I am in the process of getting a bulldog puppy. i already put a deposit down. so in about a month i will be bringing her home.

Well see my question is, i have 2 other dogs at home, shih tzus. one male and one female. ok, well my we just found out that my female is going to be delivering on April 30th. ok, well i will be bringing my bullie baby home a little before the birth.

My question is do you think that we might have a problem with this.? I will have a private place for the female shih tzu to whelp. How do you think a bull dog and shih tzus will get along with each other?  Is this a mistake.

From my experience of being around bull dogs they seems sooo easy going and loving, im hoping she will fit right in with our family, is this possible?

Stacy

——–answer——

Hi Stacy,

Introducing a new puppy to home dogs does take some extra care,
but a few simple steps should help.  And yes, english bulldogs in
general are quite mellow and loving.

I’m not a behavior expert but I’m happy to give you my opinion.

I think they should all get along fine.  It’s the dogs you already have that
may potentially be a problem and need to be introduced properly to the
new puppy.

If you keep your dogs in crates this process could go much smoother,
but if you don’t it should be ok if you are mindful of a few things.

Dogs are pack animals and their instincts kick in when they see a new
dog in their midst.  You now have 2 dogs but 3 dogs constitutes a pack
and there will be ‘ranking’ in that pack.

Remember that you are the true alpha, or ruler of your pack and it is
up to you to set the tone and keep everyone in their place.

The pregnant female is going to be instinctually protective of her unborn
puppies, so she’s the one I would pay close attention to.

Fortunatley puppies do not pose as big a threat as an adult dog would.
That said, you have a pregnant female and are bringing in another
female.  Statistically the female dogs fight for rank more than the males.

It is best to introduce the puppy to your current dogs on a neutral location
like a local park or your neighbor’s yard.  When they meet, be sure to praise
them in a cheery voice to reward the behavior.

Let them sniff each other.  The puppy will probably bow down, which is a
sign of “lets play”.  If your dog’s hair starts to raise up, that is a sign of
aggression and you should probably separate them.

If things go well, which they usually do with a puppy, you can bring the
puppy in the house.  Be aware that a puppy will want to play with the
adult dogs a lot – possibly more than they want.  Your adult dogs may
growl to tell the puppy to lay off.  This is normal.

If you current dogs respond to the puppy by biting him, this could
be dangerous to the puppy so you need to keep an eye on them until
they all seem to be doing fine in their new pack.

This might sound scary, but usually these introductions go really well
when a puppy is involved.  I introduced my first bulldog puppy into a
household with an Akita and a cat.  We introduced the two dogs in the
front yard and they got along famously.  It was the cat that became the
benevolent dictator of the pack.

I’m attaching a pdf document from the Dumb Friends League with
more information for you.

Congratulations on your puppy and let me know how it goes.

Your Bulldog Pal,

Jan

Hi Jan,
Thanks for the email and I also ordered your book! I have a question about our 9-month-old bully, Mack. For the past 3-4 months he has started scooting across the carpet and spinning in circles while whining painfully.  I have noticed his tail is very tightly screwed into his body which is apparently causing him a lot of pain. We clean and disinfect his tail daily, however it is still inflamed and sometimes has little sores. We have checked his anal glands and had them expressed a couple times, but it does not seem to give the poor little guy much relief. It has now gotten to the point where he is almost acting psychotic and won’t stop spinning/scooting even when coaxed with treats or his favorite toy. Fortunately, he has a very good breeder who breeds champion bulldogs and we called him when we were at a loss of what to do. We brought Mack over to see him and after throughly cleaning his tail and seeing his behavior, he suggested we might want to think about tail amputation. Our vet has also suggested this. It seems like such a drastic move and I don’t mind paying the money as long as it gives him some relief. Do you have any suggestions of what to do?? Please help!

Jessica

———my answer——

Hi Jessica,

Since you’ve ruled out impacted anal glands as the source of Mack’s butt scooting,
it sounds like he has an infection in his tail pocket.  It can be quite painful and
life threatening if it cannot be cleared up.  He may have a severe yeast infection
in the pocket – does it smell sour?  The little sores could indicate a
bacterial infection such as staph.  A chronic infection can become systemic
and spread through his body.  This would be very dangerous.

All English Bulldogs have part of their tail still inside the body as an extention
of the tail bone.  Some have straight tails and some have screw tails.  An
inverted tail is a condition where part of a screw tail makes a loop inside
the body and then comes out.

This inverted tail is very tight and close to the body with a very tight tail pocket
and part of the tail constantly rubbing and festering in the pocket.  This is
not a fault of breeding, it just happens sometimes.

