Bulldog Lab Mix

bulldog lab mix

The Bulldog Lab mix is a hybrid of the purebred English Bulldog and pedigree Labrador Retriever. Also known as the Bullador, they are loyal, intelligence and charasmatic characters. Upsettingly, recent genetic research has questioned the long-term viability of the Bulldog as a breed. This mix attempts to bring together the wonderful personality of the Bulldog and healthier structural characteristics of the Lab.


English Bulldogs and Labrador Retrievers are two beloved dog breeds. Both are famously endearing and good natured, so it’s no surprise that an English Bulldog Labrador mix would be a desired mixed breed dog. Bulladors are adorable and sweet natured, but as much as we love the idea of this particular designer dog, it’s difficult to recommend it, even for experienced dog owners. Even the most robust Labrador, when crossed with a purebred Bulldog, cannot guarantee a healthy Bulldog Lab mix. The many genetic conditions that contribute to a Bulldog’s unique structure and appearance are also what make it uniquely unhealthy.

bulldog lab mix

Bulldogs vs Labradors

These two breeds were created for very different purposes but both have evolved from their original jobs to become beloved canine companions.

Originally developed for the (now defunct) sport of bull baiting, today’s Bulldog is a famously mellow and easygoing companion animal. The Bulldog is a low to medium energy pet, not much of a barker, and good with children and other animals.

This sweet natured dog is unfortunately burdened by some significant health problems linked to its distinctive head and body structure.

The Labrador Retriever was first developed in Newfoundland, Canada as a working dog for fishermen. The breed then became a valued sporting dog, retrieving waterfowl and other game brought down by hunters. Besides being a popular family pet, the Lab is also used extensively as a service dog for the disabled, and as a working search and rescue dog.

When you combine these two dogs, any of these features in any combination can be prominent.

bulldog labrador

English Bulldog Lab mix appearance

The Bullador’s good looks make it a popular mixed breed dog. It’s easy to fall in love with that sweet face, floppy ears and pathwork coat. But they can take more after one parent than the other when it comes to physical characteristics.

The English Bulldog is a thickset, medium sized dog. Adult males are about 50 pounds and females should be around 40 pounds. They are stout dogs, generally 14-15 inches tall at the withers. Labrador Retriever males range from 65-80 pounds; females are 55-70 pounds. A male Lab’s height is between 22.5-24.5 inches and a female’s is between 21.5-23.5 inches.

Like all cross-breed dogs, an individual Bulldog Lab mix puppy could end up falling anywhere between the small and large ends of the height and weight scale. Generally, their weight can range from around 50-80 pounds and they can be between 20-25 inches tall.

The average Bullador will have a muscular, sturdy body, large head, and somewhat jowly face. Like overall body size, the head size and shape and droopiness of the face can vary from one dog to another.

bulldog lab mix

Labrador Bulldog mix coat

The Labrador Retriever has a double coat, with a short top coat and a warm undercoat that sheds seasonally. The Bulldog’s coat is short, flat, and smooth. The Bulldog also sheds, but generally less than the Lab.

Expect your Bulldog Lab mix to have a short, dense coat. Your individual dog’s coat may be a bit thicker like a Lab’s, or close like a Bulldog’s.

There are three recognized coat colors for the Lab, all solid: black, yellow, and chocolate. The English Bulldog has a much wider range of coat colors and patterns. Recognized colors are red, white, fawn, and fallow—in any combination. Markings include brindle, piebald, ticked, masks, and tipping.

Bullador coat color can be any shade of brown from dark to light, and also black or white. Markings can be brindle, brindle with white, and piebald (black or brown with white is common).

bulldog lab mix

Bulldog Lab mix temperament

Given the friendly and affectionate personalities of both the Lab and the Bulldog, it’s no surprise that the Bullador is known for its very good temperament.

Keep in mind that your mixed breed dog could have more of an outgoing Lab temperament, more of a placid Bulldog temperament, or a combination of both.

Good training and socialization are just as important as breeding to an individual dog’s overall temperament and behavior. For the Bulldog Lab mix, this is especially true if your dog has the famous Labrador energy and enthusiasm.

Bulldog and Labrador mix exercise

The typical Bulldog will have a much lower energy level than a Lab. Because of their short noses, Bulldogs often have difficulty breathing during exercise in extreme hot or cold weather.

Labs are high-spirited and very active dogs. They enjoy lots of interactive play sessions and outdoor activities, including being in and around the water.

