Why Choosing a Bulldog Breeder Who Shows Dogs is Important
Here is a question we’ve heard before and as bulldog breeders who also show bulldogs, we thought we’d take a moment to chime in with our two cents.
Question: If you aren’t planning on entering your bulldog into a dog show, why should it matter whether or not you adopt a bulldog puppy from a breeder who shows dogs? After all, you’re only looking to adopt a lovable family pet—not a ribbon-holding champion. It shouldn’t matter who the puppy’s parents were— because caring about your puppy’s lineage will just make you seem snobby, right?
Answer: Actually, the opposite is true.
At dog shows, bulldogs are evaluated against their breed standard. This includes an examination of each competitor’s soundness, type, gait, and temperament. Let’s look at what these terms mean.
Soundness—Soundness refers to the mental state and physical health of the bulldog—scoring high in soundness ensures all of the bulldog’s faculties are operating as they should.
Type—Type is comprised of movement, character, bone structure, condition, temperament, and appearance.
Gait—Gait refers to the bulldog’s quality and ease of movement. A bulldog with good bone structure will move with a graceful flow.
Temperament—Temperament is the overall attitude that a bulldog has toward people and other animals. According to The American Kennel Club (AKC), the bulldog’s temperament should be “kind and courageous.” Similarly, a bulldog’s demeanor should be “dignified.” This easy-going and relaxed temperament is part of what makes bulldogs such excellent family dogs.
Bulldogs that have been bread and raised to compete as show dogs innately possess these good qualities because they’ve been bread to “standard.”
Bulldogs that have been bread by inexperienced or unknowledgeable breeders, on the other hand, may not possess these same positive characteristics. They may be aloof or aggressive, for example—two characteristics that go against any breed standard.
The same is true of gait and type. Bulldogs have gained an unfair reputation as being “unhealthy,” and this largely due to poor breeding practices by breeders who don’t breed to standard. Bulldogs that come from a quality gene line (aka, “show dogs’), however, live full and active lives and lack many of the health issues the public has come to associate with the breed (such as hip dysplasia).
It is nearly impossible to have a winning show dog who has a litany of health problems—as the type standard dictates that the dog be in good, structural shape in order to compete. Choosing dogs from a breeder that participates in shows can actually increase the chances that your dog is healthy.
Of course, breeders aren’t able to magically make every bulldog show-worthy. There will always be some puppies in a litter that are otherwise healthy, but because of their larger ears or mismatched eye color, for example, they simply lack the characteristics needed to title. These bulldogs may not be competition worthy, but they’ll make ideal pets because you’ll know they come from good genes and have been raised by knowledgeable professionals who are experts at breeding healthy—and happy—bulldogs.
About Cascade Bulldogs: Cascade Bulldogs is a website dedicated to informing bulldog owners on how to raise, train and show bulldogs (also commonly referred to as “English bulldogs”). Follow Cascade Bulldogs on Facebook and Instagram for weekly updates, cute photos and inspirational bulldog quotes.