Urban Potty Review – First Look At A Dog Potty Box For Your Puppy

Years ago a friend of mine got into the artificial grass business and introduced me to an artificial grass dog potty box.  Just the other day we spoke with the founders of the Urban Potty a much more advanced version of the original dog potty box we saw several years ago.

As a guide dog puppy raiser and therefore someone who constantly has puppies in the house I thought the Urban Potty would be a great tool for puppy potty training.  The boys (Linus, Stetson, Apache, plus special guests) decided to put the Urban Potty to the test and write a thorough 3 part review including some awesome images and videos of the Urban Potty in action.

Urban Potty Review

Toby is ready to do his first product review with the Urban Potty!

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Keep Your Puppy Safe

We’ve been raising guide dog puppies for the past 6 years and during that time we’ve learned a lot about how to raise and train a puppy.  One of the most important things we learned was how to keep your puppy healthy and safe.

Before we picked up Linus from the shelter 8 years ago we had no idea how sensitive a puppy could be to potential disease and illness.  Of course we had heard the horror stories about puppies dying from Parvo or catching some other horrendous disease.  However, it wasn’t until we brought home Dublin (now a working guide dog) our 3rd guide dog puppy in training that we witnessed the dangers of Parvo first hand!

As guide dog puppy raisers we are all trained to be very careful with our pups until they’ve received all of their vaccinations (around 16-20 weeks of age).  Until that time our puppies have a weaker immune system and it’s therefore a good idea not to bring them to areas where there are a lot of unknown dogs such as

  • Dog Parks
  • Veterinarian’s Office (keep them off the floors if possible)
  • Pet Stores
  • Home Depot
  • Your Neighborhood

Even with this information one of Dublin’s fellow puppy kindergarten classmates caught Parvo and after battling with the disease for a few days ended up passing away.  All of the puppies from our kindergarten class had to be tested for Parvo and lucky for us Dublin was okay.  However, it just goes to show you that even people as careful as puppy raisers need to be aware of the dangers of outside diseases.

OK!? So Where Should I Work On My Puppy Potty Training?

Urban Potty Review With Stetson and Linus

Stetson and Linus checking out the Urban Potty

Sorry if we scared you with the whole Parvo thing, but it’s definitely out there and you need to be aware.  So if you can’t let your puppy out into the neighborhood to do his business then what is the best solution for potty training?

Some people are lucky enough to have a nice backyard where they can safely take their puppies to “get busy”.  However, we live in a small condo with just a patio.  Until recently we’ve allowed our puppies to just potty directly on the cement or in the little rock bed we have on our patio.  This is great for our guide dog pups because we need to teach them to potty on all different kinds of surfaces.  However, one drawback is it can get a bit messy with potty stains on the concrete.

As I mentioned earlier we had the opportunity to speak with the founders of the Urban Potty and we got our hands on a cool new Urban Potty Starter Kit.  This is a perfect solution for puppy owners like me.  The Urban Potty is great (for our situation) for several reasons:

  • The artificial grass gives our pups yet another surface to learn to “get busy” on.
  • No stains on the concrete.
  • Urine collects in the easy to transport container.
  • Easy to setup and use on the patio.
  • I don’t have to worry about all the potential diseases and parasites I spoke about earlier.

I’m sure there are many other great reasons, but those are just off the top of my head.  Here’s a closer look at the Urban Potty.

Urban Potty Review – A First Look

Urban Potty Starter Kit

Urban Potty Starter Kit

Urban Potty Starter Kit

  • Urban Potty sleek tray (36 wide X 32 depth X 4.5 height)
  • Potty Turf™ synthetic grass
  • Collection System container and funnel (container holds 1.8 liters)
  • Setup and usage instructions
We talked to the founders of Urban Potty and learned about the many different uses for this innovative puppy potty system.  We already mentioned that it would be great for our guide dog puppies because it helps lessen the threat of germs and diseases.  However, we also learned that it could benefit puppy and dog owners in a number of different ways including:
  • Convenience/Bad Weather: I live in southern California so I never really thought too much about bad weather.  However, if you live where it constantly rains, snows, or you experience extreme heat you can save time and yourself from getting wet/cold/hot by setting up the Urban Potty on your balcony or patio for easy access.  If you live in a highrise apartment you won’t have to worry about waiting for the elevator or rushing down the stairs.  This can be especially important for smaller breeds and puppies who need to potty often.
  • Puppy potty training: The Urban Potty helps with good potty habits.  By having easy and quick access to a potty spot, owners will be able to quickly respond to puppy seeking a spot to potty.  When we first start potty training our puppies we teach them to go to the same spot every time.  The Urban Potty gives your puppy a consistent spot to potty.
  • Cost: While the initial cost may be high.  Overall the Urban Potty is a less expensive alternative to pee pads because there are no ongoing costs.
  • Maximum drainage: The Potty Turf grass offers great drainage and it’s porous throughout the surface of the mat instead of insufficient drainage holes drilled every few inches like on other competitor grass products.  Efficient drainage assists in keeping paws clean and minimizing odors.
  • No distractions: Urban Potty minimizes distractions such as street noises, other dogs, people walking by, cars driving by, and various smells in the air.
  • Keeps you and your dog healthy: Our guide dog school as well as most veterinarians will recommend not taking puppies to places heavily frequented by unknown dogs until they’ve completed their vaccination series.  By using the Urban Potty you will significantly redue your pups exposure to disease and parasites.
  • Safety: If your dog or puppy needs to potty at 2am it’s much safer to just take him to the Urban Potty on the patio then to take him for a short walk through downtown.  Safety first!

