In 1209 the Earl of Warren was observing two bulls fighting for the right to mate with a cow. Suddenly, a group of dogs owned by the local butchers set upon the bulls and chased them through town. The Earl enjoyed the sight of this madness so much that he set aside land near his castle for the butchers. His only condition was they had to repeat the incident by having the dogs chase a bull six weeks prior to Christmas Day every year.

The type of dog that was desired by these men of old, was a dog that had a short snout so it could hold on to a bulls nose and still breathe. A dog with a flat wrinkled face so as blood didn't get into the eyes of the dog and although the first ever bull bait was an accident, over time, and as the "sport" became more popular, the stockmen and butchers of the day began to select dogs with these specific features, because they would make the best baiters and stood a better chance of surviving beyond one fight. The bulldog was never a breed until after Bull Baiting had been made illegal and it's not until then that the "type" is slowly created based on all the points they considered would create the perfect baiting dog.

The points were taken from the well known bitch Rosa - famed for her partnership with Cribb. Considered the first "bulldog", she was the inspiration behind the early description as they took what they considered her best points and altered the points they considered would hinder her in a fight. The result was something that looked a little like our Bulldogs of Today.

There are an awful lot of bulldogs called Crib and Rosa in the early pedigrees.