Some Advice On How To Breed Your Bulldog…..

How To Breed Bulldogs

Pregnant Bulldog

With this post I wanted to address the fact that many of you are getting involved or hoping to one day be involved in breeding your English Bulldog. First off, let me assure you, I’m not writing with the intent to scare you off. I’m not going to simply tell you that breeding Bulldogs is too hard. In fact, I plan to do something very different….. I want to help you. The whole process of breeding and raising Bulldogs can be quite difficult at times and yes, even heart breaking, but it’s especially rewarding when you’re in it for all the right reasons.

By now you’ve probably been researching all over Google on the subject of Bulldog breeding and whelping just as my wife and I did before we officially got started. I can safely assume that while most of the information you’ve come across about breeding looks to be legit, you’ve been told that what you’re endeavoring to do is wrong. Get the impression  someone behind all these articles wants to see you run away with your tail between your legs? I know when we started out in our quest to own and breed bullies, that was completely the message we heard through all of our research. Over and over again we saw signs to “Turn Back Now!” We asked, “Why??” We pressed on!

After 8 years of experience breeding English Bulldogs, we’ve come to a better understanding of why there’s such a huge fuss. I believe all of the warnings are well founded. Maybe it’s all simply a way of weeding out those who may not be appropriate candidates for the hardships of breeding Bulldogs. This is a tough job and requires people who are dedicated to the humane treatment and overall improvement of the breed.  Did you know, each year in America, there are nearly 1 Million dogs euthanized? What’s worse, is to think of the countless number of dogs being horribly abused and neglected in pet stores and what we call “puppy mills”. To say the least, we have a big problem in America controlling the pet population! As a whole, we must be more loving and devoted to our pets. Still, amongst all of the bad, there is a great need for responsible Bulldog breeders who put their love for their animals ahead of their wallets. That may or may not be where you come in…Let’s Find Out!

Is Bulldog Breeding For You? Here’s a Quick Test!

Ask yourself, “what is motivating me to breed Bulldogs?”. Be honest about this! Did the first image that popped into your head sort of resemble a long, green, paper material with the words “In God we trust” inscribed on it?

Stop! What do you know about Bulldogs Right Now?? If you think you need to start from the beginning check out this book to your right Dummy!

Can I Make Money Breeding Bulldogs?

Maybe you’ve seen the lofty price tag on these dogs and thought to yourself, “oh ya baby, that’s where I want to be!”  To put it plainly, if you’ve been wholly persuaded by the opportunity of making big bucks you’re barking up the wrong tree. Don’t expect to get rich breeding English Bulldogs as the process demands lots of hard work many times ending with an insufficient payoff. It’s impossible to start breeding Bulldogs if you’re not financially stable in the first place.

Those who have, in their mind, constructed elaborate ways to “score big” off these animals are usually known as scam artists or  backyard breeders. You know, the guys who hope never to do any real work except collecting and running – don’t find yourself counted in this number. In short, yes you can make money breeding Bulldogs, but you won’t be upgrading the family car anytime soon.

Related Article: Why Are Bulldogs So Expensive?

Is Breeding My Bulldog Dangerous?

“Hello! First off I love your website! Its chock full of great info. I’m writing to seek some advice and guidance. I currently have a female brindle and white English Bulldog. She’s the third bulldog I’ve owned over 20 years. I’m thinking of breeding her. She has a great pedigree full of champions on both sides. Of course she has some areas that could be improved a d I’m seeking a stud who compliments her.

My main question/concern is about my Bulldog’s safety. I saw that you recently and tragically lost your family member. Indy. I know that it was unexpected and sudden. Is death during pregnancy/caesarean/post-partum more common in English Bulldogs? Specifically HOW common (if you know.)

