Bull Terrier Dog Breed

Country of Origin: Great Britain
Height: Impression of maximum substance to size of dog|20 to 24 inches [est.]
Weight: Impression of maximum substance to size of dog|45 to 80 pounds [est.]
Coat: Short, flat, harsh, glossy
Colors: Only white acceptable (may have markings on head) [AKC]|any color other than white [UKC]|
Other Names: English Bull Terrier
Registries (With Group): AKC (Terrier); UKC (Terrier)

Origin and History

In the early 1800s, when dog fighting was legal and actually quite popular, breeders were always looking to produce dogs with tenacity, endurance, and agility. Originally known as the "bull-and-terrier," the Bull Terrier is the result of crossing a Bulldog with the now-extinct white English Terrier.

Englishman James Hinks first standardized the breed in the early 1850s. He bred only white dogs and called them "bull terriers" to distinguish them from the "bull-and-terriers" who were similar to today's Staffordshire Bull Terriers. Hink's white dogs became known as "the White Cavalier." It is not known exactly what other breeds went into developing the modern Bull Terrier, but the Dalmatian, Spanish Pointer, and Greyhound are all possibilities. The resulting breed soon became known simply as the Bull Terrier. When all-white Bull Terriers were crossed with Staffordshire Bull Terriers, the colored variety emerged.

Today, thankfully, dog fighting of any kind is illegal, and these dogs are strictly companions. Their egg-shaped heads quickly distinguish them from all other breeds, and their looks and personality have endeared them to many.

Personality Profile

The Bull Terrier is a charming, friendly, playful breed who is very attached to his family. He needs a lot of companionship and a good deal of supervision in order to make a good pet. Intelligent and active, he requires mental and physical stimulation. For those who have the time and the leadership to give to a Bull Terrier, this dog can be a fine companion, as his devotion is unwavering.

Care Requirements


Bull Terriers need regular exercise and plenty of it! An energetic breed to begin with, without enough exercise, they may be compelled to release their energy in ways that aren't always desirable—such as through excessive chewing, self-destructive behaviors, and even obsessive-compulsive behaviors.


The Bull Terrier is easy to keep groomed. His short coat should be gone over with a hound glove and a soft bristle brush. This loosens dead hair and dirt and brings out his natural shine.

Life Span

The average life span of the Bull Terrier is 10 to 12 years.


A critical component of training for any Bull Terrier is socialization. From early puppyhood, the Bull Terrier needs to be introduced to all sorts of people, other dogs, other animals, and environments so that he does not feel threatened by them.

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