If you’re wondering about the cost for the Urban Potty the regular list price is $289.  However, it’s currently discounted 24% and selling for $219 along with free shipping.

Our First Thoughts About The Urban Potty

If you can’t already tell I’m very excited to let the boys try out the Urban Potty.  I think it can be a great tool for potty training our puppies today and in the future. Not only does it solve our individual problem of keeping our pups safe from outside disease and parasites, but it can also solve many other puppy potty training problems depending on your individual situation (see above examples).

Of course we do have a few questions that we plan on answering in our upcoming Urban Potty Review posts:

  1. I know it will produce some odor, but how much will the Urban Potty smell?
  2. Will my pups use the Urban Potty?
  3. Can it withstand the weight of my pups (55-90lbs)?
  4. How often should I clean the Urban Potty?
  5. How often do I need to empty collection system container?
  6. How easy is the setup and maintenance?
  7. Apache is a pretty big boy.  Will the Urban Potty be large enough for my pups?

Will the Urban Potty live up to our expectations? We’ll see in our upcoming reviews…

That’s our initial assessment of the Urban Potty.  Time to get busy and let our dogs “get busy” on the Urban Potty.  We’re going to poke and prod the Urban Potty so we can find out exactly what it is made of.  No holding back!!!

What do you think?  Do you have any questions you’d like answered about the Urban Potty?  Have you used an Urban Potty or similar product?  If you have then please give us your Urban Potty Review in the comment section below.

Urban Potty Reviews:

Our 3 part series reviewing the Urban Potty is now complete.  Check out each blog post for our thorough review of this product:

  1. First Look Urban Potty
  2. Urban Potty Review After First Month
  3. Urban Potty Video Review

Disclosure: This is a paid product review.  This is our personal opinion of the product.  Compensation will never influence the content on our blog.


  1. says

    Sounds like a great idea and a good way to get them onto the idea of pottying in the grass. You have some great questions, I can’t wait to see what the answers are as they would be my concern as well.

    • says

      Hi Jodi,

      We started using the Urban Potty and so far the preliminary reports are very good. Let me know if you have any questions about the product.

      Take care,

  2. says

    That is an interesting device. I would almost imagine the smell would be equivalent to a cat box – depending on how well it’s kept clean would depend on the odor. But if you don’t have a yard with regular grass, I suppose it would come in handy. You’ll have to let us know how this works out for the dogs!

    • says

      I’m a little worried about the smell too. The directions say to sprinkle water every time your puppy potties. We’ll see how it goes. I also have the luxury of being able to hose down the entire Urban Potty if necessary.

  3. says

    I’m very curious to see if you can get your older dogs, Stetson and Linus, to adapt to the urban potty. We’re considering something like this for when we move aboard a sailboat in a few years.

    • says

      Hi Pamela,

      We’re already working on training the dogs to use the Urban Potty. As you might have guessed Toby (8 week old Lab) took to it right away. Before he went to his new home he’d run straight to the Urban Potty we he had to pee. I’ll let you know how the others did in our next review (it’s still a work in progress).

      Take care,

  4. Rissa says

    My brother just got a puppy and this would be perfect for the pup as he lives upstairs in an apartment. He doesn’t want to take the puppy out before it is adequately immunized but wants him to learn how to “get busy” on grass. Also, this would replace the need for expensive puppy pads that aren’t exactly environmentally friendly!

    • says

      Hi Rissa,

      Congratulations to your brother! What kind of puppy did he get? Yes, this is a good solution for people with puppies who live in apartments. As I mentioned in the article it’s important for puppies to stay out of the community grass areas until they are fully vaccinated.

      Take care,

  5. says

    Hey Colby,

    I’ve never seen one of those before – it will be interesting to see how all the pups get on with it and the answers to all your questions!

