A great and simple way to house train your dog is to teach him to ring a ‘potty’ bell. By teaching your dog this potty bell trick, you can minimise accidents and be a huge help with house training.
You may also be thinking what if I live in an apartment? The potty bell trick can also be used for apartment dogs, you can put the bell on door to the balcony, or use your front door.
Here’s how to train your dog to ring a bell to go outside to potty:
Choose a suitable bell and a door that you can hear from a common area of the home. Pick a bell that is not too small that you wouldn’t be able to hear. There are different types of bells, you could try one that you can hang, or a ‘hotel reception’ type of bell that you can place on the floor. If you use a hanging bell, hang it from the handle of the door that leads to your dogs outdoor potty area. Use a ribbon or rope that is measured low enough for your dog to reach it with their nose. We got our bell from Spotlight, however most dollar stores also have assorted bells. (see images)
Each time you take your dog out, ring the bell yourself. They will get to know the sound and sight of the bell and associate it to the door opening followed by going outside. Most dogs make a connection after a 1-2 weeks. Eventually, your dog will try to ring the bell on their own with their nose or hand.
Show your dog the bell. If they touch it with their nose, open the door and give them a treat. If they are already doing it on their own, try to get to the door quickly to let your dog out. They will soon learn how the potty bell works – it makes the door open.