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Is Your Dog a Real Bulldog? Uncover the Facts

Purebreed bulldog looking at the camera

Reviewed by Dr. Joseph Menicucci, DVM, MBA. Veterinary Health Specialist and Diagnostic Expert.

Unraveling Your Bulldog’s Lineage

If you’ve ever wondered whether your four-legged companion is a genuine Bulldog, you’re not alone. Bulldogs are cherished for their distinctive appearance and gentle disposition. This guide aims to help you identify the hallmark traits of a Bulldog and understand how DNA testing can confirm your dog’s breed.

How To Find Out If Your Dog is a Real Bulldog?

To confirm if your dog is a true Bulldog, you can use DNA testing services that provide detailed breed and health information. Here’s a simple guide:

Comprehensive DNA Analysis: These services can analyze your dog’s DNA to confirm their breed.

Key Insights Provided:

  • Breed Mixtures: Identify the breeds in your dog.
  • Health Insights: Learn about any genetic predispositions to health issues.
  • Ancestry: Trace your dog’s lineage and discover relatives.

Steps to Get Started:

  • Order a Kit: Choose a recommended DNA test.
  • Collect a Sample: Follow the instructions to collect a DNA sample from your dog.
  • Send for Analysis: Return the sample and wait for your dog’s genetic report.

Discover your dog’s heritage and health with these simple steps!

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Simplified Dog Breed Detection Test Comparison Chart

Breeds Identified 350+ 300+ 300+ 400+
Health Insights 250+ health risks 60+ 280+ health risks Not specified
Traits Analysis 35+ 10+ 40+ 30+
Sample Collection Cheek Swab Cheek Swab Cheek Swab Cheek Swab
Turnaround Time 2-4 weeks 4-6 weeks 4-6 weeks 2-6 weeks
Unique Feature Relative Finder Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) Technology Oral Health Genetic Matches

The Hallmarks of Bulldog

Bulldogs are renowned for their muscular build, wrinkled face, and friendly nature. Here are the key characteristics that set them apart:


  • Size: Medium, with males weighing about 50 pounds and females slightly less.
  • Coat: Their short, smooth coat comes in various colors, including brindle, white, red, and fawn.
  • Face: Notable for their broad, flat snout and deep wrinkles.
  • Build: Compact and muscular, with a distinctive waddle in their walk.


  • Affectionate: Bulldogs form strong bonds with their families, showing love and loyalty.
  • Gentle: Despite their tough appearance, they are known for their gentle and patient nature.
  • Playful: They enjoy playtime but are also content with relaxing by your side.

Common Health Concerns for Bulldogs

Bulldogs have unique physical characteristics that make them prone to several health issues. Here are the main concerns and how to manage them effectively:

Brachycephalic Syndrome

  • Breathing Difficulties: Bulldogs often struggle with breathing due to their short snouts, which compress their nasal passages and airways.
  • Symptoms to Watch For: Noisy breathing, snoring, difficulty breathing, excessive panting, and struggling in hot weather.
  • Emergency Signs: Blue-colored skin (cyanosis) or collapse, which require immediate veterinary attention.
  • Management Tips: Keep your Bulldog at a healthy weight, avoid exercise during hot weather, and consult your vet about possible surgical options for severe cases​.

Skin Infections

  • Causes: The deep wrinkles on a Bulldog’s face can trap moisture and bacteria, leading to skin fold dermatitis.
  • Prevention: Regularly clean and dry the skin folds to prevent infections.
  • Signs of Infection: Redness, foul odor, or frequent scratching at the face​​.

Joint Problems

  • Common Issues: Bulldogs are susceptible to joint disorders like hip and elbow dysplasia.
  • Symptoms: Pain, limping, or difficulty moving.
  • Management: Regular veterinary check-ups, maintaining a healthy weight, and possibly using joint supplements. Severe cases might require surgery​

Caring for Your Bulldog

Proper care is essential for keeping your Bulldog healthy and happy:

  • Exercise: Moderate exercise is recommended; avoid overheating due to their brachycephalic nature.
  • Grooming: Regular brushing and cleaning of their wrinkles are crucial.
  • Diet: Monitor their diet closely to prevent obesity, a common issue in Bulldogs.
  • Temperature Regulation: Avoid extreme heat to prevent breathing difficulties.
  • Skin Care: Regular cleaning of skin folds to prevent infection.

