Victorian Bulldog: Meet the Charming Breed Reviving Old Splendor

A Victorian Bulldog close up orange background

The Victorian Bulldog is a breed with a rich history, tracing back to the Victorian era where it was revered for both companionship and its status as a symbol of British tenacity. Unlike the modern English Bulldog, the Victorian variety was bred to resemble the older version of the breed, one that was healthier and capable of more physical activity. This selective breeding aimed to mitigate some of the health issues that befell many bulldogs due to their exaggerated physical features.

Your interest in the Victorian Bulldog might stem from its unique blend of gentleness and courage, as well as its distinctive appearance which sets it apart from other bulldog breeds. With a strong, stocky frame and a friendly disposition, these dogs are known for their unwavering loyalty and adaptability to various living conditions. Considering their storied past and distinct characteristics, it’s essential to still thoroughly research the history of Bulldogs and their needs before searching for a Victorian Bulldog Puppy for sale or breeder.

So, What Is A Victorian Bulldog? Breed Overview

The Victorian Bulldog is a reconstructed version of the traditional 19th-century English Bulldog. It’s a healthier, more athletic breed, preserving the Bulldog’s classic appearance and friendly nature. Bred for a longer muzzle and a less wrinkled face, it aims to reduce respiratory issues, making it a robust and affectionate companion.

The Victorian Bulldog is a delightful breed that captures your attention with its sturdy frame and kind gaze. It’s sort of like the cousin to your well-known English Bulldog, but with a few twists that make it stand out.

  • History: In the 1800s, the English Bulldog was popular in Victorian Britain. Breeders were super into keeping track of their dog’s families, kind of like a family tree for pups! Then comes Ken Mollett in the 1980s, a guy passionate about dogs. He wanted to bring back that traditional Victorian Bulldog look.
  • Ken Mollett’s Vision: Ken started the revival of the breed by carefully selecting dogs that had the features of the old-style bulldogs. These guys are known as the Mollett Victorian Bulldogs today.
  • Breed Traits:
    • Size: Pretty muscular and chunky. These bulldogs are medium-sized but look super strong.
    • Temperament: They’re gentle and love hanging out with you. Great with kids and other pets.
    • Health: They tend to be healthier than some other bulldog breeds. This was part of Mollett’s plan; he wanted to create a breed with fewer health issues.

So, if you’re looking for a dog with an old-school charm and a friendly vibe, the Victorian Bulldog could be a top-notch pal for you. They’re a testament to the dedication of breeders who aim to bring back the historical bulldog’s physique and charm.

Key Takeaways

  • The Victorian Bulldog is a distinct breed that harks back to the more athletic bulldogs of the Victorian era.
  • They are characterized by their sturdy build and affectionate nature, suitable for many living situations.
  • Proper care includes regular exercise, a balanced diet, and grooming to maintain their health and wellbeing.

Victorian Bulldog History & Origin

A Victorian Bulldog close up tongue out

What breeds contribute to the Victorian Bulldog

Ancestral Breeds

Tracing back to England’s 1700s and 1800s, the early bulldogs were part of a brutal activity known as bull-baiting. Initially bred for their strength and tenacity, these Bulldogs’ lineage is rooted in bandogges and molossoids. The very practice that honed their characteristics was outlawed in 1835, leading to significant changes in the breed.

Historical Significance

When bull-baiting became illegal, the breed was at risk of vanishing. Admirers decided to alleviate the breed’s aggressive traits and health issues by introducing new bloodlines. Bulldogs were crossed with less tenacious dogs, gradually transforming into companions with much calmer demeanors.

The Breed Today

Efforts in the 1980s by a breeder named Ken Mollett sparked the creation of what you now know as the Victorian Bulldog. It is a revitalization of the breed, aiming to reduce the health problems prevalent in modern bulldogs. It’s similar to the Olde English Bulldogge, another Bulldog breed created to look more like the original olde Tyme Bulldog, created by David Leavitt.

