Feeding a Bulldog can be tricky, especially since these dogs tend to be big eaters. While most dog food bags provide basic feeding guidelines, the ideal food quantity can vary greatly depending on your pup’s age, size, activity level, and more.
The amount of food to feed a Bulldog depends mainly on its age. Generally, a Bulldog puppy can be fed 1 to 3 ½ cups of puppy food per day, while adults need roughly 2 ½ to 3 ¼ cups of dog food daily. On the other hand, senior Bulldogs do best with 2 to 2 ½ cups of dog food per day.
This English Bulldog feeding guide will walk you through the key considerations around daily intake. We will also address the most asked questions regarding this breed’s nutrition. Read on to learn more!
What Factors Impact How Much to Feed a Bulldog?
A lot of factors influence how much food a Bulldog needs. Knowing about these components will allow you to adjust your dog’s food to its particular needs.
Here are factors affecting how much a Bulldog should eat:
- Age: The amount of food a dog needs must be tailored specifically to its age. Generally, English Bulldog puppies need more calories relative to their weight compared to adult English Bulldogs. A calorie-dense food also helps with a puppy’s developmental needs and immune system.
- Weight: The amount of food you should provide an English Bulldog depends on its weight. Bigger dogs, in general, require a bigger portion of food. However, if your dog is overweight, its appropriate diet may be reduced in order to help with weight loss.
- Spay or neuter status: The nutritional needs of Bulldogs are directly affected by spaying or neutering. According to experts, spayed or neutered dogs have slower metabolisms, which means they require less food.
Aside from those factors, sex, heredity, the dog’s size, and environment can all have an impact on your dog’s food portion size. Learning about these factors will help you offer your Bulldog the appropriate amount of food.
How Much to Feed Your Bulldog?
This section explains how much food to give your Bulldog based on its age. It’s worth noting, however, that the recommended serving sizes here assume that your dog is healthy and falls within the ideal weight range for its age.
Furthermore, the recommendations below are tailored for dogs that are fed with dry foods, such as kibble, dry puppy food, and other variants of dry dog chow.
For dogs that are fed with wet food, homemade diets, including white and brown rice, green beans, a combination of kibble and flaked cereals, and other kinds, will require an adjusted feeding portion.
Bulldog Puppy Feeding Chart (2 to 12 months)
After birth, responsible Bulldog breeders allow the puppies to feed straight from their mother in order to benefit from the natural antibodies produced by the colostrum present in their mother’s milk.
If the litter is too large or if the Bulldog puppy is separated from their mother earlier than expected, a milk replacement formula is usually given to young bullies.
Once your Bulldog puppy starts eating dry puppy food, you may use the feeding chart below as a reference:
|Daily Feeding Amount (Cups)
|Caloric Intake (Per day)
|2 – 5 months
|1 – 2 ¼
|499 – 1062
|6 – 7 months
|2 – 2 ¾
|891 – 1274
|8 – 10 months
|2 ¼ – 3 ¼
|1065 – 1408
|11 – 12 months
|2 ½ – 3 ½
|1161 – 1561
Along with feeding your Bulldog puppy the right food, you must also ensure that your dog is kept hydrated. A well-hydrated dog will have an improved digestive system, healthy skin, and enough energy for growth and development.
However, one of the earliest lessons I had with giving water to dogs like the English Bulldog is that there is a much safer alternative to using food bowls, and that is to use water bottle feeders.
When I first took care of Bianca, my very first Bulldog, I noticed that every time she drank from the bowl, she would always have a wheezing sound, which was an indication that she was snorting out water from inside her nose.
Like most types of Bulldogs, Bianca’s brachycephalic feature makes it hard for her to drink without accidentally dipping her nose in the bowl.
Hence, I instantly switched to using a water bottle feeder, which made a big difference to her comfort and safety when drinking her water.
Keep in mind that there are many dog foods available in pet stores that can satisfy the needs of your Bulldog puppy. Dog owners can pick from an array of wet dog food and dry food. Just be sure to adjust the food portioning accordingly.
Adult Bulldog Feeding Chart (1 to 7 years)
Around the end of its second year, a Bulldog puppy matures into an adult dog. At this stage, it is critical to change your pet’s diet from puppy food to adult food to help support your dog’s changing needs.
The following feeding chart shows the suggested serving size when feeding adult dog food to your Bulldog:
|Daily Feeding Amount (Cups)
|Caloric Intake (Per day)
|1 – 7 years
|2 ½ – 3 ¼
|984 – 1248
Keep in mind that the portions are best for dogs who are on a dry dog food diet. Should you decide to feed your dog with a different kind of food, be sure to adjust the serving sizes accordingly.
Some owners opt to give a raw diet to their adult Bulldogs. While this has its benefits, remember, however, that raw diet food has a short shelf life and may spoil quicker than dry dog food.
That said, be careful not to suddenly feed your English Bulldog puppy spoiled food. You may also need to visit a licensed vet if you wish to transition your dog to a raw diet.
Additionally, based on my experience handling a lot of other Bulldogs apart from my Bianca, it is easy to notice that they are one of the sloppiest eaters around.
Combining this with the multiple folds on their face, they really leave a messy face and environment after eating.
Hence, I always ensure to wipe their faces with a slightly warm sterile cloth after their meals, then dry it with a clean cloth afterward. This prevents the build-up of bacteria that may cause unwanted illnesses.
Watch this video from a Bulldog owner to have more insights on feeding your bully a raw diet:
Senior Bulldog Feeding Chart (7 years and above)
A Bulldog’s metabolism will slow down when it reaches its senior years. Its level of activity will also be decreased. As a result, older Bulldogs may be more at risk of obesity.
Senior Bullies require fewer meals, and their calorie intake must be lowered to match their energy level. Protein-rich diets are also encouraged to help an older Bulldog maintain its muscle mass.
