Named for their long-ago connection with bull baiting, Bulldogs are very recognizable. This breed is short and compact in stature, exhibiting a shuffling gait and wrinkled skin. Because their coat is so short, Bulldogs require little grooming and though they do not need a great deal of daily exercise, they may become destructive if left unsupervised for extended periods of time. This breed has a gentle temperament and tends to form strong bonds with their human caretakers – particularly children – which makes them a popular family pet.
Because Bulldogs have such short faces they are prone to overheating in hot weather. This breed is also susceptible to other health conditions including skin problems, hip dysplasia, an elongated soft palate and breathing problems. Pet insurance may help you cover treatment and medications for these conditions.
Bulldogs are prone to developing dermatitis, tear stains and acne. Dermatitis is a bacterial skin infection which typically follows some kind of abrasion or inflammation. Medicated shampoos and wipes can keep the dog’s skin clean and corticosteroids may be administered to reduce itching – these treatments typically cost less than $50 per month. Like many dogs, Bulldogs are prone to excess tearing which may result in reddish brown stains near the tear ducts. A veterinarian consultation may be needed to determine the cause of tearing but tear stain solutions to clean the fur can be purchased for between $10 and $30. Acne is most frequently seen in Bulldog puppies ranging in age from three to twelve months and it can easily be treated with antibacterial soap or an antibiotic ointment which generally costs less than $30 per month.
This condition is seen most frequently in large breeds, but Bulldogs are also prone. Hip dysplasia is a condition in which the femur does not fit properly within the hip joint, causing pain, arthritis and the development of bone spurs or calcium deposits. Though dietary alterations and the administration of anti-inflammatory drugs may help to control the condition in young dogs, surgery is often required to correct the problem. Total hip replacement surgery may cost between $1,500 and $3,000 per hip and alternative surgeries to repair the joint cost around $2,500 for both hips.
Due to the small size of the Bulldog’s head, this breed is susceptible to several respiratory problems including an elongated soft palate. The soft palate serves as a flap to prevent food from entering the airway and, if it is elongated, it may fall into the throat during inhalation causing breathing problems. This problem can be surgically corrected for between $500 and $1200. Bulldogs may also experience other breathing problems related to brachiocephalic syndrome or a small trachea. Surgical repairs for these conditions may cost up to $2,000.
Disclaimer: Symptoms, conditions, and costs may vary. Consult a licensed veterinarian to inquire about treatment options and cost of care for your particular situation. Check actual coverage and benefits for your dog to determine whether you will be covered by pet insurance.