Kennel Club Recognition

Modern Victorian Bulldogs possess a family-friendly temperament and a robust physique, aligning more accurately with the Bulldogs of the 19th century. The breed, still relatively new, is gaining recognition and has a strong following, echoed by the breeding and selection efforts represented by Mollett Victorian Bulldogs. 

While the breed is not officially recognized by all kennel clubs, it’s supported by many enthusiasts who appreciate its unique characteristics and storied past. And it is recognized by the Continental Kennel Club (CKC). You can also witness the community’s dedication through active groups such as the Victorian Bulldog Registry.

Throughout these developments, these bull-descended companions have maintained their loyalty and charm. The Victorian Bulldog stands today as a testament to thoughtful breeding and a reflection of the breed’s original form — without compromising its well-being.

Physical Characteristics

Victorian Bulldog running

Victorian Bulldogs are a balanced and powerful breed, combining strength with agility. They have a distinctive muscular build and an impressive appearance, reflecting their heritage as hardy dogs. Below are their specific physical traits.

Size and Build

Height16-19 inches16-18 inches
(40-48 cm)(40-46 cm)
Weight65-75 lbs55-65 lbs
(29-34 kg)(25-29 kg)

Your Victorian Bulldog should have a slightly rectangular body, showcasing a sturdy but not overly heavy build. The males of the breed are typically more substantial in size and mass compared to the females, which are a bit lighter.


The body of a Victorian Bulldog is solid, indicating their physical capabilities. They have a broader chest and a medium-sized body that shouldn’t be too stocky or too light. The head is a defining feature, appearing square when viewed from the front, with a prominent furrow between the eyes and minimal wrinkling. Their confident expression is complemented by their composed and watchful eyes, all of which contribute to a dog that looks both alert and formidable.

Coat and Colors

Victorian Bulldogs have a short coat that is smooth to the touch and fairly easy to maintain. In terms of colors, they come in several shades including red, brindle, fawn, and white, often with variations or combinations. Fabulously, the breed can also present with a black or fallow coat. A notable characteristic is their clean appearance, free from excessive wrinkles, especially around their face and body.

Temperament and Personality

Victorian Bulldog puppy

When you think about a Victorian Bulldog, you imagine a dog that’s both affable and sturdy. This breed is known for a balanced temperament that’s both gentle and protective, making them excellent companions in a variety of family settings.

General Disposition

Victorian Bulldogs have a steady and loyal nature. They’re often described as affectionate and loving towards their families, displaying a level of devotion that makes them stand out. With a friendly demeanor, they are neither overly aggressive nor too timid.

Interaction with Children and Other Pets

These dogs are particularly good with children, showing a gentle and protective side. They’re patient and often become a child’s trusted playmate. When socialized properly, a Victorian Bulldog can also get along well with other pets. They thrive on attention and return it in kind, making them an integral part of your family dynamic.

Common Behavioral Traits

Intelligence and trainability are key aspects of the Victorian Bulldog’s personality. They do require consistent training and socialization from a young age to avoid any unwanted behaviors. A Victorian Bulldog often has a moderate energy level, requiring regular but not overly exhausting exercise. Their friendly nature typically extends to both their family and strangers, which, combined with their obedience and willingness to learn, can make training sessions both successful and enjoyable.

Health and Lifespan

So what do you need to know about the health of this bulldog breed?

Average Lifespan

The Victorian Bulldog typically enjoys a lifespan of around 10-12 years. Their longevity can be influenced by various factors, including their genetic health, environment, and the quality of care they receive.

Common Health Issues

Victorian Bulldogs are prone to certain genetic issues due to their physical structure, so awareness is key for your furry friend’s health. Keep an eye out, as they may develop hip dysplasia, a common condition due to the malformation of the hip joint. PennHIP screening can help you determine the risk of hip dysplasia in your dog.

Your Victorian Bulldog might also encounter skin issues, such as irritations or allergies. Due to their folds, they are susceptible to infections if not cleaned regularly. Additionally, ear infections can be a concern, often resulting from the buildup of moisture in their ear canals.

