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How to Potty Train a Puppy Using a Bell: Quick and Easy

If you just adopted a new puppy, potty training your pup can seem like an uphill battle. But with the help of potty bells, it can be quick and easy! Yes, you heard that right, you can teach your new puppy dog to ring a potty bell to go outside.

I taught my dog to ring a bell when he was potty training. In fact, I still put them out when we have family staying with us because it is easy to forget to let the dog out when you are socializing. Plus, it almost always gets him praise from my house guests that he is such a good boy!

If you are interested in potty bell training your pup then you are in the right place. Keep reading to find out the easy three-step process to successful dog bell training.

In this blog post, we’ll discuss the benefits of bell training, how to teach your puppy to ring the bell, and how long it will take for them to be fully potty trained. Let’s get started!

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Can you really train a puppy to ring a bell when they have to potty?

Yes, you can! And it’s actually a lot easier than you might think. There are many benefits to bell training your puppy, such as preventing accidents in the house, bonding with your dog through positive reinforcement training, and giving your dog the opportunity to learn something new.

Does potty bell training mean I don’t need to crate train my new puppy?

Just because you are teaching the puppy to use dog potty bells to go outside does not mean the puppy will be safe to be left unattended in your home. Crate training your dog is still very important for training a new puppy.

What kind of bell should I use for bell training?

You can use any type of potty bell that fits your lifestyle, the most popular options are a small handbell, potty bells you hang by the door, an electric dog doorbell, and now there are even talking buttons for pets too.

How to introduce a dog to a potty bell?

If you want your dog to have a positive experience when they learn to use a potty bell you should make time for a beginning training session. This first lesson is to introduce the puppy to the sound of you ringing the potty bell a few times.

It is a good idea to have a reward ready to give to your dog for hearing the sound of the potty bell. Next, place the potty bell on the floor and let your dog approach the potty bell and investigate it on his or her own terms.

If you utilize clicker training you can click and reward your puppy for being brave and sniffing the potty bells. Dog training takes time so remember not to stick any item in your dog’s face or push it up against the dog’s nose. This can have the opposite effect on the dog as most dogs do not like anything unfamiliar coming into their space.

Once you can see that your dog is fine with the sound of the bell ringing, you can begin to move on to the first step of dog bell training.

Step 1: Teach your puppy to ring the potty bell

Teaching your puppy to “Touch” an object is the basis of a lot of training when your dog is a puppy. You may have already taught them to touch something without even realizing it, for example, if you encouraged your puppy to sniff an unfamiliar person or item in the past and told them “good job” for being brave.

The most important thing you can do to teach your dog to use a potty bell is to allow your dog to sniff of their own free will. And then you can use your clicker or voice to mark and reward your dog for touching the item.

Your dog or puppy will quickly learn that when the dog’s nose touches the potty bell that is when they receive a reward. Practice this in short, playful training sessions with your puppy before moving to the next step.

Step 2: Have your puppy ring the potty bells on command

Once you’ve successfully taught your dog to ring the potty bells it’s time to teach the word association with the action of the puppy’s nose or paw against the potty bells. Place the potty bells where your dog can approach them and as soon as the dog begins ringing the potty bells say, “Touch!” in a happy tone to teach the dog the English word for the action he is performing.

It is best to give a high-value reward when teaching a puppy or adult dog new tricks, so give your dog a small piece of real meat or some play time when he is successful. This will help your dog learn more quickly and create a positive association with the bells.

Step 3: Take your dog outside when they ring the potty bell

Once your dog knows to ring the potty bell when you say the word “Touch” you can place the potty bell by the door or hang it on the wall where it should stay for the rest of the time your dog is potty bell training.

Start your training session by telling your new puppy to “Touch” the potty training bells. As soon as the dog rings the potty training bells open the door to reward the dog with the freedom to go outside. This will teach young puppies that when the dog bell rings the door opens and they can go potty outside.

Give your puppy a potty break and then return to the potty training bells again. Repeat the process of the dog’s nose touching the potty bell, potty bells ringing, the door handle turning, and the puppy getting a potty break.

At this point in the dog bell training you are rewarding your dog with the freedom to be let outside and you will no longer need to use puppy training treats anymore. You now just need to ask your dog to ring the bell every time they go outside to potty.

If your puppy doesn’t seem to understand this concept right away don’t worry because it can take several weeks for a puppy to learn how to use a potty bell. But be sure to be listening because when you least expect it they will ring the bell.

That is when the magic happens and you will begin to see that your hard work is starting to pay off. Give your puppy praise and let them go out to their potty spot. As your puppy learns that ringing the bell means it’s potty time they may begin to start ringing it all the time.

This is better than accidents in the house but may also signal to you that your dog is learning and communicating to you that they like going outside. After the first few months of your dog ringing the bell and not having accidents in the home, you can remove the bell system. Don’t throw it away though because you may want to use it again if you move to a new home or travel with your dog.

And there you have it! Potty training a puppy to use a dog potty bell to let you know they need a bathroom break.

Please remember to be patient with house training a small puppy

Puppy potty training is a complicated task, and can be even more difficult with a small dog that needs to be watched constantly. So please be patient with your puppy as they are learning a new skill and need time to master it.

Potty training your puppy will take time, consistent training, and frequent bathroom breaks to master. Just remember that when you begin to feel like it is never going to work, that’s usually about the time your dog will start to surprise you and begin to figure things out.


How long does potty bell training take to work?

It typically takes between two to six weeks for a puppy to be fully potty trained. However, some puppies may take longer depending on their age, breed, and how much time and effort you are willing to put into the training process.

At what age can you bell train a puppy?

You can start bell training a puppy as young as eight weeks old. For best results, it is recommended to wait until your puppy is at least 12 weeks old before starting the training process.

What is the easiest way to potty train a puppy?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question as every puppy is different. However, many dog trainers believe that bell training is one of the quickest and easiest ways to potty train a puppy.

How often should I take my puppy out to potty?

For the first few weeks of training, it is recommended to take your puppy out to potty every two hours, after meals, upon waking up, and during playtime. Once your puppy has mastered the basics of potty training, you can start to reduce the frequency of bathroom breaks. However, keep in mind that puppies have small bladders and may need to go out more often than adult dogs.


Potty training a puppy can be a difficult and time-consuming task, but bell training is a quick and easy way to house-train your furry friend. And with a little patience and consistency, you’ll have your puppy potty trained in no time!

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