Fans of Dragon’s Den would have seen entrepreneur and puppy owner, Steven Bartlett, invest £50,000 in an eco-friendly dog business.
Piddle Patch is a biodegradable, real-grass alternative to puppy pads is intended to house train dogs – and works brilliantly for pet parents living in high-rise apartments, like Steven and his puppy, Pablo.
The 29-year-old Dragon demonstrated his passion for the product on Twitter by sharing a tweet of Pablo using a Piddle Patch in his central London home.
To encourage other new puppy owners inspired by Steven, dog training expert, Lorenzo Barichellahave some advice for house training your puppy within a week.
Teach your dog where to go
“Rather than choosing plastic puppy training pads, I recommend my clients buy a Piddle Patch – a real grass, soil free dog toilet that can be used inside a tray – this teaches the puppy right from the start only to toilet on grass and not on textiles,” Lorenzo said.
“It’s also more eco-friendly – puppy pads can take up to 500 years to degrade in landfill!”
“Place the dog toilet in a suitable place in the house, however you need to be consistent and leave it in the same place to ensure house training will work.
“Don’t confuse your puppy by moving it around and making it difficult to find.”
Tempt them with treats
“Find a very tasty treat that your puppy will adore,” Lorenzo advised.
“I normally recommend the bacon treats that come in long and soft strips.
“Use this special treat only when toilet training your puppy.”
Make the moment boring
“Every 2 hours – but especially 15 minutes after every activity (eating, sleeping or playtime) – take your puppy to where they need to toilet using a lead and ensure the lead will be short enough to avoid them roaming around.
“Make the moment extremely boring, say nothing but keep an eye on your pup, avoiding eye contact.
“When puppies have nothing else to do they are more likely to pee.”
Positively praise your puppy
“When the pee is nearly done, start praising your puppy with a lot of excitement and a high-pitched voice.
“You can actually repeat a word of your choice to create a command to pee on cue in future, such as ‘pee pee’, ‘good pee pee’ or ‘go toilet’.
“While praising your puppy, pick up a bacon treat, break it into very tiny pieces and give them a shower of treats, at least 12 or more, one by one, to create a jackpot effect.
“That Jackpot effect plus the special treat used uniquely for house training will help the puppy understand when and why they receive that special treatment.”
Keep at it
“This association will soon invite the puppy to use only the designated place to relieve themselves and it will also help them to hold on when necessary to grant the special reward,” Lorenzo said.
“If the puppy poos it is fine to praise them, but don’t give them treats, to avoid making the association between food and poo, as this can lead to the puppy eating poo!”
“This method will work as long as you are consistent,” Lorenzo said.
“Many of my clients have successfully toilet trained their puppy in a week or less using this method.”
Talking about the creation of Piddle Patch, founder Rebecca Sloan said: “The inspiration for Piddle Patch came during a visit to the park.
“The dogs were happy to be in their natural environment and the stress associated with toilet time melted away because the dogs knew instinctively where to do their business.
“When house training a dog, it makes sense to teach them to behave as they would in the outside world – and so Piddle Patch was born.”