The Science Behind DNA Testing for Dogs

DNA testing for dogs works by analyzing genetic markers, which are specific sequences in their DNA. These markers are like biological fingerprints that provide insights into a dog’s breed and potential health risks. Scientists compare these markers to a database of known genetic sequences from various breeds. By identifying patterns and matches, they can determine your dog’s breed composition and identify genetic predispositions to certain health conditions. This information helps pet owners make informed decisions about their dog’s care, ensuring they can address potential health issues early and provide the best possible lifestyle for their furry friends.

Understanding the Scope of DNA Tests

While DNA testing for dogs is a valuable tool for uncovering breed and health information, it’s important to understand its scope. Not all DNA tests offer the same level of reliability, and accuracy can vary significantly depending on the comprehensiveness of the genetic markers and databases used. Some tests may provide more detailed insights than others, so it’s crucial to choose a reputable service. Despite these variations, DNA tests remain a great resource for pet owners, offering crucial information that can help tailor care and enhance your dog’s quality of life.

Interpreting DNA Test Results for Your Dog

Interpreting your dog’s DNA test results with your veterinarian ensures well-informed care decisions. DNA tests reveal breed-specific traits and health risks by identifying genetic markers. Your vet can help you understand these results, highlighting any serious health concerns and recommending specific actions like diet changes or preventive measures. This collaboration tailors care for your dog’s unique needs, promoting a healthier lifestyle.


True Bulldog Heritage?
Discover with The Top Dog DNA Testing Kits 2024

ProsperK9 – Most Precise Breed and Health Insights

prosperk9 breed + health test

ProsperK9: The Ultimate Genome Sequencing for Unmatched Dog DNA Insights

  • Accurate Breed Analysis: Detailed breakdown of your dog’s breed composition.
  • Health Screening: Identifies genetic health conditions for proactive care.
  • Age Estimation: Precisely determines your dog’s age for informed care decisions.
  • Dental Health Insights: Offers recommendations for optimal dental care.
  • Clear Results: Reports are easy to understand and act upon.


ProsperK9 stands at the forefront of canine genetics, offering dog owners a deeper insight into their pet’s breed, health, and ancestry through advanced DNA testing. With a commitment to enhancing the bond between pets and their owners, ProsperK9 combines scientific precision with a passion for dogs. Their easy-to-use dog breed test reveals not just the breed composition but also vital health and behavior traits, empowering owners with knowledge to care for their pets better. Trusted by veterinarians and pet lovers alike, ProsperK9 is dedicated to providing clarity and peace of mind through detailed genetic analysis.

ProsperK9 Full Review

Unparalleled Customer Service: Basepaws

basepaws The Breed Health Baseline for Dogs

Basepaws: Pioneering Pet DNA Discoveries Beyond Felines

  • Comprehensive DNA Testing: Basepaws offers breed, health, and trait insights.
  • Pioneering Pet Science: Utilizes cutting-edge genome technology.
  • Detailed Health Reports: Detects over 280 genetic health risks.
  • Breed Identification: Analyzes over 200 dog breeds.
  • Unique Trait Discovery: Reveals 30+ distinct dog traits


Diving deep into the genetic tapestry of pets, Basepaws emerges as a trailblazer in the realm of DNA testing. While many associate the brand with feline genetics, Basepaws extends its expertise beyond cats, offering a holistic view of your pet’s genetic makeup. Their state-of-the-art, CLIA-certified laboratory ensures unparalleled precision, mirroring the accuracy standards of top veterinary institutions. With Basepaws, pet owners can unravel mysteries surrounding their pet’s breed, potential health risks, genetic age, and more. The brand’s commitment to innovation and excellence positions it as a frontrunner in the ever-evolving world of pet genetics.

Basepaws Full Review


Most Comprehensive: Embark

Embark Vet: Leading the Pack in Canine DNA Testing

Embark Dog DNA Test

  • Comprehensive DNA Testing:  breed identification, health screening, and trait analysis.
  • Collaboration with Cornell University: Ensures scientific accuracy and credibility.
  • Detailed Health Reports: Identifies potential genetic health issues.
  • Breed Identification: Discovers your pet’s breed mix from over 350 breeds.
  • Family Tree: Traces back your dog’s ancestry up to its great-grandparents.

