17 Pugs Potty Training Problems And How To Solve Them

Potty training a puppy or older dog is not fun, but it’s part of pet ownership. Every puppy is different, and everyone’s daily schedule, living situation, and dedication will vary as well. Unfortunately, there’s no “one size fits all” when it comes to potty training Pugs.

Fortunately, we can pin Pugs potty training problems down to 11 of the most common problems and how to fix that problem. Once you realize the problems, you can quickly get back on track to house training your new puppy.

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Pug potty training problems

17 Of The Most Common Pugs Potty Training Problems

Problem #1: Letting Your Puppy Eat Whenever They Want

One of the biggest mistakes new pet owners make is leaving food out throughout the entire day for their young pup to eat whenever they get hungry. One of the quickest ways to potty train your new puppy is to implement a feeding schedule.

A set eating schedule not only teaches trains your puppy to poop on schedule, it can also prevent your Pug from becoming over eating and becoming overweight.


Get your puppy on a set eating schedule, that will help you monitor their toilet schedule. I’d recommend feeding them 2-3 times per day.

Your puppy will quickly learn their new eating schedule and you will know when to take your pup outside.

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Problem #2: Not Taking Them Outside Soon After Eating And Drinking

letting your puppy eat whenever they want
Don’t leave the food bowl out for your puppy to eat, stick to a feeding schedule during training.

Most young puppies will need to go to bathroom about 10-20 minutes after eating or drinking. Some may try to hold it a little bit longer, but won’t be able to hold it very long.


As soon as your puppy has eaten, you’ll want to take them outside to use the toilet. Most dogs will need to use the bathroom at least 30 minutes after eating. We’ve created this Pug puppy potty training chart that will help you keep track of when your pup has used the bathroom.

Problem #3: Not Taking Them Outside To Potty First Thing In The Morning

take your pug puppy outside in the morning
As soon as you get out of bed, you need to take your pug outside.

You’re eating breakfast, brushing your teeth, or drinking a cup of coffee before you take your puppy outside. It’s easy to think that your puppy can hold their pee just a little longer until you’ve had your first cup of coffee.

However, your puppy has just been in their kennel for 6-8 hours and the first thing they need to do is pee.


As soon as your feet hit the floor, you need to take your puppy out of the crate and take her directly to their pee spot. Don’t go to the kitchen and begin making your coffee.

Instead, get into the habit of taking your puppy out right as soon as you get out of bed. Once she has done her business, you can then worry about making your cup of coffee.

Problem #4: Their Crate Is Too Big

Many pet owners opt for crate training because they’ve heard that it’s the fastest way to toilet train a puppy. Some people prefer to only use a crate during the night because they’ve been told that a dog won’t go where they sleep.

Only to wake up and realize that they’ve gone inside the crate! What’s that about?

Before you throw out the crate because you think it doesn’t work. It’s important to look at the size of the crate in comparison to your small Pug puppy. It’s true that puppies won’t use the bathroom where they sleep, but if the crate is too big, they will just go in the corner.


If you’ve purchased a big crate for your 8 week old Pug puppy, you’ll want to use a divider of some type to ensure they won’t have too much space.

They should have just enough space to lay down and stand up without ease. We used a divider in Mindy’s crate and gave her just enough room for her pet bed.

Problem 5: You’re Leaving Your Puppy Too Long In Their Crate

Many pet owners make the mistake of leaving their puppy in the crate too long without a bathroom break because they know their dog won’t wet their bed.

The result is that their puppy eventually stops trying to hold their pee because they are being neglected.


A crate should only be used as a potty training aid, and you should avoid leaving your puppy in it for several hours at a time without a bathroom break.

Don’t overestimate how long your puppy can hold their bladder. Leave your puppy in their crate for short periods of time, and take them outside before their bladder becomes too full.

At night, when their metabolism drops, they’ll be able to stay in the crate for longer periods without a break.

Puppies should Never be left locked in a cage for long periods of unsupervised time!

Problem 6: Not Taking Your Pug Puppy Outside Often Enough

give your Pug puppy several potty breaks
A small puppy needs to be take outside to potty several times throughout the day.

If your Pug puppy is peeing inside more than they are outside, there’s a good chance you’re not taking them outside often enough. Puppies have very small bladders and depending on the age, they likely have very little control over them.

