BREED DESCRIPTION & INFORMATION
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Note: The breed registries indicated above are the most recognized all-breed registries. The breed may be recognized by other registries not indicated here. For further details about dog registries, please see the document: Dog Breed Registries in North America.
* The FCI is the World Canine Organization, which includes 84 members and contract partners (one member per country) that each issue their own pedigrees and train their own judges. The FCI recognizes 339 breeds, with each being the "property" of a specific country. The "owner" countries of the breeds write the standards of these breeds in co-operation with the Standards and Scientific Commissions of the FCI, and the translation and updating are carried out by the FCI. The FCI is not a breed registry nor does it issue pedigrees.
12 to 16 inches
50 to 60 lbs
Photo ©Jumpstart 2015, Lisa Wysminity
Courtesy of: Iroc Bulldogs
The Bulldog, sometimes referred to as the "English Bulldog", is believed to have evolved from the Molossian dog first brought to Britain by Phoenician traders in the 6th century BC. Because of their courage and apparent ability to endure pain, the breed was exploited in the sports of bull baiting, bear baiting and dog fighting. When bull baiting was made illegal in England in 1835 and eventually dog fighting was prohibited, the breed began to decline in numbers. Fortunately, with the beginning of the dog show era, the breed was saved by a group of fanciers determined to preserve the characteristics of the breed and eliminate all fighting and viciousness.
Though the Bulldog may appear to be oddly built, each point of his structure was bred into the breed to aid or protect him while attempting to overcome a bull. His general appearance is one of stability, vigor and strength.
The Bulldog is calm and dignified with a steady, even disposition. He is resolute and courageous but not vicious or aggressive. He loves people and though his appearance may be somewhat intimidating, he does not generally make a good watch dog. He has a relatively low activity level so adjusts well in just about any environment. His facial structure makes him susceptible to snuffling, snorting and snoring.
Today, Bulldogs are successsfully competing in Obedience as well as Agility and Tracking, and their calm disposition makes them ideal candidates to work as Therapy Dogs.
For Bulldog coat colours, the Canadian Kennel Club and American Kennel Club Breed Standards state:
"The colour of coat should be uniform, pure of its kind and brilliant. The various colours found in the breed are to be preferred in the following order:
(a) red brindle;
(b) all other brindles;
(c) solid white;
(d) solid red, fawn, or fallow;
(f) inferior qualities of all the foregoing.
Note A perfect piebald is preferable to a muddy brindle or defective solid colour. Solid black is very undesirable, but not so objectionable if occurring to a moderate degree in piebald patches. The brindles, to be perfect, should have a fine, even and equal distribution of the composite colours. In brindles and solid colours a small white patch on the chest is not considered detrimental. In piebalds the colour patches should be well defined, of pure colour and symmetrically distributed."
Additional Information on Coat Colors:
- Coat Color Chart for the Bulldog from Bulldogs World
A Word of Caution: In part due to the growing popularity of the breed, the Bulldog is becoming more and more at risk of irresponsible breeders attempting to cash in. If you are considering the purchase of a Bulldog puppy, be especially selective in choosing a responsible and reputable breeder. (For more information see Puppy Buyer Beware as well as the articles on selecting a breeder, at Breed Listing and Breeders.)
The average life expectancy for the Bulldog is from 8 to 12 years; however, some have lived to 15, 16, and even 18 years of age. Like all breeds, the Bulldog is no exception to a number of health related issues, such as:
- Elongated Soft Palate This is the most common breathing disorder.
- Hypoplastic (narrow) Trachea The most common signs of a narrow trachea are shortness of breath, gurgling sounds, and/or wheezing. Many Bulldogs live long and happy lives with this condition provided that they are carefully monitored.
- Pinched Nares (nostrils) With this condition, the dog's nares are pinched tight causing insufficient air to pass through the nose. This can usually be corrected with surgery.
If you are considering the adoption of a Bulldog puppy, or any breed, it is very important to be selective in choosing a responsible and reputable breeder. Ensure that the prospective puppy's parents have all health clearances. Breeding of any dog should not be done until after they have been proven to be free of evidence of significant hereditary diseases. (For more information on selecting a breeder, see the articles on the main Breed Listing and Breeders page.)
Recommended Health Screening:
For the Bulldog, the CHIC* database includes health screenings for:
- Patellar Luxation
- Congenital Cardiac Database
- Tracheal Hypoplasia
- Also listed as "optional": Eye Examination by a board Ophthalmologist (after 24 months of age); Hip Dysplasia; Elbow Dysplasia; Autoimmune Thyroiditis; Congenital Deafness; and Hyperuricosuria
Additional Health Resources:
- Bulldogs and Health...
- Heat Stroke/Exhaustion in Bulldogs
- Canine Inherited Disorders Database Bulldog
- Health and Nutrition Growing section of the Canada's Guide to Dogs website which includes information on several health and nutrition related issues.
- Canine Health Information Center (CHIC) Providing a source of health information for owners, breeders, and scientists that will assist in breeding healthy dogs. CHIC is a centralized canine health database jointly sponsored by the AKC/Canine Health Foundation (AKC/CHF) and the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA).
- AKC Canine Health Foundation Working towards developing scientific advances in canine health.
- Canine Eye Registration Foundation (CERF)
- Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA)
- Ontario Veterinary College (OVC)
- University of Pennsylvania Hip Improvement Program (PennHip)
- HealthGene HealthGene Corporation is the leading provider of veterinary DNA diagnostic services in Canada.
- Labgenvet Laboratory of Veterinary Genetics is a Canadian diagnostic laboratory that offers a comprehensive service of DNA tests for veterinary genetic diseases.
- CKC Breed Standard
- AKC Breed Standard
- An Illustrated Guide to the Official Standard of the Bulldog Published by the Bulldog Club of America
- UKC Breed Standard for the English Bulldog
- The Kennel Club (U.K.) Breed Standard
- FCI Breed Standard No. 149
- Grooming This section of the Canada's Guide to Dogs website includes tips, articles and information covering all aspects of dog grooming along with a listing of Groomers from across Canada.
- Training For training information, see this growing section of the Canada's Guide to Dogs website for tips, articles, as well as listings of training centres across Canada.
Choose from a wide variety of items from Dogwise.com
- Cesar Tries Waking Up a Sleeping Dog.
Cesar Millan brought his friend's bulldog to the office to meet his pack but had some trouble waking the dog up when it was time to go. Watch video. Watch videoAdded April 2012
- Have We Overbred Bulldogs?
The traits we love in bulldogs come with health risks we didn't intend. Have we gone too far in how we breed them? Read moreAdded April 2012
- 10 Interesting Facts About Bulldogs
Did you know over 80% of bulldogs are delivered by C-section? Here are 9 more interesting facts about bulldogs Learn moreAdded April 2012
- Puppy Buyer Beware By Cindy Madill, BCCC
- What About Mini-Bulldogs?
- Bulldogs World Excellent Bulldog information web site.
- Clubs, Sports & Activities For information on the many sports and activities you can get involved in with your dog.
- Working Dogs The Working Dogs section of the Canada's Guide to Dogs website provides information and listings of organizations that are involved in various dog jobs, such as Guide Dogs, Therapy Dogs, Police Dogs, Protection Dogs, and much more.