Many people think of bulldogs as being short, stout and slow. Their wrinkly, scrunched faces give the impression of a tired pooch. But, they are not as lazy as you think. Bulldogs are intelligent, fun, and even active. Yes, bulldogs love to rest and cuddle but who doesn’t?!? But claiming that bulldogs are bound to be nothing more than an extra lump of furniture in the home is far from the truth.

Are Bulldogs Lazy? No, bulldogs have physical health limitations, like brachycephalic, but can still be quite active. Bulldogs respiratory issues may cause shortness of breath, poor stamina, and require more recovery rest than most dogs. But even with these issues, it is recommended that bulldogs have a daily activity time, to include a 30 minute walk.
Bulldogs enjoy activity and exploring. Bulldogs have certain limitations but don’t allow these issues tie you down like a ball and chain. There is so much that you, as a bulldog owner, can do to squash the common questioning mentality that all bulldogs are lazy. Which is not true.

Breaking the Myth: Are Bulldogs Lazy?

To better understand how to help your bulldog live a more fulfilled, active lifestyle first understand its limitations. This knowledge will help you support a healthier, more active lifestyle while taking precautionary steps.
There are several factors that can perpetuate the myth of bulldogs being lazy. Here are six of those factors:

Bulldogs Need to Rest…ALOT!!!

This is true to a point but every living creature requires adequate rest. For a bulldog, their body composition and health can lean towards needing more rest than normal.
That being said a restful dog still needs to get moving. It is highly recommend to walk your bulldog at least once a day for 15 minutes.

Bulldogs are Difficult to Train

Bulldogs are known to be stubborn and independent. The older they get the harder it is to train a bulldog. Bulldogs take longer to train than your perfect modeled pets, examples retrievers, labradors, etc. Again, bulldogs are not lazy! Bulldogs can learn tricks and a few other tricks up their sleeves…er…skin rolls.
The best time to train a bulldog will be during their adolescence. It is extremely important to show patience and love throughout this training. Bulldogs will need it. After much practice, a bulldog can obey simple commands and even SKATEBOARD!!! This trick will definitely impress the neighbors and proudly show off your bulldog. Read here to learn more on how to train your bulldog to skateboard. Or if you are less venturous, read here on how to train your bulldog puppy basic commands.

Bulldogs Difficulty to Breath

A bulldogs scrunched face and nasal structure can make it difficult for them to breath, which in turn can make them tire easily. Anytime air flow is blocked or impeded will increase how quickly a body will tire.
To improve airflow and oxygen intake, specialized pet surgeons can do work to clear up their nasal passage. This decision is very personal and should be made with the support of your current veterinarian to determine the pros and cons for your bulldog if surgery is or is not performed.

Bulldogs Dietary Needs

A bulldog will eat just about anything you give it. Bulldogs love food and will be more than willing to eat any leftovers or under the table scraps. Bulldogs are the best pet vacuum in the WORLD! However, if a bulldog is not fed a nutritious diet centered on their specific health needs, it will lead to obesity and increased laziness. A bulldog truly is what they eat.
Be mindful of your bulldogs diet. Seek guidance from your veterinarian on what is best for your pet. When the best nutrition is provided to a bulldog it will improve food digestion and convert food into good energy. More energy = less bulldog laziness. On a side note…an occasional treat is perfectly fine. Everyone deserves a cheat day.

Bulldogs Love Interaction and Playtime

A bulldog wants to play and enjoy one-on-one time with their owners. They can be goofy and playful. It is up to the owner to build this up or not.
By taking time to play with your bulldog, indoors or outdoors, this will translate in a more active pet. Your bulldog can have all the fun in the world within established boundaries!

Bulldogs Overheat Easily

Bulldogs thick bodies and wrinkles can overheat easily. A good rule of thumb is to be weary of taking your bulldog outside if the weather exceeds 80 degrees. Taking your bulldog outside in anything hotter than this for prolonged activity can be extremely dangerous.
In place of heading outdoors during the hottest time of the day plan to go for a walk early morning or later in the evening when temperatures have cooled. If there is a massive heat wave take additional time to play indoors at home or seek a pet friendly, air-conditioned facility. Good examples are Home Depot or Lowes. These retailers welcome the DIY or homebuilders pets, regardless if they are a service animal. And no this is not a paid advertisement. I Just happen to frequent both locations often and know their rules.