If your dog favors its Lab ancestors in physical appearance and energy level, expect an active dog that needs regular exercise. If your Bullador’s head shape, body type, and temperament are closer to the English Bulldog, then moderate exercise may be all that’s required.

Remember that the activity of short nosed dogs should be monitored in very cold or hot weather. The big problem here with a Bulldog Lab mix is you could have a dog with the enthusiasm of the Labrador, but the breathing problems of a Bulldog. Leading to a very stressed and upset dog, who wants to play more but isn’t physically capable.

Bulldog Lab mix health

The most important consideration in the decision to acquire a Bullador is the possible health problems your dog could inherit, especially from the Bulldog side.

Common health problems of Labs include centronuclear myopathy (a type of muscular dystrophy), exercise induced collapse, hip and elbow dysplasia, and certain heart and eye diseases. Reputable breeders will test for dysplasia and have the results certified and available for your review.

Unfortunately, no discussion of Bulldogs or Bulldog mixes would be complete without an honest assessment of the breed’s inherited health problems.

In 2016, an important genetic study of the Bulldog was published. Researchers found that the breed has an extreme lack of genetic diversity, due in part to breeders selecting for the desired Bulldog physical traits.

Sadly, many of these characteristic traits cause Bulldogs to suffer from significant health problems.

The researchers concluded that even with drastic changes to Bulldog breeding practices, such as outcrossing with other breeds, the existing Bulldog genetic stock is so unhealthy that there is little chance of improving the health of future generations.


Short muzzled dogs like Bulldogs and Pugs are brachycephalic, and often suffer from brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome (BOAS). Dogs with BOAS have difficulty breathing, especially during exercise and hot weather.

The English Bulldog’s craniofacial structure is more extreme than other short muzzled dogs. The breed also has a very large tongue and palate, as well as a lower jaw that is pushed forward.

All these features combine to produce life-threatening health problems such as sleep apnea, exercise intolerance, gagging, pneumonia, and heatstroke. Brachycephalic syndrome is the leading cause of death in the breed.

Chondrodysplasia and hemivertebrae

Chondrodysplasia is an inherited skeletal disorder (like dwarfism in humans) that has been incorporated into short legged breeds like the Bulldog and Dachshund.

Dogs with this condition can suffer from a variety of painful problems like hip and elbow dysplasia, intervertebral disc disease, luxating patella, and hemivertebrae.

Hemivertebrae is common in English Bulldogs, French Bulldogs, and Pugs. It is a congenital deformity that creates the desired curled tail of these breeds, but it also causes serious spinal abnormalities.

The vertebrae in dogs with this condition are malformed and/or fused together, causing spinal deformity, pain, and loss of hind leg function.

Skin and dental problems in Bulldogs

Bulldogs are prone to chronic skin conditions because of the excessive folds in the skin. Conditions like dermatitis, acne, and folliculitis are common and require regular treatment. Excessive skin folds on the face can also cause eye problems.

The Labrador Handbook by Pippa Mattinson(paid link)

The undershot jaw of the Bulldog can lead to tooth overcrowding and other dental problems. Bulldogs are more prone to dental health issues than other breeds. Their brachycephaly can make anesthesia risky, an important consideration when a dog needs frequent dental procedures.

Bulldog Lab mix lifespan

Given the serious health problems of the Bulldog, it’s not surprising that they are a relatively short-lived breed. The average life expectancy of the Bulldog is a depressing six years. And they are not six comfortable years. Labrador Retrievers have a lifespan of 12 years, quite a bit longer than a Bulldog.

The health of your dog’s Bulldog genetic lines can play a large role in determining the answer to this question. A Bulldog Lab mix that physically takes after it’s Lab parent is likely to live longer than one with the breathing problems of the Bulldog.

Bulldog Lab Mix

The Labrador Site Founder

Pippa Mattinson is the best selling author of The Happy Puppy Handbook, the Labrador Handbook, Choosing The Perfect Puppy, and Total Recall.

She is also the founder of the Gundog Trust and the Dogsnet Online Training Program 

Pippa's online training courses were launched in 2019 and you can find the latest course dates on the Dogsnet website


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  1. Perhaps a cross between an American Bulldog and a Labrador would solve some of the inherited physical problems from the English Bulldog. The American Bulldog rarely has the physically debilatating problems of the English Bulldog.

  2. A mix of Both hmm Labradoodle is one of the best of the breeds, very kind, loving and loyal, What a great piece of information, cheers for this one bro, definitely going to recommend to others