Among the five, Embark Vet stands out as the top dog. Offering the best value for money, the quickest turnaround time, and an unmatched level of support, Embark Vet is a clear winner. Their team of registered veterinarians is on call 24/7 to guide you through your testing journey.

Embark Vet’s tests are conducted in their high complexity, CLIA-certified laboratory, ensuring results as accurate as those you would receive from a vet’s office or hospital.

With Embark Vet home-kits, you can uncover insights into your dog’s breed, genetic age, health risks, and more.

Embark Full Review

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Most Esteemed Partnerships – Ancestry®

ancestry know your pet dna test kit

Ancestry®: Pioneering Pet DNA Insights with Trusted Partnerships

  • Cutting-Edge DNA Science: Utilizes Ancestry® expertise for pet DNA.
  • In-Depth Breed Insights: Provides detailed breed mix and inherited traits.
  • Easy Sample Collection: Doorstep kit with simple saliva swab.
  • Quick Online Results: Dashboard results available in a few weeks.
  • Genetic Matching Feature: Connects pets with their DNA relatives.


Ancestry® stands as a beacon in pet DNA testing, with a rich legacy rooted in human genealogy. Their dedication to transparency and excellence shines through their partnerships with esteemed institutions like the ASPCA, Massey University, and the University of Minnesota’s College of Veterinary Medicine. These collaborations not only bolster their credibility but also underscore their commitment to delivering accurate and insightful results. With Ancestry® kits, pet owners embark on a comprehensive journey into their pet’s genetic lineage, health risks, and more, all backed by a brand synonymous with trust and expertise.

Ancestry® Full Review


What Makes Bulldogs Excellent Family Pets?

Bulldogs are known for their loving and protective nature, making them fantastic companions for families. Their calm demeanor and affectionate personality fit well in various households.

How Much Exercise Does a Bulldog Need?

Bulldogs require moderate exercise to maintain their health. Short walks and play sessions are sufficient to keep them in good shape without risking overheating.

Are Bulldogs Easy to Train?

While Bulldogs can be stubborn, they are also eager to please. Consistent, positive reinforcement training works well with this breed.

Can Bulldogs Live in Apartments?

Yes, Bulldogs are well-suited for apartment living due to their moderate exercise needs and calm nature.

What are Pet DNA Tests?

A pet DNA test is a method to obtain genetic information from a specific pet. Through genetic testing, a simple cheek swab sample can reveal a vast amount of genetic information about your pet.

Do Pet DNA Tests Successfully Identify Breeds?

The accuracy of breed identification depends on the test. DNA testing for pets can identify specific breeds/breed mixtures, genetically-linked disease potential, and predict physical traits.

What are the Benefits of Pet DNA Tests

Pet DNA tests offer several benefits, including identifying breed or breed mix, common genetic predispositions, and guiding diagnostic testing and treatments. They also help in identifying specific genetic mutations to guide lifestyle, medical care, and diagnostic testing.

How Reliable are Pet DNA Tests?

The reliability of pet DNA tests has improved over the years. Factors that affect reliability include the number of genetic markers available for testing, the number of breed profile markers, the test sample collection requirements, and the amount of validity testing completed by the company.

How Can Pet Parents Choose the Right Pet DNA Tests?

Choosing the right pet DNA test depends on what you hope to learn from the test results. It’s essential to select a test based on the number of genetic health markers available and the depth of breed analysis provided.

How Long Does it Take to DNA Test a Dog?

The duration for DNA testing can vary based on the specific test and company. However, most tests provide results within a few weeks after receiving the sample.

A Loving Reminder

The information provided at ThePetPicks.com is based on research and expertise, aiming to enhance the bond between you and your dog. However, it’s essential to remember that every dog is unique. Always consult with professionals, like veterinarians or trainers, for specific concerns or advice. At ThePetPicks.com, we believe in “Trust Born from Love,” and we encourage every pet parent to make informed decisions rooted in love and care.

Top Kits

Dr. Joseph Menicucci

Dr. Joseph Menicucci is a dedicated veterinarian passionate about enhancing pet health and wellness. He holds a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) from Western University of Health Sciences and an MBA focused on Health Care from the Jack Welch Management Institute.

Dr. Menicucci’s career includes valuable experience at Straley Veterinary Clinic, Fort Morgan Veterinarian Clinic, and Trans Ova Genetics. His commitment to accessible, high-quality pet care makes a significant impact on pet owners and their animals.

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