You love your dog – but you don’t love arriving home to find they’ve had an accident on the floor!
Puppies are rather notorious for going to the bathroom indoors, but even well-trained adult dogs will have an occasional accident. No matter what stage of life your dog is in, pee pads can help him stay comfortable while protecting your home from stains and smells.
Not sure what pee pads are best? We’ve listed the top five most effective and affordable brands. Plus, our complete guide explains what pad features to consider and how to train your dog to use it successfully.
Table of Contents
- The 5 Best Pee Pads for 2019
- 1. Hartz Home Protection Gel Dog Pads
- 2. Paws & Pals Large Pee Pads
- 3. Glad for Pets Activated Carbon Training Pads
- 4. AKC Training Pads
- 5. PETMAKER Puppy Potty Trainer
- When Should Pee Pads be Used?
- How to Use Pee Pads
- The Best Dog Pee Pad
The 5 Best Pee Pads for 2019
|Invenho Pet Nail Grinder||3.7|
|Paws & Pals Large Pee Pads||4.5|
|Glad for Pets Activated Carbon Training Pad||3.2|
|AKC Training Pads||4.0|
|PETMAKER Puppy Potty Trainer||3.4|
Hartz promises to turn “eww” into “phew” with these gel pads from trusted pet product manufacturer Hartz. Each 21 by 21-inch pad has six layers to absorb the liquid. A plastic backing protects floors while keeping the pad from sliding around.
Liquids turn instantly into gel thanks to the pad’s unique Flash-Dry technology. Moisture is locked away the second it hits the pad. Additionally, an infused lavender scent reduces odors.
These large pads are great for all-day use. Urine spots are small. Your dog can easily find a fresh, clean spot to pee even if he’s already used the pad a few times.
Pros & Cons
- Lavender scent masks odors.
- Plastic backing keeps pad secure on the floor.
- Flash-Dry technology turns liquid into gel.
- Localized urine spots for all-day use.
- Not every drop of liquid turns to gel.
- Relatively thin.
Give your furry pal a comfortable place to pee indoors while also protecting your carpet flooring. Paws & Pals pee pads have five unique layers:
- A tear-resistant cover.
- Two tissue-locking layers.
- An absorbent layer.
- A leak-proof, water-resistant lining.
Not only do the pads absorb the liquid before it can reach the floor, but a deodorizing layer also helps reduce odors. Plus, the pads are tear resistant.
They’re large, too. Each pad is a 22-inch square, making them appropriate for dogs of just about any size. They’re sold in packs of 30, 100 and 150. The 30 pack is portable enough to take along on trips or hotel stays easily.
Pros & Cons
- Five layers of protection.
- Deodorized to reduce odors.
- Tough and resistant to tearing.
- Absorbs a large amount of liquid quickly.
- Pads are relatively thin.
- Pads can slide around on wood floors.
Glad is known for their garbage bags, but they also make a line of durable pee pads. Each pad has an active carbon layer to help minimize odors. They also use a lightly scented pheromone to help capture the dog’s attention.
The pad has five layers to protect floors and absorb liquids. A polymer layer transforms liquid into gel, which makes clean-up a snap. You don’t have to worry about spills or overflow. They can absorb up to three cups of liquid in just 30 seconds.
While Glad isn’t a big name in pet care, there’s a lot to like about these pads. After all, garbage bags also have to contain liquids and odors without tearing. The same technology is used effectively here to create a touchpad you can count on.
Pros & Cons
- Active carbon reduces odors.
- Durable and tear resistant.
- Polymer layer transforms liquid into gel.
- Holds up to three cups of liquid.
- The black color might confuse dogs used to traditional white pads.
- Not ideal for all-day use.
Designed for basically any size or breed, these training pads are made by the American Kennel Club. They have six layers to absorb liquids quickly. The absorption speed is a highlight here.
Three pleasant scents are available:
- Fresh Scent
Aside from masking odors, the scents also double as an antibacterial agent. The pads are absorbent enough for three to four uses, making them a great choice for all-day or multi-dog use.
Pros & Cons
- Thick, durable and ultra-absorbent.
- Three fresh scents neutralize odors and battle bacteria.
- Quick-drying gel absorbs liquids instantly.
- Non-slip backing keeps pads in one place.
- 18.75 by 20 size is smaller than traditional pads
- The pad is thin.
This pee pad is a bit different than the others on our list – it’s not disposable. Instead of throwing it away after use, you empty the container tray and clean the mat with soapy water. While it does require more work, a permanent pad is also a better long-term value because you only have to buy one.
The pad, covered with synthetic grass, locks into place atop a plastic insert. Pads use a three-layer system to drain liquids into a collection tray below. Each layer of the pad captures germs and controls odors.
The synthetic grass is perfect for dogs who pee outside most of the time, as it helps creates a familiar space indoors. It’s also a good option if you need to use a pee pad in an outdoor space, where you can use a hose to keep it clean.
Pros & Cons
- Durable enough for all-weather outdoor use.
- Removable tray for easy liquid disposal.
- Synthetic grass helps dogs understand the purpose of the pad.
- Great long-term value.
- The pad requires cleaning after each use.
