Whether you have a puppy or an older dog, without a specific signal from your dog that he has to 'go,' you may spend time doing a lot of guessing. You know he wants something, but what?
My dog comes to get me... for any reason at all. Sometimes he goes directly to the door. (Whew!) Other times he just walks around stopping at different insignificant places like the TV, but he doesn't watch TV. No matter where he stops, he looks up at me like this journey means something. So, I give him a treat, because it must mean something to him.
So, for sure, I'm going to get a doggie doorbell to distinguish my dog's real needs from his fake needs (irony intended). If you want to learn how to manipulate others, just take lessons from your dog.
Door-Hanging Doggie Doorbells
There are lots of doggie doorbells that are designed to hang on a door knob, theoretically on the door knob of the exit door. Most doggy door bells have secured bells at various levels so your pup can bump, or lick, or rub up against them however and wherever she wants to make them ring. They are pretty simple, but very effective.
These simple 'jingle bell' style doggy doorbells have bells securely fastened at different levels, so no matter how tall your dog is, she can ring one or more sets of bells.
Wall-Hanging Doggie Doorbells
Though less common, there are some dog doorbells that screw in or otherwise attach to the walls. The Go-Go Bell Deluxe is a good, and perhaps, more elegant solution to the door handle doorbells. It's a little more dainty and a more precise bell for your dog to ring. It's called the 'deluxe' because it has a good loud brass bell, not a 'tinker bell' for your dog to ring.
Customers really like the Go-Go Bell, but say it should be used for a larger dog because the bell can be pretty loud and might frighten a smaller dog. This is a good indication, though, that it definitely can be heard around the house!
Paw-Tapping Doggie Doorbells
These PawPawz Pet Potty Training Bells don't look too exciting, but dog parents really seem to like them, especially for potty training! All your dog has to do is learn to tap the button on top, either with his paw or his nose, to ring you up. This is a great device if you are close by, because the bells are not very loud.
Wireless Doggy Doorbells
How do you like all those scratches on your front door? Pretty, huh? Well, get out your sandpaper, varnish and stain, because these wireless doggie doorbells can be a great substitute for door scratching!
Why not go high-tech with your doggy doorbells? They can been used outside of the house as well as inside, so if you have a mostly outdoor dog (or cat!), you may want to look into putting one of these outside the house for when she's ready to come in. They are practical and fun, no matter where you put them, and they ring loud enough to get your attention.
The wireless doggie doorbells are generally hung on a wall at the height of your dog's nose. They are also easy to teach cats to ring the bells just by rubbing up against them.
Customers have generally good results from the Pebble Smart, but you want to make sure your dog learns to tap the bell with his nose, not his paws. Dogs that paw the bell may break it by tearing off the ringing mechanism. The Pebble Smart ringer operates on one 12 volt battery, and 2 AA batteries are required for the chime. If the functions weaken, it is likely to be because the batteries are weak. The range of the chimes is about 250 feet and the chime ring has 36 selectable tunes.
Conveniently, Pebble Smart also offers a twin pack if you want to place a ringer inside and outside of the door. Additionally, Pebble Smart offers a 2-Pack, which includes two transmitters and two ringers so you can, say mount one set on the front door and the other on a back door.
The Doggy Place Electronic Chime Bell uses no batteries, which makes it a bit less of a hassle than some of the other electronic options. It is also portable. You can adhere it to a wall, leave it on the floor, or move it around. It can be tapped with your dog's paw or nose. I like the fact that the Doggy Place is portable, especially because it is easier to use when potty training a puppy. (Often, potty training begins at a crate, not a door.) The Doggy Place has a light touch so not much force is needed; even human infants can use it. The Doggy Place doorbell can be adjusted up to four volumes, and its volume has a 100 foot range, which might be an issue, depending on the size of your home.
The image above represents the 'deluxe' Doggy Place dog doorbell, including two transmitters and one ringer. If you need just one transmitter and one receiver, that is also available at this link.
The Mighty Paw Smart Bell has the widest range of the dog doorbells covered here - 1000 feet. Its ringer can be adjusted up to four levels in volume and it has 36 doorbell tunes to choose from. It operates easily with the touch of a paw or nose. The Might Paw activator does not use batteries; it plugs into an electric outlet and adheres with 3M tape to a wall. Like the other wireless dog doorbells, it can be used inside the house or out and can be purchased with one or two activators. Some customers are concerned that the touch pad on the transmitter is not sensitive enough to respond to their dog's touch, but others are very positive about the Mighty Paw. The Mighty Paw comes with an installation and dog training guide.
Training Your Dog To Use Doggy Doorbells
All of the above doggy doorbells come with, at least, brief instructions on training your dog to use them. But I'll give you a quick 'how-to.' It's not hard.
When training your dog to use the doorbells, start by jingling the bells or tapping them yourself before taking your dog outside, so your pup begins to associate the ringing of the bell with going outside to do her stuff. After you ring, immediately open the door and let your dog out. Do this for one or two days every time you know she has to go out. Then encourage your dog to ring the bells herself. Lead her to the door and wait a minute watching her and smiling, asking "What do you want?" "Do you want to go outside?" If at anytime she even accidentally rings a bell - no matter how lightly - praise her, using her name. "Good girl, Lucky! Good girl!" Then immediately open the door and let her out. After she goes out and does her stuff, you can reward her with a treat, but not before, or she'll be ringing the bell for the wrong reason!
Keep up the:
1. Encouragement to ring when your dog needs 'to go.'
2. Praise with 'Good Boy!' or "Good Girl!" (Forever, because they never get enough!)
3. Opening the door immediately after the dog rings the bell.
4. Rewards with treats or more praise after your pup eliminates.
You can make both your dog's and your own life easier with a doggie doorbell. You'll have fewer communication problems and a lot less mess on your floors and doors.
That's the buzz for today!