Cockapoo Toilet Training: House Training In 7 Simple Steps

Toilet Training A Cockapoo Puppy

…or newly adopted Cockapoo can seem daunting and often is frustrating.

The good news is, many puppies and Cockapoos can be housetrained in around two weeks, as long as the owner has the discipline to stick with a good, positive toilet training programme.

cockapoo potty training
Patience and kindness pays dividends

I’ve summarised the most important points below:

  1. Give him as many opportunities you can manage for him to get it right. It really is that simple! The more times he is rewarded for going to the toilet in the right place, the quicker he will learn.
  2. It’s equally important that you must never punish any mistakes that he makes during this learning time. If he thinks you are going to punish him then you’ll only confuse and worry him and the training will take much longer.
  3. Find a place you can keep your Cockapoo where it’s okay for ‘accidents’ to happen – but this is only for brief times when you cannot supervise him during training. For example, an indoor kennel or crate or an area penned off in the kitchen (baby gates work well). It has to be a relatively small area, which will discourage him from going to the toilet there. Place his bedding and water in his safe area and also use this space to feed him in. (Please note: if a Cockapoo or puppy is shut in an indoor kennel or pen for long periods of time, this can become a serious welfare issue and is not something that we recommend.)
  4. First thing in the morning, take your Cockapoo outside, stand with him and wait for him to go to the toilet. When he ‘goes’, give him lots of praise as he finishes (being careful not to interrupt what he is doing) and give him a treat. He should need a wee and a poo, so wait for him to do both.
  5. When he has gone to the toilet, you can take him back inside and have a play or cuddle. Let him have full access to the room that you are in – but only as long as you can give him your full attention and watch him – otherwise return him to his safe area.
  6. Take your Cockapoo out every hour on the hour from morning to last thing at night, to give him the opportunity to go to the toilet. You will also need to do this after exercise or play and after meals.
  7. When he goes, praise and reward him with a favourite treat (and write down the time of day that he went and what he did). If you keep a note of this every day, you will find that a pattern of when he goes takes shape. You can then use this to predict when he’ll need to go to the toilet. After about a week you shouldn’t have to take him out as often as every hour.

TIP: There will be times you can’t watch him, so place him in his safe area with a chew toy. It’s kinder to put him in his den area when you cannot watch him, than him sense your disappointment if he toilets in the wrong place.

When ‘accidents’ happen

There will be accidents. You must be prepared for this.

Remember Humans take at best three or four years to get this right; dogs take only two or three weeks!

It’s important to clean up any spray or odour left by accidents. Try cleaning the area with a one part non-biological washing powder / four parts water, or a branded product. This will take away any smells and stains. Make sure you do not use cleaning products that contain ammonia, as this smells like urine to Cockapoos, and will encourage him to use the same spot again and again.

Don’t make a fuss – your Cockapoo has not done it on purpose. If he is still going in the wrong place, then it may be because you are not watching him carefully enough. If you can’t watch him, he should be in his safe area. It’s not fair to keep letting him get it wrong.

Calmly place him in his den, whilst you clear up the mess (well enough it doesn’t become a sniffing place), then let your Cockapoo come back out and it’s all forgotten.

Don’t make this housetraining mistake

If you tell your Cockapoo off when he has accidents you will only cause him to worry and be afraid to toilet anywhere near you. It’s a common training issue that he may accidently learn to go inside but out of sight, in order to avoid the owner’s telling-off he is expecting.

This behaviour can spiral as it makes it harder for you to praise and reward him for toileting correctly, in the right places, because he won’t want to do his business in front of you anymore.

Toilet Training a Cockapoo Puppy

Some puppies may be too young to hold on for too long, as their bladders may be too small to cope. If this is the case, then you will need to take him out more often until he is a little older.

If a Cockapoo has diarrhoea or soft, runny poo and needs to go very often, then you may need to change his food, so it becomes more solid. Ask your vet for advice about this. Infact, if toilet training problems aren’t resolved in a few months, ask your vet to check your Cockapoo hasn’t got a medical condition that is behind the accidents.

Remember, some young puppies find it very daunting to toilet outdoors. They have developed a preference for, certain types of indoor surfaces during early accidental socialisation with their early environment.


  • Make it easy for him. Make the effort to take him outside as often as you possibly can to give him the greatest opportunity to toilet in the correct place.
  • Don’t leave him unattended for too long because he will pee when he sees you in excitement.
    By rewarding your Cockapoo at the right time and ignoring mistakes, your Cockapoo will soon get the idea and be ‘accident’ free in no time at all.
  • If you put him in his indoor den or in your bedroom overnight, he’ll let you know when he needs to go out and this will help speed up the process.
  • Find a friend – having a fully vaccinated, friendly older Cockapoo to visit and ‘show him the way’ can be very helpful and speed up the process.

Good Luck!


