The health of the English Bulldog species will likely not improve without crossbreeding, finds a new study.
Despite its popularity, the breed is susceptible to a variety of problems that can affect the hips, respiratory system, and eyes; it also tends to have a relatively shorter lifespan of about six years.
These and other issues have been exacerbated, in part, by inbreeding to "promote characteristics like its shortened muzzle and stature."
Researchers from UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine agree, stating in their paper that "English bulldogs have very low genetic diversity resulting from a small founder population and artificial genetic bottlenecks."
The team came to this conclusion by comparing the genes of 102 registered English Bulldogs with 37 other members with health problems.
Based on their analysis, the researchers determined that some genetic diversity still exists but questioned whether it was enough to improve the breed's outlook.
According to Gizmodo, to try and counteract these deficiencies, some Swiss breeders have started crossing "English Bulldogs with the Olde English Bulldogge."
The BBC is reporting that "breeders differ widely on what should be done to tackle the illnesses. Some argue that any deviation from the breed's standards would no longer make it an English Bulldog."
Clickthrough for photos of bulldogs below:
Well, what are you waiting for? Get down on those knees and kiss my royal paw then ask me what I want for lunch, human #AllHailKingMav ➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖A MASSIVE thank you to @ohmydoggies who designed Mav's King cloak and crown for us. You are so talented, and we are so blessed to count you as a friend
The girls are such dainty drinkers while Mav has to shove his whole mouth in #NewPOV
Only one things gets this lazy sausage out of bed (listen with sound) 😂 - longer version on our YouTube channel, The HippoPotaBullies
Never get between a speeding Maverick & his giant Jolly Ball
Finding out the monster under your bed is real
I'm available to help check some boobies this month, just putting that out there #breastcancerawareness #savetheboobies ➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖
Our pic was inspired by our adorable South African buddy, @yorkthebully and his gorgeous Mom. Follow them, you won't regret it! #realmenwearpink
Mavericks face 😂
How I feel on cardio day 😂 @igbulldogs_worldwide
When you're being an asshole to someone then their bigger buddy comes to their rescue #CantMakeThisUp (full video on YouTube, The HippopotaBullies)
What happens when you mount a GoPro on a new skateboard and give it to 3 bulldogs (full video on YouTube, The HippopotaBullies)
You're not going to cuddle me? Fine. I didn't want to cuddle anyway 😤
I just can't..... Go on without me
OMG... We have another stubborn one on our hands. She does NOT want to go for a potty walk tonight
Shelby Shark is very concerned for the crying puppy she can't find