English bulldog for a semi active family?

(30 Posts)
Windsweptly Sun 12-Aug-18 14:14:10

Just wondered if it is unreasonable to consider an English bulldog as a dog for a family that is fairly active? Not hiking active but country park walks etc? Online varies between saying they are fine to walk in cool weather to some saying they just sleep all day? Help! Obviously doing huge amount of research before considering any dog breed. So far have ruled out high energy breeds as we live in a city and can t commit to 3 hrs exercise a day. Thanks in advance!

OP’s posts: |
DogInATent Sun 12-Aug-18 14:22:28

It would be useful to know how many hours you could commit to every day for exercise, and any other restrictions - particularly how much time (if any) a dog might left on its own through the week.

What is the appeal of the English Bulldog to you as a breed? Any other breeds you like or dislike, and why?

Windsweptly Sun 12-Aug-18 14:38:03

Thank you very much! I could commit to 30 - 1 hr per day ideally. We live in a flat in the city. We have small children and cats. Looking for a dog we can take to the park / beach / country park for ambles. Really looking for a placid, child friendly dog that is happy to be left if needed. Ie not something like a vizsla! The 3 that best fit are the bulldog, Frenchie and whippet. Thanks!

OP’s posts: |
threemilesupthreemilesdown Sun 12-Aug-18 15:51:19

YABU to consider any brachycephalic dog on health and welfare grounds.


tabulahrasa Sun 12-Aug-18 15:55:00

Out of those three - get a whippet, they’re the only one out of them that’s just happy being less active rather than less active because they’ve had so many health issues bred into them.

Titsywoo Sun 12-Aug-18 16:01:41

We have a bulldog and to be honest if you want a dog to join you on walks then this is not the breed for you! Our girl walks pretty slowly and the max she would do was 30 mins and only if it was about 18 degrees and under. Since she turned 9 she started refusing to walk and now doesn't go out at all. She is very slim and doesn't have any real health/breathing issues either. They are very easy dogs if you don't have much time for exercise but they do like a lot of company during the day.

I also would never buy a bulldog puppy as I agree with threemiles up - our dog is a rescue.

Titsywoo Sun 12-Aug-18 16:02:35

Although saying that re company we leave our dog for up to 6 hours but not every day


Grasslands Sun 12-Aug-18 16:11:09

Over 3 decades I’ve owned 4 bulldogs. Two were very active and enjoyed hiking an hour a day of rugged terrain. The other two were extremely inactive. They all had sweet gentle personalities.

SubtitlesOn Sun 12-Aug-18 16:52:45

Puppies will need to go out to poo/wee approx every 20 min/40 min so if would prob be easier for you to get a house trained dog from rescue rather than puppy

If you have young children presumably you can't leave them to keep taking puppy outside

DeadButDelicious Sun 12-Aug-18 17:00:09

Full disclosure, I have had two pugs both adopted as adult dogs. The first died from a neurological condition aged 5, the second is a 4 year old we have had for just over a week.

If you are serious about wanting a bulldog I would urge you to consider a breed specific rescue or to look for an adult that is being retired from a reputable breeder. If you do go down the puppy route and I would urge you not too, you want any and all health testing to have been done. Ask to see the certificates. Educate yourself on what good results are. Really look into the health conditions that they can suffer from and the special care they need, have you considered insurance costs?

An English bulldog probably won't be joining you on anything even similar to a long walk, especially not in weather that's even slightly warm. Same for frenchies.

DogInATent Sun 12-Aug-18 18:13:25

30-60 minutes/ exercise per day and non-specific about how long it might be left. Sorry, but I think "cat" is the right choice here. Any breed is going to need to need exercise twice a day and wee breaks in between. Every day, 365 days a year.

Is it a flat with a garden or on the ground floor? It's not impossible with a flat - a good friend through a change of circumstance has a springer in a 2nd floor city centre flat and it works ok - but it takes work to make sure they get enough priority and attention to meet their basic needs.

I'm inclined to think what you want would be met by a young adult Staffy, but what you're offering falls short of their requirements. One of the smaller breeds or one of the kerb-faced breeds might work with what you offer but won't give what you want.

RoseTheHatt Sun 12-Aug-18 18:15:08

Yabu to consider buying a breed that is bred to be deformed and unable to breathe properly.

Windsweptly Sun 12-Aug-18 18:22:38

Thanks for all the advice, I think we will look most seriously at the whippet now.

OP’s posts: |
SubtitlesOn Sun 12-Aug-18 18:26:34

What about doing a scheme of dog walking for a charity or organisation that arranges dog walkers for elderly neighbours?