One of the most common reasons a puppy will pee indoors, is they have been ignored left inside without sufficient potty breaks.

Young puppies will need to go bathroom every 30 minutes or more, depending on their age. Yes that seems like overkill, but it’s best to take them outside more often than wait too long and they have an accident.


Set a timer on your iPhone for 20-30 minutes or whatever time gap you think your puppy can wait. Once the alarm goes off, put your pup’s leash on and take them to their designated spot so they can use the bathroom.

This may seem like overkill, but it’s best to establish good toilet training habits at a young age. Once your puppy becomes a little bit older (a month or two), you won’t have to take them out as much as you did when they were just a few weeks old.

Problem 7: Not Taking Potty Breaks Seriously

avoid distractions during potty breaks
Make sure you avoid distractions to avoid puppy toilet training problems

If you take your puppy outside to pee and there’s a lot of activity going on in the backyard, they’ll be distracted and less likely to take care of business.

Puppies will empty their bladder if it is full or there is nothing else going on.

However, if it’s only one fourth full and there are other things going on, they’ll get distracted. Their bladder isn’t full enough and there’s just too much interesting stuff going on around them.


Take your puppy to the same spot everyday and make sure no one is playing or distracting them from doing their business.

Your puppy’s potty spot should be boring and low key.

Problem 8: Are You Being Consistent?

According to Healthline, it can take 66 days for people to learn a new habit. Like humans, puppies will learn faster when you’re consistent with your training.

You can’t expect your puppy to learn this new habit, if you’re not being consistent and setting up a regular routine.


Take your puppy to the same spot in the yard each time you take them out to potty. Your grass will turn yellow from the pee, but this is only temporary.

Once your puppy is successfully potty trained, they’ll likely change up their potty spot and you won’t have to worry about ruining your grass.

Problem 9: Not Cleaning Up Accidents Correctly and Fast Enough

pick a potty training spot
Always clean up after your puppy when they have an accident in the house.

Puppies and dogs have an instinct to pee where they have peed before. It’s not unusual to see an older dog peeing in a spot where other dogs have peed. This instinct is what makes it easy to potty train your puppy to go in their designated spot.

The downside is that this instinct is what will cause your puppy to pee in the same spot if they’ve had an accident in the past.

Many people make the mistake of just using water and a paper towel to clean up the mess. A quick clean up job won’t remove the smell and stains that will only cause your puppy to pee in the same spot.


Use an enzymatic cleaner to remove stains and smells so your puppy will be less likely to return to the same spot.

If your puppy pees before you get an enzymatic cleaner, you’ll want to use a carpet shampooer to clean the area thoroughly. Avoid using a steam cleaner, as the heat will engrave the stain and odor into the carpet permanently.

Make sure you use a stain and odor eliminator designed for pets like this one.

Problem 10: You’re Forgetting To Use Positive Reinforcement

Pugs were bred to be companion dogs and thrive on attention. If your puppy isn’t understanding what you want them to do, maybe you’re not giving them enough attention?

You’re quick to let them know when they have an accident, but you’re not giving them enough praise when they go potty outside.


Next time your puppy goes potty, take the time to let them know they did a “great job.” Get down on your knees and say “good girl” and give them a hug and pat, or pet them.

Show them how happy you are with them by spending some time playing, praising, or even giving them a treat. Make it a huge celebration, so they’ll know what they did.

Once your puppy understands what you want them to do, they’ll be more likely to potty in their spot without you telling them.

Problem 11: You Are Leaving Your Puppy Outside Alone

If your puppy is allowed to go in and out the pet door by themselves, there’s a good chance they are not doing their business. Puppies need supervision until they are properly trained.

I understand that it can be hard to stand outside while your puppy takes their time to do their business. However, the only way to ensure they pee outside and not in the house is to stay by their side until they are successfully trained.


Take your puppy outside on a leash until they are properly trained. It may seem like a hassle to go outside with your puppy every 30 minutes to an hour. This won’t last forever and once your puppy is trained, they can start using the pet door, as long as your backyard is fenced in and safe from hazards.

Problem 12: Are You Letting Your Puppy On Your Carpets?

take them outside after naps
Carpet can easily be confused for grass.

