Notorious Droolers are Family Favorites
Bulldogs make an immediate impression. With a large head, shortened muzzle, undershot jaw and a strong, square build, bulldogs appear formidable.
Don’t be fooled. These drooling, heavy breathers are softies at heart and are one of the most popular canine companion choices in America. They are also on the AKC’s top 10 most-wanted dog breeds list year after year.
Descended from the mastiff breed, the bulldog was bred to guard, control and bait bulls during the Middle Ages, using its wide lower jaw to clamp on to the bull's nose like a vise. The bulldog’s short muzzle allowed the dog to continue breathing while clinging to the bull.
The bulldog is known to be dominant and courageous, with a seemingly high tolerance to pain, characteristics of which have been attributed to the breed’s fighting dog ancestry.
While these may be common medical conditions, your bulldog will not necessarily develop any of those listed below.
- Extreme sensitivity to temperature variations and difficulty breathing in hot temperatures due to a shorter muzzle. Good ventilation and air conditioning are essential with this breed.
- Skin infections, hip and knee problems.
- Abnormal dentition placement, number and development of teeth.
- Brachycephalic upper-airway syndrome: Signs are noisy or open-mouth breathing, snoroing, panting, exercise intolerance, vomiting and difficulty eating. An exaggerated movement of the dog's abdomen during breathing is commonly seen in more severely affected animals.
- Distichiasis: This occurs when eyelashes grow in the wrong spot and cause an eye irritation even to the point of scarred corneas. Treatment options your veterinarian can offer include manual removal, electrolysis, electrocautery, cryotherapy and surgery.