You brought a new puppy home, and you’re starting a potty-training regime. Your dog underwent a surgical procedure with strict orders for minimal activity for the first few days. Nothing beats the stunning view from your penthouse apartment – a whopping eighty floors away from anything resembling walking space for your dog. You have a senior dog showing advanced signs of canine cognitive dysfunction. What do all of these situations have in common? They’re perfect for puppy training pads!
But I Don’t Have a Puppy
Whether you call them puppy training pads, potty pads, or pee pads, the function is the same. These versatile pads create an indoor bathroom space for your dog. They’re often referred to as puppy training pads because people commonly use them to potty train new additions to the household. Does that mean you’re limited to that single use? Of course not.
Owners find plenty of other uses for puppy training pads:
- Small Breed Dogs: Tiny dogs don’t create much in the way of waste. Many owners opt to skip the outdoors and keep everything indoors.
- Plummeting Temperatures: Has your dog ever given you the, “Are you kidding?” look on winter mornings? Puppy training pads provide an alternative when snowy conditions prohibit outdoor excursions.
- Apartment Life: If you live on lower floors, trips out for a walk aren’t a big deal. When your apartment is in the upper reaches, though, making your dog “hold it” through lengthy elevator rides is rough. Some buildings provide rooftop options, but many don’t.
- Owner Limitations: Your disabilities might prohibit you from the frequent walks your dog requires. Cleaning a puppy training pad could prove a more accessible option.
- 9 to…Whenever: People work long hours. If a mid-day dog-walker isn’t in the cards, providing your dog with a puppy training pad might split the difference, especially if you have a younger dog lacking sufficient bladder control.
- Health and Wellness: Dogs recovering from illness or surgery frequently have limitations. Seniors regress to puppy-like behaviors. Whether temporary or permanent, you’ll find a puppy training pad beneficial.
Indoor Potty Options
You aren’t limited to puppy training pads. After all, with only a couple of exceptions, you have to dispose of them in the trash (not environmentally-friendly). Yeah, not always appreciated.
So what else can you opt for?
- Paper towels
- Cloth towels
- Simulated grass stations
- Genuine grass stations
The Pros and Cons
Since we’ll address puppy training pads in this post, let’s look at the pros and cons of the other options.
When considering newspapers and paper towels, they’re pretty similar. Paper products absorb fluid well, depending on how many layers you use (and the size of your dog). They aren’t expensive, and, as you’re recycling (in some cases), they’re environmentally-friendly. However, they’re messy to clean up.
Cloth towels check the inexpensive box (unless you decide to splurge – up to you), and they’re also environmentally-friendly. They DO absorb fluid well (again, depends on the thickness of the towel). However, you have to wash them regularly. You also have to watch your dog to make sure they don’t chew them.
Grass stations are expensive, especially if you use services that supply genuine grass. They work well if you take your dog outside occasionally. They ARE great for absorbing liquid, but they have limits, and then you either need to order a replacement or clean them.
Choosing a Puppy Training Pad
Puppy training pads all work on the same principle: they absorb fluid, locking it in place until you dispose of the pad. Not all potty pads are created equal, though, so make sure to look for the following:
- Absorbency: How large is your dog? How long are you away? You don’t want the pad to “overflow” in that time. If the pad fills too fast, it can spill over, AND your dog will track urine through the house.
- Quick-Drying Top: This feature helps prevent the same problem of tracking urine through the house. The top layer should wick urine away.
- Leak-Proof: Puppy training pads come with plastic backing to keep urine from leaking through to the floor. Some are better than others, and you DON’T want a full pad to seep through. Reusable pads have the best proofing, but you can also look for leak-proof guarantees.
- Odor Control: You don’t want your house to smell like urine. You can opt for a puppy training pad with a built-in scent or one with odor control.
- Attractants: Pee pads don’t resemble the outdoors. Potty training with a pad teaches your dog that spot is appropriate, but some pads come with attractants such as ammonia, pheromones, or grass scents to tell your dog “go here.”
- Adhesive: You don’t need that puppy training pad sliding all over the floor. Simple adhesive strips allow you to adhere them to hard floors (they’re less successful on carpets, but you can try).
- Durability: If you have a chewer or digger, look for sturdy potty pads that won’t get destroyed in the first five minutes.
The Best Puppy Training Pads
There are a lot of options available when you start looking at puppy training pads. Consider your particular situation. Do you have a small dog? A large dog? Are you caring for a dog recovering from a surgical procedure? Is your dog aging and losing their memory? Or are you just planning to potty train your new puppy? Whatever your need, there’s a puppy training pad just for you.
Best Standard Puppy Training Pads
If you aren’t looking for any fancy bells and whistles, these are the puppy training pads for you. They get the job done. Maybe you just want a standby for when the snow creeps up over the door. Or perhaps you need some help with potty training. These are the perfect go-to options.
Four Paws provides a little of everything you could want in a puppy training pad. Each pad features five layers to lock in fluid, with a quick-drying top layer. The “floor armor” bottom layer is 100% guaranteed leak-proof, reassuring you your floors are safe and sound. Have a chewer? These pads are durable and resist tearing. Built-in attractants draw your dog straight to the pad, while odor control keeps your house smelling clean. There are five sizes available – up to Gigantic! – in packs of 75, 100, 150, and 200. You won’t break the bank paying for them, either.
