While the Italian greyhound is sometimes considered a bit more difficult to house train, it is not any more difficult than any other smaller dog. With patience and consistency, it can be done successfully.
Schedule and Routine:
This is one of the most important parts. Dogs thrive on routine, and you must consistently walk your dog for bathroom breaks. The duration relates to the age of your Italian greyhound dog. The younger the dog, the more frequently it needs to go. For example, an 8 week old puppy might need bathroom access every 15-30 minutes while you’re there.
Feed on a schedule as well. This helps to create a more reliable potty schedule. Dogs usually have to go at certain times if fed on a schedule. Always remember to walk the dog around key times: always when he wakes up, within 15 minutes of eating or drinking, following a play session, and just to take him if it’s been awhile. If your Italian greyhound has an accident, step up the frequency of your walks. If you’re using an indoor potty, make sure to be taking the dog to that with the same frequency as outdoor walks.
Supervision and Limiting Freedom:
This is usually one of the biggest problems. We give young puppies and dogs way too much freedom when it hasn’t yet earned with a reliable history of no accidents. Always take your Italian greyhound dog for a potty walk prior to a free-time period. Then, close all the doors in the house and baby gate off any open areas so that you can supervise him better.
Not allowing him the whole house means you and he are in the same proximity to one another, allowing you to pay more attention to him. This way, he isn’t able to discreetly disappear to another room for an accident. When your IG becomes more reliable, slowly give him more freedom in the house, but not before then!
When you are not able to supervise the puppy or if you will be gone, you need to confine the puppy to a smaller area. Crate training is the most ideal, but many people prefer ex-pens. You will need to cover the floor of an ex-pen with newspaper, but be advised that many puppies play with that.
I suggest crate training for those times you are gone or overnight. Just don’t leave a puppy for long stretches in a crate without a walk, break, or playtime. Consider using a dog walker, family member, friend, or neighbor to walk your Italian greyhound dog at least once during the day if you must be away for a longer duration.
Watch Body Language:
Learn what signals your Italian greyhound dog gives. All dogs give signals, but they may be subtle. Pay attention to:
o Coming to you and away more than once
o Attempting to disappear
o Sniffing the floor
These are all signs of a dog that might need to be walked. The better you get at reading your Italian greyhound dog’s signals, the fewer accidents you’ll have.