Why Does Your English Bulldog Keep Attacking You? & How to Stop It?

English Bulldogs are stubborn and bossy. It’s related to their history and breed, as Bulldogs were originally bred for dog fights and aggression. 

With proper training, English Bulldogs will grow up to be loving and loyal pets. However, in some cases, they might still attack their owners.

So, why does your English Bulldog keep attacking you? Your English Bulldog keeps attacking you due to several reasons, such as being afraid, going into defense mode, suffering from an injury, or trying to assert dominance. None of these reasons imply that your dog doesn’t love you.

Continue reading to learn more about the reasons why your English Bulldog is attacking you and what you can do to stop it.

Why Does Your English Bulldog Keep Attacking You?

a photo of a bulldog snapping at its owner to show why English bulldogs keep attacking

English Bulldogs are usually friendly and predictable animals. However, they were originally bred to participate in violent dog fighting practices.

Even though they are good as family pets, sometimes, they get triggered, and their aggressive tendencies cause them to attack others, including their owners.

Dogs can be triggered due to various reasons. So, here are the common reasons why your English Bulldog keeps attacking you:  

History of Aggression

Bulldogs were named for their use in bull-baiting, which is the practice of getting dogs to bait and fight bulls.

This kind of practice became illegal; however, it caused the Bulldogs to develop some aggressive tendencies. 

That doesn’t mean that all Bulldogs are aggressive by nature, as it mainly depends on how you train your dog. If you train your dog to be aggressive, it will likely attack others and eventually you.

Asserting Dominance 

English Bulldogs like to assert dominance over other animals, especially other dogs.

Some English bulldogs think of themselves as the pack leaders. When their owners try to dominate them, they will lash out and try to assert their dominance in return by attacking.

So, if an English Bulldog tries to attack you, it’s often because they don’t see you as the leader of the pack. You will have to train your dog and assert that you are, in fact, in charge, or they’ll keep doing the same exact actions. 

Defense Mode

Bulldogs will often go into defense mode when they feel anxious or afraid, as it’s their way to cope with their overwhelming feelings. It’s similar to our own fight or flight mode, which exists in pretty much every single living being.

When they go into defense mode, they’re likely to act aggressive and attack others because they are trying to protect themselves and feel safe again.

If your Bulldog acts defensively for no reason, it’s recommended that you go to a vet to figure out what the problem is. 

Learned Behavior 

Like all other dogs, Bulldogs learn behaviors from training as well as observing others around them.

If they are raised in an environment where those around them are aggressive, it’s likely that they will also become aggressive, as that’s the only kind of behavior they have learned.

Learned behavior in dogs is hard to unlearn but not impossible. All you need to do is be patient, stop exposing the dog to violence, and discipline bad behavior from the dog immediately.

Please keep in mind that you should only use positive reinforcement with your dog and should never physically punish them as a way of disciplining them as this can – and probably will – backfire and make things worse. Physical punishment often makes the dog fearful and turns him stubborn, which will make training him a lot harder.

Illness or Injury 

English Bulldogs are prone to develop various health problems and injuries, which could cause them to feel a lot of discomfort and pain.

When they feel sick or in pain, Bulldogs tend to lash out and act aggressively as a way to cope. They might attack you, even if you’re only trying to help them.

Keep in mind that English bulldogs may get injured and be in pain from activities that other dog breeds are unlikely to be harmed by, such as going up and down the stairs or simply jumping on you or a couch. Meaning; your Bulldog can be in pain without you knowing about it.


Bulldogs that come from rescues are likely to have experienced a lot of trauma throughout their lives. This trauma will make them more anxious and more likely to become aggressive.

It’s important to help these dogs with their trauma by training them as well as showing them more affection.

How to Stop Your English Bulldog from Attacking You?

Now that you know the reasons why your English Bulldog is attacking you, you need to learn how to stop that from happening.

So, here are some tips you can follow to stop your English Bulldog from attacking you:

Manage The Dog’s Behavior 

You need to manage the dog’s behavior by rewarding good behavior and discouraging bad behavior.

If your English Bulldog is doing good, engaging in games, and being playful, you can reward the dog by giving treats or showing it some affection. 

When it comes to discouraging bad behavior, on the other hand, it’s best to find a way to let the dog know that its behavior is unacceptable without using violence.

So, if your dog tries to attack you, make sure he hears you say that you’ve been hurt, turn your face, and stop playing with him for a little while. Eventually, the dog will learn that this kind of behavior is bad.

If you use violent punishment methods such as yelling or hitting on your English Bulldog, it’s likely to backfire and cause the dog to become even more aggressive.


Sometimes training is just not enough to manage the dog’s behavior. So, you might want to consider going to your vet and asking about medical interference.

If the cause of this aggression is fear or anxiety, then medication will surely help a lot. The medication doesn’t have to be temporary. 

When to Seek Professional Help?

You know it’s time to seek professional help when you have tried everything you could to change the dog’s behavior, and it’s not working.

If your English Bulldog is noticeably becoming more and more aggressive, it’s time to take him to the vet.

 If there’s a medical or physical reason, you must act closely with the vet to provide the right treatment for your Bulldog. 

There are so many indicators for dog aggression, and there are so many warnings if your dog is suffering from fear or anxiety.

Here are the signs you need to watch out for to tell that your Bulldog is becoming more aggressive:

  • Growling and snapping 
  • Licking its lips and yawning a lot
  • Tucking its tail 
  • White dots in their eyes 
  • Raised fur 
  • Rapidly wagging their tail

If you see any of these signs, maybe it’s time to seek some professional help to make sure things don’t deteriorate and become a lot worse.

Related Questions 

Why Bulldogs Attack Their Owners?

Bulldogs attack their owners for many reasons, including frustration, pain, anger, and fear. It’s important to understand what your dog is attacking to know how to stop it from doing it. You should act calmly to control the situation and don’t tolerate this negative behavior. 

Can English Bulldogs be Aggressive?

English Bulldogs can be aggressive. Their aggressive behavior mainly depends on their training and living conditions. To prevent your dog from becoming aggressive, you need to train it from a young age and provide it with good living conditions.

Why Does my Bulldog Snap at Me?

Your Bulldog Snaps at you as a warning. Dogs can’t talk, but they can communicate with us in various ways. Snapping usually indicates that a certain action has threatened the dog or made it uncomfortable. You need to figure out what action to stop the dog from snapping.

When Should You Worry About Your Dog’s Aggression? 

You should worry about your dog’s aggression when its behavior starts to escalate and becomes more directed at other people. If your dog growls, snaps, or tries to attack people on the street or other family members, you need to find a way to discipline its behavior to prevent it from hurting anyone.

Helpful Resources

25 Most Common Dog Behavior Problems

Did you like the post? If so, please share it!

Similar Posts