English Bulldog Potty Training Regression: 6 Basic Causes

By: Mo


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While accidents are normal, the primary reason for English bulldog potty training regression is old age.

But I think there are many other reasons, such as medical problems, incomplete training, cognitive dysfunction, urine marking, separation anxiety, and a recent change in environment or routine. 

Video Source: Dog Fluffy Youtube Channel

If your bulldog is behaving strangely and has completely regressed with its potty training, there are some factors you need to look into.

If you can find the root of the behavior, you can try to correct it or limit the accidents.

To help, I have laid out this post, where I provide insights into regression in bulldogs

Let’s get started. 

What Causes a Potty-Trained Dog to Regress?

What Causes a Potty Trained Dog to Regress

Whether you got your English bulldog as a puppy or adopted him when he was older, potty training is the primary training that you will typically provide.

As a dog owner, it is essential to set boundaries so that your living space is not messed up.

However, accidents may happen during the initial stages, which is entirely normal. 

But if you have potty trained your bulldog and he starts regressing, it becomes a problem.

This can lead to much aggravation and stress for you and your dog

Tools You Need For Potty Training

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Best Dog and Puppy Potty Training Pads

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If you’re potty training your English bulldog and also have a cat, it’s important to have the right tools for both pets, such as a crate, training pads, positive reinforcement for your dog, and Tofu cat litter for your cat’s litter box, which is an eco-friendly and odor-controlling option.

There are a few reasons why your dog has regressed its potty training. I have mentioned a few: 

#1 Medical Problems

English Bulldog Medical Problems

English Bulldogs are prone to diseases like bladder tumors, prostate tumors, Cushing’s disease, diabetes, kidney disease, bladder stones, and urinary tract infections.

They need proper care and medical attention as they grow older. It can be because of body structure.

Whatever the case, I always recommend having a vet check-up before doing anything else is best

Numerous common medical conditions and illnesses can cause bulldogs to have accidents in the house.

If your bulldog has an underlying medical condition, you will not be able to get things under control until the illness is diagnosed and treated correctly. 

So, I would recommend you rule out any behavior modification or training to fix the accidents if your dog has a medical problem.

You can consider buying dog diapers until the issue is diagnosed and treated thoroughly. 

#2 Incomplete or Improper House Training

English Bulldog Incomplete or Improper House Training

If your dog is perfectly healthy and still has accidents in the house, it can be because of improper or incomplete training.

Some dogs need to be trained as early as possible to respond to commands and not cause accidents inside the house

In my experience, English Bulldogs are a little complex breed to train.

They need regular training each and every day for at least a year and a half.

Now, puppies can be trained far more quickly than adults. 

If you brought home an adult dog from a shelter, adjusting to the house’s new norms could take some time.

You will have to treat the adult dog like a puppy who doesn’t know where to potty

Some dog owners stop the training in the middle, thinking that this is all their dog needs to learn.

This may lead to English Bulldog potty training regression. It is essential to housetrain any new dog you bring home.

Never leave the training incomplete, at least the basic ones, like potty training

If you find it challenging to train your bulldog, you can hire a dog trainer who will be happy to help you. 

#3 A Sudden Change in Routine or Living Environment 

I recall my English Bulldog potty training regression when we moved into a new home. Since dogs are also territorial, adjusting to new settings or routines may take time. 

Just like us, dogs are also creatures of habit. Even the tiniest change in their surroundings or routine can make them confused. This can lead to accidents. 

When I talk about routine change, I mean that if your work schedule changes or someone from the family starts taking the dog out at a different time, this could confuse your dog.

It is a significant change for them as their mind and body are used to the previous routine.

So, this change of routine can cause English Bulldog potty training regression. 

On the other hand, if you have recently moved to a new place that your dog is not used to, he is prone to causing accidents.

Dogs are intelligent creatures. They will never defecate in their den. Here, I am referring the den to your house

A Sudden Change in Routine or Living Environment

Now, when they move into a new place, it will take them some time to adjust to their new home and surroundings.

