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Leerburg.com August 8, 2011
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Patience in Potty Training Stella

Patience in Potty Training Stella

Cindy is potty training Stella, our 9 week old border terrier puppy. Anyone who has ever house trained a puppy will get a good laugh out of this video.

In it, we see Cindy taking Stella out for a potty break. The goal of potty training is to teach a puppy to quickly relieve themselves when you take them outside. To accomplish this the puppy owner doesn’t interact with the puppy on potty breaks. They take them out and stand there until the puppy does its thing. When the pup pees or poops, you immediately praise the pup and bring it back inside.

This teaches the pup a potty training routine. It learns that there are potty breaks and there are play and walk breaks.

Information from this video is covered in Your Puppy 8 Weeks to 8 Months.

August 8, 2011 | 5 Minutes, 40 Seconds

Submit Your Question
for Ed & Michael Ellis!

We are now accepting more questions that will be used in our newsletter video Q&As with Ed and Michael Ellis. Michael and Ed will be filming new training videos in a few weeks. We are compiling a list of common dog training questions that will be filmed and featured in future newsletters. If you have a question, send it to Cindy at cindyr@leerburg.com

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Your Puppy 8 Weeks to 8 Months

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Leerburg Q&As

This Week's Featured
Question & Answers

Question: Our 7 year old beagle is attacking our 14 year old cocker. It’s gotten so bad we are afraid the beagle will kill our other dog, what can we do?


We have a 7 year old Beagle and a 14 year old Cocker Spaniel at home. We've had both since they were puppies, but we got the cocker first. They have gotten along up until about this past year.

Lately, the Beagle has been attacking the Cocker Spaniel. She's a hunting dog, so she's fast and gets a good grip on the other dog. Out of the blue, she'll lunge at the other one and attack her, without ever letting go. When we try to drag her off, she takes the other one with her.

It doesn't make sense because most of the time they are friends, but sometimes the Beagle gets jealous for no reason and seems like she's trying to kill her.

It's gotten so bad, we are afraid she might kill the Cocker, especially with her old age.

We don't know what to do about it. I've been reading your website, and it has great tips ... It's just that the Beagle has been aggressive and attacking the other one for so long, we're worried it is too late. We are unsure if any training classes would help her at home (she doesn't seem to learn her lesson easily...). We also wouldn't want our life to revolve around keeping her on a leash the whole time. We are already constantly on the edge of our seat for the next attack. This isn't how we want to live our life, but we really just want the fighting to stop.

We have to get in and pull her off, unless she'll never let go. We need your advice before either one of us gets bitten, or our Cocker Spaniel gets badly hurt or killed. We definitely don't want it to come to where we have to get rid of the beagle, or be forced to put her down.

Please help us!

It would be so greatly appreciated if you would email me back. Also, if you would post a response on the website, please let me know.

Thank you,


Normally we suggest separating and training both dogs but with a 14 year old dog I believe the best course of action would be to keep them separated so the poor older dog gets some peace.

My guess is that as the cocker gets older, the beagle is trying to climb the social ladder and take over the dominant role from the cocker. YOU should be intervening and not allowing this to even be a possibility in the first place. It’s like a senior citizen being put in the middle of a bar fight, it’s just not fair.

I would take the beagle through our groundwork program and Pack Structure for the Family Pet.

I’d also recommend a dominant dog collar and Dealing with Dominant & Aggressive Dogs.

You may not want your life to revolve around keeping her on a leash, but you have a responsibility to train or safely contain this dog so the older dog can live in peace. Putting the beagle to sleep seems like a pretty harsh option to me, just because “We also wouldn't want our life to revolve around keeping her on a leash”

If you spend some time reading this section on dog fights, you’ll see that your problems are very common. I’ve received 6 or 7 emails just today from dog owners with very similar problems. If you don’t teach the dogs your rules, they can’t possibly behave how you want them to.

Cindy Rhodes

For more questions on this topic, see our Q&A on Dog Fights.


Question: I have a stray dog that I want to do some clicker training with and he screams and tries to hide when he hears the click. Do you have any suggestions for a quieter clicker?

I take in and rehab strays. I do a lot of trick training using clickers. However, I have a Blue Heeler who screams and tries to push himself under the bed or cram himself into the corner of a closet when he hears the click. Someone suggested using a retractable pen, but the timing with it is unreliable. The Heeler was not scared of its sound, though, so I am hoping a quieter clicker would do. I saw two in the Leerburg catalog that advertised as being having softer clicks. They were the i-Click and the Clik Stik. All things being equal, I would prefer the i-Click, but if the other is significantly softer, I would get it. Or do y'all know of something else that could be used as a marker that would have the same accuracy as a clicker? I know you don't use clickers a lot, but they work real well for teaching tricks to these abandoned dogs. They really enjoy the trick training--they loosen up and get a little confidence.

Cindy's Response:

Use a verbal marker, instead of a clicker. We use the word YES. Some dogs are bothered by the clicking sound.

You can also use a clicking sound you make with your mouth (like you would use to encourage a horse) the timing may not be as accurate but for trick training, it should be fine.

Good luck!

Cindy Rhodes

For more questions on this topic, see our Q&A on Training with Markers.


Have a question for Ed & Cindy? Try the Leerburg Search Engine. This search engine was written specifically for Leerburg by our in house IT manager. Our search engine is specific to Leerburg and only searches leerburg.com and the Leerburg web forum. If you can't find the answer to your question by using our search engine, you can email Cindy here at Leerburg at cindyr@leerburg.com. If you have your spam filter on, make sure you set it to receive our replies!!!

Customer Comments
on Thursday's Newsletter Video

Cindy, your newest little one, Stella is absolutely adorable. I have always been a "big dog" person, but Stella is utterly charming. Best wishes for you both. I know she will bring you much joy.



Hi Cindy,

I want to congratulate you on your new puppy! I read in a recent newsletter that Ed plans on showcasing her throughout her training to give us ideas on how to train the small dog. Having a cavalier, I am so excited to see the videos. Training a small dog is so very different and I appreciate that someone is finally acknowledging that. These little dogs have so much to offer and can make wonderful performance dogs. I've put an RN on my cavalier and we were working towards our RA title and she seems to have just shut down. I'm not sure what happened because she still loves to train... and begs to train. I'm not sure if it's just a stage, or if I did something inadvertently or a combination of both. Hopefully, I will be able to get some pointers from you and Leerburg to get us back on track. And if she just doesn't like ring pressure, then I will retire her and she can take first place in our hearts. I look forward to watching Stella grow!



OMG Stella is sooooo cute, I can't stand it!!!! Congrats on your new puppy!!



Thanks for sharing that wonderful video… will look for more down the road as she grows and trains, give a pat to Stella for me.

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