DOGUE DE BORDEAUX PUPPIES & INFORMATION
They’re big, wrinkly, slobbery, squishy and utterly adorable…yes, it is the Dogue de Bordeaux puppy! You would be hard pressed to find anything on this planet cuter than a Dogue de Bordeaux baby. They will melt your heart with just one look of those droopy eyes.
When you get a Dogue de Bordeaux puppy you are taking on a creature that has many, many endearing qualities and some not-so-endearing qualities. If you are considering the purchase of a Dogue de Bordeaux, please do extensive research on the breed then decide as a family if you are ready for one. The decision to bring home a puppy or adult should not be made lightly. This information is meant to help give you a realistic idea of what to expect. When a puppy is bought without consideration to the time, attention and resources required, it is the puppy who suffers. On the other hand, when well planned, your choice of a Dogue de Bordeaux can be most gratifying. Many who have owned a Dogue de Bordeaux never want to be without one.
Of course, you will encounter the usual problems associated with puppies of any breed; potty accidents, likely furniture damage, restrictions to your time and freedom, etc. With the a giant breed puppy these issues are multiplied tenfold.
Since you have decided you want a Dogue de Bordeaux, a mastiff breed, you must be a lover of large dogs. The sheer size the these animals is a major consideration. An eight week old puppy can weigh 15 – 20 lbs. You blink and then you have an 80 lb, six month old baby running around the house! Your Dogue de Bordeaux puppy will need adequate amount of space to run, play, sleep, and be rowdy both inside your home and out-of-doors. That baby will continue to grow until you’re left with well over one hundred pounds of dog love. Dogues de Bordeaux take up a lot of room in your house, car, sofa, and heart. Be prepared! They are truly big teddy bears. They are sure to catch the eye of strangers wherever you go.
A factor families need to consider is that the Dogue de Bordeaux is not a cheap animal to maintain. Like most things in life, such as vehicles and houses, the bigger you get, the more expensive upkeep will be. Monthly heart worm medication, flea/tick treatment, and routine veterinarian visits will come with a higher bill than other breeds. When unexpected health issues pop up (and they likely will with this breed), you’ll need to be prepared for that as well.
Not to mention all the dog supplies that will be needed including toys, beds, crate and grooming supplies. See our Puppy Supply List.
Your biggest expense will be proper nutrition and diet. I simply cannot express enough the importance of feeding your Dogue de Bordeaux a premium kibble appropriate for this breed. The philosophy of “you are what you eat” is just as applicable for our animals. See What To Feed My Dogue de Bordeaux.
For those who are able to feed their Dogue de Bordeaux a raw/BARF (bones and raw food) diet, all the better!!
TEMPERAMENT & TRAITS
Dogue de Bordeaux puppies are very curious, but also cautious. Even as adults, Dogues de Bordeaux are sensitive creatures. They may be nervous when put into a new environment even if they are with you. You will notice fear periods between 8 to 16 weeks old and again at 7 to 8 months. Avoid fright and pain during these phases. It is important to socialize your puppy well. Positively expose him to different situations, sounds, smells, etc. when he is young. When this is done correctly, your Dogue de Bordeaux will be happy to explore new places and meet new people with you.
Dogue de Bordeaux puppies are somewhat more serious and self-confident than other breed puppies. These qualities will become stronger as the puppy grows to adulthood. Like all molosser-type dogs, an adult Dogue de Bordeaux has strong nerves and is not easily excited. As a whole, the breed is balanced, quiet, and calm (obviously personalities vary from dog to dog). This is not to say Dogue de Bordeaux puppies don’t have moments of complete silliness. You will certainly find this out when your clumsy, long-limbed pup sprints from one end of the house to the other, running into walls at full speed because he doesn’t realize he needs to stop before he gets to it!
In fact, if you are considering a Dogue de Bordeaux puppy because you’ve heard they are lazy couch potatoes who sleep all day long, you were misinformed. It’s true adults are relatively inactive indoors, however Dogue de Bordeaux puppies can be extremely rambunctious between nap times. They run, they bark, they growl, they nip at your feet, they chase, they chew, they jump. You’re probably thinking ‘I’ve owned puppies before, I know what to expect.’ Well, the reason this is mentioned as a consideration is because an eight month old Dogue de Bordeaux is larger and more powerful than most full grown dogs!
You must also remember that giant breeds mentally mature much, much slower than other breeds. Typically not even reaching adolescents until well over one year of age. The puppy to adolescent to adult stages will prove to be a slow process indeed. Extra patience, leadership mentality, physical stamina, sense of humor, and LOTS of love are critical to raising a well rounded Dogue de Bordeaux. Navigating the tricky period of puppyhood may be difficult, but can be even more rewarding.
A wonderful quality of the Dogue de Bordeaux is they are very family oriented. They often prefer the company of their humans to that of other dogs. If you purchase a puppy from us, it must be an inside dog that becomes part of your household. They want nothing more than to be close to their owners. Dogues de Bordeaux do not do well if separated from their owners for long periods of time. A Dogue de Bordeaux may consider long separation as a form of punishment. Your schedule will obviously be a major factor when deciding whether a Dogue de Bordeaux would be a good fit for your family.