Sometimes constant maintenance of the tail pocket will keep your bulldog
healthy.  You need to clean out the tail pocket daily using warm water on
a washcloth in a circular motion and get deep into the pocket. Then the
area must be thoroughly dried and perhaps add some Gold Bond powder.

In your case it sounds like you have been very diligent in keeping Mack’s
tail clean and he still has chronic infections. So in this case it would
probably be best to amputate his tail.

This is a condition that happens on occasion with bulldogs, even from the
best lines.  And he will be much happier and healthier if you do the
amputation.

I hope this helps.  Please keep me posted on Mack’s progress.

Your Bulldog Pal,
Jan

Jan, another question.

I have read conflicting reports on the net about Bullies and Rawhides. Roxie absolutely loves the Pig Ear style and small stick rawhides. When she has them, we always monitor her and never leave her alone or put one in her crate with her. Is it OK for her to have them, or is it too risky, as some say they pose a high risk for choking?

Erik

—–answer——-

Hi Eric,

My opinion is never let an English Bulldog have a rawhide, pig’s ear, or greenie.
Not even if the rawhide is the particulate type. Bulldogs do love them because
they are quite tasty but to me it’s not worth the risk, even if you are watching
Roxie she could swallow it whole.

The problem is the bulldog tends to inhale, not chew, and they can get lodged in the
throat or worse in the stomach or intestines. Rawhide expands in the stomach and can
kill a bulldog who swallows chunks of it.

I learned this the hard way, twice having to do the heimlich on my first bulldog. She
inhaled a rawhide and it got stuck in her throat. On another occasion she dug up my
neighbor’s dog’s rawhide and ate it without my knowledge.  She regurgitated it
onto the carpet about 4 hours later.

A dog has a reflex at the back of the stomach that causes the to throw up
things that cannot be digested, but it does not always ensure your dogs
won’t be harmed by ingesting the wrong thing.

As for greenies, they don’t dissolve when swallowed whole and can get stuck in
a bulldog’s intestines. I’ve heard of a case from my breeder where a Greenie had
to be surgically removed from a bulldog puppy’s stomach (at a cost of $3000).

Rope toys may be shredded and if they eat them, you can
get the same stomach problem. So you need to keep an eye on them with a rope
toy.

I’ve found the Kong toys to be the most durable. You can put something tasty
like peanut butter inside and it will keep Roxie occupied for quite a while.

I’ve found it best to err on the side of caution.

Your Bulldog Pal,

Jan

I have spent a fortune at the vet this past month. My
Olde English is 1 1/2 years old. She has started gagging (like trying
to clear her throat or puke? Sounds like a bark) and coughing. This
goes on basically 24/7. The vet first gave her injections and benadryl
100 mg. 3 times a day. Now another steroid and hydroxizine 25 2x a day.
She is getting WORSE. I don’t know what else it is.

Amy

—–answer——

Hi Amy,

Your english bulldog is being treated as if she had an allergic reaction to
something in her environment.  If she does not have an allergy, steroids
and anti-histamines will have no effect on her gagging.

At a year and a half she’s just reaching maturity. She could have a congenital
problem with her elongated palate. Does her tongue and the inside of her mouth
start to turn blue? If so, she may be a candidate for palate surgery. This type
of surgery is not to be taken lightly but sometimes is the only way to cure this
condition. It’s called bracycephalic syndrome and the dog literally chokes on
her own palate and throat.
Here’s an overview of what is involved in this:
http://www.acvs.org/AnimalOwners/HealthConditions/SmallAnimalTopics/BrachycephalicSyndrome/

Or she may be experiencing problems with her esophagus. There are two
conditions that plague bulldogs: megasopagus and esophogeal motility
disorder. You can read more about them on my Q&A blog:
https://bulldoghealth.wordpress.com/2008/01/11/bulldog-megasphagus-and-esophageal-motility-disorder/

I hope this helps. Please write with any more questions.

Your Bulldog Pal,
Jan

Hi there,

I was recently on your website reading all your knowledge on our adorable friends.

I have two British bulldogs one male and the other female, they are both only a day apart in age and are 10 months old.

I brought them from different breeders so they are not blood related, in the idea of breeding them one day.

All up until a month ago i have come into some problems that have concerned me extremely.

My Female has become very aggressive towards the male, she dominates him over food, toys and human affection. They are calm all up until i walk in the backyard to play with them she becomes very aggressive and attacks him. The male is very placid and does not want to fight with her but she does not stop.

I have tried stopping her with spraying her with water but she likes the water and thinks its a game, I have since separated them at feeding times and this i feel has caused more aggression with her.

