American Bulldog

In England during the 17th and 18th centuries, the now extinct Old English Bulldog's were used on farms to catch and hold escaped livestock and also as butcher's dogs; it was believed then that sending a dog out after a bull would tenderize the meat. This eventually led to the bloodsport of bull-baiting, popular with the poor and rural areas for both entertainment as a bloodsport and the potential for gambling. These practices extended not only to the British Isles but also to the colonies she accquired during this time, including what is now the United States and in particular the South; many of the settlers brought their dogs with them to help around the farm, hunt in the woods, and to gamble. In 1835, the sport of bull-baiting was outlawed in the United Kingdom and over time the English Bulldog became the more compact and complacent version known today, but the much more athletic American strain continued on much the same in the rural South even as its popularity declined in favor of other breeds. By World War Two the breed was near extinction until John Johnson and Allen Scott scoured the backroads of the South looking for the best specimens to revive the breed.

An American Bulldog is typically friendly and assertive, but also a little wary of strangers and stubborn. They are quite fond of children but, because of their size and high energy tendencies, they should be supervised with small children. They bond strongly with their master and family but, because of strong guarding instincts and a somewhat dominant attitude, they need a firm hand; they should be socialized and obedience trained early to expose them to other dogs and people and to ensure they can be controlled around company as they get older. They need room to expend their energy and so do best in a home with a backyard. They are not always good around cats.

American bulldog tracking pulling dog harness

The American Bulldog remains higher on the leg, more agile and swifter than its English counterpart. Some individuals are reportedly able to leap six or more feet into the air. The American Bulldog is a very muscular, sturdy dog with a large, powerful head and jaws. He is very strong, but agile and light on his feet. The chest is wide and the muscular neck tapers from shoulders to head. The neck may have a slight dewlap. The head is square and broad with muscular cheeks and a furrow between the rounded eyes. The strong muzzle is shaped like a box. The stop is sharply defined and deep. The teeth should meet in a tight undershot, even or scissors bite. A variety of ear types are acceptable including rose, half-pricked and pendant. Though some people crop the ears, uncropped ears are preferred in the American Bulldog Breeders Association Standard. Any eye color is permitted, but black eye rims are preferred on white dogs. The nose is black or grizzle. In black-nosed dogs, the lips should also be black, though some pink is permitted. The lips should be loose. The heavy-boned front legs should be strong and very straight.


Appearance: American Bulldogs are a stout, burly breed, but they are also extremely agile and swift. They have a wide chest and a tapered, muscular neck that may or may not have a slight dewlap. The breed features a strong-boned, compact body with straight limbs and burly hindquarters. They have broad, square heads with a pronounced furrow, muscular cheeks, and a box-shaped muzzle. Their stop is prominent, defined, and deep. Their well-developed teeth meet in a tight undershot or a scissors bite. American Bulldogs have a variety of acceptable ear types including pendant, half-pricked, and rose. Their eye color varies. The American Bulldog has black, loose-fitting lips and a black nose. Their tails are low-set and taper to a point. A variety of colors exist for the American Bulldog’s short, harsh, close-fitting coat. Many variations of white, brindle, brown, red, and tan are acceptable for show.

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American Bulldog dog harness, American Bulldog dog muzzle, American Bulldog dog collars

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