Why the Bull Terrier Is the Ultimate Protector
Terrier breeds are full of energy. Bred to hunt and protect, they have intense personalities and can be quite protective, and that’s especially true for the bull terrier.
The bull terrier's protective instincts and willingness to please make them good companions, as long as they have outlets to burn off excess energy. These dogs require consistent training because their determination is sometimes exhibited as stubbornness — but that’s part of why we love them, right? Read on to see why the bull terrier is the ultimate protector in the dog world.
The Bull Terrier’s Origin Story
The bull terrier was bred for dogfighting. The original bull-and-terrier was likely the result of a cross between the bulldog and the English terrier.
Over time, other breeds were introduced that diluted the fighting spirit, including the Spanish pointer, the white English terrier and the Dalmatian. The white version of the breed, called “white cavaliers,” was popular among the gentry in the mid-1800s.
How Large Does a Bull Terrier Get?
Before getting a bull terrier, it’s important to know how big they’ll get.
These are medium-height dogs, standing about 22 inches at the shoulder and are stocky, generally weighing 55 to 60 pounds.
The bull terrier also has a distinctively egg-shaped head that is flat on top with pointy ears that stand up. Its eyes are small and close-set, and it’s the only dog breed with triangular eyes.
These dogs also have a short coat that may be all white or any other color.
Protective Family Dogs
Bull terriers are family-oriented dogs that are playful and affectionate with family and protective around strangers. Early socialization with both people and other dogs is important for this breed, as is obedience training.
They are strong, muscular dogs, and their protective nature can veer into aggression if not properly handled.
They’ll Need Lots of Exercise
Bull terriers are strong and energetic dogs, so without sufficient exercise, they can be destructive.
While they enjoy a good run in a securely fenced area, long walks on a leash may be sufficient exercise, particularly in combination with games that provide mental stimulation.
Focus on the Fun
Bull terriers thrive on positive reinforcement and do best when training is treated as a game. They are intelligent and can be stubborn, so persistence and patience are required when training.
They will enjoy canine sports such as agility, rally, flyball, weight pull and carting and can also be trained for important jobs such as bomb detection and search-and-rescue or as service or therapy dogs.
They’re Good for Marketing
Both the Bud Light and Target corporations have chosen bull terriers as their mascots. Bud Light’s fictional Spuds MacKenzie was used in marketing starting in the late 1980s.
And Target’s mascot, Bullseye, officially debuted in a 1999 commercial.
Bull Terriers Lived in the White House
Theodore Roosevelt’s dog Pete was forgiven for killing squirrels and biting naval officers and ministers, but he was sent away after biting the French Ambassador.
And Bruce joined Woodrow Wilson in the White House near the end of his second term.