How to Potty Train a Two-Year-Old Male Yorkie That Was Abused

A Yorkshire terrier that has been abused may need house training.
A Yorkshire terrier that has been abused may need house training. (Image: Jupiterimages/ Images)

Weighing no more than 7 pounds, the Yorkshire terrier is a small dog with a big attitude. They are a curious, courageous, stubborn, and outgoing breed. Abuse can damage their natural self-confidence, however, and cause Yorkies to be timid and shy. A two-year-old Yorkie that has been abused is likely to have behavior problems, such as urinating or defecating in the house. House training techniques are the same for dog as for a puppy, but may take longer on an adult.

Things You'll Need

  • Dog treats
  • Crate

Sensitize your Yorkshire terrier to being touched. Yorkies that have been abused may afraid of being handled, which they exhibit through aggression (snarling and growling) or cowering. Earn your Yorkie’s trust by offering her treats without attempting to touch her. Pet or pick her up only after she will come to you without hesitation. Continue to reward her with treats each time she allows you to touch her.

Clean up messes on the floor without punishing or scolding your Yorkie. Abuse can cause Yorkies to be afraid of using the bathroom in front of humans or even of the act itself. Punishing your Yorkshire terrier for having an accident will only increase her fear and exacerbate the problem. Be patient. She has two years of bad habit to change.

Carry your Yorkie outside to go to the bathroom every two to three hours. Put the act on command by saying, "Potty" in a relaxed and happy voice. Remember that an abused Yorkie may be afraid to go to the bathroom in your presence, so wait patiently while she gains confidence.

Praise your Yorkie excitedly when she potties outside, but don’t make any sudden movements to pet her. She may misinterpret your actions and think that you're going to hit her. Give her a treat along with the praise after she has finished, every time she goes to the bathroom outside.

Interrupt your Yorkie if you see her using the bathroom inside. Though with a typical dog you would normally use a loud noise to interrupt, speak gently to your Yorkie to avoid scaring her. Then walk slowly to her, pick her up and carry her outside. Encourage her to “Potty” and reward her after she performs successfully.

Confine your Yorkshire terrier to a crate if you have to leave. This crate should be large enough for your adult Yorkie to stand and turn around in, but not large enough to give room for her to use the bathroom. Dogs normally don't go to the bathroom where they sleep, so crating your Yorkie will help her control herself until she goes outside. Do not leave her in the crate more than three hours at a time, however. If you must, ask a family member who your Yorkie trusts to come over and take her outside.

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