Dental issues often arise in brachycephalic breeds like the Victorian Bulldog. Regular dental check-ups and cleanings can help prevent periodontal disease.

Be aware of eye and eyelid abnormalities, including cherry eye and entropion, which can cause discomfort and vision problems if not treated. Catching such issues early on is crucial to ensure better management and possible correction.

Preventative Care Tips

To maintain your Victorian Bulldog’s health, routine check-ups with a vet are indispensable. A balanced diet, adequate exercise, and regular grooming are foundational. Be vigilant about their joint health; moderated exercise helps maintain joint mobility and control weight.

For their distinctive wrinkles and skin folds, you’ll want to clean them consistently to prevent infections. Lastly, genetic assessments have revealed issues related to inbreeding in Bulldogs, so it’s sensible to understand your dog’s genetic health to manage or prevent conditions effectively.

Understanding the genetic diversity among Bulldogs provides insight into health and breeding considerations. Engage with reputable breeders who utilize ethical practices, as highlighted in discussions about the ethics of breeding Bulldogs. Taking these steps can help your Victorian Bulldog lead a robust, happy life.

Exercise and Housing Needs

So how much exercise does your Victorian need?

Daily Exercise Requirements

You might wonder how much activity Victorian Bulldogs need since they have a muscular build and a laid-back attitude. Your pup should get about 30 minutes of exercise per day. This could be as simple as a brisk walk or some playtime in the yard. Remember, regular exercise is key to keep your bulldog healthy and to prevent obesity.

Space Requirements

Your Victorian Bulldog doesn’t require a mansion to be happy. These dogs can adapt to home-life in apartments as long as they get daily walks. However, having access to a medium-sized yard is beneficial for them to roam and play freely.

Suitable Living Conditions

Victorian Bulldogs thrive in a loving and interactive home environment. They are family-oriented and need to be part of your daily activities. Keep in mind their comfort when it comes to temperature: Bulldogs are sensitive to extreme weather. Make sure your home is cool in summer and warm in winter for their well-being.

Creating a cozy space for your bulldog is simple. Provide a comfy bed, some chew toys, and ensure they have a cool spot to relax during hot days. Your Victorian Bulldog will be a happy and integral part of your family with just the right amount of exercise and a comfy place to call home.

Training and Socialization


Victorian Bulldogs are known to be quite the team players. They often want to please you, which makes training a smoother journey. Don’t worry, you won’t have to be a drill sergeant; just consistent and patient. They respond well to positive reinforcement — think treats and pats!

Quick Tips:

  • Use short, clear commands.
  • Reward good behavior.
  • Keep sessions brief to maintain attention.

Socialization Needs

Getting your Victorian Bulldog to be friendly and confident around others is key. Start when they’re pups by gently introducing them to different people, animals, and experiences. This helps them become well-rounded adults who are chill with new encounters.

Ideas for Socialization:

  • Puppy classes.
  • Walks in the park.
  • Visits to pet-friendly stores.

Behavioral Training Tips

You’ll want to guide your Victorian Bulldog on being the best pup they can be. This means teaching them not to jump on people or chew stuff they shouldn’t. Calm and consistent corrections work wonders, and remember, you’re shaping habits for a lifetime.

  • Redirect bad behaviors with toys or tasks.
  • Establish a routine for eating, walks, and playtime.
  • Practice commands like sit, stay, and come regularly.

Diet and Nutrition

What is the best diet for a Victorian Bulldog?

Dietary Needs

Your Victorian Bulldog’s diet should give them a balanced intake of protein, fats, and carbohydrates. You wanna look for high-quality dog food where meat is the first ingredient. These pups tend to be muscular and active, so protein helps keep their muscles strong.

  • Proteins: Chicken, beef, or fish
  • Fats: Flaxseed or fish oil for a shiny coat
  • Carbs: Whole grains like brown rice or vegetables

Remember, bulldogs can gain weight easily, so watch those portion sizes!

