The English Bulldog: Little Body, Big Heart

English Bulldog History

While you might not have guessed it from their cuddly appearance, English Bulldogs were originally bred for the cruel sport of bull baiting. The breed’s lineage can be traced back all the way to the British Isles in the 1200s when bull baiting was popular. Bull baiting was outlawed in the mid-1800s, and as a result, the breed almost became extinct. However, thanks to a few Bulldog enthusiasts, the breed was saved and bred into the lovable and goofy dog we know today.

English Bulldogs were officially recognized by the AKC in 1886 and are now the fourth most popular dog in the United States.

Lovable and Lazy

With their heavy, compact frame and flat (brachycephalic) facial structure, English Bulldogs are not the agile, robust breed their ancestors were. That said, they love to be with people and can be unapologetic couch potatoes. This breed does not require too much exercise or a large yard, in part because of the way they’re built. Their heavy and compact frame and compressed breathing make it difficult for them to sustain long bouts of activity, which can also result in extra stress on their joints. Their dense bodies preclude them from being the best swimmers, so an apartment in a cool climate and away from the beach is a comfortable place for English Bulldogs to live.

While they may not be the easiest to train due to their stubborn nature, the English Bulldog’s affectionate and lively personality makes up for it. English Bulldogs make great family pets for anyone looking for a little more fun around the house.

Health Concerns and Considerations

While English Bulldogs are certainly friendly companions, they can heave health issues. Because of their breeding, English Bulldogs can be afflicted with a myriad of congenital diseases. Their flat noses, while cute, cause a multitude of issues. Their folds need to be cleaned daily to avoid skin infections; they can’t be overworked in the heat as it makes it even more difficult for them to breathe; and they can benefit from special food that they’ll be able to grip and ingest with their short, broad muzzle.

English Bulldogs also have a compact gastrointestinal system, which is why they’re famous for their flatulence. A food with fiber blend and digestive support, like ROYAL CANIN® BREED HEALTH NUTRITION® Bulldog, can help keep their signature stinkiness at bay.