I'm waching some youtube videos of bulldogs
and they are (as dogs go) some pretty slow learners.
Were the working bulldogs
of the 1800's smarter than the somewhat hapless dogs you see today.
The term "Bulldog" was first mentioned in literature around 1500, the oldest spelling of the word being Bondogge and Bolddogge. The first reference to the word with the modern spelling is dated 1631 or 1632 in a letter by a man named Preswick Eaton where he writes: "procuer mee two good Bulldogs, and let them be sent by ye first shipp". The name "bull" was applied because of the dog's use in the sport of bull baiting.