Bulldogs, with their stocky build, short snouts and wrinkly faces, do not match the traditional dog beauty standard like that of a Goldendoodle; but did you know they have an entire day that celebrates their beauty? That’s right, National Bulldogs Are Beautiful Day, celebrated every year on April 21. Here are three other facts about your stocky friends you might have not known.
1. How Bulldogs Got Their Name and Almost Lost It
Bulldogs have a long and interesting history, dating back to the Middle Ages. Part of that history includes how they got their name. Bulldogs got their name from a cruel practice that was common sport, known as bullbaiting. Bullbaiting was when a bull was tied to a stake in the ground and the dog would bite the bull’s nose until the dog brought the bull down. This was often played for sport and having too small or too large of a dog would be a disadvantage, so breeders needed a new kind of dog, one who carried weight in the front of its body, thus the bulldog was born. Luckily, the practice of bullbaiting was outlawed in 1835. After bullbaiting was outlawed there seemed to be no purpose for breeding bulldogs so they almost became extinct until breeders decided to breed out the aggression of the dog and make it a pet.
2. Bulldogs Are Very Popular
It is no surprise that bulldogs are a popular breed not only among dog enthusiasts, but also among universities, celebrities and even presidents. There are 39 American universities that have the bulldog as their mascot, most notably Jack the Bulldog belonging to Georgetown and Handsome Dan belonging to Yale; the name being transferred from bulldog to bulldog as they retire.
Celebrities like the Jolie-Pitt family have a bulldog named Jacques. Victoria Beckham gave her husband, David Beckham, a bulldog named Coco for Christmas. Michael Phelps has one named Herman. Even Grammy award winners and supermodels are not immune to the charm of a bulldog. John Legend and wife, Chrissy Teigen, have an English bulldog named Paul and a French bulldog named Penny.
Bulldogs have even run the halls of the White House. Calvin Coolidge, 30th President of the United States, had a bulldog named Boston Beans; however, Coolidge did not eat Boston Beans during his term in the White House. Warren G. Harding, 29th President, had a bulldog name Oh Boy. Since Harding had Oh Boy while President, Oh Boy was given the official title of First Dog.
3. Bulldogs Are Made for Naps
Seeing bulldogs run around the dog park, it might surprise you to know that bulldogs sleep about 50 percent of the day. On average a bulldog sleeps 12–14 hours in a 24-hour period. Puppies and older dogs sleep even more, up to 18–20 hours in a 24-hour period. If left alone, a bulldog can sleep up to 22 hours in a day, and the best part for the bulldog, all that sleeping is not bad for them. They also do not need much exercise to stay healthy, only about 30 minutes a day, but with all the sleeping they do, you might need to give them a push in the right direction with some treats and positive encouragement.
Now that you know so many interesting facts about bulldogs you can truly celebrate National Bulldogs Are Beautiful Day. Just remember to give your best friend some treats and the recognition they deserve as the sleepy, loving dog they are.