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Champion Bulldog

Champion Bulldog

Huevos, Bungie, and curator Mark Engstrom
Mark Engstrom brings Bungie out of storage
Unwrapping Bungie
Huevos, meet Bungie. Bungie, meet Huevos.
Huevos, a 21st century bulldog
Bungie, the early 20th-century championship bulldog
Bungie, an early 20th century championship bulldog
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Mystery Vessels
Baby Mummy
Lost Dinosaur
Medieval Crossbow
Sitting Bull’s Headdress?
The Bug Room

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Why did a champion bulldog drop dead?

And where shall we place the blame?

In a dark storeroom, encased in plastic, we discover the preserved remains of a world champion British Bulldog named Bungie.

What is this once-famous Brit doing in the basement of a museum in Toronto?

He’s here because he died in Toronto, on a hot day in 1936.  The cause of death wasn’t illness, or accident, or cruelty.

So why did Bungie drop dead?

The secret is revealed in Museum Secrets: Inside the Royal Ontario Museum.

The Secret of the Death of a Champion

Bulldogs, like many dogs, have been bred by humans for centuries. Breeding is a kind of unnatural selection for traits deemed desirable (by people – not dogs). And sometimes the results of breeding have unintended consequences.

The Bulldog has long been popular with breeders because it is extremely susceptible to the breeder’s art. Within only a few generations a skilled breeder can make a bulldog’s snout long or short, its stance narrow or splayed.

Bulldog owners who are reading this will probably already know (or guess) why the champion Bulldog named Bungie dropped dead on a hot summer day.

The reason was... no... we won't provide a spoiler here. But here's a hint: Bungie died because of an unintended consequence. A fatal flaw. One might say… a design flaw.

To learn about the unintended consequences of Bulldog breeding, we invite you to watch this Web Exclusive Video: Unnatural Selection.

Over To You

Do you have a bulldog (or other dog) that you suspect may have an inherited disorder?  You can find information on known genetic disorders online in the Canine Inherited Disorders Database.


jason • #11 • 2011-02-27 06:00:18
if bulldogs live so short and are so flawed why do we continue breeding them

rufdoof3 • #46 • 2013-04-25 17:09:09
@ #11: Bulldogs do not live so \"short\" ... I just had to let go my 11 year 8 month old girl yesterday...this is NOT a short life span. Average age is 11 1/2 for me. This is not a short life span in the dog world. Learn about the breed ; not its

kingpoelar • #104 • 2016-06-28 18:03:17
@ #11: I would expect no less from someone who doesn\'t understand it is human who have fucked these animals up so much and what would you consider a long life for dog cause most dogs only live between 10 and 16