One of my favorite things about Dogue de Bordeaux puppies is their ability to fall asleep at the most random times in the funniest positions. A puppy may find a favorite end table in the living room that he loves to sleep under. When he is 100 pounds you will notice him still trying to fit under that table to take a snooze, often lifting the table completely off the ground attempting to scooch under it.
An eight week old puppy will sleep most of the day for the first couple weeks. This is normal, he needs his rest. You will notice him begin to “wake up” and explore more around twelve weeks. You want to make sure you have prepared a peaceful place in your home where he can go to rest. A crate with a sheet placed over it, soft blanket, and a SAFE toy can become your pet’s little “den”, or a cozy bed in a quieter place of the house close to the family.
“The Stare”. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention this stunning trademark trait of the breed. Those of you who have owned a Dogue de Bordeaux know exactly what this is. Those of you who haven’t will learn soon enough. When you first feel the unfaltering gaze of a Dogue de Bordeaux on you, it can be unsettling. Looking into those frank, hazel eyes you are positive he can see right through you. This is a characteristic completely unique to the breed. So much so that their “serious expression” is called for in the official breed standard.
So imagine this, you just got home from a long day. All you want to do is chill-ax at home and vegetate on the couch for the evening. Just when you get comfortable, you sit in your favorite recliner…only to drop your hand in a big, white, gooey puddle of DROOL. You’re getting ready for a night out on the town. You’re dressed to the nines wearing your favorite outfit. You say goodnight to your four legged kid then head out. Not until you are in the car driving do you notice the 12 inch drool smear on the front of your slacks. Which leads us to: Do Dogues really drool as much as they say???
This is a question we get a lot. The answer is yes and no. No, it is not quite the crises situation Hollywood portrays it to be with perpetual shoe strings hanging from their jowls. During mealtimes, when your Dogue de Bordeaux gets hot, when playing with chew toys, and especially after drinking is when you will notice the worst of it. Males generally have bigger heads so they tend to drool worse than females. The shape of the head, mouth, and jowls have a lot to do with how much an individual Dogue drools. Get a big shoe tray to put under the water pale to protect your floors. Have rags handy throughout the house. The Dogue de Bordeaux is not for those faint of heart when it comes to messes. In fact, the Dogue de Bordeaux made the top of AKC’s 5 messiest dog breeds.
Fortunately, Dogues de Bordeaux require minimal grooming. Regular bathing and a once weekly brushing will suffice to maintain a clean coat and keep shedding to a minimum. Summer months you may see your Bordeaux shed A LOT. This is often referred to as “blowing of coat.” There are lots of good de-shedding tools out there. The Sleek EZ, Zoom Groom, and the Furminator (all available on Amazon) are some of my favorites I keep in the grooming bag. And don’t forget about those nails, ears, and teeth!
Two points of exceptional importance are: 1.) Your Dogue de Bordeaux puppy must never be over exercised, or allowed to play to the point of exhaustion. Over time this can cause serious skeletal problems. See our post Puppy Exercise Guidelines 2.) Dogues de Bordeaux (of any age) are extremely sensitive to hot weather. They will become over heated quickly if left in a high temperature environment for any length of time. For more information on these issues, please see our Myth Busters page.
Training your Dogue de Bordeaux puppy is paramount. To own a powerful breed dog whom you do not have complete control over is irresponsible to society and to the dog. Not only that, but truly the most loving thing you can do for your new puppy is to provide him with a strong, dependable, trustworthy leader to follow. If there is no “pack leader”, your puppy will soon recognize this void eventually filling that role himself. A puppy should be able to simply enjoy being a puppy. They should not have to carry the burden of being in charge. It’s up to you.
News flash – your Dogue de Bordeaux is NOT a Golden Retriever! This is a “gladiator” breed. Meaning they are powerful dogs bred for hunting, fighting and guarding. They were trained to bait bulls, bears, jaguars and hunt boar. First and foremost they are natural born guardians. You will quickly find this is not a breed who is eager to please you 100% of the time. Yet, they are extremely sensitive souls. When training your Dogue de Bordeaux, always keep in mind his self-confidence, arrogance, independence, stubborn nature, as well as his sensitivity. Regrettably, some mistake stubbornness for stupidity. Dogues de Bordeaux are anything but stupid! They are quite intelligent. Once they learn a command they will never forget it. The key to training your Dogue de Bordeaux is to find what motivates him. Food, affection, play, toys…whatever it is that gets your Dogue excited use that as the positive reinforcement for training.
BE PACK LEADER
Many Doguues are natural born leaders so you must assert yourself as the dominant one. They will quite literally shut down and zone you out when you show your frustration with them. Yelling at them will simply make them look away at some imaginary spot on the wall over your shoulder like you’re not even there. Or worse yet, treating your puppy harshly will make him terrified of you and you will lose his trust. If your Dogue de Bordeaux does not trust you, you’ve got major problems.
