Bulldogs are one of the most popular breeds of dogs registered with the AKC, ranking fourth in both the US AKC registry and UK. They are referred to by several different names, including the American Bulldog, French Bulldog, Old English Bulldog and many others. They are a medium-sized dog; they are stout and strong and muscular. One of their most recognizable characteristics is their wrinkled face. They also sport a broad face and shoulders, hanging skin around the mouth and neck, and pointed teeth with an under-bite. Their personality should be that of a good-natured dog; not aggressive or vicious. They’re often regarded as courageous, resolute and kind-natured. As with any breed, the bulldog does require specific care needs in order to keep him healthy and ensure longevity in his life. Here are seven tips for caring for you bulldog to help him to stay happy and healthy so that both your bulldog, can enjoy a long, happy life together.
Proper diet is so important to caring for your bulldog. There are plenty of cheap versions of dog food on the market today and many of them do not put meat first as the first or main ingredient. Your dog needs a well-rounded diet of proteins, fats, carbs and vitamins and minerals. You do not want to overfeed your bulldog no matter what kind of food he is on, as this can quickly cause weight gain for you pet. Bulldogs are short and stalky and being overweight can create knee and gait problems, among other health issues. Bulldogs should be feed two to three small meals a day.
Because bulldogs are medium-sized dogs, they can be comfortable living in a house and even an apartment, with little room to roam inside, however, they will require exercise outside of the home on a regular basis. Bulldogs don’t expend a lot of energy like many medium to large breeds dogs, but they do need exercise of some sort, daily, in order to keep their heart and bones healthy. Playing games with bulldogs also helps to keep their minds sharp and active. Dog parks are perfect places for your bulldog to play. He will benefit by getting exercise as well as socializing with other dogs and people.
It’s important to socialize your bulldog, starting a very young age. Although they are not considered to be aggressive or vicious, any dog can develop temperament problems when they aren’t socialized to people or other animals. Bulldogs tend to especially love children, so by socializing your puppy to kids of all ages starting from puppyhood, you will be nurturing that natural, sweet nature in them that they have for children. Once they bond with children in the home, they tend to be protective of them in, which is a plus, for many bulldog owners.
4. Groom your bulldog
Bulldogs do not require a whole lot of grooming, but they do shed some. The best way to care for your bulldog’s grooming needs is to bathe him when he needs to be bathed. Unlike other breeds that need regular baths, bulldogs do not, unless dirty. They do, however, need to be brushed regularly to help keep the shedding fur from building up and the natural oils in their skin from causing skin issues. It is a good idea to check in the folds of their skin around their face and neck on a regular basis, to make sure there aren’t issues between the folds. Chaffing or dirt that can be cleaned out with a damp rag. Your bulldog should get regular dental care. Brush your bulldog’s teeth regularly, or give them dental hygiene bones to clean their teeth.
5. Health checks
Bulldogs are prone to certain medical conditions, such as, laryngeal paralysis, hip dysplasia, deafness, hypothyroidism and more. Regular vet checks for vaccinations are only part of taking care of your bulldog’s health. Getting regular, annual physicals by your vet can help ensure your bulldog is in good health as well monitor your pet for any changes that may be happening as he gets older. Regular vet checks is one way to help prevent health conditions from starting or becoming a bigger issue.
6. Plenty of chew toys
Most all dogs need to chew; it is their nature. Chewing serves several purposes: when your bulldog is a puppy, chew toys and bones help your pup get through his teething stage. Like human babies, they need to be able to chew to deal with pain and discomfort, as well as it helps loose baby teeth to fall out. Keeping your bulldog stocked in chew toys and bones also helps to keep them from wanting to chew on things they shouldn’t chew on, like your personal property. When a dog feels nervous or anxious, or bored, they will be more tempted to pick up a shoe or chew on a piece of furniture if they do not have plenty of their own toys to chew on.
7. Create a space just for them
Dogs want to feel secure and comfortable. If they do not have their own space they can go to, to rest, sleep, or escape from a storm or noises, they become anxious and nervous. Your bulldog should have his own designated, comfortable space he knows he can retreat to anytime he wants or needs to. Give him a comfortable dog bed that is just his size where he can find toys nearby, maybe a blanket that is all his, he can curl up with. If you crate your bulldog, make it comfortable for him inside so that he knows he can go in freely to rest and retreat whenever he wants.
Bulldogs are a great family dog that are more than willing to love all family members, and love attention back. They can be quite the cut-up and keep their owners on their toes with their funny dispositions. It is no wonder why bulldogs rank so high on the AKC registry, because they are just all around, good dogs to have for a pet.