It can take a week or two for the dog to call the new place its home. So, in such situations, accidents are expected. 

You can potty train them according to the new routine or surroundings with proper house training.

#4 Separation Anxiety 

I have met many bulldog owners who have shared stories about their dogs suffering from separation anxiety.

Singles or working couples with a day job or night shift encounter separation anxiety in their dogs

When the owners leave for work, the dog is alone in the house.

This can trigger some behavioral changes in dogs, which may even lead to English Bulldog potty training regression. 

Separation Anxiety

Regressing with potty training is one of the earliest symptoms of separation anxiety.

Notice how your dog behaves when you reach home.

If he is all wiggly, excited, and can’t be happier to see you, this suggests that he truly missed you.  

People who leave their dogs home alone set up a camera to record their dog’s activities.

If the dog constantly looks at the door and window, it means he is upset or anxious about something. 

I would recommend you confine your dog to a particular area where they feel comfortable.

You can set up a dog crate. When dogs are alone, they prefer being in a confined space.

So, a crate is a good option. This way, accidents will be limited. 

However, leaving them alone won’t be a much bigger issue if you have two or more dogs.

With enough food, water, and toys, they are good. But accidents may still happen. 

Nevertheless, if separation anxiety is why accidents happen, I suggest you get prescription medication for anxiety to control and treat the problem. 

#5 Urine Markings 

Male dogs have the tendency to make urine markings as it is their way of attracting female dogs.

Urine Markings

There is nothing much you can do about it because it is their natural instinct when they reach an age-appropriate for mating. This behavior cannot be corrected with house training

So, I would recommend you build a place for your dog in the backyard with proper shade and lots of areas to play in once he reaches this age. If you want your dog to breed, this is the best thing you can do.

However, if your dog has bred a couple of times and you do not want him to breed anymore, you can have him neutered. 

This way, you can stop accidents. On the other hand, when I talk about female dogs, unspayed females also have urine marks. But their frequency is relatively low as compared to male dogs

In both cases, spaying the female dog is a good option. Neutering and spaying should be done after much thinking.

If you want your dogs to produce offspring, it should be halted for some time. 

#6 Cognitive Dysfunction 

Older English Bulldog potty training regression is widespread. Canine cognitive dysfunction is a common health issue among older dogs, which is similar to Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. 

In this condition, dogs tend to forget their housetraining, which makes them susceptible to cause accidents.

Some of the symptoms of this illness are seeming to forget familiar faces, staring off into space, getting lost in familiar places, pacing at night, or restlessness. 

While there are medications to tackle the symptoms, accidents can still happen. If you have a senior dog with this condition, consider buying him dog diapers

Video Source: DGP Dog Behavior Videos

Best Dog Pee Pads For English Bulldog Potty Training Regression

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If yours is still a pup with the potential to quickly learn new commands and potty training, I recommend you buy a quality dog pee pad for house training.

This will help you with English Bulldog potty training regression and reduce accidents significantly.

There are plenty of dog pee pads available in the market. So, you can choose the one that fits your dog’s training needs. Also, you can check our recommended dog pee pads from Amazon.com

Final Thought

Conclusion on English Bulldog Potty Training Regression

These are some of the primary reasons triggering English Bulldog potty training regression.

The earlier you identify the cause, the better it will be because you can make the necessary changes to ensure accidents don’t happen.

2 responses to “English Bulldog Potty Training Regression: 6 Basic Causes”

  1. Eddie Gales Avatar
    Eddie Gales

    An impressive share! I have just forwarded this onto a co-worker who had been conducting a little homework on this. And he actually bought me breakfast because I found it for him… lol. So allow me to reword this…. Thanks for the meal!! But yeah, thanks for spending time to talk about this issue here on your internet site.

    1. Dog Fluffy Avatar

      Thanks a lot for your comment 😊

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