By Macy Gen Veterinary AssistantMacy Gen Last updated: 8th February 2023

Bull Terrier


Macy Gen Veterinary Assistant Macy Gen
Last updated: 8th February 2023

The Bull Terrier is a robust dog hailing from the terrier family, known for its unique physical features and stunning characteristic traits, which in turn make it a popular companion as well as a show dog.

Bull Terrier Pictures

Quick Information

Other namesEnglish Bull Terrier, Bully, The Gentleman’s Companion, Wedge Head, The White Cavalier
CoatShort, flat, glossy and harsh when touched
ColorBlack and tan, black tan and white, brindle, red, brindle and white, white, red and white, fawn, fawn smut, red smut
Breed typePurebred
GroupTerriers, Fighting dogs
Average life expectancy (How long do they live)10 to 14 years
Size (How big do they get)Big
Height of a full grown Bull Terrier18 to 22 inches
Weight of a full-grown Bull TerrierMale: 55 to 65 lbs; Female: 45 to 55 lbs
Litter sizeApproximately 5
Behavioral characteristicsPlayful, friendly, extrovert, mysterious
Good with childrenOnly older kids
Barking tendencyModerate
Climate compatibility Cannot adapt to cold or damp climate
Shedding (Do they shed)Moderately high
Competitive Registration Qualification/ InformationFCI, ANKC, AKC, CKC, UKC, NZKC, KC (UK)

What does a Bull Terrier look like

Head: Long and egg-shaped, curving below from the upper part of its skull to its nose tip.

Eyes: Small, sunken, triangular in shape, placed obliquely.

Ears: Small and thin, placed closely, that is often erect when pointed upwards.

Neck: Muscular and longish, which is arched and clean.

Tail: Low set and of a fine texture, often carried horizontally.

Video of Bull Terrier Puppies

History and Origin

The Bull and Terrier (presently extinct) dogs evolved in the 19th century, with the purpose of controlling vermin, also engaged in blood sports common during that time. The Bull and Terrier that was an outcome of the Old English Terriers and Old English Bulldog were lightly built like the terriers but not competent enough to tackle affairs like a bull fight. Hence grew the need of a dog that was courageous and agile as the Terriers and possessed the power of the bull dog. The Bull Terrier amongst many other breeds had also originated during the bull and terrier crossing. After fighting sports were deemed illegal, they became the companion of aristocratic gentlemen in the 1800s. James Hinks took the initiative of crossing the Bull and Terriers as well as the English White Terrier to get a breed that looked cleaner, had long legs as well as a fine head. Though the dogs bred by Hinks were white, colored varieties came later that was once recognized as separate varieties but later became unified.

Temperament and Personality

They have a friendly and lively demeanor who loves to be in the company of his near and dear ones and is always happy to see its master. Make sure you never leave them alone for extended periods and keep them engaged in some activity or the other as boredom could compel them to resort to destructive activities like tail chasing.

Behind their friendly nature lies a brave dog ready to face any situation with zeal and courage.

Because of this trait, it would not display friendliness towards strangers at the first go but maintain a reserved attitude at first and observe the unknown person keenly before building a rapport with him.

However, most owners have even mentioned that the Bull Terrier might be wary at the onset though never aggressive.

These lovable dogs, however, have a streak of stubbornness, also possessing an independent nature, thus not being an ideal choice for inexperienced owners. They could get rough while playing, hence not suitable for homes with smaller children. Moreover, supervision is also required when they are interacting with kids who do not belong to the family as these dogs could get aggressive towards them especially if they hear too much of yelling or shouting from unfamiliar children.

The Bull Terrier may get aggressive on interacting with same-sex dogs and are also not a good choice for cats as well as furry creatures since they may trigger its instinct to chase.

It also has an immense likeness for a car ride, though ensure that you take it for short rides at first to help it adjust and not fall sick.



They are active and have moderate exercise requirements, needing a daily walk along with sufficient playtime. Make sure you take them on a leash since they have a tendency to get after anything on the move.


Their short and flat coat with a hard, glossy texture need not be groomed much but for a weekly brushing using a brush with soft bristles or hound gloves to remove the loose hair and dirt. Bathe it only when it gets dirty, else wash it using a vet-approved dry shampoo or you can also dust it with a dry cloth.  Other hygiene requirements include brushing its teeth, trimming its nails as well as cleaning its eyes and ears on a routine basis to keep a check on infections.

Health Problems

Though a healthy breed some of the common issues they may suffer from include hereditary nephritis (kidney disease occurring in this breed since their puppy days), deafness (single or both the ears mostly in white dogs than the colored ones), allergies (particularly in the white bull terriers whose skin is more sensitive), spinning (kind of tail-chasing that can start when it is six months old), and lens luxation.


Because of their stubborn and strong-willed nature, a firm and experienced taskmaster is needed to train them efficiently.

  • Housetraining these dogs are said to be a challenge hence you should start it since its puppy days. Since the time it is young make sure you take him out to eliminate post a meal, every time he wakes up from a nap or whenever he is looking a little distressed. Take him to the same place every day and associate a command with this action so that he may be able to relate the two. In case he messes up the room do not shout at or scold your puppy as this could stress it further.
  • Leash training since the beginning is essential to keep a check on its chasing instinct.


Besides a high-quality dry dog food devoid of any additives and artificial colorings, you can even add homemade diet after consulting with a veterinarian.  They need a high amount of calcium, and some breeders have said to give them yogurt or whole milk in measured amounts in the morning and before bedtime. Including boiled broccoli as a part of their diet would also help in fostering their growth as well as bone development.

Interesting Facts

  • George S. Patton, a general of the U.S. Army, owned a Bull Terrier by the name of Willie which also featured in the 1970 film Patton.
  • Target Corporation has a Bull Terrier named Bullseye as its mascot.

One response to “Bull Terrier”

  1. alano says:

    apart from its appearance it is always a cross of mastiff and terrier as with the staff-american, english, boston terrier, blue poll terrier, dudley terrier, yankee terrier, red smut terrier and many others in other countries which always bears the name of bull & terrier but unfortunately it will always be very badly recognized even to half recognized for decades one of the beautiful lines but manage by some like just a dog and whose color of the nose and coat will always lie and forced to see that this black, the bull and a beautiful dog but these managers are poorly done

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