I see too many dogs in my community tied up outside 24/7, rain or shine. Even if they have a dog house, it is still sad to see an animal born to be in a pack, all alone outside. Why is this? I am asking myself. I believe one of the reasons is they are not house trained and a lot of dog owners do not know where to start.
When I rescued my 12 week old puppy Max it was during the cold days of January and I kept him in the house. I took him outside right after a nap, and after he ate or played. I did not give him water after supper, and I praised him and gave him a treat every time he did his business where I wanted him to do it.
His bladder was small and could not hold it for long; I took him outside every four hours: 8 a.m. - Noon - 4 p.m. - 8 p.m. - Midnight - and 4 a.m. I even set my alarm for it. I went outside with him no matter how cold it was so he would not feel alone and he would be safe.
As Max got older he did not need to pee as often and we adapted our routine accordingly. No accidents in the house!
I adopted Okwari (oh-gwa-lee) when he was only 2 months old. He was very young but I had two adult dogs he could play with so it was okay. He came to us already paper trained! Yep... him and his 9 siblings were paper trained as soon as they could walk. The person who took care of the puppies was home a lot and instead of bringing them all outside she simply was attentive and put them on the paper to do their business when she saw they were sniffing the floor and walking in circles. That's a lot of work but is better than picking up poop, and once your best friend is trained you are all set for life.
I have a friend who ties up her dog to her waist to make sure she keeps an eye on him and she brings him outside as soon as he shows the signs that he needs to go.
The secret is to be consistent and keep an eye on your dog at all times, at least the first few weeks.
If there is an accident I wash it off with vinegar. That helps get rid of the ammonia smell of urine and acts as a deterrent.
This has been my personal experience, and you can read a great article with more information on the subject HERE.
Good luck with your best friend. The time spent showing them how to live with you is well worth it.