So, it has been quite a while since I potty trained a puppy from start to finish...and I think it was about time! You really only learn by first hand experience, and while I tell people "take her potty every time you think she needs to go potty", and "it just takes time for her to decide to hold it", it was time for me to take some of my own medicine! 

What I have learned is:

There are four stages to potty training a young puppy:
  1. I will not hold it, so make sure I am outside when I need to go potty. 
  2. I would rather go potty outside than inside, but if I have to go and am currently inside, I will find the best place and go there. 
  3. I would rather go outside than inside, and will try to tell you in very subtle ways to let me outside- if you notice and let me out right away, this behavior will grow stronger. If you do  not notice my subtle signs, I will stop trying and just go ahead and go inside in the best spot I can find. (This is when you set them up for success). 
  4. I would rather go outside than inside, and will hold it until I feel like going outside to potty. When I need to go, I will tell you be best way I can, and hold it as long as I can (depending on bladder control, this may or may not be very long).  
  1. I will not hold it, so make sure I am outside when I need to go potty. You will need to pick her up immediately and take her outside:
    1. Right after she eats or drinks
    2. Right after she wakes up.
    3. Every so often when she is awake for a while. This time varies from puppy to puppy. (Some puppies will need to go potty every 30 minutes when they are awake, and EVERY time they get up, no matter how short of a time they were laying down).
  2. I would rather go potty outside than inside, but if I have to go and am currently inside, I will find the best place and go there. When you know she needs to go, take her outside. Also, watch for sniffing and frantic walking/spinning, then immediately pick her up and take her outside to potty. You still need to pick her up from the crate when she first gets let out, or she is likely to go on the floor before you get her out the door. 
  3. I would rather go outside than inside, and will try to tell you in very subtle ways to let me outside- if you notice and let me out right away, this behavior will grow stronger. If you do not notice my subtle signs, I will stop trying and just go ahead and go inside in the best spot I can find.  You can now start to teach her to go outside to go potty:
    1. When you get home and let her out of the crate, have her follow you out the door to the yard before you say hi to her and let her go potty.
    2. After she eats, watch VERY closely, and wait for her to walk toward the door, then say "outside?" and immediately take her outside to go potty, then reward when she does. Next time wait a little longer, until she gets a little closer to the door, etc. If she does go potty indoors while you are waiting for her to walk towards the door, just say "ah ah!" and pick her up -mid pee- and take her outside right away to finish going potty out there. Reward. 
  4. I would rather go outside than inside, and will hold it until I feel like gong outside to go potty. When I need to go, I will tell you the best way I can, and hold it as long as I can (depending on bladder control, this may or may not be very long). The signals for I need to go potty will start out pretty vague, and progressively get stronger and stronger with time. This is the highest level of potty training a young puppy can achieve. Congrats!
As of three days ago, Venga is in the beginnings of stage four, and it has taken her three weeks to get there.