How To Train Your Bulldog

Bulldogs In Training

How to Train Your Bulldog

Considering training, you’ll find it’s much better to start out with a puppy than an adult as an adult Bulldog has already acquired a set of learned behaviors.

The family life and training an older bully has received from his original owners has in a sense, become engraved in his mind and determine his temperament and reaction to obedience training.

Sadly, some of these learned behaviors may have little hope of being reversed, but many of them can quickly be redeemed. Bulldog puppies on the other hand, are like a fresh new canvas on which with every brush stroke, can be painted a well tempered, obedient and loving Bulldog the whole family can enjoy.

Bulldog Won’t Stop Jumping On People?

Potty Training Demands Consistency!

Potty training a Bulldog puppy will seem like a full time job at first and if you haven’t already prepared yourself for a little work then you may end up falling short of the finish line. A Bulldog puppy is a whole lot like a baby and he’ll count on you every step of the way to be patient and consistent.

Nose To The Ground Bee Line/Circling Means He’s Ready!

Once you bring your new Bulldog puppy home he should have already been introduced to potty training outdoors and if so, he prefers to go in the yard as opposed to your clean carpet. Some breeders may have used pee pads or newspaper for the first few weeks of the puppy’s house training. If this is the case with your Bulldog, don’t worry, you can still train him to go outside.

If the puppy has used pee pads or the sports section to do his business for a prolonged period of time potty training may be a bit tougher, but can still be done. To break him from going inside on the newspaper, take the paper or pad outside for him to go on if he prefers. This will help your puppy get used to his new “bathroom”.

For effective potty training you must know where your puppy is at all times. There are certain measures of prevention you’ll need to take with your new pup. Between potty trips outside, try and keep him on your lap, or even at your feet on a leash so he cannot pee.

Stick to a consistent schedule that includes taking your puppy outside to pee about every 2-3 hours and anytime after eating and drinking. When you see the trademark circling and sniffing or nose to the ground bee-line, you had better get on your feet and take the puppy outside quickly.

This circling usually means the puppy is looking for a place to go poo. In our experience the puppies don’t give as much of a show before peeing, but they all have their own tell or way of showing you they’re ready. They’ll just sort of plop down anywhere. They seem to like finding a quiet or hidden place when they go, so if you notice it’s too quiet, something’s up. Of course, if he’s still new to your home he’ll be sniffing everywhere for a couple of days just to explore his new surroundings.

Discipline + Reward = Obedience.

If your pup has an accident, and he will; quickly scold him with a deep toned voice. Tell him “No, No” and immediately drop everything to take him outside even though the damage is already done. When you take the pup outside you should have a treat on hand so that when he pees you can reward him. Just as you scolded him when he peed inside, you’ve got to praise him over and over when he has successfully used the potty outside.

The key is to help the puppy associate positive feelings of reward and praise for going potty in the lawn and a negative feeling after peeing inside. Typically a puppies come home to their new families at about 8 weeks old and should be pretty well trained within 2-4 weeks, but accidents can still happen for a month. A Bulldog of about 1 year old with a fully developed badder should be able to hold their pee for 6-8 hours.

You Need a Crate For Your Bulldog.

For potty training to work, you’ve got to get a crate big enough to house the puppy when he’s fully matured, but that also includes an adjustable divider you can re position as he grows. Let me recommend this Double-Door Folding Metal Dog Crate. It measures 36″L x 23″W x 25″H and it’s what we use for our Bulldogs, especially puppies in training. The divider is needed to size the inside of the crate so that the pup has only enough room inside to lay down, stand up and turn around. You don’t want enough room for the puppy to walk around inside the cage or else he’ll gladly use one side of the cage as a restroom and the other for sleeping.

The Crate is Key.

By placing him in a large cage you’ll be further encouraging him to pee inside it. A bulldog won’t pee or defecate in his living area unless he absolutely can’t hold it anymore. This will force the pup to wait as long as possible for you to come and take him outside. If you have small children I would suggest you use the crate twice during the day for an hour or two as a sort of “nap time”. Children can quickly overwhelm and exhaust your new puppy so he could use a place of solace to escape for a while.

The crate should definitely be used throughout the night hours. Nobody wants to wake up to piles of poo and urine all over the place, but that’s exactly what will happen if you leave that puppy out for the night. Typically, for a new puppy, you might have to wake up 2-3 times in the night to let him out. You’ll know he has to pee or poo when he begins to bark.

Food and water should always be available to your puppy, but be sure to serve the last meal 2-3 hours before bed and only give him a small drink. If you time your feedings, bed time and potty breaks before bed, you may not have to let him outside more than once. A puppy of 12 weeks may start to make it through the night with no potty breaks.  Each time the puppy comes out of the crate he must immediately be taken outside.

Here’s the schedule we use for an 8 week old Bulldog pup:

  • Last meal at 630pm
  • Last water at 1030pm
  • One last potty break at 11pm
  • Wake up when he barks to go potty (usually 230am and again at 530am)
  • New day begins at 73oam. Take him directly outside to potty

During the day, water is always available. Food is served a total of 3-4 times per day. Frequent trips to go potty. Remember when your pup is in the house to keep him in one of the “safe zones” such as your lap as much as possible.

Voted #1 Best Seller on Training the Bulldog.

If you need more help with potty training your Bulldog and love your kindle as much as I do, this book may be perfect for you! Andi Anderson is a contributing editor for the Dogington Post. Shes used her experience with Bulldogs in writing this in depth, but simple little read to help the layman better understand potty training and it’s specific to Bulldogs.

She clearly shows her knowledge of Bulldogs giving praise to the positive reinforcement method while discouraging the use of fear and punishment. I love the statement she makes in her book, “If you invite them into a power struggle, they will respond accordingly.” Andi knows it can’t be all treats and praise though. No, she makes it clear in her book, a Bulldog desperately craves a clear instruction and “you can’t be a push-over.” Click Here to Give Her Book a Shot!

Don’t Lose Your Cool.

Now, honestly, although it’s never fun to clean up poop or pee from your carpet; you must be prepared for quite a few “accidents” and it shouldn’t anger you. Get yourself a good carpet cleaner so you don’t have to call a cleaning crew into your home twice a week.

You need to be clear headed and under control when scolding your puppy just as you would with a child. If you find yourself continuously at the end of your rope it may be a good idea to call your breeder for advice. Never give your puppy away or sell him without first offering him back to the breeder.

How to Get Your Bulldog to Stop Biting.

Usually it’s puppies that are in the habit of biting, not adults. If you’ve got an adult Bulldog that bites it probably means they weren’t trained out of the biting when they were supposed to be. As with any rude or undesirable behavior, your Bulldog is following your lead. When a puppy bites it can be fun to rough-house with them a bit and encourage the play biting, but be careful, every time you allow your puppy to bite you’re letting him know this is acceptable behavior. Biting is cute for a while, but eventually it gets annoying and soon, even painful.

Don’t allow your puppy to bite. Scold him and if he doesn’t stop the biting, move him to the other side of the room. If you’re not getting anywhere after a few days you might have to swat him on the rear(if you believe in that). For us, we almost always have to smack our bullies on the butt at least once or twice to get them to listen. Once their older, they’ve learned not to bite or they get a stinging sensation on their rump.

Have You Got a Dangerously Aggressive Bulldog?

English Bulldogs are not typically mean or aggressive in any way, but for many reasons a Bulldog can become unsafe for your family, those visiting your home, and even your other pets. Most commonly a Bulldog’s nature becomes aggressive either because he was abused, neglected, improperly trained in the early stages of his life, or as a direct result of the his owner’s lack of leadership.

Your Bulldog Needs a Leader First

As your Bulldog’s owner you want to be consistently calm and assertive, especially in the younger years. Usually when you think of mistreatment of a pet you picture physical and verbal abuse from the owner, but a very serious form of neglect manifests itself in the lack of discipline and leadership you apply to your Bulldog.

Just like a child, your Bulldog must know that you are the leader and this message comes through to him loud and clear when you’ve set rules and boundaries for him. The control you take over your Bulldog is never, ever to be abusive in manor. No, it’s something your Bulldog willfully turns over to you once you’ve proven yourself to be the confident, assertive and loving leader he needs.

Remember; your pet’s personality will reflect your own. If you get nervous when someone comes to the door, so will he. Your mood and body language is something your bully is very perceptive to and will always set the tone for the way in which he reacts to his surroundings.

Below, Cesar Millan Works to Offset This Nervous Bulldog’s Aggression.

Where Did This Bulldog Go Wrong?

