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When parents find out they are going to have a child, they make all sorts of preparations. A special area, food, toys, bottles, etc. You need to make the same preparations for a new puppy & think about the equipment you will need to care for him. Your puppy is going to need a place he can call his own and a crate/cage will fill this bill. Get one that will be large enough for him as an adult, I use 24 x 36 inches. The pup will need food, water bowls, toys, collar, leash, doggie toothbrush & toothpaste, a good quality dog food (I am a fan of Eukanuba Large Breed,) & plenty of papers or training pads.  If he sleeps in a cool area of the home, make sure he/she has a blankie at night or when left alone.

Many dogs are not prepared for a car ride, nausea & car sickness is possible, but not common. Bring baby wipes & paper towels in case needed. Be sure to potty him before getting in car. On your first trip, it's better to hold him as he will be insecure about new people & smells, talk to him so he will be more comfortable. I recommend bottled water until you get him home. Do not stop & potty him in public dog areas as there are countless contagious diseases & shots are never 100% effective. Do not take a puppy under 4 months (age of completion of shots) in public dog areas.

Leaving mom & littermates will probably bring some kind of separation anxiety. This can be greatly diminished if you plan your schedules so someone is with the puppy constantly for the first 3-4 days. I suggest you plan for this introductory period by keeping the puppy involved with plenty of attention from family & children through every one of her waking moments. Allowing him to sleep when tired, eat & drink when hungry & working on the housetraining from the first moment he arrives in his new home.

This is the time when young children should be instructed as to proper handling of the puppy & teaching them common sense rules you have set down from the beginning, will eliminate problems or accidents later on.

What, when & how to feed a puppy is very basic with a new puppy. It is best to feed a quality dry dog food from the beginning.  I "free" feed my bulldogs.  I feel that if they get too hungry and wolf their food down, along with a lot of air, it increases the chances of "bloat."  Bulldogs are susceptible to bloat as are any breed with a deep chest.  If good quality food and fresh water are always available, then I find my bulldogs calmly eat when hungry and drink when thirsty. And, immediately come to wipe their face on you.  

For a vet check as soon as possible & to set up the rest of her/his shot schedule.



REMEMBER.... a puppy needs to potty immediately upon waking, again in 5 -10 minutes, after eating/ drinking then again in 5-10 minutes & every 30 minutes after that. Pick him up to go outside, saying " outside, potty" then use elaborate praise when he does his "thing". I praise him/her, saying "good, potty, good potty!!!!"

The puppy is used to sleeping with several brothers and sisters, so for him to feel lonely and cry the first couple of nights is normal. When you are ready for bed, place newspaper to the back of your crate and a small blanket to the front.  Place the crate by your bed.


When the puppy cries out, place your finger through the wire door, touching his nose. Don't sweet talk him, tell him 'no' in a soft voice and leave your finger there until he stops crying. The only thing you tell him when he cries out is softly but firmly 'no', you already have your finger there for reassurance. Whatever you not take him out of the crate unless you need to change his newspaper or pad. If you need to change it, do it quickly and without any talking to or playing with the puppy.


By the 3rd night, you should be able to move the crate and place it inside a blocked off area, like the kitchen, or a wire playpen which should already be set up on a linoleum/hard floor surface. Leave the crate door open. Now you can take the newspaper out of the crate and line the playpen with it.   The puppy will be very happy that he is able to come in and out of the crate at night as well as during the day.  I usually leave my dogs crated all night, just to keep them out of trouble, unless they are sleeping with one of my kids.  


  1. Set rules immediately and stick to them.

  2. Avoid situations that promote inappropriate behavior.

  3. Observe the pet and provide for his/her needs.

  4. Supervise the new pet diligently through undivided individual attention and training, and restrict pet's access to limited area of house until training is complete.

  5. Encourage good behavior with praise and attention and treats.

  6. Correct bad behaviors by providing positive alternatives (toy for sock, bone for shoe, etc.)

  7. Never physically punish or force compliance to commands.  

  8. Don't play rough or encourage aggressive behavior or play biting.

  9. Expose pets to people, animals, and environments where you want them to live.

  10. See your veterinarian or contact breeder/seller about serious or unresolved problems.

Your new puppy is a lifelong responsibility, not a toy, but a friend & companion for life.  Treat him as such and there rewards will be endless.  Remember, s/he wants to please you, but you must teach her/him how to please you first! A puppies' attention span is about 2-3 minutes at 3 months of age, so consistency and repetition is the key to training your puppy to be the ideal companion.

"A dog is like a child.  He is a product of his environment, and he is what he has been taught to be."

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