Originally bred to fight bulls, this extraordinary gladiator has evolved into the ultimate couch potato....
Way back in the day, in early 13th century England, there was a job called bull baiting. It was a very unpleasant activity in which Bulldogs would latch onto the nose of a bull with their strong jaws and basically whip it into a fury. If youve ever seen a cowboy hold onto a bucking bull, remember that theyve got it easy: theyre on the bulls back, away from the pointy end. The Bulldog had a similar job, but they had to hold onto the bulls face using only their jaws. Yikes! Talk about tough.
In the Middle Ages, Bulldogs were very different from today's breed. The Bulldog of the Middle Ages was bigger, stronger, and a heck of a lot angrier. Thankfully, in about 1835, it was decided that dog fighting was just a plain bad idea, and it was outlawed in England. With their gladiator days behind them, Bulldogs began to decrease in popularity. Sharply. In fact, at one point, they almost disappeared.
But people quickly got together and bred the dog to be a peaceful companion, and the Bulldog was recognized by the AKC in 1886. Now, the dog is even more famous as a loving member of the household than they ever were as bull baiters hundreds of years ago. In fact, they are consistently ranked in the top 20 most popular dogs in America year after year a suitable retirement plan for such a hardworking dog.