Olde English Bulldogge

Olde English Bulldogge
Olde English Bulldogge
Other names Old English Bulldog
Nicknames OEB
Country of origin United States
Weight Male 27–36 kg (60–80 lb)
Female 25–32 kg (50–70 lb)
Height Male 56–63 cm (17–20 in)
Female 54–60 cm (16–19 in)
Coat Smooth, tight and medium to short
Color Gray, black, brindle of red, brindle spots on white, fawn, red or black solid or with white.
Litter size 3–12 pups
Life span 9–14 years
Dog (Canis lupus familiaris)

The Olde English Bulldogge is a purebred breed of dog. It is a re-creation of the bull-baiting dog that existed in England during the English Regency period of 1811-1820.




The Olde English Bulldogge is a muscular, medium sized dog of great strength, stability and athleticism. It is well balanced and proportioned with no exaggerated features. It has the appearance of a dog capable of doing its original job of bull baiting. Excessive height would have been detrimental for the old working bulldog as it had to “play low” to avoid the bull’s horns and fasten onto its nose. A heavyweight dog would also have been at a disadvantage, as the bull’s nose would have been likely to rip sending the dog flying.


The disposition of the Olde English Bulldogge is confident, courageous and alert. Olde English Bulldogges are very friendly and loving. They are extremely strong and occasionally display same-sex dog aggression, so socialization and obedience training are important. It is best to channel high energy dogs to some type of work and exercise.

Olde English Bulldogge Breed Standard

Several of the breed's main attributes from the recently revised breed standard of the Olde English Bulldogge, written (August 2007) by the Olde English Bulldogge Kennel Club and Leavitt Bulldog Association are listed in the table at right and breed disqualifications below. This Standard was written at the request of the United Kennel Club (not to be confused with the American Kennel Club or AKC) before it began recognizing the Olde English Bulldogge breed as a purebred dog breed within its foundation stock registry program, the Canine Developmental Health and Performance Registry [1].

Show & Breeding Disqualifications

Eyes: Any eye color other than brown. Wall eyes or crossed eyes.
Nose: Any color nose other than black.
Bite: Wry jaw or Overbite.
Tail: Docked, kinked or bobbed tail.
Color: Blue/gray (Neapolitan Mastiff color) & rust/mahogany (Rottweiler color)
Also: Males lacking two fully descended normal testicles.


The Olde English Bulldogge may be a healthier breed of dog than many modern bulldog breeds, though they can be affected by many of the same disorders that occur in any breed. Many breeders are now x-raying hips to reduce the incidence of hip dysplasia as well as having dogs evaluated by organizations such as the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) and the University of Pennsylvania Hip Improvement Program (PennHIP). When considering buying a puppy it is important to ask about health testing that has been done for both parents of a litter to better evaluate if the dog can be expected to grow up free of health issues. The Olde English Bulldogge is also quickly becoming well respected in many working venues such as weight pull, therapy training, obedience and several others. They have become excellent breathers and do not have to be kept in an air conditioned environment on hot days. Artificial insemination is not a standard protocol when breeding Olde English Bulldogges; natural ties are the standard. Caesarean sections are only needed in the event of unexpected complications at delivery like with almost any breed of dog. Breeders from the breed's Parent Club, The Olde English Bulldogge Kennel Club, Inc., are working vigorously on educating new breeders among the breed on genetic disorders and the benefits modern genetic testing for these disorders can have on preventing genetic disorders in domestic animals. Many breeders are also becoming more aware of how important selective breeding can be to the breed as a whole.


General overview of Bull-baiting and Blood Sport during the English Regency Period

Bull baiting dogs, referred to today as bulldogs, were bred to bait animals, mainly bulls and bears. Baiting sports, often referred to as "Blood Sport", were extremely popular from their inception around the 12th century until they started being banned across Europe in 1835[1]. During "Bull-baiting" the dog would attempt to flatten itself to the ground, creeping as close to the bull as possible, then darting out and attempting to bite the bull in the nose or head area. The bull would often be tethered by a collar and rope which was staked into the ground. As the dog darted at the bull, the bull would attempt to catch the dog with his head and horns and throw it into the air. The dog owners would often try to catch the dog before it fell to the ground to minmimize the dogs injuries so that the dog could continue tormenting the bull.

