Skin Care for English Bulldogs: The Proper and Thorough Way

Skin care for English bulldogs is a constant undertaking. There goes your dog again, scratching vigorously. Regardless of breed, dogs can develop skin issues. These skin conditions can become even more stubborn if your dog stays outdoors. I know of many dog owners that manage skin issues through a regular regimen, and that approach works. Being proactive and not reactive is the way to handle skincare for English Bulldogs.

Skin Care for English Bulldogs Prone To Issues Just Like Other Breeds

While all dog breeds have skin problems at some point, English Bulldogs are more predisposed to developing them.  Their cute wrinkles are a distinctive character but are also a problem area. Cute as the folds are, they are the perfect breeding ground for fungus and bacteria. The moist conditions between the wrinkles invite infections and they thrive in them.

If you fail to keep the wrinkles clean, severe skin issues can develop. As mentioned earlier, a proactive approach is best.  Prevention of skin infection is the ideal treatment you can provide your English bulldog.  Take the time to visit your veterinarian to discuss the best way to care for its skin.

Some Tips for Skin Care Of English Bulldogs

French Bulldogs skin problems are perhaps the most common medical problem veterinarians deal with. The main complaint is typically some amount of itching. This can range from mild to vigorous scratching, sometimes even leading to lesions or wounds.

English bulldog owners also say they observe greasy or dry coats, bad skin odor, and flaky skin on their pets. There are also complaints of French bulldogs with some hair loss issues. This can vary from extensive baldness to some dogs with patches of hair loss. 

The point here is that English Bulldogs are susceptible to all kinds of skin conditions and issues.  If your pet’s skin looks irritated in any way, take it to your veterinarian for an evaluation. However, for now, let us concentrate on prevention.

The Skin Care for English Bulldogs is a Non-Stop Routine

Commit to a religious routine and you will hardly have to see the veterinarian.

Older English Bulldogs Might Need More Care

eczema on English Bulldogs
Skin Care for English Bulldogs: The Proper and Thorough Way

Cleaning their wrinkles is vital. Not doing so can turn into very stubborn, and even time-consuming problems. An older bulldog will need even more thorough care. This is because its older folds are calloused and thus get injured once in contact with surfaces. Older dogs also heal longer.

Younger English Bulldogs Will Require Less Skin Care

While this is not to encourage you to get lazy and slacken on the cleaning routine, pups do require as much skincare. As young dogs, their skin is more adaptable to changes in the environment. Their skin is also more resilient to different kinds of conditions. The younger English Bulldogs also heal faster from any kind of wound.

Make Wiping Often the Foundation of Your Skin Care for English Bulldog Regimen

All English Bulldogs, regardless of age or gender benefit from properly administered wipes two times a week. However, in some dogs, pet owners might have to clean every day to prevent irritation and infections.

Wiping Is Your Best Friend

In case you have not noticed, English Bulldogs are not the neatest creatures. They are very messy eaters, and they love rough and tumble play outdoors. Add to this equation those folds and wrinkly skin, and you have the perfect recipe for skin problems.  

They will surely get some dirt, grime, and food between the skin.  That of course includes their cute faces. As the owner, you can determine the amount of cleaning needed, and how frequently. The best gauge of that is how successfully you can keep skin problems at bay.

Wiping Technique

There are some proven ways to clean dog wrinkles. Use this advice for regular daily skincare for bulldogs. These practices also help in moisture or curing mild infections in the folds. Hopefully, your English bulldog should have a more sanitary body with a matching clean face to show.

The Actual Wiping Process

Everyday regimens are quite straightforward. You will do a wipe using a fabric immersed in warm water. This applies to most English bulldogs. Use gentle strokes to wipe off any dirt and debris. Go thoroughly inside the folds, reaching into the deepest skin.

Water should suffice for ordinary dirt removal. However, if you are dealing with more dirt than usual, you might need something more. If the gunk has lodged and is stubborn, your first backup is to employ the use of the regular soap or shampoo of the dog.

Using Detergent to Aid the Wiping

It is important to point out that the soap or shampoo should be mild. It should be gentle and have some germicidal qualities.  To be sure, consult your dog’s doctor for a good choice. Do not experiment with brands, as this could just be counterproductive and harm the dog’s skin.

Also, be mindful that using products like dog detergents can be tricky if your English Bulldog is very playful and strong-willed.  When wiping or bathing make sure it does not lick it.

Once you have successfully used any product, do not leave any residue on the skin, coat, and especially the inner folds. Failure to do so could lead to problems later. Many English bulldog owners swear by generic baby wipes as a great choice to clean bulldog skin. It is very gentle and great for removing grime and dirt.

Moisture and Dryness Basics

Why Moist Is Not Good

Whenever you use a damp piece of fabric for cleaning, you must not leave any moist areas behind. This is vital especially in the inside of the folds and wrinkles. Take your time and make sure all the skin parts are dry. Not drying the skin thoroughly can lead to bacteria and fungus taking root. Infections thrive in those moist areas.