Feeding Schedule

Victorian Bulldogs do best with a regular feeding schedule. Usually, two meals a day works well. Here’s a quick guide:

  • Puppies (2-6 months): 3-4 meals daily
  • Adults (over 6 months): 2 meals daily

Make sure fresh water is available at all times. It’s super important for staying hydrated.

Special Dietary Considerations

These dogs sometimes have sensitive tummies. If you notice your buddy’s not feeling good after meals, you might want to try a limited-ingredient diet or special sensitive stomach dog food. Also, be mindful of treats; you don’t want to overfeed. Too many treats on top of meals can lead to a pudgy pooch.

Keep an eye out for common food allergies like:

  • Grains: Wheat or corn
  • Proteins: Chicken or beef

If you’re not sure what’s best, chat with your vet. They can give you advice tailored to your Victorian Bulldog’s unique health needs.

Grooming Needs

Victorian Bulldogs are a lovable breed with a unique look, but they have specific grooming needs you should keep in mind to keep them healthy and happy.

Grooming Frequency

You’ll want to set a routine for your Victorian Bulldog’s grooming. Regular eye and wrinkle care is crucial due to their distinctive face folds. Wipe their wrinkles a few times a week to prevent dirt build-up and infections. Dental hygiene is also important; brushing their teeth at least three times a week helps prevent gum disease. As for nails, a monthly trim usually suffices, while ear cleaning should be done every few weeks to ward off infections. Regular washing depends on their activity level, but a monthly bath is a good baseline. Brushing them once a week helps with shedding and keeps their coat shiny.

Grooming Tools

Here is a quick checklist of the tools you’ll need:

  • A gentle dog shampoo;
  • Soft towel or blow-dryer (on a cool setting);
  • Toothbrush and dog-friendly toothpaste;
  • Wrinkle wipes or a damp cloth;
  • Nail clippers or a grinder;
  • Ear cleaning solution and cotton balls; and
  • Brush for their coat type (usually a medium-bristle brush or a rubber grooming mitt works well).

Grooming Tips

Use a soft cloth to clean around your dog’s sensitive eye area and pay attention to any signs of irritation. When wiping their wrinkles, make sure the skin is dry afterward to avoid moisture-related issues. Introduce dental care early so they get used to having their teeth brushed. Clip the nails carefully to avoid the quick, and always check their ears for foul odors or redness which can signal a problem. During baths, use lukewarm water and be sure to rinse thoroughly. Most Bulldogs are moderate shedders, so a weekly brushing is enough to manage dead hair and dander. Always praise your dog and maybe slip them a treat after grooming sessions; it makes the process enjoyable for both of you!

Cost of Ownership

How much does a Victorian Bulldog puppy cost?

Initial Cost (Victorian Bulldog Puppy Price)

When you decide to bring a Victorian Bulldog into your life, the first expense you’ll have is the purchase price of the puppy. The cost can vary a lot, but generally, you should be prepared to spend anywhere between $1,500 to $3,000 on your new buddy. Remember, the initial price can change based on things like the breeder’s reputation and the puppy’s lineage.

Ongoing Costs

After the initial purchase, you need to think about the money you’ll spend on your dog over time. Let’s break it down:

  • Food: High-quality dog food is a must, and you might spend about $50 to $70 per month.
  • Healthcare: Routine vet check-ups and vaccinations could set you back $100 to $300 each year. Don’t forget to save a little each month for emergencies or sudden health issues!
  • Grooming: Bulldogs have pretty low-maintenance coats, so a grooming session might only be $30 to $50 every few months.
  • Training: If you opt for professional training, that could be an investment of $50 to $100 per session.

Don’t forget smaller costs like toys, treats, and bedding. It’s all part of ensuring your Victorian Bulldog has a happy, comfortable life. Plus, there might be doggy daycare or a pet sitter if you travel. It’s important to budget for these things to avoid surprises.