How To Handle A Cockapoo Puppy For The First time

Cockapoo puppy training 101

One of the things we often forget is that not all dogs naturally enjoy being groomed, handled or cuddled. We have to teach them that these things are a normal and natural part of family life. This is a foundation to training a Cockapoo puppy as it creates a lovely bond between owner and dog.

Sometimes if some one is bitten it’s because a dog reacts fearfully to being handled. That’s because he’s never been taught what a joy it is!

Doggy body language

Body language is very different for dogs. Have you noticed how a dog barks when he sees two people hugging? Dogs just don’t understand it because hugging is not how a dog shows affection.

You have to teach your Cockapoo how to enjoy being hugged and cuddled.

For owners who have children or people that just love the physical interaction and pleasure of cuddling their dog, this is one of the best things you’re ever going to teach him to do.


To begin

You will need a good supply of yummy treats. While giving him his treat, slowly start to stroke him.

Start by stroking him where you know he will be comfortable being stroked. Down the sides of his body, up his ears, down his paws. Eventually turn him over and rub his tummy.

You are giving the treats so he links in his mind your stroking him with feeling good.

If you find an area where you dog shows concern about being stroked, just stop and go back to an area he is comfortable with and gently introduce him to being stroked in that area.

Always take it very slowly and very gradually and build it up over the time your working with your dog.

Early grooming

Sometimes you can use a brush or a fluffy glove. And while he’s chewing his treat he’s learning that brushing and stroking is really enjoyable.

Get everyone in the family to do this. Everyone must know the dog needs to be handled nicely and with respect, so that your dog knows hands are always something to be enjoyed rather than something to be worried about.

You can find more positive reward-based training techniques with the ‘Training Your Cockapoo’ hand book.


Cockapoo Training:Puppy To Adult

training a cockapoo

Cockapoo Training: Puppy To Adult

A well trained dog is a joy to live with. You don’t have to worry when someone visits or if there are children around. You can just relax and enjoy your time together. That’s why Cockapoo training is so important.

Cockapoo Training
Every puppy deserved to be trained

Your Cockapoo will be excited about almost any outing you can imagine. So having a well trained Cockapoo will allow him all the freedom he craves. You can take him everywhere with you, to visit friends, to the park, to the pub even to work, because you know he will be well behaved.

It’s not just about freedom though- it’s also about safety. You owe it to your dog to keep him safe, well behaved and appropriate in what he does. And also to ensure anyone that comes into contact with your Cockapoo is safe from being jumped on.

Learn How Your Cockapoo Learns

When you bring a new dog into your home, particularly a puppy, nearly all his activities will be controlled. Most people get into trouble with their puppy because they give them way too much freedom. Mayhem ensues and the ‘fun puppy’ experience soon turns sour.

That’s why it’s important to establish an early bond with your dog during training. As the Cockapoo training programme develops over weeks and months your Cockapoo will gain your trust and you can entrust him with more and more freedom.

The Cockapoo is the perfect example of a dog that has become skilled at learning from, and anticipating, human behaviour. The Poodle is known to be one of the cleverest dogs on the planet. Also the toy and miniature Cockapoo varieties have been bred as companion dogs. So you have a dog that wants to learn and wants to please- the job is half done!

A Cockapoo Training Programme

As well as learning from his owner what is and isn’t acceptable, your Cockapoo is also interacting and learning from the world around him. This is sometimes referred to by dog trainers as ‘accidental learning’.

Dogs do what works for them. If they are rewarded by doing something they will do it again.

training a cockapoo
Start training your Cockapoo from Day one

If your Cockapoo has a bad experience from doing something he will quickly learn to stop doing that thing.

If he doesn’t get anything beneficial or bad from doing something he will gradually lose interest and stop.

With that in mind, canine psychology can be summed up in three ways:

  1. Experience something good = will do more of
  2. Experience something bad = will stop doing it
  3. Experience something neither good nor bad = gradually stop

Once you have learned that dogs will do repeatedly whatever they experience is good for them, you can use that to great advantage with your training programme.

A well trained Cockapoo is a happy Cockapoo and having him well trained will make you a happy and proud owner.

Other Important Cockapoo Training Tips

Cockapoo Rage Syndrome is something Cockapoo owners are keen to avoid. Training and exercise are key to not seeing that side of your Cockapoo manifest.

When you do embark or a Puppy Training Programme, remember to build up his exercise slowly.

It’s also important tosocialise puppies to people to make them a pleasure for any person to meet.

For your own sanity, Toilet or house training is one of the first things you’re going to teach your Cockapoo do as well as teaching him not to bite. And most dog owners believe crating is a indispensable training aid and necessary for you and your poo.

Before you start on any of those topics you might want to learn how to handle a puppy for the first time. Or if you have any particular training issues or questions, just drop a comment below.