In 1835,[2] the Cruelty to Animals Act was passed in Parliament that outlawed "Blood Sport" in Great Britain. The bulldog's work was suddenly over and the bulldog rapidly started dying out. Around 1865 dog fanciers began developing dog clubs which eventually culminated into conformation shows. Many fanciers utilized various remnants of the dog utilized for "Blood Sport" to resurrect the "Bull" dog and ultimately developed today's modern English bulldog.

History of the Olde English Bulldogge

Barkley OEBKC

The Olde English Bulldogge is an attempt to recreate the "Regency Period Bull Baiter" and was developed by David Leavitt of Coatesville, Pennsylvania. Mr. Leavitt began his project in 1971 utilizing the cattle line breeding scheme of Dr. Fechimer from Ohio State University[3]. The goal was to create a dog with the look, health, and athleticism of the original bull-baiting dogs, but with a much less aggressive temperament.[3] The foundation of the Olde English Bulldogge can be traced to a mix of English bulldog, American Bulldog, American Pit Bull Terrier, and Bullmastiff. After many carefully planned crosses, the Olde English Bulldogge emerged and began to breed true. Thus, Leavitt formed the Olde English Bulldogge Association (OEBA) to maintain the breeds stud book and issue registration papers to future offspring[4].

During the 1980s Ben and Karen Campetti from Sandisfield, Massachusetts, worked closely with Leavitt in breeding the Olde English Bulldogge. Soon they achieved great success[citation needed] showing the breed in Molosser breed shows across the country and internationally. For several years the Olde English Bulldogge was the top rare breed in rare breed conformation shows across the US[citation needed]. In 1993 Leavitt stopped breeding and turned the OEBA registry as well as his personal breeding stock over to Working Dog Inc. which was owned and operated by Michael Walz of Pennsylvania[5]. In 2005, Leavitt re-emerged and joined the Olde English Bulldogge Kennel Club. Leavitt declared that he was merging the OEBA registry with the registry of the Olde English Bulldogge Kennel Club before he developed another club called the Leavitt Bulldog Association.

Despite recent controversy over the name that Leavitt assigned to the breed, today's Olde English Bulldogge is still breeding true to form and possesses excellent health, agility, temperament and a consistent look to that of the old working Bull Baiter of the English Regency Period. The Olde English Bulldogge Kennel Club is recognized as the breed club or Parent Club of the Olde English Bulldogge by the Canine Developmental Health & Performance Registry (CDHPR) of the United Kennel Club as well as the American Rare Breed Association as it works to protect and maintain the bloodlines that make the Olde English Bulldogge a purebred dog breed.

The Olde English Bulldogge Kennel Club has recently achieved breed recognition by the CDHPR under the sole name of "Olde English Bulldogge." Prior to allowing a breed full recognition with the United Kennel Club, the CDHPR evaluates a breed's registry database to determine it's integrity. Once the CDHPR deems a breed's registry valid, they begin providing registry services for the breed through the Parent Club's registry database to establish a more verifiable database for the United Kennel Club.

Olde English bulldogge Breed registry

There are many registries in the US and abroad that claim to register purebred Olde English bulldogges. However, if a dog's pedigree can not be traced back to the breed's original foundation stock, the dog being registered can not be ethically registered with The Olde English Bulldogge Kennel Club, The Canine Developmental Health & Performance Registry (CDHPR) or The American Rare Breed Association[citation needed]. The breed is not recognized by the American Kennel Club.

See also


  1. ^ *Jenkins, Robert; Ken Mollett (1997). The Story of the Real Bulldog. Neptune, NJ: TFH Publications. ISBN 0-7938-0491-4. 
  2. ^ Fogle, Bruce; Tracy Morgan (2000). The new encyclopedia of the dog. New York: Dorling Kindersley. p. 381. ISBN 0789461307. 
  3. ^ a b Semencic, Carl (August 1984). The World of Fighting Dogs. Neptune, NJ: TFH Publications. ISBN 0866226567. 
  4. ^ *Semencic, Carl (April 1998). Gladiator Dogs. Neptune, NJ: TFH Publications. ISBN 0793805961. 
  5. ^ Olde English Bulldogge Kennel Club .::. Home of the Original Olde English Bulldogge
  • DePrisco, Andrew (1990). The Mini-Atlas of Dog Breeds. Neptune, NJ: TFH Publications. ISBN 0866220917. 
  • Brearley, Joan McDonald (1985). The Book of the Bulldog. Neptune, NJ: TFH Publications. ISBN 0-86622-027-5. 

External links

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