He was a very timid and anxious dog and displayed his feelings of discomfort through aggression. I wonder if you noticed the owner’s desire to “come to his Bulldog’s rescue” during this training exercise? The owner’s reaction to the exercise helps to explain instantly how this aggressive behavior one day took hold of and shaped their Bulldog’s nature. It’s evident that the Bulldog became uneasy at some point along the road because of the lack of leadership in the home.

Lead Your Bulldog.

To a dog, no leadership means no protection. You can bet anytime the bully came into contact with a new person or strange object, he would first become nervous and aggressive(for protection) then without fail the owner would swoop in to coddle him, eventually ushering him away from the object of discomfort.

This behavior put on by the owner promotes feelings of uneasiness in the Bulldog and once again reassures him that there is no safety to be found in the home, save that which he can achieve for himself. Set rules and boundaries for your Bulldog in a loving, assertive fashion, all the while displaying that you are confident and in control. Once you’ve shown yourself to be the steady leader your Bulldog needs, the aggression will stop.

Related: See Cesar Millan’s Best Tips To Stop Dog Barking

My Bulldog Won’t Sit and Stop Jumping on People!

Did you know each time you allow your Bulldog to jump on you for affection, or to be pet, you may inadvertently be teaching him it’s ok to jump on people? Sure it may be cute now to watch your puppy jump up on someone and beg for attention, but this will get annoying quickly.

** Before I go further, I want to make clear the fact that Bulldogs, especially puppies, absolutely must receive a hearty dose of physical touch and words of affirmation every day! Often times we forget to show enough affection to our pets and just like a person who’s been locked away for hours at a time, they can temporarily forget their manners. Think of it this way. If you were shut in your office all day on an important assignment, with no other human contact, you’d probably be very talkative when you finally make it home to your wife. Actually she may even think all the talking is downright annoying. But this is natural. In the same way, a dog that’s been cooped up in his cage all day will uncontrollably desire his owner’s touch. Find an acceptable mode of communication.

If you find that no amount of training helps teach your Bulldog to stop being so jumpy, you should consider whether he is getting enough physical touch from you, his family. In a lot of instances people tell me, “our bulldog is so jumpy, we have no choice but to put him back in the cage” He won’t stop jumping and he scratches the children.” I can tell you most assuredly putting him back in the cage another hour will only do him more harm. This is tragic! Try a different approach. Shower him with quality time. He may just need some extra lap time, petting and play. Don’t throw out the rules though. Make sure he sits when being petted. the kids may need to leave the room while he is still jumping. Read On……..

A good rule of thumb is to almost never pet your Bulldog or give him a treat until he is in the sitting position. Once he understands he’s not getting anything from you until he sits, he’ll begin to see you as the true authority figure. More importantly he’ll begin to perceive jumping as unacceptable. When your bulldog jumps it is important to back up removing yourself from contact. Disrupting affection when he jumps will dismiss any gratification he would have otherwise received by placing his paws on you. Don’t just walk away though. I want you to look at your bully and sternly tell him, ‘No’. Try not to yell at him as this can be rather counterproductive.

As with any unwanted behavior, the key will always be the same. It’s simple. Look your Bulldog in the eye, verbally rebuke him, then diligently watch for good behavior for which you can positively reinforce. No matter the problem, each time you go through this process you’ll find yourself one step closer to the goal. After implementing these techniques you’ll soon need reminding your English Bulldog was ever in need of any behavioral training.

Great! I’m Covered In Hair Now!

How pleased your guests will be to enter your home and not be jumped on by a 50 lb Bulldog. If your English Bulldog just isn’t “getting it”, you may physically, but lovingly, push his rear end into the sitting position. He won’t stay sitting for long without your hand holding his rear down, but when he is sitting you must quickly give him a treat and verbally praise him.

This sounds a little funny, I know, but any training exercise can be successful if done in repetition. Finally, as I always do once I’ve shared all of my knowledge on the particular topic with you, the reader, I recommend to you Bulldogs For Dummies. You’ll find a ton of info on every issue concerning Bulldog Training from Jumping to Potty Training and More. 

Like This Article On Training Your Bulldog?

The topic of training your Bulldog is a big one and we barely scratched the surface, but I chose to discuss what I think are the three most important training issues to Bulldog owners first. I would love to add new topics of training to this article so please let me know if you have any ideas in the comments section below, or on our Google Plus Page!

114 Responses to How To Train Your Bulldog

  • Greg Forsch

    Hi Dan thanks for responding to my question. I have the 6 month old female bulldog puppy that is fully house broken and starting at about 5& a half months of age she started the following routine 1st she jumps up on our shared bed 2nd she paws at the ground like a bull would do before charging the bull fighter 3rd she pulls the bed sheets and blankets towards her and builds a mound of them underneath her belly and then she pees on them. First of all the sheets have my sent on them I think hers as well. Second there’s a change going on inside of her because her 1st minstrol cycle is in the process of forming. Could it have anything to do with her testing me to see if I’m strong enough to be in charge or could she be saying ” This is my bed stay off ” or could she be “marking her territory ” telling all other dogs ” this is my bed and this is my daddy stay out!!! “. Will it subside after her 1st period or will she grow out of it I’m desperate I have a studio apartment and there’s no way I can keep her off the bed unless I book her up to a lead in the living room so she can’t get over to the bed. Every dog I’ve ever had has slept in the bed with me to me it’s part of it I’m not fulfilled without it I’m sorry to say if someone would have said to me that I have to tie up my bulldog inside the house to stop her from peeing on the bed and she can never sleep with me in the bed I guess I would have adopted a pug. Do you have any guess as to why she does this? And any chance she might grow out of it.

  • Greg Forsch

    I have a 6 month old bulldog female puppy who is fully house broken/ potty trained.How ever that being said this is exactly what she does. She jumps up on my bed where we both sleep, then she she scratches at the ground with all four of her feet/ digs at the ground like a bull would do before he charges the bull fighter, then with her front two paws she pulls the covers/ sheets underneath her belly then she pees on the bed sheets this last time she did it I standing right there in front of her. Does she have a mental dis order?

    • Dan Weese

      It seems like I hear so many people that say their Bulldog is house broken, but when there is a blanket or dog bed of some kind the Bully has no problems peeing on them. Our bully, Lily was always the same way. We just couldn’t allow her on the bed anymore because she just didn’t understand for whatever reason.

  • Cassandra

    On Thursday the 22nd December I went and bought a English Bulldog a 4 year old unspayed female. She is a great dog wonderful with the children listens as well as a bulldog does, is very laid back, wants to sleep all day and is overweight but she has potty issues! I changed her diet to raw ( her previous food choice per previous owner was terrible ) and make her walk the treadmill 3times a day for 10min to support her weight loss without causing problems to her joints and because she is very lazy and in hopes to get her to go potty outside. I put her on a schedule to go potty outside and she will simply not go she will hold it ALL day if she is constantly watched or kenneled ( for the most part, the other day we had a emergency so I took her out before we left and of course she did not go , came back 7 hours later took her out again she still did not go but went pee in her kennel either while we were gone or during the night as I smelled the urine the next day it had already dried up ) the previous owner admitted that she was constantly head butting with her and was not sure how to handle a bulldog she also stated that her husband seemed ok with it but that’s not really true either Ashe stated himself because he’s barely home. She will go and relief herself in the house if not properly watched even if I just took her outside 10min ago and stood there, walked around with her for 10-15min. She refuses to go! I can count on one hand how many times I got her to go potty outside since we had her I the times she did go I made a big deal out of it to express to her that it is a great thing to do. I don’t like kenneling a dog if I am home anyways but I am already at a wits end of what to do. She’s also started barking in the middle of the night so I take her outside and she will not go! I don’t want to give up on her just yet but I really also need help, I grew up with bulldogs and studied them as a teenager but I have never come across one that acted this way. I really need help! I want to help her get better and understand that I will not back down though it seems like a good thing to do.. but her previous owner basically ” gave up on her for four years and let her have her way instead of teaching her so I don’t want to become like that. What can I do??

    • Dan Weese

      You’re at war with her last four years of training. That’s tough, I’m sure. Does she pee on a blanket or dog bed while in the kennel? Not sure why but our dogs always peed on the blankets we would leave with them. We took the blankets away leaving only the steel floor and feel bad doing it, but they stopped peeing in the cage because the pee would roll around in there and they knew it would.