It’s not uncommon for puppies to pee on carpeted floors. Carpet is soft and spongy under your dogs paws, which mistakenly feels like grass. When I brought Mindy home I made the mistake of setting her down on the carpet and she peed right away.

The downside is that it’s almost impossible to remove all traces of urine from the carpet, which means that they’ll likely pee again in the same spot.


Make sure you don’t allow your puppy on the carpet without supervision. You may need to invest in a baby gate or play pen when you don’t want them in the living room or other carpeted room in your home.

Problem 13: Are You Confusing Your Puppy With Pee Pads?

While pee pads can come in handy when you can’t let your puppy out on schedule. The downside is that the pee pads can confuse your puppy when they are still in training.

Pee pads tell your puppy they can use the bathroom inside, which can make it hard when it comes time to remove them.


If you have to use disposable pee pads, keep them in a designated room with tile or hardwood flooring. Don’t leave them on the floor when you are home and can take your puppy outside.

Make sure you pick up all newspapers, rugs, and other items that can be confused for pee pads.

Problem 14: It Could Be Because Of The Weather

If you get your Pug puppy for Christmas, you’re likely to have more trouble with potty training. Most puppies don’t want to go potty outdoors when it’s snowing, cold, or rainy.

Your puppy will likely hold their bladder until they get back in the warm house.


I’m afraid you’re going to have to go out in the elements with them and wait until they poop and pee.

If you need a sweater or jacket, then so will your Pug. Here are some of the best Pug sweaters that will help keep your puppy warm while they spend time outside in the elements.

The colder that it is, the longer it will take your puppy to go. Dogs are smart and they know that you’re likely to take them back inside before they do their business.

Problem 16: You’re Not Waiting Long Enough

puppy toilet training problems
Sitting in a chair can be a distraction for this lap dog.

Speaking of not giving your puppy enough time, many pet owners complain that their puppy pees right after they bring them indoors, after an unsuccessful stint in the backyard.

This usually happens when you haven’t given your puppy enough time. Every puppy is different, some may take 5 minutes while others may take 20 minutes to take care of their business.


Give your puppy at least 20-30 minutes to do their business. This doesn’t mean you have to stand around for 30 minutes. Put a chair by your puppy’s toilet area.

The downside is once you sit down, your Pug will want to sit on your lap. This can be a distraction for your pooch which can make the process take longer.

If a chair doesn’t work, then try walking around in their potty spot. Your puppy will likely go bathroom faster when they are walking instead of just standing looking at you.

Problem 15: Does Your Puppy Have A Bladder Infection?

Sometimes a medical problem like a bladder infection can keep your puppy from learning how to potty on demand. If your puppy is continually having accidents in your home, when you’ve implemented a potty schedule, it may not be your fault.

If your puppy has been successful for several weeks and then all of a sudden they’re having accidents in the home, they could be dealing with medical issues.


Take your puppy to the vet to ensure they are not dealing with cystitis or other ailments. Jot down when your pup started wetting the bed, leaving pee and poop in the house and let your vet know.

Your veterinarian will be able to diagnose the problem and likely treat it with antibiotics so you can continue your training.

Problem 17: You’re Expecting Unrealistic Results

Most people are looking for the quickest ways to potty train a puppy. They tend to believe that a puppy can be trained in 7 days or less. They start one method of training and when they don’t see results, they switch it up to another method.

This only confuses your puppy and can delay the process.

The truth is that there is no “one size fits” all when it comes to potty training. You can’t put a timeline on how long it will take to successfully train your puppy.


There are no secrets to potty training a Pug. As long as you create a potty training schedule and stick with the routine, your dog will eventually learn what you expect of them.

It’s going to take as long as it takes to potty train your Pug. Once they are successfully house trained, you’ll have a well-behaved dog that doesn’t make a mess in your home.

Final Word On Pug Puppy Potty Training Mistakes

If your puppy keeps having accidents, you’re likely making some of the mistakes above. Once you’ve ruled out any medical issues, you should ensure you’re not making any of the mistakes that can be confusing your puppy.

There are no secrets to potty training, it just takes persistence and consistency on your part! Pugs are easy to potty train if you know what to expect.

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