The Olde English Bulldoggies vs. the Old English Bulldog
What Is the Difference?
When most people think of bulldogs, the Old English Bulldog or the modern-day English Bulldog is often what comes to mind. Surprisingly, Old English Bulldogs are actually extinct and English Bulldogs are what we’ve come to automatically identify as the stereotypical bulldog with its short stature, boxy body, and heavy wrinkles.
Both of these breeds are commonly confused with the Olde English Bulldoggies (OEB), which made its first appearance in the 1970s in the United States. This new breed was in many ways created to capture the traits of the original and extinct Old English Bulldog—the athletic, agile, bull-baiting breed of the 17th century.
Olde English Bulldoggies are a blend of the following breeds:
- 1/2 English Bulldog
- 1/6th Bullmastiff
- 1/6th American Pit Bull Terrier
- 1/6th American Bulldog
AN EXTINCT BREED: THE HISTORY OF THE OLD ENGLISH BULLDOG
The Old English Bulldog is an extinct breed. The breed was created in England around the 1600s or 1700s, and it is the ancestor of many bully breeds that are still around today including the English Bulldog and American Bulldog. Celebrated for its compact, muscular build and its large lower jaw, this strong, courageous, agile, and hardy breed was used for English blood sport and bull baiting in London up until the decline of these activities upon the passing of the Cruelty to Animals Act in 1835.
The breed was thought to derive from the Old Mastiff or Alaunt of the 17th century, an ancient breed used in times of war.
BREEDING TO EXTINCTION
One parent breed, the proper Mastiff, wasn’t quick enough for bull baiting, so the Old English Bulldog was blended with the Old English Terrier to create an athletic, fast-acting hybrid. This breed was designated the “Bull and Terrier” and was an early attempt at the Bull Terrier and American Pit Bull breeds. This development further led to the eventual decline of the Old English Bulldog.
Breeders who appreciated this great, beautiful dog tried to breed out some of its aggression. They began to cross remnants of this dog with other breeds selected for their temperament and features they wanted until they finally developed the English Bulldog. Unfortunately, however, this breed has numerous, inherited health issues.
How to Tell Bulldog Breeds Apart
This photograph cross-compares three popular types of bulldog breeds.
A Comparison of Bulldog Breeds
*Breed information adapted from Wikipedia
English Bulldog Traits and Temperament
Before getting into the specifics the OEB, I’d like to first tell you how it differs from the English Bulldog or classic bulldog you are probably familiar with. Olde English Bulldoggies tend to be a bit healthier, as they are a mix of several breeds and specifically designed to be more active and healthier with less of the traditional health problems English Bulldogs face.
English Bulldog Traits
- Appearance: Large head, short muzzle (brachycephalic), undershot jaw
- Size: Medium (averaging 50 pounds as adults)
- Body: Stocky, blocky head; short legs
- Wrinkles: Heavy
- Temperament: Gentle, loyal, protective, stubborn
- Notable Traits: Heavy breather, brachycephalic
- Health Issues: Respiratory, heat and exercise intolerance, dental and palletmalformations, skin and dietary allergies, knee joint and hip complications, reproductive issues and dystocia-prone (difficult birth), cherry eye
The most obvious difference is that the English Bulldog is much smaller and lighter in build and much more sensitive to hot and cold—you can’t have them outdoors for long periods of time in extreme temperatures or exercise them as hard. The average cost of ownership of an English Bulldog (in vet fees) is over several thousands of dollars a year. They are very expensive dogs to own and tend to have numerous health issues much like French Bulldogs.
What Is the Difference Between an Olde English Bulldog and an American Bulldog?
Olde English Bulldoggies and American Bulldogs are quite similar in appearance, however, the American Bulldog is much larger, taller, and originated in the 1700s. The OEB is a fine breed for beginner owners, whereas the American Bulldog is recommended for experienced owners. Both are great with children, trainable, and loyal; the American Bulldog has a higher tendency to bark, is more energetic, has higher grooming needs, and is not hypoallergenic, whereas the Old English Bulldog is hypoallergenic.
A New Breed: The Olde English Bulldoggies
The modern Old English Bulldoggies is essentially a healthier and more active remake of its 17th-century relative. It is a mix of the English Bulldog, American Bulldog, American Pit Bull Terrier, and the Mastiff. All of these breeds were used to selectively achieve the traits and temperament desired. The result: A good-looking and athletic (compared to the English Bulldog) dog with a happy disposition.