      • Cassandra

        I learned early to not automatically give a dog a blanket until you can trust her and she can trust you. So I went with that, still made me feel bad but she seemed more comfortable that way as she is overweight and when I first brought her home was always sweating. To be honest the first three days I slept downstairs with her and she was free roaming. she had no accident during the night until the third day when she pooped and peed in the house. I never punished her for what she did but watched her reaction when she watched me first seeing it and then clean it up ” she would roll onto her back and look at me but then look away”. We got her a kennel on Sunday and at first she did not want to use it but I rewarded her when she would go in and now all I need to say is “go to your bed” and she goes still sometimes she will stop and look at me as if she’s trying to test me what I will do so I will just repeat the command and then she will go. I still reward her for it. This morning at 0230 she started barking so I walked downstairs said ” no” gave it a few seconds and then took her outside to see if she needed to go. Nothing.. I put her back in her kennel after 10min outside. I used a box to cut off the other half of the kennel as she had more room, now it’s enough to lay down and kind of turn around. This morning no accident but she refused to go outside not even a treat made her come to the door sigh I dragged her something I’ve never done before and it made me feel terrible. Outside she completely refused to go just sat there, I let her stay outside 10min, I stay with her because I already tried letting her go alone she will just stand at the door steps and not do anything. So I fed her breakfast and put her back in her kennel for resting time. Ill try again in about 30- 1 hour ( usually she will fall asleep ) to let her out and the cycle will just repeat itself. You know she’s really a good listener when I tell her sit and stay, even when I give her the same commands for waiting to eat with hand sign. She does great with it! But going potty… geez I have no idea what to do with her. She has an appointment with the vet this Friday so I am hoping we can rule out anything medical. other then the potty issue she’s a great dog!

        • Cassandra

          Also I’m still in contact with the previous owners as I am trying to ” play nice” for them to share everything they have done and tried with her. Since all of this was left out when I went to their house to pick her up, asking questions. It’s obvious to me that because a bulldog is stubborn they never stuck with anything and let her get her way. They kenneled her, left her outside and used a doggy door but according to them she will still go in the house if not watched which tells me she was never housebroken to begin with. So how do I housebreak a 4 year old that refuses to go outside? Should I change her name? Give her a fresh start with a new one? Does that even matter to a dog? I don’t know..

  • Elizabeth

    I wish I saw this when we first brought our puppy home last May.  After years of saying no, I finally let my husband get the bulldog puppy of his dreams.  Unfortunately, he didn’t want to consistently put the work into training the pup and now we’ve got a dog who seems to deliberately have accidents. I’ve tried to do as much as I can (I ended up being the one to take him out multiple times a night to get him on a nighttime schedule and eventually potty trained overnight), but I’ve been trying to let him take care of him and now it’s apparent something needs to be done and I have to take over because this dog isn’t getting it. He’s 8 months now, how long do you think it might take us to really get him trained if he has consistent discipline? Some of the issues my husband was not enforcing were things like taking him outside immediately in the morning, taking him outside as soon as he caught him having an accident, and not playing with him enough.  I’ve taken him outside every time I’ve caught him, but my hubby doesn’t (he already peed, what’s the point?) and I know that is definitely not helping. Our pup also decides to poop in the kids’ rooms sometimes after we bring him back in.  I usually stand out there with him until he goes, but the hubs just opens the door and let’s him out (and I don’t think he goes half the time).  Is it weird that my dog seems to need an audience when he’s outside but he will go sneak off inside?  Any advice?  I’m really frustrated and I want to make it right before he’s too old!!

    • Dan Weese

      Boy, that’s tough to have an older dog that’s still not trained! So frustrating. Keep doing what you’re doing. Too bad your husband won’t get on board with the training. In a way, I believe your authority and teaching is being undermined by him. Until your bulldog is better trained he should definitely be walked out like you are doing so you can be sure he has indeed done his business-otherwise he’ll just stand around until you let him back in. Your bully has developed a lazy lifestyle and obviously prefers to relieve himself inside, but you can change that I would say within a month of solid and consistent teaching. This reminds me of what we went through with our boy D.C. We thought he was good and trained and we got a little slack with him. He fell into a similar pattern as your boy and we had to re-train him over the coarse of 3 weeks. Good luck!

  • Maria

    We have just got an old Thyme Bulldog puppy. She’s 6 months old and has a very loving nature. Unfortunately before she found us she had previously been owned by another family for the first couple of months of her life who had to give her up for some reason and she was then returned to the breeder where she remained with her siblings until last Saturday when we welcomed her into our home. Her breeders admitted that she had no training at all so we’re starting from scratch. It’s early days with us of course but we’re already coming across a few major challenges – the 2 most concerning ones are that firstly she is very frightened to leave the Flat (we live on the first floor) to even down the stairs into the garden, tried tempting treats, encouragement and nothing works, she’s also absolutely petrified to walk in the busy streets and pulls so hard both ways, erratically zig zags and cowers against the wall, she’s also displaying fear aggression with other dogs and even large vehicles which happen to be passing. We just want to find some way to chill her out and get her to enjoy her walks. I work from home and the last 2 days all she’s wanted to do is sleep under my desk, she does have a comfy puppy crate which I encourage her to chill out in (with the door open) but she just pushes her way under my desk to hide it seems and sleeps for hours, not sure if this is normal and we’re worried she’s becoming depressed. Another challenge is that She also lunges for food at mealtimes – we’re doing everything we can to train her to sit but she goes completely deaf and focused on the food bowl at mealtimes! Any help or pointers much appreciated. 🙂

    • Dan Weese

      Ok so let me start from the bottom 🙂 I would encourage you to try leaving a full bowl of food out for her at all times during the day. Her food source obviously wasn’t secure at her last home and this has caused her to act out. By leaving her food out during the day you’ll teach her that she now has a secure source of food and there’s no need to scarf down every piece of kibble the moment she sees it. Now, you’ll have to be patient. She might eat a couple of times in a row at first and even vomit, but this exercise should only take a day and she’ll leave a full bowl of food untouched. Use a slow feed bowl to inhibit vomiting. After that you can leave the food out or slowly break her into a scheduled feeding plan over the span of maybe a week. As far as the other challenges like the fear of cars and not wanting to go into the garden I suppose the best method of treatment is immersion. Maybe try taking her out in the early or late hours of the day when there is less traffic until she gets used to it. Carry her outside to the garden and sit calmly with her for a moment at a time before retreating back inside to her safe place. Considering she’s only 6 months old I think there is great hope she’ll come around. Well, I hope some of this advice works or maybe gives you another idea you can try. Good luck!

  • Lorrie

    HI Dan,

    Great Article, lots of great information here. We have a 10 week Olde English bulldog pup. We’ve had him for just over a week. He’s great for the most part and is in the normal puppy chewing/mouthy stage. But, my question is, he tends to pick on/nip at our cats a lot. While they are sleeping, he will sometimes come up to them and lightly put his mouth around their neck as if he’s trying to pin them. Is this normal puppy play or is he being aggressive? The cats have given him a few good swats with their nails but he hasn’t learned his lesson yet, in fact he’s doing it even more so. Its not so bad now while he’s little but once he’s 50 + pounds he could hurt them obviously. What can I do to stop the behavior before it gets out of hand? I have little kids in my house so its important he doesn’t bite!

    • Dan Weese

      So cute! I remember how our puppies were with the cats we had in the past. Our cats would go in the basement and jump up into the rafters to get away from the puppy’s constant badgering. I think it’s totally normal. This is how young pups play with each other. Lots of biting and basically seeing how much of the other pup’s head they can fit into their mouth lol. I would say just continue to lovingly correct your puppy when he bites or get’s over playful with the cats. He’ll grow out of it and soon he and the cat will be snuggling on the floor together.

    • jenipher

      Well the behavior with the cats let the cats out either chain your pup next to u and advise him that its not good to do the things he do tell him no repeatedly he will gradually learn and wont pay the cats no attention i have a 7 month old ole english bulldoggie and i had him since he was 4 months old he wasn’t hard to train at all give it a try its easier then you think hope it goes well.

  • Lori

    I was hired to walk a 3-4 year old American Bulldog 2 times/day. She puts or let’s me put the leash on& has a sweet disposition and runs to the elevator gets in sits nicely then runs out the condo door & down the stairs then completely stops & lies down & won’t walk. I’ve picked her up thrown treats so she goes a few feet & in 2 weeks twice a day she has pooped 2 times. I’ve been stern w/her I’ve pulled her picked her up, everything. She doesn’t do this as bad with the owner or his Mom. Help!!! I have to take her tomorrow morning. What can I do without hurting her or choking her???

    • Dan Weese

      I would try something new to get her more interested in walking. Bring a basketball or soccer ball to bounce or kick around in the yard with her. Bulldogs usually love chasing after those. You could also try putting her in the car and driving a half mile from her house then begin walking. She might find the car ride and new starting point more exciting.

      As far as the pooping only twice. I would say you should discuss this with the owners and consider together if a change in meal times might be better. Good luck.  Let me know how it goes.

