Bulldog and its ancient history
Not much of the history behind the dog breeds is as interesting as the history of the Bulldog. Information about its ancestors contains mythic tales about the god Zeus and aiding in the hunt for large herbivores, participation in war and the Roman arena. The ancient dogs had such enormous strength and courage that it made up for what the dogs lacked in their sense of smell or in speed. The prehistoric dog was valued for its indispensable use as a hunting partner and a guard dog. These huge dogs were used in Europe, Africa and Asia.
These dogs were such enormous strength that they preyed on large animals that would fight back. These dogs may not have been very fast or have had a strong sense of smell yet they did make up for it with their courageous spirit and enormous size. As hunting companions, the large and predatory dogs became a trusted and valued member of the human household.
The ancient ancestor of the Bulldog is presumed to originate in Epirus, Greece since the Molossi tribal people of northwestern Greece bred it. Any Bulldog information about Bulldog history is incomplete without a mention of its ancestor's role in Greek mythology. According to ancient Greek myth, the Molossian dog was descended from Laeleps, the Demonesian bronze dog with a soul, which was given to the god Zeus from Hephaestus, the heavenly master forger, and son of Aphrodite.
Laeleps passed into the hands of different owners after Zeus and the dog eventually changed from bronze to stone. Laeleps fathered descendants before turning to stone. The Molossian is said to be a descendant of the dog of the gods, Laeleps.
According to Bulldog information, Phoenician traders began to use the dog for bartering purposes and in this way the Molossian dogs traveled the seas and oceans of the prehistoric times. It was in about 800 BC that the Molossian found itself on British shores.
Bulldog information includes a historical look into Celtic times. The Bulldog's predecessor, the Molossian dog, was prized in Briton and early Britons, who included the Celtic and other British tribes, continued to breed the Molossian. The British tribes people used the huge dog as an aid in hunting big game.
The type of large prey that the Celtics hunted, with the enormous dogs, were boars and wild cattle. Eventually, by the time of the Romans, the dogs were used as war dogs by the Celtic tribes and the Romans called these dogs, the Pugnace Britannicii or war dog of Briton. Another name for these early dogs is the Broad Mouthed Dogs of Briton. The Romans were surprised at the skills these brown and brindle Celtic war dogs had during war action including the ability to jump and bite a horse on the nose. To loosen the dog's grip, the horse would end up throwing its rider off.
This canine maneuver was a surprise to the Romans when they first invaded the British homelands. The Romans prized the dog's ferocious nature and put it in the arena as a combatant. Since this time, the dog's ferocity has been bred out so that what remains is a good natured and an even comical companion.