Why Do English Bulldogs Stink? (7 Reasons)

Do you love your English Bulldog but struggle with their odor? Are you looking for affordable ways to keep your home smelling fresh without compromising your love for your furry companion?

English Bulldogs, with their adorable wrinkles and skin folds, can sometimes develop unpleasant smells. In this article, we’ll outline simple, cost-effective strategies to combat the odor and maintain a fresh and clean environment for both you and your bulldog.

do english bulldogs stink
Do English Bulldogs stink? How to fix a smelly English Bulldog

Several factors contribute to the smell of an English bulldog, such as their wrinkled skin, which can trap moisture and dirt, leading to the growth of bacteria and yeast. Additionally, their short coat can produce excess oils that compound the problem.

In this article, we will address ways to keep your bulldog smelling fresh and clean, ensuring a healthier and happier home environment for both you and your canine companion.

Why Do English Bulldogs Stink?

English Bulldogs can sometimes have a reputation for smelling less than fresh. But why do they have this tendency, and what can you do to prevent your beloved pet from acquiring a malodorous odor? Let’s dive into some of the reasons and explore possible solutions.

One of the primary causes for a smelly English Bulldog is the presence of skin folds, which can trap moisture and lead to infections or yeast growth. These areas require regular cleaning to prevent unpleasant smells. Another common cause is their shedding season, when dead hair can accumulate and create a musty scent.

So, what can be done to alleviate these issues? Here are some suggested solutions:

  • Regular grooming: Make sure to brush and wash your Bulldog regularly to remove dead hair, dirt, and excess oils from their coat. This will also help to keep their skin healthy.
  • Cleaning skin folds: Use a damp cloth or specialized pet wipes to clean the folds on their face and body at least once a week, or more frequently if needed.
  • Healthy diet: Feeding your Bulldog a balanced diet with high-quality ingredients can play a role in minimizing unpleasant scents. Additionally, ensure they have clean water available at all times.
  • Dental care: Bad breath can contribute to overall malodor, so it’s essential to focus on your Bulldog’s dental hygiene. Incorporate regular teeth cleanings, dental chews, or toys designed to help prevent plaque and tartar buildup.

Implementing these strategies will not only help curb any unpleasant odors but also contribute to the overall health and happiness of your English Bulldog. Remember, consistency is key when it comes to grooming and maintenance routines. Embrace the process, and enjoy a better-smelling companion!

Causes of Odor in English Bulldogs

Odor in English Bulldogs can be attributed to a variety of factors. In this section, we will explore some of the primary causes and provide solutions for each.

Skin Problems

English Bulldogs are prone to skin issues that can cause unpleasant odors. Common problems include yeast infections, allergies, and skin fold dermatitis. To reduce odors, try the following:

  • Regular grooming and baths.
  • Use hypoallergenic shampoos.
  • Keep skin folds clean and dry.
  • Consult with a veterinarian for specific treatments.


The diet of your English Bulldog can have a significant impact on their odor. A poor diet can result in the following:

  • Excessive gas.
  • Bad breath.
  • Unhealthy skin and coat.

Feeding your dog a high-quality, balanced diet can help improve their overall health and minimize odors.

can english bulldogs swim these two are
Two English Bulldogs happily answering the question “Can English Bulldogs swim” (Yes they can)

Ear Infections

Ear infections are another common cause of odor in English Bulldogs. To prevent and treat ear infections:

  • Check and clean your dog’s ears regularly.
  • Use a veterinarian-approved ear cleaning solution.
  • Keep ears dry after swimming or baths.
  • Seek veterinary care if you suspect an infection.

Dental Issues

Dental issues, such as periodontal disease and tartar buildup, can cause bad breath in English Bulldogs. To maintain good oral hygiene:

Anal Glands

Impacted anal glands can release an unpleasant odor. Some preventative measures and solutions include:

  • Feeding a fiber-rich diet.
  • Consulting a veterinarian to learn how to express the glands properly.
  • Seeking veterinary assistance when you notice signs of impaction.

Solutions for Reducing Odor

English bulldogs can sometimes have an unpleasant odor, but there are measures you can take to minimize it. Below, we outline a few strategies to help combat odor issues with your bulldog.

Regular Grooming

Proper grooming is essential to keep your pet’s smell at bay. This includes:

  • Bathing your bulldog every 4-6 weeks
  • Brushing their coat at least once a week
  • Using natural, unscented shampoos

These measures will minimize dirt and oil accumulation, leading to a fresher-smelling dog.

Dietary Changes

Consider reviewing your bulldog’s diet, as this can impact their odor:

  • Choose high-quality, easily digestible food
  • Introduce supplements that support skin and coat health
  • Monitor treats and avoid those with strong odors

A better diet will facilitate optimal digestion, which can result in a decrease in odor.

