Pugs and Bulldogs are some of the most lovable dogs in the world. What happens when they’re bred together? Learn more about the Bull-Pug!
The Bull-Pug is a designer breed that’s the result of crossbreeding an English Bulldog and a Pug. It is a medium-sized dog with slick fur and wrinkles all over its face and body. Bull-Pugs have sensitive, obedient, and gentle personalities that make them get along great with people and children.
As you read on, I’ll discuss everything there is to know about the Bull-Pug. First, I’ll cover the history of the Bull-Pug and how this breed was developed. Next, I’ll describe the Bull-Pug’s personality and appearance. I’ll also talk about how you can take care of your very own Bull-Pug. Finally, I’ll wrap things up with the common health issues that Bull-Pugs can develop and my final thoughts on this breed.
Table of Contents
The History of the Bull-Pug
The Bull-Pug, also known as the Miniature Bulldog, like most designer breeds, has a vague history. No one knows when and where the breed was developed but it rose in popularity during the 1980s and 1990s. Since there is little to know about this exact breed’s history, I’ll quickly go over the history of each of its parent breeds.
The Pug is a toy-sized breed that was first developed in China in the year 206 BC, making it one of the oldest dog breeds in the world. Pugs were owned by emperors of the Han dynasty and these little dogs were treated like royalty.
In the 1500s, the Pug made its way to Europe, where it was first known as the Mopshond. Even in Europe, it was a popular choice among European royals. As the Pug spread across the world, it was given many names. France called it the Carlin, Spain named it the Doguillo, and Germany called them Mops.
By the time the Pug made it to the United States, it was one of the most popular dogs in the world. The American Kennel Club registered it as an official breed in 1885. A few decades later, the Pug Club of America was formed.
The English Bulldog
Despite its name, the English Bulldog actually originates from Asia. It’s believed to have originated from ancient Mastiffs that were then brought by nomads to Europe. This ancient Mastiff was then further developed through selective breeding and became the English Bulldog we know today.
The breed was developed for a sport called bull-baiting, which is what gave the breed its name. This dog was meant to help take down bulls with its low stature and a high tolerance for pain. Eventually, English authorities outlawed the inhumane sport and Bulldogs eventually became docile companion pets.
Bulldogs were formerly aggressive and tough dogs but these traits were bred out of the breed to make them more suitable for families. The Bulldog you know and love today is now an adorable little dog that gets along great with people and even children.
The Bull-Pug’s Personality
The Bull-Pug is an affectionate and loving family pet. Bull-Pugs love to spend time with their human companions, especially younger members like children and toddlers. This designer breed inherited the English Bulldog’s nanny-like personality, making it protective and caring towards young humans.
Bull-Pugs are playful but not particularly energetic dogs. They love to play but will be happy to laze around once they’re tired. You can expect your Pug Bulldog Mix to be a laidback puppy that will join you for your afternoon naps.
Unlike most designer breeds, Bull-Pugs don’t struggle with separation anxiety. Although it is an affectionate and playful breed, the Bull-Pug doesn’t mind being alone and spending time away from you and its other human companions.
Bull-Pugs also get along great with other dogs but they can be overwhelmed when meeting multiple new dogs at the same time. It’s important that you are present when bringing your Bull-Pug to parks or households with multiple dogs to help it feel safer.
What Does the Bull-Pug Look Like?
The Mini Bulldog is a small to medium-sized dog. It normally grows up to be 20 to 45 lbs in weight and 12 to 16 inches in height when fully grown. As you can see, it can have a wide variety of weight and height because it is a designer breed. Male Bull-Pugs are also normally larger than female ones.
Some Bull-Pugs grow up to be closer to the English Bulldog in size while others grow up closer to the Pug in size. F1 or first-generation puppies normally have a larger variety in size while later generations of puppies have a more consistent and smaller size.
The Bull-Pug has five distinct characteristics. These include a large and round head, broad shoulders, a medium muzzle, black eyes, and a curled tail that folds over its hip. It can be hard to predict what your Bull-Pug puppy will look like because it is still a new and developing breed.