  • Julie

    My 5yr old English bulldog won’t stop peeing and pooping in my apt he is house trained and knows to use it outside but lately (couple months now) he has been just using it in the house, he cu was up my son’s toys and that’s been an ongoing problem since we had him for 10 months son is 2yrs old and this dog has been a nuisance when it comes to my son’s toys. Now he is peeing on them and I am beyond fed up, he doesn’t show any signs of aggression against my child he is usually well behave per but lately he has been acting out and I don’t know why. Please can anyone help cause of if not I’m going to end up breaking my husband’s heart by giving him the ultimatum to get rid of the dog or the baby and I will be leaving.

    • Dan Weese

      Wow, that bad huh! I’ve heard of quite a few people having the same issues with Bulldogs going from perfectly house trained to…well, not so perfectly trained. He might be marking the toys because he wants to claim them as his own, I don’t know. You may have to relocate the toys so they’re out of his reach, but for other areas of the house I have heard a few people saying the Nature’s Miracle spray actually helps deter them from marking areas in the house. I wish I could vouch for this spray myself, but we haven’ ever used it. If things don’t get better, let me know and if you’re forced to give your Bulldog up for adoption I would be glad to help you find a suitable home or rescue. Good luck and let me know how it goes!

      • Julie Rivera

        Well he did it again pissed in the same spot after I put arm&hammer powder to take the smell out he pissed right on the powder after being outside. I don’t know why he is doing this but I am fed up. Just got done carpet cleaning my carpet again.  My son can’t even play on the floor cause he keeps doing this. My husband is fed up with me arguing with him about this problem. I’ve spoke with my brother, he is going to figure out where the dog can go cause I can’t keep this up. I can understand a pup doing this but not a 5yr old English bulldog whose house trained.

    • Brian

      Typical women.

  • Kelly

    We have had our bulldog Hitch for about 6 months (found him in the side of the road and found the owner who didn’t want him.) He’s about 4 years old. He is kennel trained and doesn’t usually have accidents in the house or kennel. The past week he had diarrhea in his kennel then the next night regular bowel movement in his kennel aND now he is urinating in the kennel as well. We cleaned it well and put it outside with him in it with a fan on him while we were at work because we rent and can’t afford to ruin floors with urine coming out of the kennel. Today he went in the yard and dug a huge hole and he has never dug before. Why the sudden behavior change? We can’t afford a vet visit right now…any suggestions.

    • Dan Weese

      Hard to say. I would wonder if there has been a change in routine or living arrangements that has caused him some anxiety or frustration. Does he get less attention from you than he used to? Have you recently moved? Is there a new pet or person in the home? It seems like something has upset him. I don’t think it’s any cause for great concern, but I can’t give you a sure answer as to what may be happening either. I can advise you to try giving him some plain kefir milk or yogurt with added probiotics. Give him a couple of tablespoons a day to help bolster his digestive tract in case that may have or is still one issue he’s dealing with. Please let me know how he’s doing in a few days.

  • Lauren

    Great article full of useful info. We have a 6 month old bully and we’ve come a long way with her, but we’re still working on getting her to not pee in her crate. I think I’ve figured out from your article that the crate is too big for her and she has a “bathroom” area built into the back, ha! However, I’m wondering what to do with her during the day. My husband and I both work, so we usually leave her in her crate with her bed and some toys during the day. First, I worry that a smaller crate would be torture during the day, but I’m afraid to leave her uncrated because she still pees wherever she wants (pee pads make great snacks). Because she eats them, we can’t leave pee pads or anything made of paper on the floor. We have an outdoor deck that she could use, and it has a dog house on it, but I worry that it will get too hot out there for her before long. Ideally, we want her to be house-broken so that she can stay outside during the day, but I’m not expecting that to happen for at least another six months to a year. Suggestions?

    • Dan Weese

      Catch 22! This is a tough situation for sure. I’ll just throw out a few suggestions. Is it possible you could get someone you trust to come over once a day to walk and socialize with your bulldog? That would make it easier on her with being alone and having to relieve herself midway through the work day. What about putting a doggie door up or fencing in the back yard? If you block her on the deck while you’re away she’ll be likely to chew on the lumber out of bordem or frustration. I also worry about her being left with toys in the crate while unsupervised. She may be great with toys and it might be a long shot, but I do hear stories of choking quite often. Just be sure the toys are large and indestructible to be safe. Unfortunately this is just a difficult situation and very common. I guess most of us sort of struggle through it, but things always get better. Can someone else chime in with an interesting fix for Lauren?

  • Angela

    I have a one year old bulldog who gets very excited and anxious when we take her on a walk.  She pulls, bites on the leash and runs to the point that she exhaust herself right away. She doesn’t get bothered by the dogs barking if they are behind the fence but if a dog is being walked she does go a little crazy.  I try calming her down but that doesn’t work.  Any advice.  Thank you.

  • Cass

    Hi Dan

    We have had our rescue bulldog for nearly a year now and we were made aware of his dog aggression due to being pulled under his fence by a leadoff. We have manage to stop him going from trying to get to our neighbors dog through the fence and he no longer goes Into a death toll when he sees another dog on his walk.  He does still however makes this horrible yelling sound whenever he sees or heard another dog.He knows which yards have dogs in them and looks out for them when we go past. do u think we will be able to get him past this as we would love to have him be social with other dogs and

    • Dan Weese

      Hey, Cass. Congratulations on all the advancements you’ve made thus far on his training! That could not have been easy and because you’ve already gotten him to this point I’ve no doubt you can help him reach this next mile-stone. I think with continued exposure to other dogs and your guidance(praise + discipline method) he can do this. If you feel it’s safe, don’t be afraid to take him to the park where a couple of other dogs would be. Sit on a bench and display to him a calm demeanor. Let your body language prove to him your in control and relaxed. Immerse him into this atmosphere slowly. Try and help him focus on you petting and talking to him. He’ll hear dogs and their owners jogging, walking, playing etc. If he barks or howls, calmly, but quickly address that. Treat him when you notice even the slightest bit of compliance. Again, considering what you’ve already told me about your boy’s progress, I’m super confident he can go further and begin to socialize with other dogs and their owners. Good luck and please do keep me updated on how he’s doing this Spring!

  • sofi

    My boyfriend has a 5 years old english bulldog, we take him out at least 3 times a day (forced, he does not like to go out) at night we always take him for a long walk, but then when is time to sleep he does not do it. My boyfriend always slept in the bed with with but we are trying to train him not to because he will come and lay on my face, make noises, walk around, bit his paws, lick his body (he never does all of this before we turn off the lights). If we try to take him out of the room he will try to bite me, and when we finally success and make him leave the room he will go to the living room (where he normally sleeps) but then come back to scratch the door until we let him in the room again.He does this at least three times during the night, is a constant battle to make him go to sleep and it has become a huge problem because he always does what he wants and if we try to correct him, he becomes aggressive.

    • Dan Weese

      Wonderful waking up to the sound of your Bully licking his paws isn’t it. I used to work over-nights at a boys home and our Lily would sleep in my room. Our dogs could be twins they’re so much alike. Ya this can be some very annoying behavior can’t it. There are so many things I could recommend you try, but because I’ve been there I think the best thing to do is to crate him during the night. Unless you or your boyfriend can really take control and let her know who’s boss, she won’t stop. If you crate her she will still probably bark for a few nights at first, but he should get the idea. If you can’t crate him you’ll have to battle him for at least a week straight during the nights to stay out of your room. Leave the door open so he knows it you stopping him from coming in and not the closed door. This will better display your authority over him. Each time he comes in the room your boyfriend will have to be extremely diligent to shew him out. He’ll be stubborn too, but if you decide to take this route you can win. You’ll definitely lose sleep, but you’ll win. So in my mind you have two choices. Wish there was a magic word or something. Seriously hilarious for me though to read how alike your boy is to my Lily lol.

  • Belli

    Hey! I have a two month old bulldog -Casper.we got him home last week and potty and pee training is a bit of a struggle he pottied and pees in different areas of the house,and when I do take him to the bathroom which is the assigned location,he does not eliminate there. Also he has watery it common?

    • Dan Weese

      Belli, potty training can definitely be a struggle. He’s still relatively young and new to your home so I would expect a few accidents, but at this point he should be going outside most of the time. You just have to tough it out. Easy for me to say, I know. Just remember that each time he pees inside that action is being reinforced. It’s like taking 2 steps forward and 3 steps backward. Watch him like a hawk and he’ll come around. The watery poop is a common occurrence, but you want to try and get that cleared up. Try some forti-flora by purina or even some pro-biotic yogurt or kefir milk. These are all intended to promote and strengthen a healthy digestive system which would give him a more solid stool.

