Your dog should be fed a high-quality dog food. We are currently feeding Pro Plan (Salmon and Rice). However, I switch up between grain and grain free and different brands. I think variety is good. I also cook for our dogs and we feed raw. Some dogs are prone to getting overweight, so watch your dog’s calorie consumption and weight level. Keeping your dog lean will help reduce joint issues. Give table scraps sparingly, if at all, especially avoiding cooked bones and foods with high fat content. Learn about which human foods are safe for dogs, and which are not. Check with your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s weight or diet. Also, giving supplements to help support healthy bones and joints is a must with this breed. We use several different products to include Springtime, Dasaquin and Nuvet.
The breed is known for their wrinkles and the facial area needs special attention at least weekly, sometimes daily, to see that they are kept clean and dry. At least once a week it’s also important to clean the ears and check for signs of infection. Make sure to keep the ears dry. It is also important to brush your dog’s teeth, they should be brushed often and starting as a puppy will make it easier as they get older. Nails should be trimmed regularly, consistently trimming your puppy’s nails will help you when your dog is fully grown. Wrestling with a 120 lb. dog over trimming their nails is not fun! Your dog should get a full bath every four weeks or so. Sometimes you can go longer. In between baths, wiping him down with a damp towel can keep him looking and smelling great. The breed’s short coat will shed year ‘round; using a shedding blade can keep the loose hair that falls to the floor to a minimum. We use the Furminator and Sleek EZ deshedding tools.
To avoid strain on developing bones and joints, puppies should be limited to low-impact exercise until at least 18 months of age. 5 minutes per month of age (up to twice a day, including play time) is a good rule of thumb to go by. They should not be overexerted and should not be allowed to run up and down stairs or jump off of surfaces higher than their back. Swimming is an excellent exercise for Bordeaux of any age. An older Bordeaux can work more strenuously and take longer walks. Also, giving supplements to help support healthy bones and joints is a must with this breed. We use several different products to include Springtime, Dasaquin and Nuvet.
Socialization and early obedience training are an absolute must. The Dogue de Bordeaux is a sensitive breed who requires trust, and a rough trainer or heavy-handed approach should be avoided. Discipline should be firm and consistent without being harsh; ownership of the breed is not for the timid or the very busy person. Bordeaux are Velcro dogs and want to be with their family. When they are excluded they feel as though they are being punished. This is one of the main reasons we require our Bordeaux to live exclusively inside and be a member of your family. Take your puppy everywhere after they have had all the required age appropriate vaccinations. At Back Porch Bordeaux we socialize our puppies very well but it is up to their new owners to continue that after they bring their puppy home. A well rounded, socialized and obedient Bordeaux is a happy Bordeaux.
Bloat, or gastric dilatation and volvulus (GDV), is a serious concern in the Dogue de Bordeaux. Owners should educate themselves to recognize the signs that bloat could be happening, and know what actions to take if so. Heart disease, cancer, orthopedic issues (such as hips and elbows), and epilepsy are also issues of concern in the breed. Responsible breeders will screen their stock for conditions the breed can be prone to. At Back Porch Bordeaux we try through selective breeding to minimize, not eliminate, the health issues that Dogues de Bordeaux are predisposed to.
We health test our dogs and follow the recommended health tests from the National Breed Club:
• Hip Evaluation
• Elbow Evaluation
• Shoulder Evaluation
• Cardiac Exam