Adoption and Buying Tips

Where to Adopt/Buy

When looking to add a Victorian Bulldog to your home, you have the choice of adoption or purchase from a breeder. Adoption can be a rewarding experience, allowing you to give a home to a pet in need. Look for rescue groups specializing in Bulldogs or check with local shelters. Greater issues can arise if you’re seeking a puppy, as finding a purebred in a shelter isn’t as common. If your heart is set on a purebred Victorian Bulldog puppy, reputable breeders are your best bet.

What to Look for in a Breeder

Ensure the breeder is ethical, with a clear history of healthy litters. Responsible breeders will:

  • Be registered with a recognized dog registry, such as the American Canine Association or the Dog Registry of America.
  • Allow you to visit the kennel to meet the puppies and their parents.
  • Provide health clearances for the puppy’s parents.
  • Discuss the needs of the Victorian Bulldog, a breed that requires indoor living spaces due to its sensitivity to temperature.

Choosing the Right Puppy/Dog

Whether you’re in an apartment or a house, make sure this medium-sized and relatively calm breed suits your living situation. Victorian Bulldogs can adapt to an indoor environment but do need regular exercise. They are a rare type of Bulldog with a temperament that can range from laid-back to protective, making them good guard dogs. When selecting your puppy or dog, look for one with a temperament that fits your lifestyle.

Bullmastiffs, Staffordshire Bull Terriers, and Bull Terriers share some traits with Victorian Bulldogs but also have distinct differences. Choose a Victorian Bulldog if you’re looking for a robust and affectionate companion.

Ethical breeding practices are crucial. Avoid purchasing pets from breeders who don’t do health testing or who keep their dogs in poor conditions. A breeder should be transparent about the cons and pros of the breed. Victorian Bulldogs are known for their stout build and distinctive color patterns, but their robust frame brings potential health issues that a good breeder should discuss with you.

Breed-Specific Considerations

Now what else do you need to consider before looking for Victorian bulldog breeders?

Climate Suitability

When you’re considering a Victorian Bulldog as your pet, you should think about your local climate. These dogs have brachycephalic (short-nosed) features that make it hard for them to cope with hot weather. You’ll need to ensure they stay cool and hydrated to prevent heatstroke. In colder regions, they do better, but they’ll still need a warm place to snuggle during the chillier months.

Compatibility with Lifestyle

Your Victorian Bulldog will love being part of your family and is good with children. They do well in houses with yards but can adapt to apartment living as long as they get their daily exercise. They’re not the most active breed, so a few short walks each day and playtime will keep them happy. Remember, your Victorian Bulldog will want to spend time with you and could develop separation anxiety if left alone too long.

Special Needs

Victorian Bulldogs can be prone to certain health issues. Here’s a quick list of what you might encounter:

  • Hip Dysplasia: a joint issue where the hip socket doesn’t form properly.
  • Patella Luxation: when the kneecap gets dislocated from its normal position.
  • Breathing problems due to their flat faces.

Regular check-ups with your vet are important, and being aware of any signs of joint discomfort or breathing difficulties is crucial. Keeping your Victorian Bulldog at a healthy weight and providing a balanced diet will help manage these risks.

50 Best Names for A Victorian Bulldog

When you’re picking out a name for your Victorian Bulldog, you want something that reflects their sturdy and noble character. Here’s a mix of traditional, unique, and popular names for your regal companion:

Traditional Names:

  1. Winston – after the famed British leader
  2. Victoria – a nod to the breed’s era
  3. Albert – a strong, historic name
  4. Margaret – elegant and classic
  5. Archie – for a more playful pup

Regal and Noble:

  1. Duke – perfect for a dog with a dignified posture
  2. Queenie – if she’s the ruler of your heart
  3. Arthur – fit for a canine king
  4. Ruby – for a precious and loved bulldog
  5. Baron – adds a touch of aristocracy

Unique Picks:

  1. Jasper – not too common, and very charming
  2. Luna – for a Victorian Bulldog with a softer side
  3. Ophelia – stands out and has a vintage touch
  4. Basil – a bit quirky and lots of fun
  5. Cordelia – for a dog with a big personality


