English Bulldog : appearance, character, health, grooming

Let’s find out everything there is to know about this affectionate and child-friendly dog.

English bulldog is one of the symbolic dogs of Great Britain, he immediately won the sympathy of all. It is a very affectionate, lazy and reserved animal, despite its distant origins as a fighting dog in the arenas. Let’s find out its main characteristics.


English Bulldog : the origins

The  English bulldog  is a  small breed dog  and absolutely  not dangerous , despite the ‘tough’ look and its not glorious past. It should not be confused with the French Bulldog .

It belongs to the group of dogs of the Pinscher and Schnauzer type , Swiss Molosser and Cattle Dogs.

The history of this dog has a rather unhappy beginning: in Great Britain it was used as a fighting dog against bulls .

The aim of these meetings was to make the meat of the bulls tastier. In fact, tradition wanted intense physical activity before killing to significantly improve its quality.

The origins of the breed can be traced back to the Asian mastiffs, which in turn were used by the Romans to fight in the arenas. The appearance of the name ‘bulldog’ there was only in 1632 , thanks to  Preston Eaton who, once he arrived in Spain, compared them with the local specimens.

Around the mid-19th century these dogs risked extinction, as they were not very welcome. It was not until  1864 that the first official club was born . With the beginning of the 20th century, the perception of the English bulldog drastically changed and the first competitions were organized.

The breed actually seems to have been the result of a genetic anomaly , then carried on by the breeders thanks to a series of selections that have determined the current standards, very different from those of the dark times to which it owes its name. Starting from the English bulldog, the American Bulldog breed was then selected in America .


English Bulldog : appearance

The appearance of this dog makes him almost funny: he certainly does not excel in beauty, however he likes a lot and knows how to conquer his place in the family.

The head is broad, while the back is short. The nose is very evident , characterized by an important wrinkle and particularly large and wide nostrils.

On the contrary, the ears are small and close to the head. The eyes are distant and round in shape, the jaws wide.

The chest is broad, the tail has a low set and is thin, hairless. The legs are short and well planted on the ground. The skin abounds on the neck.

The size and weight

The height does not exceed 35 cm, while the weight is about 24-25 kg (females are generally smaller). The body is muscular and well placed , somewhat stocky, with very strong bones.

The hair and the color

The  coat is short, smooth and soft to the touch. The color can be mottled white or fawn-white , but never black.

Health and disease

Let us now address this aspect as well.

Life expectancy

In good health he lives just under 10 years. Today the breeders have been able to refine the physical characteristics, allowing to  keep at bay the diseases of the cardiovascular system  that until a few years ago often caused their death.

Problems and potential diseases

Problems with giving birth: Due to the large size of the disproportionately large head with the other limbs, most English Bulldog females cannot give birth easily. As a result, Caesarean delivery is very common in this breed and they are usually planned in advance.

Other health problems that can affect this breed are:

  • Vision problems
  • Deafness : total or partial lack or loss of the sense of hearing.
  • Cancer (various forms)
  • Cryptorchidism : physical absence of one or both testicles

English Bulldog : character

This breed, although at first sight it seems to be a bit on its own, loves cuddles and caresses very much . If you let him live with you at home, you will often find him next to you to keep you company. He loves to follow his master even outside the home , perhaps on vacation, being able to tolerate travel well. Woe to leave him alone all day!

He carries out commands and lets himself be educated with simplicity, showing an affable disposition. He is not particularly active, when he can he prefers to sleep or lie down on sofas and pillows. However, he does not disdain games with his peers and with children.

He certainly excels for his courage and the readiness with which he makes himself available to defend his family. Peaceful, loyal, sly , rarely barks and never bothers.

He becomes aggressive only in the face of situations where his safety and that of the bosses are really threatened.


English bulldog: how to take care of it

Let’s start with nutrition.

How to best feed your dog

The English bulldog is a very greedy dog. Often we would not resist his languid glances to the point of giving him all the sweets he wants during the day. I recommend, do not do it , it could suffer from an overweight problem and, even if it seems strong and robust, it is quite delicate and a weight problem could be very dangerous harmful.

The dog’s nutrition must be well measured: rice, vegetables, meat and dry food. The important thing is that they are food for large breeds , as they share the same nutritional needs.

Let’s go into detail now

How to feed puppies (English Bulldog)

If you bring a bulldog puppy less than six weeks old home, you should feed him mostly puppy-specific milk with a bottle . This type of milk is available at your veterinarian or veterinary pharmacies.