Why Dry Can Be Overdone

Too much of anything can be bad, and this goes for the opposite of moisture. While skin with no moist residue is ideal, overly dry skin is also harmful. If you leave the skin excessively dry after cleaning,  other problems could ensue, and even deteriorate into more skin issues.

English Bulldogs have natural oils on their skin. Brushing them gently will help spread the distribution of the oils. If you do this habitually, the coat will have a nice and rich sheen and will be smooth to the touch.  As an added precaution rub a gentle moisturizer on the skin after the wipe or bath to moisturize. As usual, consult your vet for a good product.

Skin Care for English Bulldogs: The Proper and Thorough Way

Pay Special Attention to the Face

Finally, make certain you get to clean the facial area well. Wipe it clean then dry the deep nose wrinkle along the top and side of the facial area. This part is particularly prone to attracting the most lodged dirt. If needed, choose a mild ointment.  It is particularly sensitive and requires regular cleaning. Some English bulldog owners clean the face more often, sometimes after every meal.

The Inevitable Skin Infections

An infection can show in a number of ways and you should know how to recognize them.  Be wary of discharge, discoloration, unpleasant smells, itching, and scratching. The initial action at the onset is to see your vet immediately. Infected wrinkles, folds, or an English bulldog’s face can be uncomfortable, if not very painful.

Cleaning if there is an infection can be tricky. Since there is discomfort, wiping or washing well in the irritated folds is not easy. Trim or shave the hair surrounding the infected area, and clean it every day.  Ask your veterinarian if a cream, mild cleanser, or other product is worth using.

Symptoms Your English bulldog Has A Skin Condition

The skin is scaling

Intense scratching

Hair loss in some areas


Skin lesions

Different Types Of Infections

The different kinds of skin conditions in English bulldogs will vary depending on where the irritation is located.  However, most of the conditions are seen as emanating from pruritus (an unpleasant sensation of the skin that provokes the urge to scratch). The condition usually degrades into a secondary skin infection.   This may make the dog’s skin excessively dry, or the opposite, more moist than normal.  Likewise, it can deteriorate to a superficial infection or one that penetrates deeper into the skin.

Diagnosis of An English Bulldog’s Skin Condition by a Veterinarian

The Information Gathering

A vet will start the diagnosis of the skin by talking with you (the owner) about the dog.  He or she will ask when you first noticed the skin changes. There will be questions regarding the dog showing the typical symptoms of skin problems. You will also be queried about any treatment initiated at home.

An important part of the diagnostic process is to rule out other possible causes that can result in skin problems.  Usually, the area of the skin issue will give the vet many clues about your English bulldog’s condition.  The vet will want to determine that there is no underlying cause for the skin problem. 

Questions on the dog’s diet will also help determine if new food introduced is the cause. Other questions will be if there are any changes in the dog’s routine or home. Such changes could be causing the animal stress. Furthermore, do not overlook reporting any injury that the dog may have undergone lately. 

The Physical Examination

Next, the veterinarian will do a full physical examination of your English bulldog.  While the skin infection area(s) is perfectly visible, and the symptoms obvious, the vet will still do a full evaluation of the dog.  This permits them to check other areas of susceptibility that have not yet deteriorated into a skin infection, but very well could. 

The presence of parasites during the exam will also be looked into as this could also contribute to the symptoms.  The veterinarian will likely clean the area of the skin for a better observation of the lesion.  The vet will clip and remove excess fur from the coat to relieve the irritation.

Further Investigation

The veterinarian will probe further to find out the cause of the initial symptoms. For instance, if evidence of fleas is found, this will conclusively explain the cause of the skin problem.  Infections within the fold will likely undergo a skin cytology sample. This test will verify the kind of bacteria or fungus breeding in the skin.

Treatment of English Bulldog Skin Conditions

The proper treatment of skin problems involves recognizing the underlying cause.  Your dog’s infections could resolve, but if there is an underlying cause not addressed, it is only a matter of time before the infection recurs.

Oral and topical medications can and will be prescribed to deal with skin problems.   If untreated the dog may develop pustules or papules surrounding the lesions.  Antibiotic therapy could also be resorted to. The veterinarian will give you a prescription for an oral antibiotic course.  Medications to be applied topically to the lesions may also be part of the treatment regimen at home. 

If parasites are adding to the dog’s symptoms, the veterinarian will order a kind of flea prevention strategy or even medicines to eradicate the parasites.

In Conclusion

As underscored earlier in this post, prevention is still the superior treatment option for skin conditions in English bulldogs.  While it is no guarantee that diligent cleaning makes them impervious to infection, good hygiene is still a good habit.  Keeping your dog’s skin as healthy as possible and provide a good, balanced diet and cleaning routine.

Your veterinarian may also support your wiping regimen. If you take care of your English bulldog’s skin properly, both you and the dog should have more worry-free days together.


  • Brad

    Hi I'm Brad, the founder of Having been a vet of 6 years I work alongside our team to provide valuable insight into your dog's health. I have a frenchie myself named Senzu who is my pride and joy!

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