  1. Champ – for your little champion
  2. Scout – if they’re always sniffing around
  3. Penny – great for a valuable furry friend
  4. Dash – if your Victorian Bulldog is surprisingly quick
  5. Baxter – suits a lovable, goofy pup

Modern Twists:

  1. Milo – friendly and modern
  2. Zoe – short and snappy
  3. Harley – for a dog with a bit of an edge
  4. Rosie – fresh and adorable
  5. Finn – trendy and brisk

This table continues your list of names, mixing various styles and inspirations:

26. Edgar31. Pixie36. Belle41. Rocket
27. Pearl32. Ziggy37. Grace42. Sprint
28. Chester33. Moxie38. Willow43. Buzz
29. Clara34. Bubbles39. Rose44. Zippy
30. Oliver35. Pepper40. Faith45. Flash

And finally, here are five more for good measure:

  1. Murphy – solid and versatile
  2. Skye – for a dog with an airy, light-hearted spirit
  3. Maxwell – distinguished, yet down-to-earth
  4. Ivy – a name that’s as charming as your Victorian Bulldog
  5. Gibson – strikes a chord with music and history fans

Choose a name that suits your bulldog’s personality and your own style. It’s a fun way to begin bonding with your new best friend!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

When you’re considering adding a Victorian Bulldog to your family, you’ll likely have a number of questions. Below are some of the most common queries to help you understand what to expect from this breed.

What makes Victorian Bulldogs a good choice for family pets?

Victorian Bulldogs are known for their loyal and affectionate nature, making them excellent family companions. They are also typically good with children and other pets when properly socialized.

How do Victorian Bulldogs differ from other bulldog breeds?

Compared to other bulldog breeds, Victorian Bulldogs often have a healthier build and are less prone to breathing issues. Their structure is more athletic and they generally have fewer of the health problems seen in some modern Bulldog lines.

How much can you expect to pay for a Victorian Bulldog puppy?

The price for a Victorian Bulldog puppy can vary, but you should be prepared for a significant investment. Depending on the breeder, their location, and the lineage of the puppy, prices typically range from $1,500 to $3,000.

In what ways does a Victorian Bulldog’s personality differ from an English Bulldog’s?

Victorian Bulldogs are usually more active and have a higher energy level compared to English Bulldogs. They often require more exercise and are less prone to laziness.

What’s the average lifespan of a Victorian Bulldog?

A well-cared-for Victorian Bulldog can live, on average, from 10 to 12 years. Proper diet, regular exercise, and routine veterinary checks can contribute to a longer lifespan.

Can you explain the typical temperament of Victorian Bulldogs?

They are renowned for their gentle and friendly demeanor. Victorian Bulldogs are typically patient, making them well-suited to families with children. They can be strong-willed at times, so consistent, positive reinforcement training is recommended.

Final Thoughts

When you think about the Victorian Bulldog, you’re picturing a dog that carries a rich history from Victorian England. This breed is more than just a pet; it’s like a living piece of history in your living room!

What to Remember:

  • The Victorian Bulldog is a recreation of the original bulldogs from the 1800s.
  • These dogs are known for being sturdy and robust with a friendly disposition.
  • Your Victorian Bulldog will need regular exercise to stay fit and happy.

Here’s a quick snapshot to sum it up:

TemperamentFriendly, Loyal
Exercise NeedsModerate
HealthGenerally Good, with some care for joint health

Remember, your Victorian Bulldog will count on you for love, care, and attention. These dogs are not just companions; they’re part of the family and a nod to a bygone era. Keep giving them the love they deserve, and you’ll have a friend for life.

Tamsin de la Harpe

Tamsin de la Harpe, with a lively spirit and 15 years of experience in dog training and behavior, brings a unique flair to the team. Based in South Africa, she is deeply engaged in rehabilitating dogs, focusing on their mental and nutritional health. Tamsin's approach to dog behavior is hands-on and heartfelt, shaped by her life with her own dogs and horses. Her journey in canine behavior is ongoing, as she continues advanced studies in this field.

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