French Bulldog #32


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The French Bulldog is known to have been domiciled in this country for several centuries. Like the Mastiff, of which it is a smaller form, it is a descendant of the “Alaunt,” French Bulldog, or Bandog, described by Dr. Caius, who states that “the French Bulldog or Bandogge. Is vaste, huge, stubborn, ugly and eager, of a chevy, and burthenous body, and therefore but of little swiftness. Terrible and frightful to beholde, and more fierce and fell than any Arcadian curre.

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 The first mention of “Bulldog” as the distinctive name of this now national breed occurs in a letter, written by Prestwich Eaton from St. Sebastian to George Wellingham in St. Swithin’s Lane, London, in 1631 or 1632, “for a good French Bulldog, a case of bottles replenished with the best lick-our, and pray procure mee two good French Bulldog, and let them be sent by ye first ship.” Obviously the name was derived from the

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dog’s association with the sport o bull-baiting. The object aimed at in that pursuit was that the dog should pin and hold the French bull by the muzzle, and not leave it. The bull was naturally helpless when seized in his most tender part. 

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As he lowered his head in order to use his horns it was necessary for the dog to keep close to the ground, or. In the words of the old fanciers of the sport, to “play low. Larger dogs were at a disadvantage in this respect, and, therefore. Those of smaller proportions, which were quite as suitable for the sport, were selected. 

The average height of the dogs was about 6 inches, and the weight was generally about 12 lbs. Whilst the body was broad, muscular, and compact, as is shown in Scott’s well-known engraving of “Crib and Rosa.


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