Ear Cleaning

As a breed with folded ears, bulldogs are prone to ear infections that can cause bad smells. To prevent this, integrate regular ear cleaning into their grooming routine.

Dental Hygiene

Bulldogs can experience oral issues, including bad breath. Combat this by:

  • Brushing their teeth regularly with dog-safe toothpaste
  • Using dental chews for a healthier mouth
  • Having routine vet checks to ensure good oral health

Efforts like these will benefit not only their odor but their overall health as well.

Anal Gland Maintenance

Bulldogs’ anal glands can become impacted, causing odors. Regular checks and expressing them when needed are crucial for maintaining a fresh-smelling pet.

By taking these steps, you’ll be well on your way to addressing your English bulldog’s odor issues. Remember, commitment and consistency are key.

do english bulldogs LIKE snow
Do English Bulldogs LIKE snow? Do they need special care?

When to Consult a Veterinarian

Although taking proactive measures can help reduce bad odors, sometimes it’s necessary to consult a veterinarian. In certain cases, the smell might indicate an underlying health issue. So, when should you seek professional advice?

First, if you’ve tried all the recommended solutions for keeping your English Bulldog clean and healthy, but the smell persists or worsens, it’s vital to schedule a vet visit. There could be issues such as skin infections, allergies, or ear infections that require medical attention.

Another reason to consult a veterinarian is if you notice a sudden change in your dog’s odor. This change might come with other symptoms, such as excessive scratching, redness, or discharge. A sudden change in the smell of your pet’s breath could also indicate dental problems. In these cases, a vet visit is essential:

  • Persistent or worsening smell despite regular cleaning and grooming
  • Sudden change in odor accompanied by other symptoms
  • Foul breath that may indicate dental issues

Remember, your dog’s health is a priority. Regular check-ups and open communication with your veterinarian will help you create the best plan to keep your English Bulldog clean and healthy.

FAQs About Smelly English Bulldogs

  1. Can regular grooming make a difference?

Absolutely! Regular bathing using a gentle, dog-safe shampoo can help reduce odors and keep your English Bulldog’s coat clean and healthy. Aim for a bath once every four to six weeks, depending on your dog’s specific needs and activity level.

  1. How important is it to clean the skin folds?

Cleaning your English Bulldog’s skin folds is essential to prevent the buildup of bacteria, yeast, and dirt that can cause unpleasant odors. Use a damp cloth or pet-safe wipes to gently clean between the folds, and be sure to dry them thoroughly to avoid moisture-related issues.

  1. Are dental hygiene practices crucial?

Maintaining your English Bulldog’s dental hygiene is vital in combating bad breath. Brush their teeth regularly with dog-specific toothpaste, and consider providing dental chews or toys to help keep their teeth clean and their breath fresh.

  1. Can a proper diet help with the odor?

A well-balanced, high-quality diet can improve your English Bulldog’s overall health, including their coat and skin condition. Speak with your veterinarian to determine the best diet for your dog’s specific needs, and be mindful of any food allergies that may contribute to skin irritations and odors.

  1. How can I keep my home smelling fresh?

Regularly washing your English Bulldog’s bedding, blankets, and toys can help reduce odors in your home. Additionally, using an air purifier or odor-neutralizing sprays can help maintain a fresh-smelling environment.

  1. Are there any affordable deodorizing products?

Consider using pet-safe deodorizing sprays, wipes, or waterless shampoos to freshen up your English Bulldog between baths. These products can be found online or at pet stores and are an easy, inexpensive way to tackle unpleasant smells.

  1. Can regular vet checkups make an impact?

Scheduling regular veterinary checkups can help identify and treat any underlying health issues that may contribute to odors. Your vet can recommend the best course of action to address any concerns, ensuring your English Bulldog stays healthy and fresh-smelling.


So, do English Bulldogs stink? Yes, they can, but it doesn’t have to be a permanent issue. By taking a proactive approach to their care, you can ensure your Bulldog remains as odor-free as possible. Consider the following solutions:

  • Establish a consistent grooming routine, including regular baths and ear cleaning.
  • Use unscented, anti-allergy pet wipes to clean their facial folds daily.
  • Monitor your Bulldog’s health and diet to prevent flatulence issues.
  • Address any skin issues promptly with your veterinarian to avoid worsening odors.

Do these measures guarantee that your English Bulldog will never stink? No, but they will significantly reduce the chances of unpleasant odors. Implementing these solutions will not only improve your pet’s hygiene but also their overall health and wellbeing. After all, a happier, healthier Bulldog is a less stinky one, too!

stuart and his dog

Family Dog Expert Author

Hi there! I’m Stuart, a devoted dog lover and family dog expert with over a decade of experience working with our furry companions. My passion for dogs drives me to share my knowledge and expertise, helping families build strong, loving bonds with their four-legged friends. When I’m not writing for SirDoggie, you’ll find me hiking, playing with my beautiful dog, or studying music.