  • For a one week old puppy it will be necessary to have him suckle every three hours, for two weeks every four hours, for three weeks every five hours, for four weeks every six hours, for five weeks every eight hours but by the sixth week you will need to give him some puppy food.
  • Always give the puppy milk until the age of two months, but leave it in a bowl . For food, give him kibble rich in vitamins and minerals so that he can develop an effective immune system and that he can grow without being obese or stunted. As for the frequency of his dishes, it will be four a day and a bowl of milk. Don’t forget to give him water to drink. When she is six months old, reduce her meals to three a day.

How to feed an adult dog (English Bulldog)

The bulldog is considered an adult when it reaches 18 months of age. From then on, it is advisable to feed him only twice a day. Of course, don’t forget to give him to drink frequently

To vary the diet:

  • you could give him kibble in the morning and dog food in the evening. It is possible to mix sugar-free yogurt with the croquettes.
  • You can also add chicken broth to the croquettes.
  • Specific cookies are also allowed but do not exceed the amount of eight per day.

To compensate for his desire to eat out of hours, you can give him a toy to  nibble on.

If you want to have a healthy English bulldog, you need to control their diet from the first weeks, respect meal times well and favor the quality rather than the quantity of meals.

Also, don’t forget to  worm your bulldog puppy as early as four weeks of age. Don’t forget to do your bulldog’s routine health checks as well.

English Bulldog : Physical activity

He needs to exercise to counteract his laziness and help him not gain too much weight. But be careful with temperatures that are too high : if you notice intolerance, cool it immediately with water and avoid leaving it around during the hottest hours of the day.

Too hot  could even lead to death , due to respiratory problems.

English Bulldog : Grooming

This breed doesn’t require a lot of grooming .

  • Regular brushing is required to keep the coat silky and shiny.
  • Bathing should only be done when the dog has been playing in the mud, or when it starts to smell bad.
  • The folds of the muzzle must be cleaned and dried regularly to avoid the proliferation of bacteria and must be dried after bathing.

For more information, ask your veterinarian for advice.


Cons of English Bulldog

  • he is very stubborn
  • he is very very lazy and snores when he sleeps
  • tends to make flatulence
  • loses drool
  • does not tolerate the heat, if you love going to the beach in warm places you will make him suffer

Does a non-pedigreed English bulldog puppy cost less?

Attention, you must be wary of pseudo breeders who offer you purebred dogs without pedigree. It is a document that certifies the origin and purity of the dog, it must absolutely be issued regardless of whether or not you want your puppy to participate in beauty exhibitions.


Are English bulldogs aggressive?

No, but it can happen that they tend to nibble, grab and bite the feet, calves and hands of their masters up to in rare cases even more “serious” bites.

This type of attitude appears especially in young specimens. In their first few months of life, these dogs tend to want to test their owners to see what limits will exist in their relationship. It is also a relatively normal game for puppies who naturally want to play and do not yet know what they can or cannot do.

We must not confuse puppy attitude with real aggression, it is a normal phase in the growth and education of any dog.

There are many ways to correct this attitude, although there is no quick fix.

  • Under no circumstances should you hit the animal but neither should you let it know that you are overwhelmed by its attitude.
  • A relatively effective first solution is to isolate your dog until he calms down. It is also important to keep in mind the stubbornness of these puppies, and the operation must therefore be repeated many times to get results.
  • One technique is also to move the dog ‘s kennel or pillow to a not very central place in the house. In fact, it is necessary to avoid that the animal does not consider itself the master of the situation. We must therefore give him a place that is that of a dog and not that of a human being, it is not he who decides !
  • Ignoring the dog also works quite well.

In any case, it is very important to frame the puppy firmly , otherwise he could grow up with an aggressive temperament in adulthood.

If all of this fails, it is also possible to consult a behaviorist who is truly experienced in these problems.


Why does the English bulldog stink?

Puppies have a tendency to flatulence and you’ll have to get used to it. It is a dog that needs to spend a lot of time outside and, if possible, roll around on the grass. If he spends too much time indoors, his coat will not get air.
Shampoo is not an optimal solution, you will exasperate the sweat glands, and you risk an even worse smell.

A tip is to put talcum powder inside the folds, to absorb excess sebum, which can generate a very strong unpleasant odor. This is typical of dogs with pleated fur such as the shar-peï or the dachshund dog.


Is losing hair and drooling normal for English Bulldog?

Like all dogs, even the English Bulldog does not escape the rule, it loses its coat. It is natural and inevitable. So it will be necessary to remedy by regularly passing a vacuum cleaner suitable for dog hair to have a clean home.

As for drool, he actually loses a lot of it mainly when he drinks, due to his particular jaw.


Is English bulldog child friendly?

There is no incompatibility with children, even at an early age. The dog is very kind and affectionate with the little ones but do not hesitate to call him to order if necessary, he will quickly correct his behavior. However, you will also have to educate the children to respect your dog, which I remind you is not a large living soft toy.


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