You’ve tried putting him outside, you’ve tried putting mats down, you’ve tried walking him round the block, but whatever you do, your new little dog keeps going on the carpet. Does this sound familiar? It’s surprising how many dog owners want to know the answer to this simple problem, but no matter how hard you look it never seems to be enough.

You have to remember that having a new dog is a bit like bringing home a baby; neither of them know at first what they are supposed to do – you have to teach them. You also wouldn’t leave a small child at home by themselves, yet people bring home a puppy and expect her to stay at home all day and not leave you an unpleasant surprise – and it’s unreasonable to expect it.

The good news is, there are 7 simple steps you can take which will help you house train your dog in no time.

Firstly, in the early weeks of your puppy’s life, either you or someone else should be around to look after her. This doesn’t mean 24/7 but a member of your family should there for a good part of the day.

Routine and repetition is vital, so try and feed him at roughly the same times each day. Carefully monitor their eating habits; most newly arrived dogs need feeding between two and four times a day at first depending on what type of dog you have.

Identify an area where you think it is best for them to do their business and take them there as soon as they have finished eating their food. Try and remember to do this as soon as you get up in the morning as, like you, might be desperate to go after being shut in all night. You can put a leash on them if you want to as this will also get them used to that and, depending on the breed, will ensure you get them to the right place. Not everyone has a back yard or garden but it’s really important to keep doing the same thing. Make sure at first that you do this every hour or so.

Decide on a command that you will use each time you take them out, make sure everyone who takes him, uses the same word. This can be whatever you like as long as you say the same thing each time.

Have an area which is designated as his; a pen of some sort is fine and put bedding and toys in it. If he hasn’t gone when you’ve put him outside, put him straight back in his bed when you come in. Dogs are really clean animals and will rarely soil their bedding but they might do it just next to it if that’s possible.

If you see them peeing or about to, say something like ah, ah and put them outside straight away preferably in the appointed place (see point three above). Immediately clean up and disinfect the affectedsoiled area. On no account hit, shout, or worse of all, rub their noses in it.

Finally, all dogs love attention, so really go mad and show him how pleased you are; pet him, use encouraging language, give him a small treat so that he knows he’s done well and he will want to continue to please you. Don’t overdo this though as you don’t want them to associate going to the toilet with treats.