You get to have the walks with the dog to the park etc

SubtitlesOn Sun 12-Aug-18 18:27:17

Sorry X

AirandMungBeans Sun 12-Aug-18 18:35:00

We've had a bulldog. Like most others I've known, he was very anti exercise. He'd go as far as he wanted, tbh, that was the end of the road some days, then stop and sit or lie down, it was then an absolute mission to get him to carry on or go home. We lost him unfortunately at two years old, but he was completely healthy up until the very end of his life (sudden illness). Despite his laziness he was slim for a bulldog .

If you are an active family or want to go on decent walks, I'd suggest a more active breed. That said, bulldogs are lovely and packed full of character.

BehindLockNumberNine Sun 12-Aug-18 18:49:09

Visit greyhound rescues. They will have whippets and whippet crosses (both my whippet crosses came from a Greyhound rescue)
Look at greyhounds, whippets, lurchers at that rescue.
Sounds like you could be the dream home for a very lucky dog.
There are hundreds in rescues, some as young as puppies.
Please take a look smile

Ylvamoon Sun 12-Aug-18 19:48:25

Of you really want a bulldog why not try one of these:
www.leavittbulldogassociation.com ?

Otherwise go for a Whippet, they are a great all rounder!

user1471453601 Sun 12-Aug-18 20:04:37

I've said this before on this website, but I'll repeat it. Although a "breed" might have particular characteristics, it doesn't mean that all dogs of the breed will have that characteristic. I've had Staff's all my life. Some want\need a lot of exercise others ( like dear girl we now have) would sooner snooze of the sofa. Dogs are not just their breed, they are individuals, just like we are.

If you want a dog with a particular characteristic, go to a good re homing centre. They will have assessed the dog, and if they are good, they will assess you and match your family to a dog that you want and that the dog needs. It's not only about your needs. The dogs needs are equally (more) important

Honey2468 Sun 12-Aug-18 20:17:16

I think there is loads of great advise above, but I just wanted to add that if you plan to continue living in the flat for quite a few years yet, a bulldog might struggle as they get older and if they do run into problems they can be heavy to carry up and down. I think whippets are fantastic family dogs and have thought about this breed myself. I was really shocked also to learn from a vet that the average life expectancy of an English bulldog is five years. That’s really sad I think

TheHandmaidsTale Mon 13-Aug-18 22:00:22

I second the advice to go to a rescue and get a mid aged dog. We got a 5yr old beagle a year ago and he is happy to be left and just sleeps until we return. But also is happy to walk as far as we walk him. Beagles would likely be needing more like 1hr per day exercise along with mental stimulation but it does depend on the dog. Visit rescues and see which dogs they would recommend!

AvocadosBeforeMortgages Mon 13-Aug-18 22:20:40

There's an English bulldog in the local park that has to be pulled around in a red trolley because it won't / can't walk. It doesn't even look old.

I don't know about English bulldogs, though is suspect they're similar, but I know Frenchies are becoming almost uninsurable - £200 per month is not uncommon. Do check you would be able to get and afford good quality health insurance - PetPlan Lifetime for instance.

Have you considered an alternative, non-brachy bull breed? A carefully selected middle aged staffy could be a good choice.

therealposieparker Tue 14-Aug-18 07:29:38

I don't think a dog is ever appropriate living in a flat.

AvocadosBeforeMortgages Tue 14-Aug-18 08:23:01

There's nothing inherently wrong with keeping a dog in a flat.
Some flats are larger than some houses.
Some flats have gardens; some houses do not.

If you actually mean that you don't think it's appropriate to keep a dog without access to a garden, say so. I'd say it's doing dog ownership on hard mode, but for the dedicated dog owner who takes their dog out for enough loo breaks and walkies, it's entirely doable (I say this as someone who has had high energy DDog in a flat with only a communal insecure garden for the last year, through circumstance rather than choice).

If you actually mean that you don't think it's appropriate to keep a dog when you live in a city, say so (though I'll disagree; some dogs need a quieter environment but others thrive in a city)

If you actually mean that you think dogs need a certain size of dwelling, say so.

The only thing that differentiates a flat from any other form of housing is a lack of stairs dividing the property. I don't know anyone who claims that stairs are vital for a dog's health and welfare.

BiteyShark Tue 14-Aug-18 08:36:30

I don't think a dog is ever appropriate living in a flat.

Any flat? A flat downstairs with a garden? A flat upstairs but still with a garden?

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