Welcome to the forums!! :hello1:Well, Tyr, Icarus and Persephone have been home for 3 days now. They took instantly to the idea of the crate, and I have them on a training schedule. Tyr and Persephone really seem to understand what I want of them....I am, for now, using potty pads but hope to have an outside area set up for them fairly soon....but Icarus reacts to the pad as if it were Kryptonite!!! I know Chi's have the reputation of being...... difficult.
A lot of people love to paper or pee pad train their chis, but honestly, in my experience, it's better to start with outside ONLY at first. I tried to do both with Teddy and he got really confused. He wasn't holding his urine because saying "THIS spot is okay to pee on inside the house, but not this OTHER spot" is really confusing for a little pup. Once I eliminated the pee pads entirely, he really got the idea that OUTSIDE is for pee, and not INSIDE on my carpet.
When he was a little older (about 8 months old) and more reliable with his potty training, I started introducing pee pads again and only in one specific area in the house. (I chose the bathroom because it has a solid floor. This made cleanup easier if he missed at all.) Now if I miss the signals to take him outside, he runs to the bathroom and goes on his pee pad (which now sits inside a wide dog litter box). Just make sure that wherever you put the pee pad is always the same. Once they are trained to go in a specific area, if you move the pad they will often continue peeing in that area even if there's no pad there.
The problem that I foresee for you will be when they get too big to stay in that crate together plus a pee pad and you have to move either dogs or the pad around. They will likely get confused because their routine will be disrupted, and you'll have accidents. You'll probably have to go back to basics at that point anyway. That's why I think it's easier to introduce the pads once they're already pretty house trained, rather than trying to do both at once.
I hope this helps. It's true that these little guys can be difficult to housetrain, but taking them out VERY frequently (every 30-45 minutes for a pup, and every hour or two for an adult) and being 100% consistent is the key. Their bladders are only about the size of a shot glass fully grown, after all. The boys seem to be more difficult, especially if you don't neuter them by the time they start lifting their leg to pee instead of squatting. (I really wish I had neutered Teddy just a week or two before I did.. He was 7 months old and had JUST started lifting his leg, and he hasn't stopped since, unfortunately. Now he's kind of an obsessive urine marker.)
Also, if you're interested at all in teaching them to tolerate a carrier, the earlier the better. I started introducing the carrier to Teddy with positive reinforcement when he was 11 or 12 weeks old. Even just a few minutes a day of throwing a treat into a bag and watching them go in after it will build positive associations. Don't expect too much at first.
Good luck with training and I'm looking forward to seeing some pics of your pups soon!!