However, since the Bull-Pug’s parent breeds have similar builds, you can see a general build that all Bull-Pugs have. They have a short and stocky build that features big bones and strong muscles. They also have wrinkly skin that shows wrinkles around the face and hind.
The most unique and distinctive trait of the Bull-Pug is its tail. Bull-Pugs normally have a short tail that curls into its hip. This little trait adds a lot to the Bull-Pug’s adorable factor and popularity among the fans of this breed.
The Bull-Pug is a smooth-haired dog, just like its parent breeds. However, Pugs have double coats while English Bulldogs have single coats. This means that a Bull-Pug can have either a double coat or a single coat, depending on which parent’s genes it inherits.
If your Bull-Pug inherits its fur genes from its English Bulldog parent, you can expect it to have a smooth and glossy coat with minimal shedding. On the other hand, if it inherits its fur genes from its Pug parent, you can expect your puppy to have a smooth coat that’s a bit thicker with more shedding.
The Bull-Pug can also have a variety of coat colors just like the English Bulldog. Sometimes, it also inherits the solid coat colors of the Pug. A Bull-Pug normally either looks like a tiny version of the English Bulldog or a small English Bulldog with a Pug’s facial features.
Below is a list of the coat colors a Bull-Pug can have:
When a Bull-Pug inherits a black, fawn, or red coat, it normally features a black muzzle similar to that of a Pug’s. When it has a pied coat, the muzzle’s color will depend on where the colored markings are placed. It can either have a white muzzle or a muzzle with color markings.
Take Care of a Bull-Pug
The Bull-Pug is a relatively low-maintenance dog. Since it is a small breed, it doesn’t need to eat much every day. It requires minimal grooming but it can easily develop skin and dental problems if you don’t regularly take care of your dog’s skin and teeth.
The most important parts of taking care of a Bull-Pug are paying attention to its diet and skin condition. Bull-Pugs have sensitive skin that can easily be affected by their environment and how they’re fed.
Since the Bull-Pug is an average shedder, it will need to be brushed once a day or once every other day. Bull-Pugs have sensitive skin that can easily be irritated by regular brushing. It’s best to use a bristle brush when grooming your Bull-Pug. This will gently remove dead skin, dander, and loose fur from your Bull-Pug’s body.
Bull-Pugs are also prone to dirt buildup in their ears, so they need to have their ears cleaned regularly. Just like brushing, you will need to clean your Bull-Pug’s ears once a day or once every other day. You can use a pet-friendly ear cleansing solution to protect your Bull-Pug from producing too much earwax. Regularly cleaning your Bull-Pug’s ears will prevent any nasty infections from developing.
Your Bull-Pug will only need to be bathed once every three weeks to keep its fur and skin healthy. Your best option is to take it to a professional groomer so that it can receive the care it needs. However, you can provide it with more than enough care if you choose to bathe your Bull-Pug on your own.
Since it’s a breed with skin folds, Bull-Pugs are sensitive to chemicals in shampoos. It’s best to use a natural oatmeal shampoo to clean your Bull-Pug’s skin. Oatmeal shampoos have natural and hypoallergenic formulas that help alleviate dryness and itching.
While it’s still a puppy, your Bull-Pug will only need to eat about 0.35 lbs of puppy food a day. Once it reaches adulthood, it will need to eat about 0.7 lbs of adult dog food a day. Bull-Pugs are prone to bloat so it’s best to divide their meals into 3 to 4 meals a day as a puppy and 2 meals a day as an adult.
Remember that the best dog food you give your Bull-Pug will depend on which parent breed it shares more genetic similarities with. Bull-Pugs that are more Bulldog than Pug will need food that’s formulated for Bulldogs. Bull-Pugs that are more Pug than Bulldog will need food that’s formulated for Pugs.
Remember that the amount to feed your Bull-Pug will also depend on its lifestyle. Larger and more active Bull-Pugs may require a higher amount of food every day while smaller and less active ones will require a smaller one. Be sure to consult your veterinarian to find out the best way to feed your dog.
