Black dog with toilet paper around him

Breeds which are easy to toilet train

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Five of the easiest dog breeds to toilet train

By Nick Whittle Author

Updated on the

Potty training your puppy is a must, but it will only be successful if you employ consistency, patience and positive reinforcement. Read on to find out more.  

Owning a dog is a big responsibility. Dogs have an in-built eagerness to please, and most will not like to sit in their own soil. Take on the role of the trainer for this most important of duties and you will reap the rewards in later life. 

Most dogs quickly learn the ways of the toilet, but some are less willing to take orders than others. Remain calm and consistent and you will see that in due course your training will pay off. Approach things from a negative point of view and you will fight a losing battle for years. 

To bring a puppy or new dog home can put new owners on edge. Puppies especially will need to be taught the best course of action for wees and poos.

Which dog breed is easiest to potty train? 

The Australian Shepherd is generally considered to be the easiest dog to toilet train. Its willingness to please and ability to learn tasks quickly makes for an easier training regimen.

Dogs of this breed are especially conscious about keeping their living and sleeping quarters spotless. That helps, in a sense, because the dog will feel bad if it has an accident. Positive training of the Australian Shepherd is especially successful.

What Are The Easiest Dog Breeds To Toilet Train?

Working dogs and/or dogs that are used to training in various tasks are generally considered to be the easiest to potty train. Dogs such as these want to please their owner or handler, and they have a strong desire to be applauded for their actions. This eager to please is a huge incentivising factor in the working dog’s ability to learn.

Here are five breeds we consider the easiest to toilet train:

Australian shepherd

As we have mentioned, the Australian Shepherd beats paws-down the rest of the pack when it comes to toilet training. A natural desire to stay clean and tidy and a love of learning make the Shepherd a fast learner.

German Shepherd

German Shepherd ©Shutterstock

Again, a working dog that is used around the world in highly specialised roles, the GSD has an excellent training ethos and is intelligent to boot. It is a hard working animal, loyal to the death and extremely fond of praise. However, be aware that negative techniques of training will create unwanted GSD behaviour.

Border Collie 


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If you play your part in the training of the Border Collie you will possess a dog that is as obedient as any other. However, collies require an exceptional amount of input and a consistency of training since their attention span is notably short. To housebreak a collie is therefore easy but only if you are prepared to put in the work.

Start early! Here are 5 great puppy exercises.

Boston Terrier

For the Boston Terrier positive reinforcement is key. Approaching toilet training from any other route will land you with a dog that will literally ‘dig in its heals’. If treated well - and shown oodles of respect and love - the Boston Terrier will obey and trust its owner and do what it is told to do.


The Dobermann is an exceptionally intelligent dog. It may oft be associated with guarding prized possessions, but it makes a supremely loving and loyal home dog too. House training a Doberman is relatively easy, although the dog must be shown patience and love in order to avoid unwanted behaviour.

Are little dogs harder to potty train? 

Some dogs are quick to learn about potty training and some are not. On the whole small dogs - especially dogs that belong to the terrier breeds (such as the Jack Russell Terrier) - possess a stubborn streak that goes against them when it comes to training.

Here are five dogs that are harder than most to train:

Bichon Frise

The Bichon Frise is one of the hardest dogs to toilet train. Although this breed of dog is eager to please its owner it is also exceptionally stubborn, and quite particular about going outside especially when it is raining. Bichons will prefer to find a quiet place to do their business.

Jack Russell Terrier


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The Jack Russell is not only stubborn but also fiercely independent. Anyone who has owned a Jack Russell will know how tricky the dog is to train in the art of anything, let alone best toilet habits. An early start on the Jack Russell is essential in order to reverse its in-built want of supremacy.

Yorkshire Terrier

Although not as independent as the Jack Russell, the Yorkshire terrier is as stubborn. To make matters worse, the dog has a knack of soft-talking its owner into submission, leading to – in later life – the inability of the human to tell the dog what to do.

Cocker Spaniel

Another dog making a name for itself as a poor pupil is the Cocker Spaniel. These dogs are zany at best and defensive and grumpy at worst. The Cocker considers training beneath it and does not take kindly to being told what to do.


The Chihuahua has the stubbornness of the Bichon and the independence of the Jack Russell. It may be the sweet and loving lapdog it was born to be, but if challenged or instructed in a way that grates against its sensibilities the Chihuahua takes on a whole new façade!

Have you recently adopted a puppy? Read all there is to know about the next steps for its training

Are schnauzers easy to potty train? 

Schnauzers both giant and miniature are challenging to toilet train, and their tutelage can be often frustrating. However, just when you think things are not going your way you may just be pleasantly surprised by how much they have actually learned.

Schnauzers are highly intelligent dogs but they are also rather stubborn and do not like to be told what to do unless there is something in it for them. Thus at the start of their potty training they may come across as unwilling to learn, but in due course they realise that what they are learning will benefit them in the long run.

The breed is resistant to harsh training methods so avoid such methods as you would the plague. On the flip side, Schnauzers respond excellently to positive training and reinforcement.

There are plenty of techniques to employ in order to toilet train a dog, but most rely on an owner or handler having a positive and patient attitude. Mistakes will happen, but it is important for us all to remember that these are only mistakes: dogs do not have the ability to act out of spite.

A consistent and confident attitude will – as with any type of training – be the route to success. Even dogs that have that stubborn streak can be successfully trained if you are willing to put in some ground work and stay upbeat. Remember: harsh training and loud voices does NOT work. 

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