    Big Wags to all,

    Your pal Snoopy :)

    • says

      Hi Snoopy,

      We had seen similar products in the past, but this is the first chance we’ve had to try a puppy potty box. It’s a very nice product for people like me with puppies who only have a patio area and not a full backyard.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  6. Irene says

    Before our puppy was trained to go outside by herself through the doggie door, we used the puppy pads. They worked well, but our Yorkie puppy would only dirty a few inches of the huge puppy pad. I think this urban potty is a good idea and would work well for both small and large dogs.

    Interested to see how your dogs like it.

    • says

      Hi Irene,

      It’s more environmentally friendly then disposing of all of those puppy pads. Lucky for us are product reviewers range from a small 15 lb puppy to a large 70 lb Lab so we’ll get the opportunity to see how it works with both small and large dogs.

      Take care,

  7. Kyle says

    My brother in law just got a puppy labradoodle and this would be perfect. I’m going to get one for him for his birthday.

    • says

      Let us know if you get an Urban Potty we’d love to hear if it works well with your brother in laws puppy. By the way, how old is your brother in laws new pup?

    • says

      Hi Dawn,

      Yes, I haven’t posted the second review yet, but Toby (8 week old puppy) really liked using the Urban Potty. As I mentioned in the article it would also work really well with people living in apartments and high rises as it’s a lot easier to walk your dog to the patio or balcony rather than down a flight of stairs or wait for an elevator.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  8. Miko says

    This is a great concept. I saw one of these at the newish Shorebreak Hotel in downtown Huntington Beach. Apparently, it’s a dog friendly hotel, so they have a longer version on their 2nd story deck for doggies to use. I didn’t notice a smell, but it was in the open air. I like this concept a lot especially for people that live in apartments or condos.

    • says

      Hi Miko,

      I like using it on my patio and it works really well for young puppies. I can definitely see how it would be a good alternative for people who live in high rises are on the second level or higher in an apartment or condo complex.

      Take care,

  9. says

    What a wonderful idea!

    I very sadly lost my darling companion not too long ago and I will be having a puppy in residence for the first time in over a decade very soon… The ‘joys’ of puppy training are all but a distant memory – I think this may be a great idea for night times, when little puppy bladders are not strong enough to hold on all night!

    Thank you!


    • says

      Hi Angharad,

      The urban potty has been working very well for the puppies that have been coming through our house over the past month. Both Toby (8 week old) and Journey (7 month old) have already learned to go straight to our urban potty as soon as they walk out the the patio. So far we really like our Urban Potty.

      We have another review including a video review coming up soon. Stay tuned!

      Take care,

  10. Carmen says

    I already have an indoor potty training and it’s working all right. However, the smell when I return from work is bad. Also my puppy is taking out the grass from the plastic container and has already begun to tear it. I just want to know if the grass in the Urban Potty is more resistant or a puppy can easily take out the grass from the container and tear it.

    Thank you,

    • says

      Hi Carmen,

      I’m using the Urban Potty on my patio and I haven’t noticed the smell much. If you got to the Urban Potty website (http://www.urbanpotty.com) they talk about some of the innovative features that help to train the urine to decrease the smell of odor. I also, regularly pour water over the synthetic grass to help keep the potty clean.

      I’m currently putting together a second review after letting my 2 dogs plus 2 puppies use the Urban Potty. Interesting enough one of the negatives I did notice was that the really young puppies liked pulling up the grass as you mentioned. The grass is not connected to the tray in any way and can easily be removed by people, dogs, or puppies.

      Let me know if you have any other questions about the Urban Potty.

      Take care,

  11. emi says

    This sure beats killing the real grass. I’m wondeing about how bad the smell would be. Is there some kind of deodorant you can put on the bottom for a pleasant smell.

    • says

      Deodorant sounds like a good idea. I haven’t noticed the smell too much, but then again it’s outside and in an area that gets a decent breeze. I do water down after each time one of the boys goes potty. I imagine if you didn’t clean it regularly it would start to smell pretty bad. I’ve sprayed it down with the hose and let it air out once since I’ve had it so far.

  12. says

    I really like the idea of having something like this particularly for the rainy days… I know I have to force two of my dogs outside to urinate during winter time when it’s pouring down rain or even if the grass is wet. Do dogs ever ‘miss’ the grass? I’m concerned about my big boy not ‘hitting’ it but for the girls would be great!

  13. Aleisha says

    If you are worried about the smell, a friend of mine swears by the CritterZone air purifier. It removes all kinds of pet smells. She had a cat-urine odor in her home and couldn’t get rid of it. She tore up the carpets and everything. It took the CritterZone unit to get rid of it.

    • says

      Thank for the information. I’ll check out the CritterZone air purifier. Our Urban Potty is on the patio so I’m not concerned with the smell, but it might be nice to have an air purifier in the house anyways.

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