Other Resources

Cockapoo Puppy Training

Training video

How Do I Stop My Cockapoo Puppy From Biting?

red cockapoo

My Cockapoo Puppy bites – what can I do?

If you have spent some time reading dog forums you will know the subject of puppies biting is often bought up. On one hand it’s to be expected but on the other… IT HURTS!

New owners are quick to question their Cockapoo puppies temperament but this really is not necessary. All puppies bite. But a sensible owner will teach their puppy soft mouth behaviour a long with other essentials like toilet training. As a puppy grows up you will find that they learn bite inhibition naturally as they notice that their playful bites cause pain and draw a negative reaction from their owner. After all, all puppies are looking for signs about how to please their owners.

So teaching bite inhibition is doing what most owners do in an accidental way by withdrawing when the bite becomes painful. By making the process into a intentional structured program you can encourage soft mouth behavior to happen sooner rather than later.

Why wait for your Cockapoo just to grow out of biting? What if there are children at home?; what if those sharp puppy teeth break the skin and a dressing needs to be applied?

Early Socialisation

If your puppy has had a normal start to life early experiences naturally teach bite inhibition while the puppy is nursing from the mother. If the puppy sucks too hard and uses teeth by accident the mother will push the puppy away or get up and leave. Also, when puppies begin to play with their litter mates, they learn to use their teeth softly or their play mates soon stop playing with them.

For this reason if your puppy is an orphan it may have a harder bite than other puppies who have had normal socialization with the mother and siblings. Also, for puppies that have not had this normal early socialization they don’t have a “tolerance for frustration” since they are not used to having to wait when siblings compete for attention.

Another factor that makes the cockapoo a good candidate for teaching bite inhibition is that genetically it has not been trained to bite down hard like some breeds. However, if you find your cockapoo puppy is biting down harder than expected you need to begin the process of teaching him/her self restraint straight away.

You can start lessons as soon as you like in fact after 5 months your puppy will start to grow adult canine teeth and have a stronger jaw so that is another incentive to start training early.

Anyone can teach their puppy bite inhibition

Start the process – The 4 Rs

Remove – When you are bitten severely enough, let him/her know it hurts and say “Oowww” as calmly as possible. Take your body part (hopefully just a figure) out of its mouth and look away. This is showing your puppy that biting hard means he/she will lose your attention and of course that is not desirable for any puppy.

If he/she keeps wants to continue biting move to a different room until the puppy is calm. Then re-engage their interest.

Repeat – This is a process but keep being consistent and you will begin to notice that the bite intensity becomes less hard.

Your puppy won’t stop biting. They have such a strong urge to bite and chew you won’t cure this. But repetition will lead to increasingly acceptable bites over the coming weeks and months.

As the bite intensity decreases you can increase your sensitivity to the bite. Still “Oowww” and remove. This will encourage softer and softer bites that slowly shape the puppies bite inhibition.

Reinforce – As with most training positive reinforcement is key. Softer bites should be rewarded with praise but keep withdrawing yourself as a negative consequence for harsh bites. Eventually soft mouth behaviour will be more common.

Redirect: You will probably notice times when your puppy is just in a rambunctious mood. Spare yourself some pain and have some chew toys to hand and leave the training for a calmer time.

How not to do it

Physical punishment is not the way to go. Firstly because it won’t achieve your goal. Hitting a dog on the nose with a rolled up newspaper will just make your dog cower and suppress anger. This suppression can then come back at stressful times and result in severe biting. It’s also worth saying that it’s never a good idea to push your dog’s patience level to the point its good behaviour is stretched to the limit. Dogs growl for a reason, it’s their way of saying, enough is enough please don’t continue annoying me or something worse might happen. This is a particularly good point to teach children as they love play with puppies but do not always understand where the boundaries are. (See “The Gift of Growling,” Whole Dog Journal October 2005.) For a full discussion on physical punishment read this discussion thread.

Teaching bite inhibition to an adult Cockapoo dog

Teaching bite inhibition to an adult dog is much harder as we all know old habits are hard to break. You can however, use this variation of the “Oowww” remove technique.

Have a treat in your gloved hand and only open it when your dog starts to bite more softly. Gradually they learn hard bites mean no treats!

Thick gardening gloves are recommended if you are teaching adult dogs bite inhibition. Be careful, an adult canine jaw has much more strength and a harder bite than a puppy!

Wrapping it up

With puppies and adult dogs you will find that biting down hard comes back at times of high emotion but gradually this will lessen if you keep on with positive / negative reinforcement.

Do continue to reinforce bite inhibition with your adult cockapoo dog, and guard against putting your Cockapoo puppy in stressful emotional situations where his/her tolerance might be tested. A dog is an animal and biting is natural to them even when they are part of a human family. It’s rarely a questionable temperament cockapoos have but environments that cause anxiety or over exuberance owners need to be mindful of.


bite inhibition video (not a Cockapoo) but still useful to watch