When people talk about a Bulldog, most refer to the English Bulldog as opposed to the American, French or Australian Bulldog. This temperamental stocky dog with its distinctive wrinkly face is a good-natured, loyal and popular family pet.
The English Bulldog hails from the ancient, much larger Bullenbeisser breed. Once in England, it was bred to become smaller and eventually the more aggressive characteristics were eliminated through selective breeding, leaving a determined but friendly family dog. The English Bulldog is also known as an English mascot, popularised by Sir Winston Churchill!
Today’s Bulldog is a powerful, sturdy canine with short, stumpy legs and a huge head with a droopy face caused by loose skin around its head, neck and shoulders. Standing between 31-40 cm tall and weighing 22-25 kg, the English Bulldog is a good 10 cm shorter and 5-10 kg lighter than its Australian counterpart.
Bulldogs are laid-back dogs that enjoy affection and love children. They can also get along with other pets if introduced at a young age. Their stubborn nature can make it difficult to train them, but Bulldogs are intelligent so it’s not impossible. They’re also quite goofy so this is a dog that is guaranteed to make you smile.
A few things to watch out for with your English Bulldog are its sensitivity to loud voices, intolerance of heat and tendency to overeat. So don’t scream at your dog, give it too much exercise or walk it in the heat of the day, or overfeed it.
The breed comes with a range of other specific health issues to watch out for, including respiratory and hip problems. Bulldogs need weekly grooming with special attention paid to their wrinkles and tearstains.
The English Bulldog has a relatively short time span, and you can expect your English Bulldog to live to about 8 years.