- Synthetic grass can look strange indoors.
When Should Pee Pads be Used?
Pee pads are an invaluable tool when potty training puppies. In fact, potty training is probably their most common use. But it’s far from their only use. No matter where you live or what type of dog you have, you probably have a use for pee pads. Here are some common situations where pee pads are useful:
Dogs, especially small ones, can live active, fulfilling lives in an apartment. But taking your dog outside three to six times a day can be difficult and complicated. A pee pad is a welcome alternative to walking your dog down several flights of stairs.
Don’t force your dog outside into the freezing cold. Even spending just a few minutes in below zero temps can cause serious damage. Plus, dogs are often reluctant to stand still long enough to even go to the bathroom in cold weather. Pee pads let your dog relieve himself comfortably within the warm confines of your home.
Older dogs often lose their ability to control their bowels. Pee pads allow him to pee inside when necessary.
Pads not only keep your dog comfortable, but they also help prevent anxiety. Senior dogs have grown accustomed to going outside to use the restroom. They understand peeing inside is bad, so losing control often makes them feel like they’re misbehaving.
Pee pads help dogs understand how to use the bathroom inside appropriately. He’ll feel supported emotionally at a time when life might be stressful.
Many rescue dogs also suffer from anxiety. Only instead of worrying about peeing inside, they’ll have a fear of spending time outdoors.
For example, many nervous dogs prefer to sit under tables and desks when they’re adjusting to a new environment. Dragging them outside to pee is only going to increase their anxiety.
Instead, place a pee pad nearby. They’ll feel far more comfortable walking a short distance to pee inside than making the longer journey outdoors.
How to Use Pee Pads
Pads can be used in two ways:
- As a training aid to teach your dog to use the bathroom outside.
- As a safe, clean place for your dog to use the bathroom indoors.
Protect Your Flooring
Regardless of your goal, the first step is the same: choose a spot in your home to place the pee pad.
It needs to be in a low-traffic area, where your dog can do his business away from the hustle and bustle of the household.
Ideally, place the pad on linoleum, tile or a similar flat surface. That’s the easiest type of flooring to keep clean. Even the best pad will result in occasional spills or overflow, so don’t expect the floor around the pad to stay pristine at all times.
Many people have to put their pads on the carpet. That’s okay. You can put a safeguard underneath the pad such as a:
- Clear tarp, like a rain tarp.
- Cut-open trash bag.
Any of those should help protect your carpet. Just make sure to change them regularly.
The Dog’s Not in Charge
Your dog might already have a spot picked out – that is, a place in the house where he’s already peeing! Don’t put a pee pad there. Your dog will receive a message that it’s okay for him to pee anywhere he likes. Also, the chances are good your dog didn’t pick a spot which is good for your floors.
Keep it Positive
Potty training a dog with pee pads is all about positive praise and rewards for good behavior. Getting angry at bad behavior isn’t effective at changing behavior. It just makes you and your dog feel bad.
If you catch your dog going to the bathroom in the house, place him on the pee pad as soon as he’s finished. Don’t move him while he’s going to the bathroom. But once he’s done, walk or carries him to the pee pad.
Understand Your Dog’s Schedule
Ideally, you can anticipate when he’ll need to use the bathroom. Fortunately, dogs are fairly predictable in this regard. They’ll go after a certain amount of playtime or a few hours after eating. You’ll probably notice these triggers easily.
When your dog is about to go to the bathroom, guide him to the pad. Involve a verbal cue such as “Let’s go potty” or something similar. Keep your tone enthusiastic and positive.
Praise your dog every time he uses the pad. He’ll quickly figure out what’s going on and will start using the pad exclusively. Most dogs learn in about two weeks. Congratulations – you’ve trained him to use a pee pad indoors.
Next, you can train your dog to go outdoors. Once he understands the pad is the place to pee, he’ll use it even if it’s moved. Of course, you can’t move the pad halfway across the house. Shift it closer to the door during a week or so.
Finally, you’ll transition the pad outside. Place it in an area of the yard where you want him to go to the bathroom. Your dog will eventually associate the area as the appropriate bathroom spot instead of the pads.
The Best Dog Pee Pad
After carefully consideration, including tests from dogs of all shapes and sizes, we recommend the Hartz Home Protection Gel Dog Pads. They have the overall highest quality with the widest range of features.
All of the pads on the list have the same basics: multiple layers, odor control, and durable construction. But the Hartz pads go the extra mile in many aspects.
While most pads have five layers, the Hartz pads use six. The extra layer helps pull liquid away from the surface of the pad but blocks it from reaching the floor. Plus, the unique Flash-Dry technology instantly turns liquid into gel. It’s a great choice if you need to leave your dogs alone for most of the day because they can pee in multiple spots on the pad.
Also, the pad is the best option for controlling odors. Many pads use an odor-control system which smells a bit odd or medicine-y. But the Hartz pads have a lavender scent which smells fresh and pleasant.
Pee pads are fairly simple – but they’re not all the same. Choosing the best dog pee pad not only protects your floor but also keeps your dog comfortable in any living situation or weather condition. You’ll never be happier to have your dog pee in the house!