The ideal guideline is as follows.
- A one-year-old dog can hold their bladder for up to eight hours, but ideally, you should give your dog a toilet break after 6 hours.
- A dog with a bladder infection or who is feeling sick will need to relieve themselves every few hours.
- Take your dog potty before bed to avoid accidents
Your one-year-old dog can hold their pee overnight most of the time. Having that toilet stop before heading to bed will help your dog to control its bladder.
As a good practice, your dog should have the opportunity to relieve themselves half an hour before you turn out the lights for the night. In other words, if you go to bed at 10 pm – take your dog out to relieve themselves half an hour beforehand.
This practice will get your dog into the habit of relieving themselves before going to bed, and it helps them to establish a good routine that will help them sleep through the night.
Taking them out to relieve themselves before bed rather than expecting them to hold for ages prevents your pup from accidentally peeing in the house. If that happens too many times, then the accidental peeing can become a habit, which can be hard to overcome.
One Year Old Dogs Need to Pee Every 6-8 Hours
Although your one year old dog can hold on for up to 8 hours, it is better if they had a toilet break after 6 hours.
The reason being that at a year old they have only just learned to hold on for a longer time. But if you leave them for 8 hours, the excitement of your arrival home may be too much for your dog and they may pee with excitement.
That can become a habit which is very hard to break. You want your pup to have the confidence to be alone, and worrying over a toilet mistake can set back your training several months.
If your 1 year old has problems urinating it could be a urinary infection. A young dog with this problem will feel uncomfortable as well as embarrassed because they have had to pee on the floor.
Urinary tract infections need veterinary attention to help clear up the infection. They are painful for your dog but with help from your vet, they can be cleared up quickly.
At the other end of the scale is urine retention. Aside from the discomfort from not being able to relieve themselves, an obstruction causing urinary retention can be dangerous.
Please take your young dog to your vet urgently for observation and treatment. Trying to diagnose your dog yourself will only lead to a worsening situation. Your veterinarian will run some diagnostic tests to see what the health issue is and how to treat it.
Sometimes Your Dog Will Need to Potty at Night
There will be times when your dog will need to go to the toilet during the night. Follow these steps for an effective midnight toilet break.
- Pay attention if your dog nudges you and wants to go out to urinate.
- Keep the whole process low-key and quiet – the purpose is to allow your dog to relieve themselves before returning to bed immediately. It is not time to play.
- Talk in a quiet voice and behave calmly.
- Allow your dog to wander around to find the right spot and do their business.
- Praise them for doing well and being such a good dog.
- Take them back inside, and go back to the bedroom or wherever your dog sleeps.
- Give your dog a small treat as a reward.
- Then it is lights out and back to sleep for everyone, your dog included.
By following these steps, your dog will come to realize that the trip outside is business only, no playing.
Don’t get sidetracked into throwing the ball or any other daytime games.
If you follow this process every time, being woken up to allow your dog to do their business will not become a problem.
Now that your dog has relieved their bladder, had a kind pat or two, and swallowed that tasty treat, they will be back to bed and off to sleep probably a lot quicker than you.
Things to Know About Your Dogs Toilet Habits
- How many times does a dog urinate each day? An adult dog pees between 3 – 5 times per day. But a one-year-old dog will probably pee from 3-4 times per day
- Night toileting facts: the factors that can decrease the amount of time your dog has between toilet stops depends on their age, size, diet, and the amount of water they consume.
- Pre-bedtime toilet stop: Make sure you take your dog out to go to the toilet about half an hour before you turn the lights out to sleep. This will help them last longer during the night before having to urinate.
- How much water should I give my dog at night? Just put out enough in a shallow bowl for a gulp or two that will relieve their thirst. If you provide them with a lot to drink, you will be up all night. Give them more to drink during the day when they are active.
- How many times should a dog pee per day? Usually, the smaller the dog, the more often they need to urinate. A one-year-old dog will probably need to go 4-6 times. Larger breeds have larger bladders, so they can hold on for longer.
- Is it normal for a dog to pee only twice a day? A healthy, growing dog needs to urinate more than that. A dog that only pees twice per day may have a critical health issue and should go to your vet for a check-up.
Use Rewards to Potty Train Your One-Year-Old Dog
You can help your dog learn what you expect from them by utilizing praise and reward tactics for when they get a task right.
For example, for going to the toilet in the right place, your dog gets a treat or cuddle. If they do have an accident, downplay the event, clean up, and move on.
Positive words, treats, cuddles, and kindness towards your dog will see them grow up wanting to please you more and more.
Young female dogs are notorious for peeing when they are scared (if you yell at them) or when they are overexcited (such as someone they know arriving at the door).
If you know you are going to have visitors, take your dog outside beforehand and allow them to run around and pee. This should help prevent excitement urination.
Dogs Soon Learn What You Expect
All dogs have a unique personality, and they learn and achieve things at slightly different rates.
A young puppy is notoriously forgetful; there is so much to learn, so much to do, that they forget things very quickly.
You will have to repeat the lessons for your young pup time and time again until they finally get it. Only then should you add a new trick into the mix.
By the time they are one year old, they can concentrate more fully and learn quicker.
They will beg to go out to their toileting area because they have learned where they get to do their business.
They associate that area as a good thing because it pleases you and dogs, as we know, love to please!
They will nudge you until you wake up during the night when they feel the urge to go, which can be annoying, but it is much better than having them pee in the house or your bed!
Your Dog Holding on Can Lead to Health Problems
Your year-old dog will soon learn to hold their urine until they are in the right area before relieving themselves.
But just because they have learned to hold on, they should not be forced to hold on longer than 6-8 hours. If you leave them too long, that is when mistakes start creeping in.
If your dog can pee when they like during the day, it will make the night easier to sleep through due to an emptied bladder.
The consequences of holding onto urine can lead to bacterial infection, cancer, and incontinence.
A urinary tract infection can cause severe pain when urinating. It may even cause the lack of your dog’s ability to urinate, which is a major health issue.
There may be blood in your dog’s pee (which is a good reason to watch them when they potty). Urinary tract infections can also cause weight loss, lethargy, lack of appetite, and accidents in the house due to lack of bladder control.
If you notice any of these signs, take your dog to your vet immediately for a check-up.
Regular toilet breaks are necessary for a healthy dog during the day. It makes it easier for your dog to go to bed at night and sleep right through without needing to pee.
Bladder Control Takes Time To Learn
Bladder control takes time for your dog to learn. It isn’t that they deliberately pee on the floor, but a small dog has a small bladder that doesn’t hold as much liquid as an older dog’s bladder.
Getting through a long night is a marathon for a puppy under one year of age. They just can’t hold on for that length of time. A midnight trip to the toilet area will be necessary.
As the puppy grows, so too does their bladder, and they will be able to hold their pee longer. It is a great moment when you realize your dog has made it through the night!
Just as a human baby takes a while to learn to control its bladder, it is the same for a young dog. Just be patient during that first year, and be content in the knowledge that your dog will gain control given time.
Writer: Jean Brewer