Breeding bulldogs is not something to do on a whim. Producing a litter of pups places considerable strain on the bitch (female bulldog) and also carries potentially life-threatening risks. In addition, the bulldog breed is associated with a high complication rate, especially at whelping. Indeed many bulldogs require a caesarian section (C-section) to produce the puppies, so unless you have the financial means to cover all eventualities, do not consider breeding.
Understand the responsibility of breeding
Do not breed unless you have plans that include the proper long-term commitment to the breed, the health and safety of the bitch and puppies, and the willingness to completely understand the bulldog and its needs. There are too many backyard breeders trying to jump in and breed dogs with almost no experience or understanding of this unique breed. They see the prices they sell for and try to get in and fill their pockets with money. The sad part about this is the end result is not good for the bulldog.
Do not breed English bulldogs with underlying health issues
Many bulldogs suffer from breathing difficulties because of a combination of flat faces, large tongues, and small windpipes. If either of the mating pair of bulldogs has had to have surgery in order to open up their nostrils, trim back parts of their soft palates, or remove their tonsils, do not breed them. The genetics for a crowded throat will be passed onto the pups and will perpetuate these distressing problems.
- Even if your English bulldogs haven’t required surgery, you should still avoid breeding them if they struggle to breathe.
- Do not breed the female during summer months if she has breathing troubles. The hot weather will compound the issue during pregnancy and cause the bitch undue distress.
Consider the female’s temperament
Evidence suggests that the character of the mother is passed onto her puppies. If she is excessively nervous or she is aggressive, her puppies are likely to have similar non ideal behavior patterns. The best bitch to breed from is a calm, friendly, and gentle dog.
- A calmer female will also make a better mother who is less likely to be snappy or insecure when it comes to her puppies.
Check her for mites
It is vital to ensure that she has healthy skin and is free from skin parasites. A form of mange caused by the demodex mite can be made much worse by the stress of pregnancy, and she could lose her fur and develop a rhino-like skin. In addition, the demodex mite can be transferred to the pups at whelping, which means they are born with the mite and will go on to have poor coats and skin. Not only is this undesirable but it can make the pups harder to sell, so you are more likely to be left with them on your hands.
Have a vet perform a physical
One full month before you want to breed your English bulldogs, you should have your veterinarian perform a full physical examination of the female. Ensure that she is up to date on all vaccinations, that she’s free of any worms, and that she does not test positive for brucellosis, a bacterial disease that can cause spontaneous abortion.
- You should also have the veterinarian perform a genetic screening. Even healthy bulldogs can still pass on undesirable genetic traits. Responsible breeding should always seek to weed out traits that can lead to health complications associated with the breed.
- The stud (male bulldog) you choose should also be tested for brucellosis.
Do not breed her before her second cycle
Your English bulldog will have her first heat sometime after six months of age, but you should never breed a bitch before her second heat, which she will have every six months after her first one.