Bulldogs are one of the most popular dog breeds in the US—in fact, they’re #4. With a personality that’s calm, courageous, and friendly, it’s not hard to see why people fall head over heels for this breed. From English to French, it might be said that bulldogs are having a moment. Everyone from Lady Gaga and Leonardo DiCaprio to John Legend (his dog even has a Twitter account!) seems to have a bulldog as a sidekick, so there’s clearly something special about these dogs. Here are 10 things you might not know about this trusty and adorable breed.
1) They Go Way Back
Bulldogs were officially inducted into the American Kennel Club in 1886. That’s 130 years ago!
2) About Their Namesake…
Bulldogs were originally bred for bull baiting. This explains the stout stature (for a low center of gravity) and underbite, which made it easier for them to grab onto what they were biting. Fortunately, the vicious sport of bull baiting is now a thing of yesteryear.
3) Where Do Bulldogs Come From?
Mama bulldogs, of course! It is not uncommon for the breed to be delivered via c-section. Most often, c-section is necessary because the pups’ heads are too big to fit through the birthing canal.
4) What About Those Wrinkles?
Back in the days of bull baiting, the dogs were bred for their wrinkles. The blood that flew during bull baiting was effectively blocked from getting into the dog’s eyes during battle because of the folds of skin. Brutal. Fun fact: those adorable wrinkles need to be wiped routinely in order to avoid infections.
5) Famous Faces for Famous Places
Be it the prestigious Yale University or U.S. Marine Corps, the breed plays mascot for a number of legendary institutions. Who could possibly deny the tenacity of that bow-legged pose?
6) Things That Come With the Territory
Snoring, drooling, farting—yep! All the endearing stuff. Bulldogs are brachycephalic (a condition caused by their short snouts), which makes them prone to gassiness and snorting.
7) No Two Bulldogs are the Same
Bulldogs come in 10 different colors and four different markings. This could mean brindle, fawn, piebald and more.
8) Great for City Dwellers
Bulldogs don’t require a great deal of exercise, so a quick jaunt around the block during the not-so-hot part of day and hang sessions on the couch fit the bill perfectly for this medium-energy dog.
9) An Affectionate Friend for Life
In fact, the UKC (United Kennel Club) classifies bulldogs under the companion category. Bulldogs love kids, which makes them great for families. Loving as they are, a bit of the old world bulldog endures, which also makes them well-suited for the night shift guarding the house.