Why Not Bulldogs? Bulldog puppies are undoubtedly the cutest among all dog breeds (no bias here ;). Even as adults, their charm and appeal make them irresistible. However, many bullies end up abandoned or left at shelters after their cuteness wears off and the time comes to take responsibility for their care.
We’ve heard many heartbreaking stories of bulldogs taken into rescue after being abandoned by their guardians for “financial reasons”. Even the most well-meaning pet guardians can become overwhelmed and exhausted with all that’s required to care for a bulldog. One of our goals at Better Bully is provide enough information so that people can make an informed decision before bringing a bulldog into their family.
Bulldogs are genetically predisposed to a long list of health conditions that are costly and take a lot of time to treat. They are brachycephalic (a technical way to say they have smashed faces), commonly referred to as brachy, which makes them susceptible to brachycephalic respiratory syndrome.
Brachycephalic respiratory syndrome means:
- Small nostrils, making it hard to move air in and out of the nose
- An abnormally long soft palate (the flap of skin at the back of the throat), causing the characteristic snoring and snorting in bulldogs
- A small trachea, making it hard to breathe-kind of like sucking air through a straw. It also makes them susceptible to tracheal collapse and can cause problems if the dog has to undergo anesthesia
As you may know, dogs pant to cool down since they do not have sweat glands like humans. Brachycephalic respiratory syndrome makes it difficult for bullies to pant well enough to cool themselves down, increasing their risk of heatstroke.
Bulldogs must be kept in temperature controlled environments in order to avoid having a heatstroke and can NEVER be a left in a car on a warm day.
There are surgical options that partially address the physical aspects of brachycephalic syndrome and can provide some relief to bullies struggling with breathing issues. However, because they are intentionally bred to have smashed, wrinkly faces, no surgery can completely correct their brachycephalic abnormalities.
Speaking of wrinkles, bulldogs have lots of them. They also have skin folds that require daily or even sometimes twice daily cleaning in order to prevent infection and the overgrowth of yeast that can cause the bulldog serious discomfort and need medical attention.
Common fold areas that require attention are
- The wrinkle or “rope” above the nose
- The skin fold above the tail
- Folds in the skin under the chin.
Bully puppies have more (adorable) wrinkles to clean, but are less prone to infection and yeast than adult bulldogs.
It may seem ridiculous to want a bulldog when considering the burden of their care, but we can truthfully say that there is no dog like the bulldog. From their wit and intelligence to their quirky personalities, they more than make up for the cost and time it takes to care for them.
For guardians who are aware of the responsibility and FULLY committed to the daily maintenance of a bulldog, there is no greater blessing than a soft, squishy bully by your side.