Below is a table comparing brands of food you can give to your Bull-Pug puppy:
|Puppy Food Brand||Quantity per bag||Bags per year||Unit price||Price per year|
|Royal Canin (Pug)||2.5 lbs||51.1||$22.99||$1,175|
|Royal Canin (Bulldog)||30 lbs||5||$127.89||$640|
|Hill’s Science||15.5 lbs||8||$32.99||$264|
Below is a table comparing brands of food you can give to your adult Bull-Pug:
|Dog Food Brand||Quantity per bag||Bags per year||Unit price||Price per year|
|Royal Canin (Pug)||10 lbs||26||$46.69||$1214|
|Royal Canin (Bulldog)||30 lbs||9||$94.72||$853|
|Hill’s Science||15.5 lbs||17||$32.99||$561|
Veterinarians recommend that you brush your Bull-Pug’s teeth two or three times a week to prevent any serious dental diseases. You can try brushing your Pull-Pug’s teeth using a
pet toothbrush and enzymatic toothpaste. It may take a while for your Bull-Pug to get used to having its teeth brushed so it’s better to start while it’s still a puppy to help your pet get used to it.
If you struggle with brushing your Bull-Pug’s teeth, you can also opt to use water additives. Water additives are formulated to clean your dog’s mouth and help it fight plaque and tartar. Simply add a capful of the formula to your dog’s water source once a day.
Since the Bull-Pug is a laidback puppy, it doesn’t need much exercise to keep any anxiety in check. Instead, your Bull-Dog puppy will need daily exercise for its physical health. Bull-Pugs need about 30 minutes of exercise every day to keep them at a healthy weight.
You can provide your Bull-Pug with its exercise needs by taking it out for a walk once a day. You can also keep it occupied with toys like balls, ropes, and puzzles. Bull-Pugs particularly enjoy rope toys and puzzles for play.
Common Health Issues in the Bull-Pug
Like most designer breeds, the Bull-Pug can be prone to any diseases that its parent breeds are prone to. It’s important to find out about your Bull-Pug’s medical history to get a good idea of what illnesses it might inherit from its parents or develop with age.
The common health issues that Bull-Pugs normally face include:
- Hip Dysplasia
- Patellar Luxation
- Skin Fold Dermatitis
- Brachycephalic Syndrome
Hip Dysplasia is a health condition wherein a dog’s ball and socket joint, which is found in its hip, don’t fit together correctly. It can be caused by a dog’s genetics, poor nutrition, or injury. This disease is common in many dog breeds, including the Bull-Pug.
Symptoms of hip dysplasia include an unstable rear end, lower energy, decreased range of movement, a dropped back, and limping. Your dog’s hip dysplasia can only be diagnosed through an x-ray that is conducted on your dog’s hip area.
It’s important that you get your Bull-Pug diagnosed as soon as possible. The sooner you detect it, the less complicated treatment will be. Dogs with mild hip dysplasia that’s caught early on, can usually recover through medication and physical therapy. On the other hand, dogs with severe hip dysplasia that is diagnosed late will require corrective surgery.
Surgery will normally involve reconstructing your dog’s joint to help it return to the correct shape and form. Avoiding surgery should be your top priority but if your veterinarian tells you that your dog needs surgery, then you will have to accept that it’s what’s best for your pet’s health. After surgery, your Bull-Pug will still need to undergo physical therapy to help it recover from the operation.
Patellar luxation is a condition wherein a dog’s kneecap slides out of its femoral grove. This health issue is common among small dogs. Since the Bull-Pug is a small-sized breed, you can expect your pet to have a strong chance of developing this condition. Aside from developing from injury or age, patellar luxation can also be genetically inherited if your Bull-Pug’s parents have this condition.
The symptoms of patellar luxation include limping, shaking the affected limb, and bow-leggedness. It is diagnosed by conducting a physical exam and will be confirmed once your vet conducts an x-ray.
