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The English Bulldog struggles with significant physical limitations due to its short catch, flat nose, skin folds and crooked legs. That is why there are now various breeding programs to give the lovable dog breed back its original, healthier appearance.
With the so-called Vintage English Bulldogs, only English Bulldogs that correspond to the original appearance may be used for breeding. This makes this variant comparable to the old German pug. The Olde English Bulldogge, on the other hand, was created by crossing other dog breeds, similar to the retro pug.
History of the dog breed Olde English Bulldogge
Bulldogs used to be bred for the bull rushing sport popular in former England. Bull rushing was banned in 1835 and the dog breed lost its role. Little by little there were fewer English Bulldogs until breeders rediscovered them as a show breed in 1860. Now it was no longer a question of sportiness, strength, condition and health, but of appearance. As a result, the dogs' snout became ever shorter, the nose flatter, the legs shorter and crooked, the skin increasingly wrinkled. The eyes of this "modern" English bulldog stand out and the animals have a strong underbite.
The American David Leavitt could no longer watch this and decided in 1971 to breed the English Bulldog back to its original appearance. The goal was a healthy, strong and active bulldog variant without breathing, eye, bit, skin and joint problems. He mated English Bulldogs with dogs that were one third Bullmastiff, American Bulldog and American Pit Bull Terrier, and in this way managed to breed the health-limiting breed characteristics again.
The Olde English Bulldog is actually a crossbreed and is not yet recognized as an independent dog breed by the FCI (Fédération Cynologique Internationale) and AKC (American Kennel Club). The UKC (United Kennel Club) - umbrella organization for dog breeding and dog sport originating in the USA - sees the "retroversion" of the bulldogs as a separate breed. Since Olde English Bulldogs are now also bred that do not meet Leavitt's ideas, the "originals" are nowadays also called Leavitt Bulldog or Leavitt Olde English Bulldogge.
English Bulldog: Cuddly pictures of the funny dog breed
Character of the Olde English Bulldog
The Olde English Bulldog has a great understanding and is very intelligent. Like the English Bulldog, it is also very stubborn, solves problems and likes to make decisions independently. Nevertheless, she is considered human-friendly and peaceful - especially towards her caregivers and other living beings with her family. In addition, these dogs are playful and fond of children, provided they have been well brought up. However, it is advisable to only keep Olde Bulls as a family dog when the children are already taller and stronger, as the muscular, medium-sized dogs could accidentally harm young children while playing.
The OEB have an instinctive protective instinct for their own pack, are often reluctant at first to strangers and can occasionally show aggression towards members of the same sex. But overall, her character is friendly and not aggressive. In order to keep it that way, good, early socialization and loving, consistent education with a lot of positive reinforcement is important.
Posture tips for the Olde English Bulldog
Due to their intelligence and physical strength, Olde Bulls need both mental and physical capacity so that they do not get bored and develop undesirable behavioral problems. Unlike English bulldogs, OEB love dog sport and cut a good figure in agility or obedience training. Their short fur is very easy to care for, but they freeze in winter when they are outside and need a coat in cool temperatures.
Since their eyes do not protrude so far, they are less prone to eye infections than the modern variant of the dog breed. The skin folds hardly cause any problems, since they are not so deep. You will also rarely find tooth and jaw misalignments with Olde English Bulldogs.