Dogs have a surprising ability to quickly learn what their 'alpha' (the leader of the pack) wants. This is almost always accomplished by associating a verbal command with behaviour, followed by praise. Punishment is usually counter-productive, and nowhere more so than in toilet training. Never rub a dog's nose in waste.
Paper and/or crate training is preferred by some. A pup can be trained to go on a newspaper, or on one of the chemically treated puppy pads designed for the purpose. Some small breeds that live all day in the home may not need to go outside at all.
The technique has a couple of down sides however. Unlike cats, dogs will rarely go in a perfumed litter box. Newspapers (even with the top layer removed after the dog goes) will eventually create an unpleasant smell in the house.
Also, long before the odour becomes unattractive to humans, dogs can smell their own distinctive aroma. They don't find it unattractive - quite the opposite. And that's the problem.
Dogs that are paper trained will often prefer to eliminate indoors. Sometimes they'll miss the paper by only an inch, creating a mess to clean up.
Once the odour is in the carpet, the dog will often seek that spot out as its proper 'place to go'. This makes training the dog to go to the toilet outside even more difficult. Best to suffer a few accidents than to create a hard-to-overcome habit.
Patience, praise and consistency are the keys to any dog training. Elimination training is the first test for you and your dog.
About The Author
Terry King runs Parcel Pets - http://www.pets2home.co.uk/cat--Training-Aids--TRAINING_AIDS.html - a leading UK pet supplies web site and has had pets all his life. He lives with his wife Louise, dog Sam, Cat Sabrina and 5 fish!