Up until 2 days ago i never smacked her but she was attacking him so much i smacked her with a shoe and this has now caused her to be upset with me, she will no longer come to me for a play and he will not come near me for the fact that she will attack him.

I love my puppies and would hate to see one of them go, i have contacted my local vet and there answer was to get rid of one of them. I do not want to get rid of one as i love them both but on the other hand is it cruel to leave him feeling scared in his own enviroment??

With my male he is very loveable but he has an aggressive streak towards children which iam quiet scared of, i would never leave an animal with a child un attended, but it concerns me as he has been brought up with young children.

Kind regards for reading me problems

Ellen

———–

Hi Ellen,

I’m not an expert on training, but I suspect your problems are stemming from
the fact that there is no clear leader in the “pack”

You need to take control of your dogs so they look to you as the alpha dog.
Your female is stepping in because she thinks you are not doing the alpha
job.  Then the male looks to dominate other threats to the pack (the children).

Female dogs are usually more dominant than male dogs.  They want to
take control and male dogs tend to be more submissive and easy going.

Since both of your dogs are still puppies, they are just learning how to
behave, and they take their cues from you.

It is very important that you become the leader.  You cannot do this by
behavior that she thinks is a game (the squirt water) or punishment (hitting
her with the shoe).  She is very confused because she thinks she’s doing
her job.  When she gets punished for what she perceives as ‘good’ behavior
she will naturally avoid you.  She’s now afraid to come to you.

There was a very good episode of the Dog Whisperer about bulldogs with
the same behavior pattern.  I can’t remember the name of it, but it was on
my local cable.

My advice is you get a very good trainer immediately.  When I had an
aggression problem with Vivy I hired Barkbusters.  They are expensive,
but did a wonderful job in one day!  There are many competent trainers
out there, so you could contact your local bulldog group.  I think your
vet’s suggestion is just plain ignorant.

Part of the training process is to teach you how to be the leader.  In my
case, since Vivy was ten, it took a lot of leash training.

Do not delay because you will have an escalating problem that will become
more difficult the longer you wait.

I hope this helps.  Let me know how they’re doing.

Your Bulldog Pal,
Jan

hey jan

i have a 6 month old english bulldog and he whines only in the morning and when he get compfortable i was thinking it was just an attention thing, any ideas?

Matt

——-

Hi Matt,

That’s hard to tell from your description.

English Bulldogs are very ‘expressive’ and often make odd sounds.  If the whine is urgent
sounding or distressed, I’d be concerned.  If it’s more pleading or enticing, like he
wants you to come over, it’s probably attention-getting.

Since he’s just a puppy, he is forming his habits and finding out what will get him
the attention he craves.  And you don’t want to encourage negative behaviors.

If the whining stops when you give him attention, then I’d suppose that’s the case.
If he whines when you touch him in a specific area like his stomach or leg, then
I might think he had some sort of injury or problem and I’d suggest you have him
looked at by your vet.

Jan

Hi Jan,
got another question for you.

We have read all about how walnuts and pecans can be fatal to our bulldogs.
We have acorns in the back yard and it is very hard to stop them from eating
them or at least chewing on them and the sticks.

They were outside, on leashes yesterday , but they always pick crap up,
well…to make a long story short, they were whiners last night and then this AM,
he had gotten sick in his cage, and then while I was gone for 1 hour to the dr. ,
she threw her breakfast up. …can it be the crap they are eating like the acorns?
Makes no sense.

Thanks for keeping in touch.
Laurie

———

Hi Laurie,

Thanks for sending the photos. They are sooooo adorable!!

As for the acorns, I have read that they are toxic although not deadly to dogs.
This includes the buds and acorns. This is most likely why they both got sick.
Puppies do have a tendency to explore the world through their mouths and
test all kinds of things by chewing them.

A dog has a natural reflex to throw up undesirable foods, which is a good thing
because they are historically scavengers and eat all kinds of bad stuff. Chewing
the acorns probably irritated their stomachs.

The most common signs of plant poisoning are vomiting and diarrhea.
If they don’t get better within 24 hours, it would be a good idea to call your vet.
If they get woozy or seem disoriented, get them to your vet asap.

A safe guide to poisonous plants is to assume that any plant that has a
white or milky sap will be poisonous.

So I’d suggest you limit their exposure to the acorns or give them something
they like to chew more when they’re outside until they grow out of the puppy
chewing phase. Or confine them to a part of the yard where they cannot get
the acorns.

Here’s a link to an article on poisonous foods for dogs:
http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm?cls=2&cat=1684&articleid=3283

Your Bulldog Pal,
Jan