This article is from the Your New Dog FAQ, by Cindy Tittle Moore with numerous contributions by others.
The first thing you should do is take your dog out to the yard where
you expect it to eliminate. If possible, get the dog to eliminate
there. If not, take it inside and give it some water. Tour your house
and go back outside again. It should eliminate this time.
Take care to enter through doors before the dog does. When you feed
it, be sure you've already had your food, or eat some tidbit first.
You want to tell your dog, without fanfare or histrionics, that you're
in charge here. This puts many dogs at ease since they won't have to
wonder who the alpha is.
The dog should sleep in the same room with you, but not on the bed.
You should either use a crate, or a sleeping pad/towel, or tie it to a
bed post, although the crate is best.
Try and get into a predictable routine as soon as possible. Dogs
prefer a routine, and you will help your new dog settle in more
quickly by adhering to some routine. Examples: feeding at the same
times, walking at the same time, going to work and returning at the
Start right away with expected behaviors. If you don't want the dog on
the furniture, then don't let it on them from day one. Don't fall into
the common trap of thinking that the dog is moping and should be given
more leeway initially. If you expect good behavior matter-of-factly
from the beginning, you'll have less trouble in the long run.
If the dog appears to be moping, leave it be but stay nearby. Don't
let it mope too long -- distract it with a walk or a bit of playing.