  • Toni Mathias-Grumley

    I have a 3 yr old old English bulldog that is primarily confined to the kitchen. His kennel is in there and he is trained in it. Never urinated or dedicated in it, or in the kitchen area where he is confined, he is potty trained except when he comes out of the kitchen by sometimes jumping the fence and only when I am gone. He occasionally pees here and there in daughters room or on some things in the living room, but it’s always after the fact, in other words, I never catch him doing it.
    We bought a new home and will be moving within a few months. I don’t want to confine him anymore and want him to have full range of the new home. The new home had another dog in it so my main concern is that he will pee on things.
    How do I teach him not to do this? Do you have any training suggestions? I don’t want him confined anymore.
    Any advice or help would be much appreciated!!

    • Dan Weese

      Hi Toni. It seems to me that because he was only allowed in the kitchen at your previous home he never understood what the other rooms were for. As far as he knew the kitchen was his living space and the other rooms over the fence were a good place to pee. You’ll just have to train him in the new home as you would a puppy. He’ll no doubt recognize the general similarities between your new and old kitchens and won’t want to pee there, but he’ll need to be taught the other rooms are for living purposes also, not relieving himself. Tour him through the house. Let him have free range, but don’t let him out of your site for at least a week or until you’re confident he’s learned not to go in the house. Let me know how he’s doing in a week 🙂

  • Lauren

    Hey there,
    4 months ago I bought a real-homed Australian bulldog, with limited knowledge o his behavioral history or owner history. Benson the bulldog recently turned 5. He is a lovely energetic dog that loves walks and the beach but his agression is becoming a problem. He recently barked and snarled at my housemate when she told him he had to go outside, she became scared and still is anxious around him (which I don’t blame her). There now have been two occasions that he has barked and growled at me and I try and not let him dominate me and remind him who is in charge. I usually grab his collar and lead him outside, sometimes I’m not sure whether he will or won’t bite me.
    Benson is trained so well in every other aspect and I understand re-homing dogs comes with is issues. I love him to death and need some advice….


  • Keimonee

    I have a 3 month old miniature bulldog named meatball. He’s a great dog loves to cuddle play  and sleep lol but lately he hasn’t really been wanting to eat,it’s hard to train him to use the bathroom outside, I am also frighten because his teeth are falling out but they are growing back and he’s chewing on my husband and I window panes in the den of our apartment and he is potty trained on the pad but is regressing back to using it on the carpet we put him in time out and spank him but he will still do it. He also jumps on you if you are eating food. What should we do.

    • Dan Weese

      Keimonee, the teeth naturally fall out and grow back in young pups. He’s only chewing because his gums are sore and that soothes the aching a bit for him. Get him a safe chew toy so he stops chewing your home. You can also spray nature’s miracle on the furniture to deter his chewing. The pee pads are sort of a bad idea because they ultimately just train a dog to pee inside. You can try and break him from this by taking him out to pee and placing the pee pad on the ground for a few days. Just be consistent in your loving discipline and it shouldn’t take much longer for his behavior to stop.

      • Keimonee

        OK thank you what do I do about him not wanting to sleep in his own bed

        • Dan Weese

          Tough love. Each time you give in to him, he’ll be that much harder to cage train 🙂

  • Julie

    I got a 4 yr old bulldog two months ado and he is house trained, but recently he peed on my 11 month old sons pack&play. Idk why he did it i know it happened when i wasn’t home. What can i do to prevent this from happening again & why did he do that? I still can’t get the smell out.

    • Dan Weese

      Hey, Julie. Just talked with someone else having the same problem. Her dog has been trained for a long time and suddenly started peeing on the couch. She recently told me she tried the nature’s miricle repellent spray and her bully hasn’t peed on any of her furniture since then. Aside from the usual discipline methods, this could be a great antidote for this new behavior. Let me know how your boy does!

  • Prianka

    Great article! I’ve a question. I’ve a male English bulldog 1.5 year old. I’ve had him since he was a puppy. He’s been house trained completely. All of a sudden past couple of weeks he’s been behaving differently. Despite of being taken out couple of times a day, he’s always peeing in the house. Sometimes he does that while he’s just leaving the house for going on walks. He’d clearly want to hold it then. I’m really confused. Any idea why is he doing it ?

    • Dan Weese

      You know, because he’s an adult now and he’s been trained for quite a while this is a bit concerning. It’s possible he could have a urinary tract or bladder infection. Boys get them too. Try and see if his urine looks normal. He could be marking territory too especially if you’ve been washing things around the house. Some say having them neutered fixes that. Really though, I would call your vet about a possible infection. They’ll want you to take a collection of urine before you come in so they can test for infection. You can collect his urine by soaking it with a paper towel and bagging it or collecting with a syringe after he’s peed if possible.

    • Joann

      Just be careful if they want to give him a shot of steroids.  They did it to my bulldog because he had a UTI and the minute I got him home he started peeing constantly – apparently steroids can do that to bulldogs.  He seriously peed for almost an entire week until the shot got out of his system.  Tried him on pills – then half pills – same thing.  Some dogs just cannot tolerate steroids – and no one mentioned anything until we had to deal with an entire week of peeing everywhere – and I DO mean everywhere – he’d walk and pee – like a stream.

  • Sin

    Any tips on “crate training” a 6 week old puppy?  We let our Olde English stay in an area by our front door, she is good at night, she usually pees/poops on the pads or cries to go outside.  During the day when we are at work (my husband comes home around 4 hours after no one is home to feed/take her out to use the bathroom), she makes a mess in her area.  We just purchased a crate last night (I didn’t want to at first because I just feel really bad), but I think if it helps us house train her faster, i’ll do it.  Any tips/suggestions on how long she should be in there?  I’d like her to be able to hang out with our entire family around the house & not just in her area.

  • Sin

    Hi, we have just purchased 6 week Olde English Bulldogge.  She is so adorable & loving, but I’d like advice on how to get my kids to show her that they are higher than her.  She loves my son (he is 4 years old), but I noticed recently that she has started trying to “nip” at his face & likes to jump on him.  She also likes to attack his feet & tug at his shorts.  We told him to be more assertive with her & to push her off & to tell her in a firm voice “OFF”.  Our daughter, age 6, is more timid around our puppy… she will go & pet her, but is mainly afraid of her (she got bit on her finger by the puppy once & has been timid since).  We’ve only had our bulldogge for 4 days now, but I am afraid that she will try to challenge the kids authority & don’t want her pushing the kids down when she gets bigger.  Any tips that will help my kids be the “leader” of her?  I just don’t want our dog to grow up & be a “bully” to my kids.  Also, I know that puppies like to chew/bite on things, is there anything else we can do to get her to stop trying to chew on our clothes/things besides buying her chew toys & telling her no?  Any tips we can get would be GREATLY appreciated, thanks!

    • Dan Weese

      Just keep doing what you’re doing. It’s ok to back your kids up too with their commands. We’re going through the same thing with our 22 week old bulldog and the kids. It’s tough explaining to the kids how to be assertive. Most of it is in the body language and the kids struggle with that. Chewing will be a big part of your bulldog’s life for the next 3-6 months. There are bitter apple sprays some people swear by but the best deterrent is non-stop supervision.  Continue to follow through with him and in a few weeks you should see vast improvements.

  • Sondra

    I have an English Bulldog pup whom is 15 weeks old. Wonderful boy, I just love his nature. The one hangup is pooping. During the day he is great. No accidents in house but I’m a stay at home mom and let him out often. However, at night, he poops in his bed. His bed is on floor next to my bed. He does not bark or ask to go out ever, in fact he doesn’t even stand up. I’m going to start setting an alarm for 230am to take him out but shouldn’t he be making it through the night by now? He eats 3 meals of Iams puppy food. 1/2 to 2/3 cup. Last meal is at 5ish

    • Dan Weese

      Ya you would hope at 15 weeks he should make it through the night without pooing, but I wouldn’t say it’s incredibly unusual. Peeing takes longer for some. Especially with his last meal being at 5pm it seems strange he’s going in his cage. What time does he go to his cage for the night? I’m guessing at least 9pm or so. He should be making it 9 hrs through the night.

  • tara

    We have a 5 month old american bulldog and potty training is still a struggle with him. He started making it through the night in his kennel (which has just enough room for him to move lay down etc) about 3 months, but during the day while we are at work he doesn’t hold it(this happens at least 3-4x during the work week), there are some days he’d only be locked up for 5-6 hours, and we’ll come home to a messed in kennel, and he’s basically rolled in it, it’ll even be on top of his head! In the past 3-4 weeks he started pooping in his kennel, and yes that would also be all over him. He also doesn’t notify us when he has to go outside, we just learned that we need to consistently take him out every couple of hours, we haven’t had a ton of accidents in the house lately. I’m beginning to worry that we might have a “special” dog. (joking, but not joking) It’s very frustrating. I have a Boston Terrier, it took me no more than 4 weeks to train her, kennel and house, I’ve owned several dogs throughout my life, I feel like I have it down how to train them, but I really am struggling with my very first american bulldog.