As far as the risk of anesthesia, I intend to spay her if I don’t breed her so anesthesia is a given. I will have her cleared for breeding and surgery by my vet prior to insemination but, as you know, even the best laid plans sometimes fail. I want to take every precaution possible to avoid unnecessary risk IF I do decide to breed her. Any knowledge and advice you can impart would be greatly appreciated.” – Kara Rouker Feb 28th 2017

Can My Bulldog Die Giving Birth to Puppies: My Answer.

“Hey, Kara. In our experience over the last ten years, we’ve produced 9 litters with three females. This last time was the only time we ever had a problem, but 1 in 9 isn’t exactly a welcomed statistic when it comes to the life of your beloved pet.

When we shared our experience on Facebook, I did hear from more than a few other families who said they lost their girl in the same way we did. I heard from thousands of people and I remember 4-5 families mentioning their Bulldog dying during or after giving birth via c-section.

Relatively often, I even hear of bulldogs dying from what were supposed to be out-patient surgeries like elongated soft palate or ACL operations.

It’s been tough deciding what to do. At first, we said never again. Indy was just 3 years old and she was our favorite. She was prized in our family and we took her on all of our vacations.

We’re on the fence now, but feel like the loss of Indy was just rare enough to continue. However, if it happens again, I don’t see a future in breeding for us. I believe the odds for success are higher than those for failure, but as you stated, there’s always a chance of death or permanent injury with any procedure, especially those involving anesthesia.

That’s about as honest of an opinion I can give you. I hope it helps you decide.” – Daniel Weese

I’m In This For The Long Haul! Now What?

I trust you’ve counted the cost to everything involved in breeding your Bulldog.

Now that we know you’ve considered how difficult and serious a task you are about to embark upon, I want to prepare you.

Maybe we should form a list of things you’ll need, some steps you’ll be taking, and what you can expect:

  • After you’ve studied the breed a LOT, You’ll need a Female English Bulldog (bitch) that comes from a long healthy heritage and conforms to the AKC English Bulldog Standard.
  • This is your official starting point! Finally a chance to personally study the Bulldog. You’ll discover the good and the bad about your new bully.  Once you’ve proven you can love and provide for one bully, you’re ready to proceed in confidence.
  • While she is maturing you can continue to ready yourself and your home for puppies.

Get These Items For Raising Bulldog Puppies

I’ll just quickly go over a few of the tools you’ll need to successfully care for the new mother and raise her litter of puppies. From the cesarean section to age 8 wks of age, there are a few life-saving items every bulldog breeder must have. On your way to the vet’s office for the C-section you should have something to carry your new puppies home in like a clothes basket. Put a few soft blankets in the basket and bring along a hot water bottle to keep them warm in the car. Get a blanket for mom too. The blanket for mom should be one you don’t mind parting with as it will likely be bled and peed on. Mom will be bleeding from the vulva heavily for the first 3 days and lighter for at least a week more so you’ll have to be creative about saving your carpet from blood stains. Have a carpet scrubber handy.

Have a digital thermometer available so you can monitor the puppies’ temperatures. Use the thermometer rectally with Vaseline Paste added to the tip for ease of entry. The puppy will squirm and squeal at first unless he is sick. A healthy newborn pup’s temperature should be between 95 and 98 degrees. Anything below 94 is dangerous. Use the thermometer sparingly. If a puppy is not squirming and whining a bit when you pick him up he may be sick or cold. Warm him up if he’s cold by holding him under your shirt close to your skin.

Here’s some more info on how to achieve a healthy puppy temperature.

Take note as to whether the puppy is just as active as the other puppies or if he seems lethargic. Don’t hesitate to call your veterinarian if you don’t know what to do.

At home, we always have ready a Low Voltage heating pad that will not reach harmful temperatures for the puppies. We keep the puppies in a clothes basket, on a table with the heating pad under it away from mom except for feeding time. The pad I’m recommending is perfect because it’s small allowing the  puppies to crawl away from it, to a cooler side of the basket if they become too warm.

