The English Bulldog is a short, stocky breed. However, despite their intimidating appearance, English Bulldogs are known for being incredibly sweet and loving dogs. The English Bulldog we know today changed a lot from when it was first bred hundreds of years ago. If you’re considering adopting one of these amazing dogs, you’ll want to know all you can about it.
Fortunately for you, in the article below, we’ve listed eleven fascinating facts about the English Bulldog for you to enjoy. Keep reading to find out all about these lovely canines and much, much more.
The 11 Fascinating English Bulldog Facts
1. They Were Bred to Fight
Transport your mind to medieval England. It is not a great time. The plague is on its way to town, the king has probably lost his mind, and English Bulldogs have been bred to participate in bullbaiting. Bullbaiting was a repulsive blood sport where a bull would fight another animal, and the English Bulldog was a common choice.
Luckily, humanity has drastically improved since medieval times, and Bullbaiting was outlawed in 1835.
2. Most of Their Defining Features Exist to Protect Against Bulls
Most of the English Bulldog’s defining features exist to protect from bulls and to make the fight as “interesting” as possible. The reasons for some of their features are genuinely horrible and put into perspective how far humankind has come as a species.
The English Bulldogs’ wrinkly skin was bred to keep blood out of their eyes. Their short legs and sturdy bodies made it much more difficult for the bull to launch them into the sky after hitting them. The underbite, short snout, and flat face combined to give them an excellent grip while biting and made it easy for them to breathe without releasing their bite.
Their loose, flappy skin makes it harder to damage their vital organs, and their short back legs help to protect them from spinal injuries. Today all these features serve the purpose of making the English Bulldog incredibly cute.
3. Most of Them Are Born Via C-Section
English Bulldogs are built in a very odd way; a good example of this is that most of them have to be born via C-section. An English Bulldog puppy typically has a head much larger than its mother’s birth canal. That means that the birthing process can end in injury and even death; 80% of English Bulldogs are born by C-sections.
4. The English Bulldog Is the National Dog of the United Kingdom
The English Bulldog is the national breed of the United Kingdom. This traces back to the second world war when political cartoons commonly represented Britain as an English Bulldog and the British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, was referred to as The British Bulldog.
5. Two Presidents Have Owned English Bulldogs
Both the 29th and 30th presidents kept English Bulldogs as Pets. Warren G. Harding and Calvin Coolidge had English Bulldogs named Oh Boy and Boston Beans, respectively.
6. The English Bulldog Was Recognized by the AKC Over a Century ago
The American Kennel Club officially recognized the English Bulldog in 1886. The United Kennel Club, however, took a bit longer, recognizing the breed in 1935.
7. The English Bulldog Has 15 Recognized Coat Colors
The English Bulldog’s coat can come in 15 colors. These colors are seal, chocolate, black, blue, lilac, tricolor, fawn, lilac sable, white, piebald, blue tricolor, blue sable, brindle, black tricolor, and the rarest coat color, merle.
8. They Almost Went Extinct
After Bullbaiting was banned, people stopped breeding English Bulldogs, and they fell out of favor. Eventually, the gap in the market was spotted, and breeders began breeding English Bulldogs to have a kinder temperate to fit as a companion.
9. English Bulldogs Are Brachycephalic
Brachycephalic dogs have shorter skulls than is normal for a dog breed. This leads to several health issues, both minor and major. The most common issue is respiratory issues, which the English Bulldog is well known to have. These dogs also tend to suffer when traveling in the cargo area in planes, which has led to many airlines banning them.
10. They Are in the Top Five Most Popular Dog Breeds in America
The English Bulldog is in the top five most popular dogs in America, as ranked by the AKC, and has been since 2013.
11. They Should Never be Allowed to Swim Alone
Bulldogs are not built for swimming; their stocky bodies, short legs, and short heads make swimming an almost impossible task. But, despite their natural disadvantages, they can be taught to swim. At any moment, a Bulldog in the water could find itself in trouble and need help, so if your English Bulldog is swimming, stay by its side and keep an eye on it.
Do English Bulldogs Make Good Pets?
Despite their original purpose as aggressive and vicious fighters, the English Bulldog makes a great pet. After its near extinction, these traits were bred out of the English Bulldog in order to make them desirable pets. They typically have calm temperaments and enjoy being around people, but, like all other dogs, they must be trained well.
They can have problems getting along with other animals, so they should be socialized early with cats and dogs.
As you can see, there are quite a few facts about the English Bulldog that you might not have known. If you’re considering adopting one of these adorable dogs, remember that they make excellent pets. They are calm, enjoy being around people, and are sweet overall. However, as with any breed, it needs to be trained and socialized as the puppy for the best results. So, what’s stopping you? Head to the breeder or your local rescue shelter to give one of these gorgeous animals a forever home today.
Featured Image Credit: AndreiTobosaru, Shutterstock