Bulldogs are Not Lazy, Just Intelligent and Purposeful

Another factor of that contradicts the thought question of bulldogs being lazy deals with the intelligence of a bulldog. Bulldogs are actually quite smart and purposeful in their thinking. Their energy may be spent quickly which is why Bulldogs seek reason for the decisions that are made. Bulldogs want to wisely choose how their energy is spent.
Once a bulldog commits to an activity it does so 110%. These lovable fur animals are just as excited to do something fun when given reason and will go all in when that purpose is made clear.
Bulldogs can be bullheaded when they are not properly convinced though. They are strong willed and stubborn. If a bulldog decides not to do something, that is final until you convince them otherwise. Similar to that old saying, “You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink.” This is very similar to a bulldog that at the end of the day it will need to make the final decision. 
For this reason alone it is important to provide guidance early on in their adolescence and the right type of structure. A structured lifestyle helps these intelligent animals to understand the reasoning behind the set expectations and planned activities. This understanding translates to an increased willingness to participate in activities because these behaviors have been trained through the early stages of their lives.

Creating a Routine to Avoid Having a Lazy Bulldog

Now that there is a better understanding of the myths surrounding the question, “Are Bulldogs Lazy?” And the purposeful intelligence of a bulldog It is time to create a routine that fits your pet. This routine will support a more active and fun filled lifestyle for your bulldog.
There will always be obstacles that can hold a bulldog back or influence a lazy environment. Don’t give these obstacles too much attention though, if you are diligent in making just a few small changes it will impact your bulldogs activity for the better.

Step 1 – Begin Bulldog Training Early

To invigorate your bulldog’s activity level, teach it new things. Do not hesitate in doing this. Help your pup while it is still young. Do not delay in providing formal training.
The older your bulldog, the more stubborn it will become in learning new things. If in the off chance you have an older bulldog that needs to be trained prepare for a lot of work and a great deal of patience.
With any bulldog, some recommendations on what to train first are:
  • Potty training
  • Crate training
  • Being home alone
  • Daily exercise
Teach commands as well like:
  • Stay
  • Lay down
  • Fetch
  • Shake Hands
  • Roll over
When your bulldog has mastered new skills, continue to stretch its abilities by practicing other skills. A bulldog that is constantly learning and displaying its abilities is not lazy.

Step 2 – Control the Diet

You have the keys and need to know what is best for your dog. Seek guidance frequently from your vet to know what specific dietary needs you dog has. Know that the dietary needs will most likely change from adolescence through adulthood so be adaptable to change.
Most importantly be strict with adhering to these guidelines. Do not cave in every time your bulldog gives you that look… you know the look I am talking about. Read The Ultimate Guide to What Bulldogs Can (and Can’t) Eat.

Step 3 – Plan a Walk Routine TODAY!!!

Schedule a specific time right now that will work for you to walk your bulldog. Do not delay. Also, make a plan B in case your preferred time doesn’t work due to a scheduling conflict. I know that life happens and different plans take place but having a set routing to walk your bulldog will be a great stress and energy release for both the owner and bulldog. Not to mention routine walks will lead to increased health and activity.

Step 4 – Plan Fun Activities

Break the mold with your bulldog. Take it exploring around town, out camping, or to a dog park. Show your Bulldog there is more to this world than the four walls of your home. By getting outside and to new destinations your Bulldogs love of life will increase and so will its spirit of active exploration.

Conclusion to having an Active vs Lazy Bulldog

Be patient with your bulldog to help it live a zestful life and stand above the laziness image. that seems to be painted so frequently. Your bulldog may challenge decisions at times but continue to work through this with love. You are both a team and need to work together to understand one another’s interests. Finding the right activities and establishing a healthy routine catered specifically to your bulldog will promote a more active lifestyle. As you work together with your bulldog exploring new activities and being active, you will both grow closer and will be able to enjoy grander adventures.