English bulldogs were once used to guard, control and bait bulls. They are known for their strength, intelligence and stubborn nature. English bulldogs are strong, stubborn dogs that should be given obedience training and socialization from the time that they are small puppies to ensure that the puppy grows up into a mature, calm individual that can be trusted to behave. English bulldogs have a number of health issues that make specialized care important. They are prone to overheating and should be kept indoors in extreme temperatures; they are also prone to respiratory issues because of the structure of their jaws. The wrinkles of the English bulldog's skin also needs to be cleaned regularly to avoid irritation and infection. An English bulldog is an omnivore that requires different foods at different points in his life. As a puppy, it needs foods to help it grow, while an older dog needs foods that have less fat to ensure it stays healthy. Bulldogs should be fed twice a day to cut down on gastric torsion and flatulence. The English bulldog was developed in the British Isles. After the use of the dogs as bull baiters lessened, English bulldogs were used for dog fighting, which was allowed until 1835. The dogs then were adapted into family dogs by breeding out the more aggressive tendencies in order to keep the breed from dying out. After the breed was brought to the United States, the breed was recognized by the AKC in 1886. English bulldogs tend to bond with a family's children and are often protective. They do not need a lot of exercise. A well-bred English bulldog should not have any aggressive tendencies and should seem to have a dignified air. Bulldogs should have a low-set, sturdy body. Males weigh approximately 50 lb., and females are smaller in stature, weighing around 40 lb. The breed is considered a medium-size dog. The face is very short, so these dogs are prone to overheating. The body in general is well proportioned. To meet breed standards, which are developed by each breed's AKC-recognized parent club, the measurement around the dog's skull should equal the length from the ground to the top of the dog's shoulders. The breed standard describes the "perfect" representative dog of the breed, and even dogs not quite meeting breed standard can be wonderful dogs. The colors acceptable for English bulldogs are brindle, white, red, fawn, fallow and piebald (white body with colored patches). Red brindle is the most preferred color, followed by brindle, then the other solid colors. Piebald is the least favorable. The coat texture itself is short and fine with no curls or feathering (long hairs on the belly, tail and legs). Wrinkling of the skin is expected. The dogs should not have brown- or liver-colored noses. The dogs were trained to clamp their jaws on the bull's nose ring and not let go until killed. They were released two at a time, and it usually took three or four dogs to finally subdue the bull. Many dogs were pierced by the bull's horns. The wagers on the contests were usually lower. Prices on the bulls were a lot lower too so it had a smaller effect on the economy. However, the low prices greatly increased attendance and increased participation. Bull baiting stayed around for an extremely long amount of time.
Getting to Know the Bulldog Personality
By Susan M. Ewing
Bulldogs possess behavioral quirks specific to their breed that you should seriously consider before you invest in one of the breed. If any of the traits mentioned in this article doesn't fit your lifestyle or with what you expect from your dog, consider getting a different breed. A Bulldog may be perfect for you if the following list...