English Bulldog Breed Standard

General Appearance * characteristics * temperment * head * eyes * ears * mouth * neck * forequarters * body *hindquarters * feet * tail * gait * coat * colour * size * faults * note

NOTE: THESE ARE NOT MY DOGS, BUT TRULY EXCELLENT EXAMPLES OF ENGLISH BULLDOGS AS THEY ARE MEANT TO BE

According to the U.K. Kennel Club

General Appearance

Smooth-coated, thick set, rather low in stature, broad, powerful and compact. Head, fairly large in proportion to size but no point so much in excess of others as to destroy the general symmetry, or make the dog appear deformed, or interfere with its powers of motion. Face short, muzzle broad, blunt and inclined upwards. Dogs showing respiratory distress highly undesirable. Body short, well knit, limbs stout, well muscled and in hard condition with no tendency towards obesity. Hindquarters high and strong but somewhat lighter in comparison with heavy foreparts. Bitches not so grand or well developed as dogs.

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Characteristics

Conveys impression of determination, strength and activity.

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Temperament

Alert, bold, loyal, dependable, courageous, fierce in appearance, but possessed of affectionate nature.

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Head and Skull

Skull large in circumference. Viewed from front appears very high from corner of lower jaw to apex of skull; also very broad and square. Cheeks well rounded and extended sideways beyond eyes. Viewed from side, head appears very high and short from back to point of nose. Forehead flat with skin upon and about head, loose and wrinkled, neither prominent nor overhanging face. Projections of frontal bones prominent, broad, square and high; deep, wide indentation between eyes. From stop, a furrow, both broad and deep extending to middle of skull being traceable to apex. Face from front of cheek bone to nose, short, skin wrinkled. Muzzle short, broad, turned upwards and very deep from corner of eye to corner of mouth. Nose and nostrils large, broad and black, under no circumstances liver colour, red or brown; top set back towards eyes. Distance from inner corner of eye (or from centre of stop between eyes) to extreme tip of nose not exceeding length from tip of nose to edge of underlip. Nostrils large wide and open, with well defined vertical straight line between. Flews (chops) thick, broad, pendant and very deep, hanging completely over lower jaws at sides, not in front, joining underlip in front and quite covering teeth. Jaws broad, massive and square, lower jaw projecting in front of upper and turning up. Nose roll must not interfere with the line of layback. Viewed from front, the various properties of the face must be equally balanced on either side of an imaginary line down centre.

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Eyes

Seen from front, situated low down in skull, well away from ears. Eyes and stop in same straight line, at right angles to furrow. Wide apart, but outer corners within the outline of cheeks. Round in shape, of moderate size, neither sunken nor prominent, in colour very dark – almost black – showing no white when looking directly forward. Free from obvious eye problems.

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Ears

Set high – i.e. front edge of each ear (as viewed from front) joins outline of skull at top corner of such outline, so as to place them as wide apart, as high and as far from eyes as possible. Small and thin. ’Rose ear‘ correct, i.e. folding inwards back, upper or front inner edge curving outwards and backwards, showing part of inside of burr.

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Mouth

Jaws broad and square with six small front teeth between canines in an even row. Canines wide apart. Teeth large and strong, not seen when mouth closed. When viewed from front under jaw directly under upper jaw and parallel.

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Neck

Moderate in length, very thick, deep and strong. Well arched at back, with much loose, thick and wrinkled skin about throat, forming dewlap on each side, from lower jaw to chest.

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Forequarters

Shoulders broad, sloping and deep, very powerful and muscular giving appearance of being ’tacked on‘ body. Brisket capacious, round and very deep from top of shoulders to lowest part where it joins chest. Well let down between forelegs. Large in diameter, round behind forelegs (not flat-sided, ribs well rounded). Forelegs very stout and strong, well developed, set wide apart, thick, muscular and straight, presenting rather bowed outline, but bones of legs large and straight, not bandy nor curved and short in proportion to hindlegs, but not so short as to make back appear long, or detract from dog’s activity and so cripple him. Elbows low and standing well away from ribs. Pasterns short, straight and strong.

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Body

Chest wide, laterally round, prominent and deep. Back short, strong, broad at shoulders, comparatively narrower at loins. Slight fall to back close behind shoulders (lowest part) whence spine should rise to loins (top higher than top of shoulder), curving again more suddenly to tail, forming arch (termed roach back) – a distinctive characteristic of breed. Body well ribbed up behind with belly tucked up and not pendulous.

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Hindquarters

Legs large and muscular, longer in proportion than forelegs, so as to elevate loins. Hocks slightly bent, well let down; legs long and muscular from loins to hock; short, straight, strong lower part. Stifles round and turned slightly outwards away from body. Hocks thereby made to approach each other and hind feet to turn outwards.

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Feet

Fore, straight and turning very slightly outward; of medium size and moderately round. Hind, round and compact. Toes compact and thick, well split up, making knuckles prominent and high.

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Tail

Set on low, jutting out rather straight and then turning downwards. Round, smooth and devoid of fringe or coarse hair. Moderate in length – rather short than long – thick at root, tapering quickly to a fine point. Downward carriage (not having a decided upward curve at end) and never carried above back.

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Gait/Movement

Peculiarly heavy and constrained, appearing to walk with short, quick steps on tips of toes, hind feet not lifted high, appearing to skim ground, running with one or other shoulder rather advanced. Soundness of movement of the utmost importance.

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Coat

Fine texture, short, close and smooth (hard only from shortness and closeness, not wiry).

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Colour

Whole or smut, (i.e. whole colour with black mask or muzzle). Only whole colours (which should be brilliant and pure of their sort) viz., brindles, reds with their various shades, fawns, fallows etc., white and pied (i.e. combination of white with any of the foregoing colours). Dudley, black and black with tan highly undesirable.

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Size

Dogs: 25 kgs (55 lbs); bitches: 23 kgs (50 lbs).

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Faults

Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog.

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Note

Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.

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