  • Meryl

    HI I have a 20 month old male EngAm bulldog he constantly jumps on me and my 2 sons ages 4 and 9 but Never does that to my 20 month old baby boy!!! He plays so rough with us sometimes I can’t pull him off me or my sons my husband has too! ! When my husband Goes to work sometimes I’m scared … he’s really sweet but he just jumps scratches growls and nibbles it’s like he sees red and goes crazy!! He is a rescue his former owner had PTSD real bad. I don’t want to get rid of him but what can I do?? He has never bitten us but I’m scared he might he’s 80 pounds!! Please help we love our maximus!!!!

    • Dan Weese

      Check out this video with Cesar Milan.

      You’ll notice Cesar gives the dogs a swift, firm kick to the gut of these dogs to snap them out of their hyper-active behavior. I usually will just swat a dog like this on the hind leg, but either of them work. Some would be quick to say this is abuse, but I ask you, why would a dog stop it’s wrong behavior if they have no reason to? There is one other thing Cesar does that is key! Watch his body language. Cesar isn’t bending over, putting his hands out and shuffling his feet in reaction to the dogs. He stands tall and faces the dog, but often doesn’t even make eye contact. it’s the eye contact many times and the human mimicking the dog’s hyper-activity with their body language that let’s the dog know you want to play or that you have no control to stop their mis-behavior. It can be so very hard to explain proper body language to the children. Often the child’s fear of past experiences with the dogs being repeated actually makes them a target. Notice the children many times move in ways that are counter productive to demanding space and submission from the dog. I hope the video helps. It’s so hard to try and explain something like this in a message 🙂

      • Meryl

        Thank you for your help I will defanitly try this!! What about a can with pennies in it???try that too??,

        • Dan Weese

          Boy, I don’t know about the pennies. Try them and let me know how they work for you.

  • Erik


    I am bringing a new Bulldog to my home on Monday and I was wondering how you guys have introduced them to other dogs in the house.
    I have a almost 2 year old Boston Terrier, female and a deff english bulldog (male) which is 15 months old. Whenever I go out with them and they see other dogs, they reacted pretty agressive but this has become less a bit after I have always turned them on their backs and hold them by their chest until they got a little bit more relaxed to continue walking.
    Whenever I bring them to my parents house, who have great danes and a doberman and leave them without a leash, they imediately start running around and feel comfortable. 

    How shoud I introduce the new puppy ? On a neutral ground (outside the house)and each one on a leash ? or better at home in a more neutral place ? Should they sleep together, in beds that are close to each other, or should the puppy sleep separately? I have heard that they should first smell each other without seeing each other.
    Any suggestions?

    Thanks for your opinions !!!!!

    Greetings from Guatemala 😉

    • Dan Weese

      I think introducing the new puppy in your home is fine. He is after all a new family member so the other dogs need to know the new pup has a rightful place at home. I would think the puppy might be better sleeping on his own at first especially since he’ll be potty training. Good luck with your new pup!

  • Grace

    This episode is exactly me and my bulldog but my dog actually will lunge. I obviously pull him away or the people will run away because he is a scary looking fellow. How can I practice this technique as it’s always aggression with strangers. never at the dog park or play day but at aroun d our home and apartment complex and some friends in particular

  • Lynn

    We have a 1 year old female bulldog and the only issues we have with her is jumping up. Recently we got a male bulldog puppy.  We got him at almost 8 weeks and we are having the hardest time potty training.  I’ll take him out to go and he’ll go outside but within 15 or 20 minutes he’s peeing inside.  He went go more than 30 minutes without peeing. We’ve had to take up the water bowl because he tries to drink constantly. Any advice?

    • Dan Weese

      Hi Lynn. Unfortunately I don’t have any magic answers or techniques to suggest to you, but what I will suggest are tried and true methods. The only thing working against you is time, patience and more patience. With the jumping, it’s best to show her absolutely no affection until she’s in the sitting position and scold her when she does this. Putting a dog that jumps on people or misbehaves into the cage doesn’t really help in my opinion. Some people try this, but the dog will more easily understand he’s being disciplined or corrected while in your presence. Give them the cold shoulder when they jump. If she won’t sit, make her and applaud her when she’s sitting. She’ll get the point. At 1 year of age they’re still young and a little rambunctious too so she could calm down soon. I think you made the right choice putting up the water bowl for your boy. Puppies are like children. They’ll drink a bunch of liquids out of boredom and then pee all over themselves lol. Just make sure he has plenty if he’s outside, but you probably already know that.

  • Anthony Santanello

    My bulldog Bella is 3 years old. I give her rawhides and treats like that every once in awhile. My problem with that is she goes through them so fast and also tries to swallow them while they are still big bones. It seems like she gets overly excited with stuff like that and throws up immediately after. How do I get her to stop being overly excited and just enjoy eating these rawhides?

    • Dan Weese

      Good question. honestly I don’t use rawhides anymore with our Bulldogs. We always had the same problem and it just seemed too dangerous.

  • Denise McCartney

    We just purchased a 14 week old male bulldog. Doing well with potty training with few accidents. I work from home so he is with me all day and get plenty of love and attention. The problem is at night. He cries all night long! He even pees and dedicated in his cage last night. The cage is just big enough for him to turn around etc but he won’t stop crying. We are going nuts being sleep deprived. Help!!

    • Dan Weese

      When the pups are young like this and especially in a new home this is normal, but like you say, really hard to deal with I know. It’s great you work from home and have plenty of time for him! I wouldn’t be bothered too much about an accident here and there in the cage. As long as you’re cutting him off from food a couple of hours before bed you’re doing all you can. For the crying have you tried putting a blanket over his cage? Just cover the entire thing up. We’ve found this to make the puppies feel more secure and calms them down. You can also verbally reassure him calmly a couple of times when he begins to cry. We’ve had the same problem. It’s so sad and you’re so tempted to run over, pull them out of the cage and comfort them, but once you decide it’s time to go in the cage you had better leave them in. Puppies are just like children; if your boy learns he can get out of his cage when he cries, he’ll never stop. All in all you’re doing a great job. You basically brought a new baby boy home. I trust things will get better soon.

      • steve

        I have read a loud ticking clock, or hot water bottle wrapped in a towel may help.

  • Lisa


    I have a 5 month old bulldog, who is for the most part house trained. I only leave puppy pads for her to relieve herself when I am at work, otherwise she wants to go outside to use the bathroom.  However, she rips and tears the pads up almost each and everyday.  I have even sprayed that bitter spray and clearly that did not work. I have tried everything, I even have someone come and walk her for a few minutes a day. I know if I don’t leave a pad she will relieve herself on my floors rather the pad. Please help I come home to a mess everyday. Thanks.

    • Dan Weese

      It sounds like you’re already doing all you can. I’m sure you’ve already tried leaving chew toys to deter her from chewing on the pads. I think this is something she would eventually grow out of, but this is a problem no one wants even in the short term. What about a doggy door so she can go when she needs to? I’m bouncing ideas everywhere I know. Really, it’s great you have someone walking her, but at that age it’s tough. She actually needs supervision for most of the day. It would be great if you could drop her with a babysitter for the day until she gets older.

  • Julie

    I have a almost 7 month old English we can’t open the door without holding her back because she starts jumping on people.  When people come over all she wants to do is jump on people. Need help to correct this behavior. Also, Whenever we eat at the dinner table she jumps up and tries to get food. We also tell her no and down and bring her back to the ground. We don’t give her any food off of the dinner table but she continues to jump up. Any recommendations to correct this problem.

    • Dan Weese

      It sounds like you’re doing all you can. A smack to the rear never hurts if nothing else works. Really, though she should come around.

  • Teresa Barnes

    I have a 11 month old bulldog she is so stubborn and does not like being told what to do, she jumps at me and others that tell her not to do things like jump on the couch and pull the cushions off, runs off when she is called, she does not always last the night without having a wee in the bedding area where she sleeps,she is very sociable but when she sees other dogs she just flattens them because shes so heavy and the owners think shes aggressive rather than playful, she is very strong and it is getting to the stage now where she is too strong for me too walk her on my own which is a shame because it is me that’s loves the walking, please can you give me some advice.

  • Sharon

    We have a 4 month old female bulldog, the past two days she has peed on the carpet after being outside about an hour before. She has not done this for about 4 weeks, what should we do?

