Hi, I recently had a tragedy with my english bulldog puppy and have included a short story/tip guide on puppy-searching that I am trying to post on message boards alike to caution young would-be puppy-owners about bulldogs, vets, breeders, and a few simple tips to finding a happy healthy puppy and keeping him or her that way. Since I googled "bulldog puppy" when we were originally searching for a breeder, I am trying to contact any and all sites that come with the first 10 hits in case there are others in our position then who might be able to read and digest what i have to say about your first bulldog purchase. Please do me and many puppies and owners nationwide a great help by posting this somewhere relevant on your website, you have my greatest thanks!
If there could be just ONE warning that every future Bulldog owner should see, it should be this one:
-DO YOUR HOMEWORK FIRST!
Researching and gathering credible info on your breeder is the first step in securing you with a happy, healthy, puppy as well as providing a solid resource for family-tree questions you may have down the road, or possible refund/reimbursement issues (should there be a problem with your new young friend).
I am not posting this because I am preparing to launch a "breeder-finder website" and I need hits (I am not), I personally screwed up by contacting a breeder with little or no positive feedback or reputation and am now paying for it by having to demand a refund (from out-of-state) for a sick puppy that had several birth defects that made him too ill to continue with us after nearly a month.
FACT: Most purebred bulldogs come with defects and heart problems. Even mixed breeds (ours was english bulldog/boston terrier) are subject to defects and diseases that may not show up on initial tests.
That is why it is most important to find a competent breeder who has much to lose by a "tainted" reputation. We went for an out-of-state breeder who sold us a mixed puppy for $500 (the cost of renting a car, travel, and hotel made up for the cost of buying from a reputable breeder more locally!) and we and our puppy suffered for it. A breeder who relies on reputation and customer criticism is much more likely to play fair, and often has more to worry about than just maintaining the "breeder" title.
SUCCESS!! (SO FAR...) Assuming you found a reputable breeder, a way to afford the cost of the puppy (and all its carry-on items and numerous early vet-visits), there is now only one more precaution I wish to leave you with:
-GET TO THE VET BEFORE YOU GET YOUR PUPPY.
It is ESSENTIAL to the puppy's health and longevity (not to mention your sanity) that you have a vet visit planned for when you first get the puppy. The obvious reason you want it scheduled is so that you need not wait should you get back and your puppy has a slight cough, etc (not uncommon for puppies to become sick during separation from mother and extended travel). You will not only have the security of getting him or her an early visit, but this visit is most important for determining what parasites and health concerns you already have to deal with (that's right: just about EVERY puppy comes with free parasites, inherited from mom, the breeding environment, and the lack of bacterial exposure in general).
In some cases, your first visit to the vet could act as your first real news-flash as to what may or may not be plaguing your puppy, not just now, but in the future as well. Treat this time with the most care you can afford--second opinions can be valuable as well in situations like this, should you suspect your being "taken for a ride" by your vet. Get a second opinion if you are unsure but never write off the professional opinion of someone who went through years of schooling and training. Some vets are paid by medical/pharmaceutical companies to diagnose certain "ailments" and prescribe your animal with their medications. However, there are a lot of genuine vets out there who can diagnose genuine problems, and the bulldog breed comes with its share of those. Most common including, but not limited to: heart disease/defects, breathing/lung disabilities, hip dysplasia, blindness, to name a few.
Best of luck with your bulldog puppy search and please take some of my advice by securing the vet as early as possible into your relationship, as well as creating a solid relationship with your breeder and you will save yourself hours, days, weeks, miles, dollars of aggravation and pain. Cheers!
***Edited By: Admin on 4/2/2008 8:50:17 PM*** Reason: .