Depending on the severity, patellar luxation can require different types of treatment. This medical condition is normally put on a scale of 4 grades or levels to identify the severity. Grade 1 patellar luxation can be treated with physical therapy while Grade 2 and above patellar luxation will require surgical procedures to correct your Bull-Pug’s knee.
Surgery for treating patellar luxation will be one of the following types of procedures:
- Reconstructing the kneecap’s surrounding soft tissues
- Deepening the dog’s femoral grove to help the kneecap slide back into place
- Correcting abnormalities in the femur’s shape and installing a bone plate
Skin Fold Dermatitis
Skin Fold Dermatitis is a disease wherein an infection forms in a pocket between wrinkles in your Mini Bulldog’s skin. This is common among dogs with wrinkly skin including. It develops because of the moisture that builds up between the skin folds. This moisture and warmth make the Bull-Pug’s skin the perfect breeding ground for bacteria and infection.
The symptoms of skin fold dermatitis include odors coming from the skin folds, redness between the folds, swelling, and excessive itching. When there’s too much yeast or bacteria in your Bull-Pug’s skin, it can turn into dermatitis. Although it’s normal for a dog to have some bacteria or yeast in its skin, it’s important that you maintain a healthy amount that doesn’t cause any skin infections.
Diagnosing skin fold dermatitis will involve doing a thorough check-up of your dog’s skin. Through this check-up, your veterinarian should be able to determine whether your dog’s condition can be treated with a routine cleaning or with medication.
Mild cases of skin fold dermatitis are usually treated using a special solution that gets rid of bad yeast and bacteria. This is normally done after your dog is given a bath with anti-microbial shampoo and saltwater.
You can prevent skin fold dermatitis from happening to your dog by keeping it clean and cool. Wrinkly dogs are more prone to skin fold dermatitis during the summer because of the heat. It is less likely to develop if you live somewhere with a cooler climate or keep your dog in controlled or air-conditioned environments. A good preventative measure is to give your Bull-Pug a regular bath.
Brachycephalic Syndrome is a condition wherein a dog experiences difficulty breathing due to the shape of its head and muzzle. This condition is common in breeds with short muzzles and flat heads. Although the Bull-Pug has a rounder head, it can still develop brachycephalic syndrome because of its short muzzle.
The symptoms of brachycephalic syndrome include noisy breathing, gagging, low energy, blue tongue, and collapsing. Bull-Pugs with brachycephalic syndrome usually show it when they suddenly become less playful or spend most of the day sleeping.
Brachycephalic syndrome is diagnosed through a physical exam. Your veterinarian should be able to tell that your Bull-Pug suffers from this condition based on the structure of its palate and nose. During this physical exam, your dog will have to be administered anesthesia to make sure it’s asleep during the procedure.
Unfortunately, the only treatment for this condition is surgery. Surgery for brachycephalic syndrome involves stretching the dog’s palette to make it easier for air to flow through its nose and throat. Just like the physical exam, your dog will have to be given anesthesia for the length of its surgery.
The Bull-Pug is an adorable wrinkly puppy with a colorful history. Since it is a designer breed, it has not yet been recognized by the American Kennel Club as an official breed. However, even if it isn’t a registered breed, the Bull-Pug is definitely still a wonderful dog.
The best traits of the Bull-Pug are its small size and personality. Having a small stature makes it relatively easier to take care of and bring around wherever you go! I think it’s charming that this designer breed gets along with children despite the aggressive history of one of its parent breeds. Personally, I can easily imagine how this dog can grow to love and protect the children in a family.
However, since it is a new designer breed, it’s evident that it can be prone to plenty of health issues. Most designer breeds that exist today haven’t been around for long so certain imperfections haven’t been bred out of their genetics just yet. The same goes for the Bull-Pug.
Although it makes for a great family pet and companion, it’s important to know about the different health issues that the Bull-Pug faces. You must prepare yourself and your dog for these conditions so that your dog can receive the best treatment and live a long and healthy life.
Hey there! I’m Matt and I’m a content writer from the Philippines. I’ve raised over 10 dogs and 5 cats. I love taking care of my rescue dog Kewpie and my two rescue cats, Misty and Rosy.