    • Dan Weese

      Isn’t that annoying! You’ve no doubt done a great job training her thus far. Sometimes as pups Bulldogs, just like children, will temporarily revert back to old habits. Stick to your guns. Scold her if she does it again and maybe even discipline her with 10 minutes in the kennel. She should come out of this unwanted behavior shortly.

  • Bobby

    We just adopted a 3 year old female rescue bulldog. She was previously only used for breeding and spent her whole life in a cage until she was rescued. The foster home we got her from said she was house broken. We have had her for a week now and she has had accidents every night and every day while we are at work. She has gone outside a few times but usually acts like she has no desire to go outside. Help please, cleaning up messes twice a day is getting tiring.

    • Dan Weese

      This is a very special case and tough. She’s spent her whole life in a cage so the habit of peeing in her cage became normal. It’s possible she’s digressed a bit just out of stress caused by being moved to a new home. I imagine the schedule is quite different in your home than it was in the foster home. If it were possible to mimic her lifestyle including everything from when she eats to what time is bed-time and how often she went outside in the foster home I would try that. Keep in contact with the foster home to answer these questions and provide advice. Obviously that may not work. If not, the best you can do is keep trying. Surely she can learn again to go outside consistently.

      • nikki

        I have an 8 weeks old bulldog birch . She has growled and gone for me twice in 2 days when I tell her no and pick her up

  • stacy

    Hi there I have just adopted a two year old bulldog, unsure of its past, and would really like to get on top of behavior and rules with him, I have 3 children under 7, should I include them in training time so he is to not get possessive of me and not only listen to me but the children as well? My main concern is the jumping up on us all the time. What is the best way to stop this as I don’t want it to become a habit. Also one of my children is absolutely frightened of him, the other two adore him, but 1 just is beside herself if he comes near her. How can I begin a bond between them or a place of understanding for both her and him, without getting my child anxious and without scaring the dog? Thanks

    • Dan Weese

      Definitely include your 7 year old in the training and have the younger ones be in the room to watch. I would recommend you wait until the Bulldog is accepting of each new training with an adult before you introduce the children into that particular trick(leash walking, sit, stay etc.) Be firm in your tone when he jumps. Let him know it is not acceptable at any time. Stand tall. Move slowly and confidently around him even when he jumps. Tell him to sit before each interaction. If he doesn’t sit, use a more stern voice and tell him again while pushing his but to the floor in the sitting position. When he’s sitting, praise him, even if he’s sitting only after being made to. He’ll get it soon enough. The easing of your child’s fear of the dog will just take time. I’m sure most of her fear is because the dog is jumping and tends to scratch a little. Once that’s fixed and she sees the rest of the family enjoying the dog she’ll come around.

  • Jonathan

    Hi, I recently adopted a 4 year old male bulldog who is recently neutered. He has been a real treat to our family but we’ve also had some issues. First off, we took him to a festival in which he was around other dogs, people and children and he did amazingly well. But when we got home we all needed naps. My 5 year old son was in my room watching tv while the dog and I were taking a nap in the living room. I was startled awake by my son screaming and crying. The dog had bitten his foot. Now, my son doesn’t lie and said he just sat down in the chair next to me when the dog proceeded to get aggressive and bite him. I know I probably should have put the dog outside while nap time now. And the dog seems to be very remorseful and has been very loving and sweet ever since. But it’s almost like he’s being protective of me with my own son. Is this a sign of me not including him enough in cuddle time? Or is he just not used to my son enough yet. Any advice would be great. Thanks!

    • Dan Weese

      My first thought was that your new Bulldog was being overly possessive of you and that’s why he bit your son. However, you said the dog was around a lot of people and dogs at the festival that day which seems to dismantle that thought. Is it possible while you and your dog were sleeping that your son spooked the dog? I would again sort of recreate the situation. This time you’ll be awake so it’s a controlled experiment. Sit on the couch with your dog like you were while napping. Bring your son in and watch for signs of aggression. Have your son sit by the dog like he did before. See if it goes without any problems. If at any time during the experiment the dog seems anxious or upset by this, stop. At this point the experiment should continue, but make sure you have the help of another adult and the dog is leashed so to prevent harm. Repeat the experiment and calmly but firmly restrain the dog if necessary. He must learn to share you and allow other people into his space without getting aggressive. This may be more action than what is required, but for the sake of others following your question I wanted to be in depth. Hope this helps. – Daniel

  • Jimmy

    Hi, I have an english bulldog who is just at 6 mo old. She has been potty trained for the wee mats but now I’m trying to get her to go outside and she’s being difficult. I take her out about 15 min after she eats but does nothing. Then when we come upstairs she goes to the mat or goes to her bed and lies down then when I turn my head for 5 min she will use bathroom on the floor. Im getting frustrated as you can imagine. Any tips that may work? Thanks for your time

    • Dan Weese

      This happens sometimes when the pee pads are used. She’s become so accustomed to peeing inside and on the mat and now it’s hard for her to change. The best I believe you can do is basically to insist that she pee outside before you take her in. It may take a while, but she has to be retrained. Once she finally goes be sure to have a treat ready and praise her like crazy. You might also try and take the pee pad outside on the patio to try and ease her into the new practice of going outside.

  • Hollie Browning


    Thanks for your timely response. I think our family is a bit afraid because before Jordan (the puppy I am telling you about) we had tried to rescue a 2 year old bulldog and she terrorized our family and other pets, we had to take her back after 24 hours, I never saw anything like it. She was fear biting and pacing as if she had anxiety. And she would growl if you did something you didn’t like. It was heart breaking and terrible. So everyone was so upset I went to our local pet store and bought Jordan, he was 2 months old then, the owner gave me the name of the breeder, etc. It’s a pet store I have bought all of my dogs out so I have trust in them. Jordan does not growl like that all of the time it’s only been 2-3 times that this has happened but since we met that last bulldog from the rescue, we are all paranoid Jordan will turn out to be like her too. Otherwise, he’s such a good puppy. He sleeps a lot. However, you had said to give him TLC but he really wants it on his own terms. Could it be due to the fact that we got a male? This is our first male dog. Wasn’t sure what to expect.

    • Dan Weese

      If he plays hard that’s one thing. Biting while playing can happen even with good dogs and they just have to learn it’s not ok. The relationship between his undesirable behavior and his sex is probably minimal. I truly think he’ll be ok, but you’ve got to take control of him now.

  • Hollie Browninv


    I recently bought a male English bulldog home. He is currently 3 and a half months old. He is doing terrific as far as potty training is concerned and he is very smart when it comes to being trained. I have been seeing some behaviors that are somewhat bothersome to me and wanted to know if you can offer some guidance. He plays and when he plays he gets very rough, he often growls at our girls and sometimes bites as well, it’s like nipping, but he has sharp teeth so obviously hurtful. He also will grow if he doesn’t want to be bothered. I was wondering what you can tell me about these behaviors? From what I have read about English Bulldogs, they like a lot of love, but he seems to be more independent, it also always says they’re good with children, and sometimes he is, but other times I worry when he nips or plays too rough. I don’t allow any tug of war at all. We are trying to teach him to release the toys so we can throw them, this has been very difficult too due to the type of play he engages in by himself. He had his first obedience training class last Friday and did terrific. What do you think about these nippy/growling behaviors we are seeing?

    • Dan Weese

      It’s always hard to say without meeting the dog in person. He’s 3 months now. How old was he when you got him? I’m wondering what behaviors he may have picked up from his previous home. Puppies have to learn acceptable ways to play. The nipping and rough play doesn’t concern me as long as you let him know(verbally) that biting is not ok. I’m more worried about him growling when he doesn’t want to be bothered. Good thing is he’s still young. When he growls I would go ahead and tell him, “no” and pet him or hold him for a minute. Anytime he shows these undesirable behaviors it’s important you scold him, but don’t push him away for too long either as he is very young and needs that tlc. Sounds like you guys are on the right track though. I’m confident you can help him through this.

  • Heidi Moyer

    We just brought home a 12 week old male english bulldog. He does well with training while we are there but when we put him in his cage at night he will cry and carry on and poop which leads to him being covered in it. He will also do it while we are at work. Even if he has gone that morning after he eats. After having to clean him and the cage up for 5 days sometimes twice a day in a row we don’t know what else to do. We read and have been told they will not go where they sleep but he does. he has only enough room to lay down and turn around in the cage.  So someone suggested making an enclosure with a puppy pad in the corner. We did this but then he cried almost all night but he did not poop but did pee on the puppy pad. Do you have any advice on what to do. We are very frustrated as we just don’t have time in the morning to deal with all the clean up from the cage but aren’t getting any sleep from him crying all night in the enclosure.

