Living in the city means there isn’t always grass available. If you just moved in from the suburbs, this can be a challenging transition for not only you…but also you dog. It’s common for dogs to feel uncomfortable when they are asked to go to the bathroom in a place they aren’t used to. This often happens with dogs experiencing changes in their bathroom habits, like going from a training pad to the outdoors or moving from a suburb to a city, where grass is rare commodity. Adjusting your dog to the city’s sidewalks and roads should be addressed as soon as possible. See if there are ways to slowly introduce your dog to concrete. Taking your dog to the bathroom in spots with both grass and concrete is a great start. Another method is buying artificial or portable grass that you can gradually remove once you think it’s time. Slowly decrease the size of the grass until your dog is comfortable going to the bathroom on the concrete. Another way to ease the transition is by taking your dog to areas that are heavily populated by dogs. The scent of other dogs will encourage yours to relieve himself in the same area. Your dog may sniff to find a clean area that doesn’t smell like other dogs, so remain patient and calm.
It’s important to lead your pup by leash to the spot where they should go to the bathroom. If your dog starts going toward the grass, gently redirect him with the leash and keep him on the cement. Praising your dog post-potty is very important. Give your dog a treat immediately after going to the bathroom, that way they can associate their action with reward. In the event your dog begins relieving himself on the grass, interrupt him by loudly clapping your hands and then lead him to the grass. When your dog finishes in the right spot, positively reinforce the behavior with lots of affection and praise.
Your attitude plays a major role in training your dog to use the concrete instead of grass. Scolding or yelling at your dog will do more harm than good. Stay patient and calm, as unlearning a behavior isn’t the easiest thing to do. Bring treats with you on walks to make giving rewards easy and efficient. Training your dog to go to the bathroom on concrete is easiest as a puppy, so begin the transition as soon as you can.