The Bulldog feeding chart below shows how many cups of the proper daily intake a senior needs:
|Daily Food Quantity (Cups)
|Caloric Intake (Per day)
|7 years and above
|2 – 2 ½
|788 – 1000
Your Bulldog’s bones and teeth may also become brittle as they age, but supplementing their food with the right amount of calcium, phosphorus, healthy fats, and vitamin D should prevent this.
If you want to add these essential nutrients to your dog’s diet, you must first visit a vet or a pet nutritionist. While most dog food already has these nutrients, it may be a good idea to give your dog dedicated vitamins.
How Often Should You Feed Your Bulldog?
The feeding frequency of a Bulldog changes with age. As a pup, it needs breastfeeding at least 5 to 7 times daily. Once it starts eating solid food, it may eat 2 to 4 times daily. At one year old, it can be fed two meals a day. Finally, in its senior years, your dog will only need one meal daily.
Younger puppies need smaller portions of food and more frequent meals to support their rapid metabolisms and growing bodies.
However, in general, as a Bulldog puppy becomes older, more food should be given per meal while the frequency should be reduced.
The table below shows the recommended feeding frequencies based on the age of your pup:
|2 – 5 months
|Three to four times a day
|6 – 12 months
|Twice to thrice times a day
|1 – 7 years
|Once to twice a day
|8 years and above
|Once a day
If your dog is a highly active senior, you may increase the number of meals a day or add at least half a cup to its meals. This will help sustain your dog’s energy needs, lowering the risk of hypoglycemia.
However, it is recommended to consult a licensed vet first if you wish to add more servings to your senior dog’s meals. Doing it incorrectly may result in obesity or may harm your dog in the long run.
How to Transition Your Bulldog to a New Food
There are several reasons why you might need to replace your dog’s old diet with a new one. Switching from puppy to adult food, medical issues, food allergies, or simply trying out a different meal are some possible reasons.
The general rule of thumb for converting your Bulldog’s diet is to do it gradually while monitoring your dog’s physical and behavioral responses.
Here’s a simple guideline you can use when transitioning your dog’s diet from old food to new food:
|1 – 2
|3 – 4
|5 – 6
Slow down or halt the process if your Bulldog develops any negative reactions or physical issues throughout this change. You may want to reduce the proportions a bit to help it adjust to the change.
Tips on Feeding an Overweight Bulldog
Bulldogs are known for their large and cheerful appetites. While watching these dogs finish their meals is satisfying, they must be appropriately managed to avoid excessive weight gain.
If you can’t feel your dog’s ribs and can see a drooping waist, swinging belly, or oval-shaped body, it is likely that your dog is overweight. To confirm this, you may take your dog to the vet or check its weight at home.
Here are some tips on dealing with an overweight Bulldog:
- Avoid excess dog treats: Treats, such as dog biscuits, increase your pet’s calorie intake. Use them carefully, and consider giving your pet natural and nutritional treats like non-toxic fruits and vegetables. This will assist your dog in losing extra weight.
- Add fiber to its diet: A fiber-rich diet can keep your Bulldog satiated even if you feed him less food. Some commercial dog foods include fiber-rich dry dog food. You may also make your dog fiber-rich homemade food.
- Reduce food serving size: This article’s feeding chart is based on a Bulldog’s optimal weight for its age. If your dog is already overweight, you must limit its food intake. In general, your dog must eat fewer calories than its daily caloric needs to lose weight.
Keep in mind that an increased weight may also be an indication of an underlying health issue. To rule this out, you must take your dog to a vet for a checkup.
It is also important to remember that the tactics listed above work best when combined with increased physical activity.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Do I Know If I’m Feeding My Bulldog Enough?
If your dog’s weight is within the recommended range for its age, you’ll know it’s well-fed. Your Bulldog will also be enthusiastic at mealtime and have plenty of energy for its activities.
Meanwhile, if your dog’s waist appears elevated rather than a smooth slope, and rib bones are evident, it may be underfed. On the flip side, if your dog is overweight, it is most certainly overfed.
Why Is My Bulldog Not Eating?
There might be a number of reasons why your Bulldog isn’t eating. Some possibilities include dietary or behavioral disorders, recent surgery, dental troubles, and gastroenteritis or gastrointestinal obstruction.
While some causes of loss of appetite are mild, others may be far more serious. If your dog hasn’t eaten in more than 24 hours, it’s time to consult a veterinarian.
Can I Feed My Bulldog With Human Food?
A dog’s digestion is different from a person’s. The typical human diet is too flavorful and fatty for a dog to absorb correctly. As a result, feeding human foods to dogs can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and other health problems.
Some dog owners, on the other hand, choose to make homemade dog food using natural ingredients for their pets. If you choose to do this, be sure there are no poisonous foods in the components.
Do Bulldogs Eat a Lot?
The Bulldog may require a lot of food to satisfy its energy requirements. If you give your Bulldog a limitless supply of dog food, snacks, or treats, it will happily eat and beg for more.
However, this could also lead to overfeeding. Hence, this is why you should stick to a strict feeding schedule for your Bulldog.
Can Bulldogs Eat Bones?
The American Kennel Club (AKC) recommends giving raw meat bones that fit the mouth of a Bulldog. However, it must be noted that Bulldogs should not ingest bones. Instead, they must only be allowed to chew them.
Chewing on raw bones has a lot of benefits for a dog’s dental health. Likewise, raw bones are also a good source of calcium, phosphorus, and other minerals. Cooked bones, on the other hand, must not be fed to dogs.
Hopefully, you have learned a thing or two in this Bulldog feeding guide. If you have any other questions about feeding your Bulldog and keeping them healthy, please leave a comment below.