You must cultivate patience. Find the right techniques for your particular dog. Training your Dogue de Bordeaux should be a fun bonding time for you and Hooch. Consistency and praise are most important aids to education. Praise everything your Dogue de Bordeaux does correctly, from going potty outside to coming when called. You will get much further by combining training with playtime. And always end each training session with a positive activity like a nice belly rub.
An ideal daily pattern to follow is; 1.) Exercise 2.) Instruction 3.) Affection. In that order. No matter where you live, city or country, the crucial element is to walk with your dog often. Daily if possible. No pulling allowed! This will have so many physical and psychological benefits for the both of you.
A word of caution, do not walk your new puppy in high traffic areas until several weeks after all rounds of vaccinations have been completed. Do not over exercise your Dogue de Bordeaux puppy!!!
Immediately following the walk is a great time to work with him on training. Perhaps you have some commands you are teaching, or maybe some behavior problems you are working on. He will be less likely to resist your training efforts at this time because he will be tired and will already be looking to you as his leader because he started out his day following you on a walk. Once you have satisfied the dog part of your baby by giving him an invigorating walk, giving him rules/boundaries/limitations, NOW is an excellent time to shower him with praise. Kiss and hug that wrinkly face as much as you like when he is calm, submissive to you. NEVER give affection or attention to an over-excited puppy. That is NOT behavior we want to reinforce.
Never ever be harsh when training your dog. This will only hinder your efforts. Positive reinforcement techniques are always most successful when you are trying to shape or change your dog’s behavior. Positive reinforcement training involves using treats/praise for rewarding your dog when he has done something you want him to do. The reward makes him more likely to repeat the behavior. Clicker Training is an example of a positive reinforcement training technique. We have had wonderful results with the clicker training. I use it for training my show dogs for the ring as well as with 8 week old puppies.
If you want to be successful in training your Dogue de Bordeaux, you have to follow some rules yourself:
Develop an understanding of how a dog thinks.
Do not blame the dog for lack of communication.
Define your dog’s personality. Act accordingly.
Have patience. Be consistent.
Here I am training a 5 month old female puppy named Juniper to loose leash walk using positive reinforcement. This is only her second time ever on lead
Housebreaking. It sounds like a daunting task to housebreak a new puppy. Though actually by applying just a few practical tips, it can be fairly easy.
Dogues de Bordeaux are relatively easy to house train compared some breeds. Success lies in the consistent potty schedule you have set up as well as how attentive you are to your puppy’s “potty signals”. An eight week old puppy must be taken out every hour, and immediately after feeding or sleeping. The older the pup gets, the less often he will have to relieve himself. A good rule of thumb is as follows:
Age: To 14 weeks; Potty Breaks: 10
Age: 14-22 weeks; Potty Breaks: 8
Age: 22-32 weeks; Potty Breaks: 6
Adult; Potty Breaks: 4
A key tool that will aid you is the crate. To someone unfamiliar with the use of crates in dog training, it may seem like a punishment to shut a dog in a crate. This is not the case at all. Crates have many humane and beneficial uses in dog care and training. It serves as your dog’s bedroom. It provides him with a safe, quiet place where he can rest undisturbed.
We recommend wire crates to our puppy buyers as opposed to fiberglass/plastic. Wire crates allow for better air ventilation and visibility to the dog. Place a sheet over the crate to create a private ‘den’. Unless you have the means to purchase a crate every couple months to accommodate your growing pup, you will want to start out with a large crate that comes with a divider that he can grow into. The typical size a Dogue de Bordeaux adult will need is a 48″ L x 29″ W x 32″ H.
The crate is an excellent housebreaking tool because dogs of any age do not like to make where they sleep. They will hold it in much longer in a crate than if they are roaming the house. Place the crate in a communal room of the house. When the puppy is in the crate he will still be close to the family which will put him at ease. A kitchen area is a good room especially if you have carpeting in the house. Accidents will obviously be much easier to clean up if the crate is on tile, linoleum, hardwood, or other solid surface. Ensure your Dogue’s crate is always clean. A clean environment reinforces to him that it is not his bathroom.
It is not OK to keep a puppy or adult in a crate all day every day while you are at work!
If you are looking for a breed of dog that:
• Will give back to you what you have put into the relationship
• Has a brilliant yet independent mind
• Is the epitome of a giant, gentle soul
• Is affectionate with family
• Will make a first class guard dog
• Has an infinite capacity for love and loyalty
Then you have chosen wisely indeed with the Dogue de Bordeaux.
Summed up in one word the Dogue de Bordeaux is charming. Having a Dogue de Bordeaux at your side brings you a sense of calmness. The animal’s quiet confidence, reliability, integrity, serious nature, and devotion can influence your state of mind when you’re around them. They are majestic animals that carry themselves with honor. When you acquire your first Dogue de Bordeaux you learn these creatures are absolutely unlike any other breed. All of these attributes and many more that compose the caliber of these creatures is unique only to the Dogue de Bordeaux.