Downside? Originally, Four Paws featured two layers of quick-dry on the top, but their newest model removed the second one, to the dismay of a lot of people.
AmazonBasics also features five layers of protection. The quilted surface is quick-drying, while the sponge-like core converts liquid to gel and absorbs odors. A plastic lining protects your floors from leaks. AmazonBasics is so confident in their product, they provide a one-year, risk-free satisfaction guarantee (always love those!).
The downsides? Unhappily, if you have a large dog, the pad might not be sufficient. People also complained the pad wasn’t always quick-drying, allowing their dog to track urine through the house.
Recognize the Arm & Hammer label? You know what that means – baking soda. These puppy training pads use baking soda in the Thinsorb middle layer to draw down moisture and eliminate odors. The top layer withstands tearing, digging, and chewing (no questions on durability!). The final plastic layer protects your floor from liquid.
So what are the downsides? Again, large dogs might overflow the pad. Also, some people complained the urine leaked through the bottom.
Best Extra-Large Puppy Training Pads
If you have a large breed dog, you know standard sizes don’t apply in your house. Large bladders require extra-large puppy training pads. Not to worry: pet manufacturing companies know you have special needs, and they designed potty pads just for you.
At 28 by 34 inches, All-Absorb holds up to 3 cups of liquid! These puppy training pads feature a leak-proof bottom, a quick-drying top layer to prevent tracking of urine through the house, and a middle layer infused with baking soda to absorb pesky odors. The middle layer also converts liquids to gel to help prevent any accidental spills.
Downsides? These pads lack adhesive backing, and they’re lightweight, making it easy for your dog to move them around the house. Also, they’re not large enough for giant breeds.
Have a giant breed dog? BESTLE has you covered. These puppy training pads hold a whopping NINE CUPS of liquid! Each pad features five layers, with a polymer gel in the center to absorb and hold the liquid while neutralizing odors. The quilted top prevents dangerous overflows while drying quickly to prevent your dog from tracking urine through the house. The durable design prevents tearing and shredding.
The downside? While there is a plastic liner, some people found it less than leak-proof, so be careful.
Best Scented Puppy Training Pads
Are you concerned about any kind of urine odor wafting through your house? It’s understandable. Dogs are attracted to the scent of urine. If family or friends bring their canine companions over for a visit, you don’t want to encourage accidental markings. Luckily, there are puppy training pads designed to combat this concern.
What’s better than a product endorsed by the AKC? These large puppy training pads measure 30 by 28 inches, coming in a range of scents such as lemon, lavender, and fresh. The five layers lock in 3 cups of liquid, with an antimicrobial layer built-in for added protection and odor absorption. The quilted top dries quickly, keeping your dog’s paws dry. The plastic liner is guaranteed leak-proof for protection against spills.
Downside? As you might expect with scents, not everyone was a fan. You’ll need to decide whether you’re willing to cope with your chosen smell.
Yet another happy endorsement: the ASPCA. The available scents for these puppy training pads feature citrus and mountain air. Each pad contains a whopping SIX LAYERS of absorbent technology, with quick-drying gel in the center to collect liquid and prevent spillover. A built-in attractant draws your dog to the pad, negating any worry the scent might repel them. The top layer dries quickly, preventing urine-tracking through the house.
The downsides? Unhappily, people found issues with leaking through the plastic layer, requiring them to use double layers of the pads. Considering the cost of the pad, they weren’t pleased.
Best Washable Puppy Training Pads
If you live in an apartment or have a small breed dog, you may use puppy training pads quite frequently. Instead of filling your trash with used pads, you may want a different option. Or maybe you’d just rather explore a more environmentally-friendly option. If that’s the case, washable puppy training pads fit the bill. They’re reusable, they don’t generate a lot of unneeded trash, but they function the same.
Simple Solution not only provides you with a washable puppy training pad, they give you TWO. This means your dog never needs to go without while one is in the wash. Each pad measures 30 by 32 inches, which isn’t too shabby, even for large dogs. They hold TEN TIMES more liquid than a standard puppy training pad between washes, with a leak-proof backing that keeps your floor clean. A quick-drying top prevents urine tracking through the house.
Downside? After multiple washings, people found they started to leak.
Rocket & Rex provide four layers to their puppy training pad. The triple-stitched top withstands tearing and chewing. The middle layers quickly absorb and neutralize odors, while the bottom provides waterproofing against leaks. You can either hand-wash or machine-wash these pads. In the machine, skip fabric softeners and use enzymatic deodorizers afterward. You get a set of two, and each pad measures 30 by 36 inches (not too shabby!). Best of all, you get a 100% satisfaction guarantee with every purchase.
The downside? You do need to follow the washing instructions carefully. If you do, they’ll last through 300 washings without a problem.
Peepeego (yes, that is the name) provides the largest puppy training pad option: a whopping 65 by 48 inches. The polyester material holds up to EIGHT CUPS of liquid! It also traps hair (just in case you wanted a bonus feature). The durable top resists tearing and chewing. The core neutralizes the smell of urine between washings.
So what are the downsides? People felt the pad didn’t stay in place very well. Also, even for a washable puppy training pad, you need to wash it OFTEN.
The Comfort of Home
Plenty of dogs need the option of an indoor bathroom. Puppy training pads provide a clean, safe option that makes everyone happy.
Whether you’re catering to your dog’s particular needs or your limitations, reaching for a puppy training pad offers a perfect solution.