There is a very long list of English bulldogs health issues, but if you understand them and know what they are before you acquire one, they are fantastic dogs to own.
However, there is also a word of caution; due to this breeds surge in popularity, there have been several bad breeding practices.
Most of these practices center around a less than reputable breeder that have bred them without fully understanding their temperament.
This has resulted in an increase of aggression in this breed.
However, this is very easily remedied by simply making sure you select a well-qualified breeder and the first question that you should ask is about their temperament.
If it is indeed a top line breeder, they can explain this to you in great detail.
In fully understanding the list of English bulldogs health issues, it is quite interesting to understand the early history of this special breed and how that has evolved over time.
This wonderful breed obviously has very deep roots from its homeland of Great Britain, and while this breed can be very stubborn at times, they are also very docile.
Because of this they have been very popular worldwide since the late 1800’s.
When they were first bred, it was done so with two objectives in mind; ferocity as well as courage.
Because of this, this breed has long been known for their habits of tenacity and a very stubborn like determination.
What is also interesting to know, is that this breed has not always been referred to as a
English bulldog, as they used to be called the bandogge, simply because they spent most of their time bonded up or tied to other dogs.
They were originally kept by butchers in order to control the unruly oxen that shaped the mid-centuries, but they were also used for what is referred to as the sport of baiting.
Although this has been eliminated for several hundred years for cruelty, during the 13th century is was very popular.
The owners would use these dogs to bait other animals such as a bull, bear, or even horses, and they were sent in to a guarded area to attack these animals.
However, their most common foe was a bull and they became very effective at grasping the fleshy nose of a bull and pinning it flat to the ground; hence the name bulldog.
Most of the English bulldogs health issues are the result of their very early breeding, as their face reflects their early ability to fight with bulls.
They have a very short muzzle as well as what is referred to as an undershot jaw, which gives them almost vice-like gripping power to this day.
Their nose was also bred to be placed back on their face, which still allowed for them to breathe easily while they grabbed the bull’s nose.
Their original breeding was also designed so they would be very stocky, medium in size, but with a broad and powerful chest, which are all qualities that they still have.
However, this also allows for their face and head to be wrinkled most of the time, and they have several facial folds which also adds to their health issues.
They are still quite stubborn in nature, but they are also extremely devoted to their owners and are very docile around their family.
In the majority of cases, they do not like to exercise a lot and do not have the same energy some other breeds do, and as a result of this, they prefer to lounge around their surroundings most of the time.
However, their stature makes them a very imposing figure, and because of this, they are excellent watchdogs and will protect your family with their life if it ever came to that.
The list of English bulldogs health issues is quite extensive, but there are eight that are considered to be the most common.
This list includes brachycephalic syndrome, pulmonic stenosis, skin inflammation and infections, hernias, heat stroke, eye problems, as well as tooth decay.
If you understand each of these eight challenges and know what to watch for, your loyal watchdog and companion can live a very full and rewarding life.
Leading the list of English bulldogs health issues is brachycephalic syndrome.
Any breed that has what are referred to as brachycephalic features is very prone to this condition, and this breed is perhaps the best known for this.
Brachycephalic syndrome is best described as a congenital obstruction of the upper airway, and will generally involve four abnormalities.
They include stenotic nares, elongated soft palate, eversion of the laryngeal sacs, and narrowing of the trachea.
The stenotic nares will involve a very severe narrowing of the nostrils in your dog, while the elongated soft palate is where their soft palate actually extends into the back of their throat.
Because of this, there will be times where it blocks their airways.
An inversion of the laryngeal sacs involves the small sac like pouching that is located in your dog’s larynx.
Because of the two previous conditions, these pouches may actually be sucked into their airway, which will in turn interfere with their air flow.
To compound this situation even further, your dog’s trachea or wind pipe is also narrower than most dogs.
This condition can very easily cause your bulldog to breathe noisily, have a difficult time in breathing, as well as a very high intolerance to most all exercise.
They may also gag at times, snort, and cough, and all of these symptoms lead to several of their other health issues, especially dental and eye problems, skin infections, as well as heat stroke.
Next on the list of English bulldogs health issues are pulmonic stenosis, and although this is not as well-known as brachycephalic syndrome, are can be very dangerous for your dog.
This is a situation where the pulmonary arteries that carry the blood from the right ventricle of your dog’s heart to their lungs become challenged.
If your dog has any type of a narrowing of these vessels or their valves, it will impede the flow of blood.
This will begin to cause heart murmurs, which will then lead to a fluid buildup within their abdomen as well as their limbs.
Skin Inflammation and Skin Infections
Because of the folds in your dog’s skin as the result of their breeding, these two conditions are next on the list of English bulldogs health issues.
Skin inflammation is also commonly referred to as pododermatitis, and this is a situation where your dog’s hocks or paws will become very sore as the result of some type of a fungal or bacterial infection.
These same infections can affect the skin folds on their face and head.
Hernias are also very common in males, and this is believed to be linked to brachycephalic syndrome as well, as the lack of oxygen that feeds your dog’s tissues is not at full strength.
This in turn causes weakness in the layers of their stomach tissues.
Heat stoke is yet another of the English bulldogs health issues and is associated with the impairment of their breathing, which can be extremely dangerous.
The shallow sockets of your dog’s face can lead to several different eye problems, and it may also lead to your dog having trouble closing their eyes.
However, the most serious concern is that if your dog is accidentally hit very hard on the back of their head, it may actually pop their eyes out of their sockets.
The shape of your dog’s face also may allow for more food to be trapped in their mouth, which can very easily lead to dental problems if you do not clean them regularly.
Although the list of English bulldogs health issues is quite extensive, if you understand and watch for them you can slow them down.
If you then back up their immune system with nutrients which can slow down and even prevent most all types of fungal or bacterial infections, your dog will lead a very full and long life