    • Dan Weese

      This is all seems to be normal behavior. At 12 weeks and in a new home away from his mom he’ll be lonely and cry, but it should subside soon as long as you stick to your guns. Make sure he’s getting lots and lots of affection while you are home. Actually, at that age you should probably take him outside half way through the night to pee and poop. I think you’re doing ok adding the pee pad in the corner, but I worry he may not house train properly with the use of pads. I would try and only use them for a short time.

  • Jerry West

    Our bulldog is now 7 months old and is still having accidents in the house. He does not give any notifications that he has to go outside. We scold him and take him outside after words but it does not seem to help. This is not happening on a daily basis but regular enough. We have a 1 yr old bulldog and he picked it up after 16 weeks and barks at the door if we do not notice he is there wanting outside. How do can we get our 7 month old to this point and how do we get him to notify us. Any suggestions would be great. – Jerry West

  • Rain Nelson

    Greetings Red White and Bulldogs,

    We picked up a stray English Bulldog yesterday.  He’s an Adult Male and not Neutered – and true to Bulldog temperament, he is very overpowering with affection.  We have two other small female dogs and one kitty that come and go at their leisure from inside the house to the backyard all day (my husband works at home).  We have tried every possible outlet to find the guardians with no luck so far. Due to the heavily trafficked shelters in this are we will not surrender him to animal control – but look to find a happier and more suitable home.

    The biggest challenge is that he is trying to mark the inside of the house with pee when we attempt to bring him in. We introduced our small dogs to him last night with no issues of aggression but he is being dominating to the humans by demanding affection.  We tried 6 attempts last night to bring him inside by putting a leash on him and escorting him around the inside of the house to sniff and familiarize.  Each time he tried lifting his leg to pee so was taken back outside directly.  I know isolation is detrimental to Bulldogs and don’t want to leave him outside or in the garage until we can find another home.  It would be much nicer if it was an inclusive environment for him.  In addition to this very helpful article, do you have any guidance you can offer regarding potty training large, intact, male bulldogs so we can give him all the love he needs!  Thanks from Texas! – Rain Nelson

    • Dan Weese

      A stray Bulldog. How exciting! And he sounds very nice. Well, we don’t know if he was ever properly trained at his previous home so you may be starting from scratch; however, it’s hard to believe he’s completely untrained. It could be that because he’s still new to your home he’s a bit out of sorts and considering the other pets in the house, maybe he’s competing for control of your home and/or affection. Bulldogs are always demanding when it comes to your attention. Honestly, it sounds like you’re doing your best and it could just take time. I would treat as though her were a puppy. Start from scratch. Scold him and take him outside when he lifts his leg and reward when he goes outside. I hope it gets better for you. Good Luck!

  • Jennifer lee

    So we have a 4 month old male english bulldog.  He for some reason goes and pees on our door mat.  Any suggestions?  He is peeing outside and sometimes on pee pad.

    • Dan Weese

      Usually if they’re peeing on the doormat it’s because they intended to go outside and just didn’t have access. I would suggest you go cold turkey from the pee pads if you can. It’s sometimes difficult for a puppy to understand why it is he can pee on one area of the house and not another. Ultimately, pee pads encourage your dog to pee inside and that’s not what you want. On the other hand, I can understand that for certain families pee pads can be useful or must be used. Good luck!

  • Jill Gildart

    Me again!
    First off thanks so much for your prompt responses and sound advice, its been a huge help in this new process.
    I have an 8 month old bulldog male, he kinda likes to jump. Its not all the time but when we are giving him love and affection. We push him down, and firmly tell him no and/or walk away from him. Any other thoughts or advice on this issue? Will he out grow it?

  • Sherry

    Hello, Our bull dog puppy, who is about 15 weeks, was potty trained and peeing and pooping outside.  About the last few weeks, she is pooping in her crate, even right after we have taken her out.  I will go and check on her in the middle of the night and she has pooped in her crate even though we took her out a few hours earlier.  Is anyone else having this problem and if so, what did you do?  Thanks!

    • Dan Weese

      Hey there, Sherry. My first question to you would have to be, how large is her crate? She should have only enough room in there to stand up and lay down. If there’s enough room to walk around, she’ll pee in one end of the crate and sleep in the other. Naturally, a dog prefers to keep it’s sleeping area clean. I would expect her to bark a couple of times when she has to go too. Has she started eating later at night recently? I would cut her off from food probably 2.5 hrs before crate time and water about 1 hr before this way her bladder and colon have time to work their contents out before bed (outside).

  • Ashley

    I have had my bull dog 3 weeks now and he is still peeing and pooping in the house a lot,hasn’t yet asked to go outside and is going in his bed without barking to ask out, how can I stop this and should I be concerned?  He just doesn’t seem to be getting it at all.

    • Dan Weese

      I’m guessing he’s around 10-12 wks old. Some accidents should be expected at this stage in potty training, but not consistently like you describe. It may be a bit early for him to be “asking to go outside.” Usually, in my experience, the pups don’t start standing at, barking, or scratching the door until they’ve matured a little more. My advice? Just follow the directions on this page. Watch him like a hawk for any sign he’s ready to go out. They all have their “tells”. He shouldn’t be left unaccompanied until he’s been trained. If you miss one, tell him, “no”, and quickly escort him outside. Don’t give up! Eventually, you should begin to make ground on this!

  • Janie

    My English bulldog is almost 11 months old, I got him when he was 12 weeks old. He’s potty trained and great with the kids. But over the past month or 2 he has become a problem. He still pees outside, and if I see him sniffing in the house I quietly tell him no and he walks away and usually goes to lay down or walks out the door, as I usually leave it open for his convenience. Lately, probably about 7 or 8 times over the past 2 months he’s peed in the house and when I walk over to the urine and look at him whether he’s close or across the room, he growls at me. He’s bitten me to the point that me and him fought til he submitted (I know that sounds funny, but I just held him to the ground by his neck til he calmed down as he kept trying to go at me). This morning my 3 yr old was laying on the floor and he walked over on top of his head like he was going to pee on my son, so I yelled “no!” the dog moved and started growling at me. I immediately grabbed him by the collar, choked him up a bit, and put him outside. It’s getting more frequent, so I know I’m handling it the wrong way…Please help!!!

    • Brandon

      Get a can or jar of coins and shake it right at him when he bites and say “NO”.  If you consistantly associate that sound with biting he will stop.  It works like a charm.  The sound is aweful to hear but it is better than any alternative I have found.  It worked on our lab too.

  • I love Bulldogs

    I’m getting a Bulldog puppy pretty soon and I was told that for house training I should just put puppy pads or newspaper down for the puppy in one of the rooms like the kitchen and also put one on either side of the crate. I see you didn’t mention anything about puppy pads or newspaper for house training and I thought maybe it’s because you don’t think it works? Should I just take the puppy outside onto the lawn to pee or let him go on the pad? If you or someone could tell me their thoughts on puppy pads I would appreciate it.

    • dan weese

      I personally never understood the puppy pad thing. It seems too much like you’re teaching the puppy to pee in the house and on the pad rather than to get him used to peeing outside on the yard. All of these things are taught by repitition so I would be careful to have the puppy repeatedly pee inside on paper. I think when it comes time to make the change to outside your puppy might be confused. One thing’s for sure, it’s just not for me 🙂 I don’t know…. am I missing something?? Is there ever a good time to put newspaper or puppy pads down in the house to aid in house training?

  • Bobbi

    I have 2 English bulldogs, and have NEVER had to smack their butts for bad behavior.  Bulldogs in general are smart, but very head strong. You just need to be consistent and firm. But love them and enjoy them for the beautiful creatures that they are. They are amazing pets!

  • Michelle

    I like your write up on potty training. I was wondering do you think its ok to kind of smack the puppy on the butt when they’ve peed or pooped in the house or when they’ve continuously done something wrong? I would never take it out of control or hurt them, but was taught that is a good method of correction. thanks

    • Dan Weese

      Michelle thanks for your comment. I too was taught that it’s best just to give a good smack on the rear end. Enough to just sting the Bulldog’s butt a little. I’ve heard the argument that if you don’t give the dog a reason to change his behaviour then why would he do it? This argument of course meaning that a bully won’t stop peeing on the carpet just because you yell at him; he needs to feel the sting on his rear. While I’m not going to say this is wrong, I will say that I think it should be a last resort. Sort of like a corparal punishment. I honestly don’t believe it’s necessary to spank the puppy in most cases and that verbally scolding is usually enough. I’d be curious to see how other Bulldog owners are handling their bullies. Is spanking in or out???

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