Newly adopted bulldog puppies often leave special “presents” for us in the house that we have to clean up. Housebreaking your bulldog puppy is the first thing that you need to do when you bring your puppy home. And it’s vital because the longer we let our puppy do something it becomes almost like a habit. If a habit is still fairly new we can still break it fairly easily. But when it has been going on for a very long period of time, now we have to put in additional effort to train our puppies.
Most puppies come home around 8 weeks of age. Now, that’s the perfect time to housebreak them! Your puppy will want to “go” around 6 times every single day so you have to be there for him. This may take a little patience but better do it now than have a lot more trouble with it later.
I recommend taking your bulldog puppy out after every meal as it creates some pressure on the bladder and colon. This becomes a problem because a newborn puppy cannot control the muscle responsible for “holding it in” until your bulldog is about 12 weeks of age. So if you forget to take your puppy out after a meal then expect a little surprise from your 8 week old bundle of love.
The key point in housebreaking your puppy is assigning a good routine that you’ll follow on the daily basis. This will make sure that your puppy gets accustomed to the schedule and not accidentally leave anything behind. I would recommend getting a crate and making sure your puppy stays in a room that’s not so difficult to clean up in case an accident does happen. This is to make sure your puppy won’t urinate all over the house.
If your bulldog puppy accidentally relieves himself inside the house you must instantly clean it up so there’s absolutely no scent of the urine left! This is because your puppy will relieve himself again at any place that smells like urine because he thinks he found the toilet!
Now the key point that you have to understand about your bulldog is that they want to please you – but they want you to make it clear for them what to do! Your bulldog doesn’t think like humans do. When you show unhappiness, your bulldog thinks that you disapprove whatever your puppy is doing at the moment – they can’t recall past events!
So let’s take for example a dog that just eliminated on the floor but 5 minutes later you get upset and yell at your puppy. Your puppy will think that you’re upset about “the mess” but not the “act” of delivering that mess. So every time your puppy will relieve himself he will feel guilty about it because he thinks that it will make you unhappy – no matter where he does it!
So what do we do? We catch him in the act! I know it may not be so simple but you have to because your dog can’t relate “the extraction” from “the act” of extracting. When you do catch him, you don’t have to punish or hit him. A firm “No” will do as he will see that you’re unhappy. So what you do is take him outside and have him finish his business on the grass. When he’s done, make sure you praise him and give him a treat!
This will tell your bulldog: “Pooping in the house is bad. Going outside and pooping is good”. So next time he wants to go, he won’t do it in the house not to upset you! This should take just a few short weeks but trust me it’s a great investment that’s going to pay off for the rest of your bulldog’s life. For more information check out the bulldog training guide.