Get your hands on a few Sterile Bulb Syringes. Sometimes after feeding, the puppies expel milk from their noses that must be sucked out. Use very hot water after each use to clean the bulb syringe.

In case mom’s milk is a little slow coming in you should have some Esbilac Puppy Formula. We prefer the powder over the liquid because you can mix only the amount you need, it doesn’t have to be refrigerated and you don’t have to use the microwave; just set the desired temperature from the faucet. Test the temperature on your wrist like you would a baby bottle. The formula should neither feel cold or hot on your wrist. If the temp is wrong, the puppies may not drink it.

Related Article: How to Bottle Feed Newborn Bulldog Puppies.

Use only bottles intended for puppies. No baby bottles! Proper bottle feeding should mimic feeding from the mother. With the puppy on his belly, place him on your palm with his head propped up slightly and let him drink for no more than 10 min. Remember the pups need to eat every 2 hours for the first 2 weeks. At 2 weeks of age feeding can be pushed back to every 3 hours. If a puppy is not eating, check his temperature and read his body language. A puppy under 10 days of age is very fragile and shouldn’t miss a feeding.

You must try to get the puppies to poop and pee before and after each feeding by rubbing their anus and genitals gently with a wet wipe or tissue. If you don’t do this, the puppies may die. Let mom do the cleaning when she’s available. The poop should be brown or green and it’s ok if it’s a bit runny at first. Lots of times, you’ll discover the puppies have been peeing and pooping while your away and the poop will get hard, blocking the anus. Any blockage you discover must be cleared with warm water and gentle rubbing. Be very careful not to rub the anus and genitals raw. Apply Vaseline gel if rubbing has caused the areas to become swollen and bleed.

  • Get to know other breeders in the area and strive to find a few that are trustworthy and are willing to help you when you need advice.
  • If you haven’t added a Male English Bulldog to your family (Stud) you’ll need to find a breeder who has an exceptional Male to fill this role for your Female. Make sure to get a copy of the stud’s health certificate. Meet this breeder in person. Do a background check on them. Search their name on Google for any complaints or red flags. The last thing you want is to be associated or do business with a crook.
  • You need to find a Veterinarian that specializes in English Bulldogs and reproductive services. This is a must! Your Veterinarian should be no more than a couple of hours away from your home. A vet that is open all through the night is preferable in case of an emergency. Look into their business history. The most important thing is not how much they charge for services, but how they treat their clients and their capability of servicing your Bulldog. We have been a client of Animal Clinic Northview for years. They specialize in Bulldogs as well as other animals and they’re second to none in reproductive services!
  • Once your Bulldog has reached the age of at least 1.5 years, she has had no major health issues in her life, is currently healthy and is cleared by your veterinarian to become pregnant, she may be bred.
  • Be sure you’re financially stable and have at least $4,000-$5,000 in savings to be used for expenses you incur. Typically, you’ll spend around $3,000 for progesterone testing, stud service, x-rays and the C-section, but you have to be ready for unplanned trips to the vet before and after delivery. It’s common to get a sick puppy or two that needs to be seen by your vet at 3am.

No Doubt You’ve Got More Questions About Breeding Bulldogs

Bulldogs and Bulldog Breeding

Bulldogs and Bulldog Breeding

Don’t worry, we knew we couldn’t possibly answer all of your questions in just one article! We’ve just gone over a few points on How To Breed English Bulldogs and I know there is a load of information that still needs to be covered.  At Left, I’ve placed a great read all about breeding bulldogs written by John Cooper. This guy set the conerstone when it comes to breeding bulldogs and anyone stands to learn a lot from his huge cache of experiences. Click on the picture to the left for more info about John Cooper and his work with bulldogs.

There are a lot of questions you’ll encounter most of which come when your bitch has gone into heat and the first week after the puppies have been born. Please forward your questions on Breeding or Whelping English Bulldogs, or Raising Bulldog puppies, to the comments section below.