, and they don’t understand that they’re doing something wrong. If anything, you’ll confuse your puppy, and that can make it even worse. Remember that puppies are babies, and we don’t punish our human babies for such accidents either.

If you catch your puppy ‘in action’ of an accident, the best way to deal with it is to interrupt the behaviour. You can make a sudden noise such a clap, followed by saying the word ‘no’. Note that you want to startle your puppy, not scare them. Then, quickly put your puppy on the Puppy Pad. If your puppy continues doing his business on the Puppy Pad, praise heavily.

How Long Should You Use Puppy Pads?

How long you should use Puppy Pads depends on the reason you’re using Puppy Pads in the first place. If you used Puppy Pads because you have no access to a garden and your puppy wasn’t fully vaccinated, you could start the transition period as soon as it’s safe for your puppy to go outside.

If you used Puppy Pads for convenience, many people stop using Puppy Pads once their puppy can sleep through the night without needing to relieve themselves.

How Do You Transition A Puppy From Puppy Pads To Outside?

You don’t have to stop using Puppy Pads abruptly, but rather transition your puppy to do their business outside. This is as simple as taking the Potty Pads away for a few hours every day, and when you notice that your puppy is looking for a place to pee, take your puppy outside to do their business there. Depending on how you go, increase the time with no access to Puppy Pads

What Is The Hardest Dog To Potty Train?

Dogs come in different breeds, and they vary immensely in characteristics. That’s why you’ll find that some dogs are harder to potty train than others. For example, for some dogs it’s enough to take them outside just a couple times (*cough* Border Collies *cough*), whereas other breeds will take forever until they get the idea, no matter how consistent you are with your training. Keep reading to learn more about the top three hardest dogs to potty train.

#1 Afghan Hound

Afghan Hounds rank on the last place on the Dog Intelligence Ranking and can take a really long time until they’re toilet trained. The breed is known for their gorgeous looks and independent nature, but they do take between 100 to 500 repetitions until they learn a new command, which can be frustrating.

#2 Jack Russel Terrier

Who doesn’t love a well-trained, mature Jack Russel! That said, it can be quite a challenge to get to that well-trained, mature dog as Jack Russel’s are known to be a very stubborn breed. When it comes to toilet training, your puppy needs to follow commands, and that can be difficult when they’re stubborn puppies!

#3 Pug

Similar to the Jack Russel Terrier, Pugs are a stubborn breed and can, therefore, be challenging to house train. In particular, when the outside weather is awful, pugs are known to refuse to leave the house to do their business. 

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