Here are 10 solutions for kids who won’t poop on the potty. They’ve been tried and tested by frustrated parents just like you, and they work.
One of the most common toilet training challenges a parent can encounter is when their child won’t poop on the potty. I know. You thought the worst of the diaper dilemmas were over, but often, potty training brings about new and challenging issues.
It’s more common than you think
First of all, you need to know that it is not unusual for a child to refuse to poop on the potty when toilet training.
It’s very common for kids to learn how to pee on the toilet quite quickly, but to fear pooping in the toilet. They often ask for a diaper to poop in, or they hold it and then have accidents or become constipated,
As long as the possibility of a medical issue (i.e. signs of a blockage, irregular bowel movements, etc.) has been eliminated, you can safely assume that this stage will pass, but in the meantime, consider trying some of the following solutions to see if you can get your child pooping in the toilet sooner than later.
Acknowledge their fear and be patient
Remember to acknowledge your child’s fear of pooping on the potty, and proceed with patience and empathy. If you force your child when it comes to potty training issues, it can stress your child out to the point that they become seriously constipated or impacted, which will have uncomfortable and upsetting, and sometimes, long-lasting results.
The following solutions were gathered from the HH Facebook community, as many parents have been through it with kids who refuse to do number two in the loo, and they had some terrific suggestions. Thanks to all of the parents who shared their solutions on my page
How to Get Your Toddler to Poop On The Potty – 10 Solutions that Work
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1. Teach him to tell you when he needs to go so you can put a diaper on him. Many kids will poop at naptime or bedtime because they feel safer doing it with a diaper on. If you allow him to ask for a diaper to poop in he won’t hold it until he’s in bed. Withholding can cause constipation, or, your child may resort to pooping in the diaper at naptime and removing it because he doesn’t like to be in a dirty diaper. That makes for a huge mess. We have a solution for keeping a diaper on at naptime if this is another challenge you’re dealing with.
2. Allow your poop in a diaper while sitting on the toilet. Once he masters this, the next step is to cut a large hole in the diaper before sitting him on the toilet with the diaper on. When he poops, it will go right into the potty, but the diaper will still offer a sense of security.
3. When they poop in their diaper/underwear, tell them it’s yucky, and have your child help you dump it in the potty. Talk about how poop should be in the potty because that keeps our homes and bodies clean.
4. Build your child a “potty castle“. Get a big cardboard box from a local hardware store (many times they will have these left over from refrigerators, etc.) and cut a door that opens and closes. Decorate it with paint and stickers, and make it look fun! Put a potty in the box and call it the “Potty Castle”. Let your child know they can only use the castle when pooping on the potty.
Alternatively, you can order this castle from Amazon, to save having to build one of your own.
5. Provide a step stool, or, instead of using the big toilet, consider using a potty that sits on the floor. Many kids need their feet planted firmly on the ground in order to brace themselves while “pushing” during a bowel movement. My followers love this Potty Training Ladder Step Up Seat.
6. Sing a silly song! My friend sings a song to the tune of “Winnie The Pooh” that says: “He wants to go home. He wants to go home. Send Mr. Poopy to his home, oh please… Cause he wants to go in. And he wants to swim. Let him go in the potty today- yay!” Her daughter LOVED this!
7. Many people suggest that you have your child clean up the poop. If you feel your child is intentionally pooping their pants, and if they’re old enough, you might have them go and get a pair of new undies and clean up AFTER YOU have cleaned up (to avoid germs and contamination). Example: you could clean the area and then give them a baby wipe and ask them to clean it more. They’ll still be doing the work, but you won’t run the risk of them getting anything on their hands.”
8. It could be dietary. Many kids refuse to poop because of constipation or because they associate it with an unpleasant feeling. Ask your pediatrician for suggestions on what you can do at home. They may suggest eating more fiber, taking oils, drinking more water, using Miralax, corn/karo syrup etc. Be sure to ask BEFORE trying anything new like this. You do not want to make the problem worse.
9. Read books and role play about using the potty! Several books about pooping on the toilet are listed below. You can click on them to view or purchase. After reading, you can act out the scenarios with baby dolls. Have your child put their baby doll on the potty. When baby poops, mommy/daddy wipes the baby. Then wash baby’s hands and give the baby a sticker or special treat for going poop.
Best books to help kids poop on the potty:
If you’re looking to do some reading of your own, these two books come highly recommended:
Books for Parents of Kids who Won’t Poop On the Potty:
10. Keep a chart or even use a calendar. Every time your child poops on the potty, give her a sticker to put on the chart. In the meantime, buy about 10 toys at the dollar store and keep them in a basket. When your child fills up their chart (start small- maybe two stickers?) they get to pick a toy out of the basket. This is immediate gratification for your child.
Hopefully these solutions will help your child overcome his or her fear of pooping on the toilet, and your potty training days will be behind you in no time.
For more help with potty training, many of my readers have had success with the book, Potty Train in a Weekend. There’s a chapter devoted to the poop and potty challenges you might be facing.
More Solutions to Common Parenting Challenges:
- What To Do When Your Baby Won’t Take A Bottle
- How To Wean A Toddler Off the Soother
- What To Do When Your Child Hates the Bath
- Toddler Biting – How To Stop It
- How To Keep A Toddler’s Diaper On at Nap-time
Jackie is a mom, wife, home daycare provider, and the creative spirit behind Happy Hooligans. She specializes in kids’ crafts and activities, easy recipes, and parenting. She began blogging in 2011, and today, Happy Hooligans inspires more than 2 million parents, caregivers and Early Years Professionals all over the globe.