The American Bulldog exemplifies the term “big softie”, with their incredibly muscular build and sweet disposition. They may be all-around working dogs and guardians, but they also excel at being family dogs.
Their athletic bodies make them suited to a wide range of tasks, but what they love the most is to spend time with their owners. Their loyalty and devotion to their humans is almost legendary, and they will reward a patient and caring owner with all the love they can give.
They do ask for a lot of attention and training, and they need an active owner who will spend a lot of time with them, but the payoff is a wonderful companion and family dog who gets along with almost everyone.
TemperamentAmerican Bulldogs are alert, confident, and active dogs that take all their duties seriously. While they are excellent watchdogs and protectors, they aren’t always stern – in fact, the breed has a reputation for clowning around and acting silly for their owners. American Bulldogs work hard, and play even harder. Despite their rough and tough appearance, they’re friendly and outgoing dogs. They’re excellent watchdogs and will alert their owner to the presence of strangers, but they’ll then head over to introduce themselves to the potential new friend. While they may be initially wary, they quickly warm up to people and begin to display their characteristic goofy antics when they become excited and happy. The American Bulldog is clever and capable, with a keen intellect and the agility and power to match. There’s almost nothing a driven and focused American Bulldog can’t do. They aren’t aggressive by nature, and are not prone to biting. They’re gentle and sweet with children, and make wonderful family dogs when properly trained and socialized.
The Ultimate Guide to American Bulldog
The American Bulldog’s ancestry can be thought to begin as far back as the 3rd century, when the first true Bulldogs were brought to English shores. A very tough and powerful strain of Mastiff was used by English farmers and butchers to catch livestock before butchering. These incredibly strong and skilled Bulldogs could take down animals many times their size. Eventually these dogs began to be used in staged fights, which were called baits. Bull-baiting became a popular bloodsport, but thankfully these barbaric practices were eventually outlawed. The English Bulldogs that were used in these events were brought over to America as all-around farm dogs and catchdogs, used to take down bears, bulls, and buffalo. These hardy, powerful working dogs would go on to become the American Bulldogs we know today. At one point after World War II, the American Bulldog was in danger of dying out. John D. Johnson and Alan Scott saved the breed from extinction, creating two of the most popular and recognizable bloodlines of the breed.
Key Characteristics of American Bulldog
American Bulldogs are alert, confident, and active dogs that take all their duties seriously. While they are excellent watchdogs and protectors, they aren’t always stern – in fact, the breed has a reputation for clowning around and acting silly for their owners. American Bulldogs work hard, and play even harder.
Despite their rough and tough appearance, they’re friendly and outgoing dogs. They’re excellent watchdogs and will alert their owner to the presence of strangers, but they’ll then head over to introduce themselves to the potential new friend. While they may be initially wary, they quickly warm up to people and begin to display their characteristic goofy antics when they become excited and happy.
The American Bulldog is clever and capable, with a keen intellect and the agility and power to match. There’s almost nothing a driven and focused American Bulldog can’t do. They aren’t aggressive by nature, and are not prone to biting. They’re gentle and sweet with children, and make wonderful family dogs when properly trained and socialized.
American Bulldogs aren’t quite as energetic as other all-around working breeds, but still need a lot of exercise and mental stimulation to keep from getting bored. A bored dog will tend to invent their own games to play, and many owners will not appreciate the results.
Most American Bulldogs require at least an hour to an hour and a half of exercise each day, whether it be walking or jogging, off-leash play in a fenced yard, or some sort of vigorous training.
The muscular build of an American Bulldog means they need relatively high-intensity exercise, even if they don’t have as much stamina as more slim dog breeds. Shorter, more intense sessions will help keep their bodies in top shape.
Games are also important for an American Bulldog’s mental stimulation, as they need to be entertained as well. Fetch, tug-of-war, or scent work are all good options for this breed. Lower-impact exercise such as jogging or swimming may be better for heavier American Bulldogs, to help preserve their joint health.
|American Bulldog Grooming||
American Bulldogs do not need much in the way of grooming, as their short, coarse coat is very low maintenance. They shed lightly all throughout the year.
A brushing session once a week is typically enough for most American Bulldogs. You can use a bristle brush or glove to keep your American Bulldog’s coat smooth and shiny. Most American Bulldogs don’t need to be bathed very often – every one to two months is enough for many owners, aside from when the dog gets particularly dirty from outdoor play.
Tooth brushing should be done daily, if possible. Regular tooth brushing will help protect your dog’s teeth and gums and prevent dental issues that may develop into larger medical problems later on.
Nail trimming can be done once or twice a month, depending on how often your American Bulldog needs it. If their nails are making noise on wood or tile floors, it’s time for a trim.
|American Bulldog Training||
American Bulldogs need to begin training early on in life, as they’re very heavy and powerful animals. It’s much easier to wrangle an American Bulldog puppy than a full-sized adult or even an adolescent, as they grow very quickly in the 4 to 7 month stage of life.
While some American Bulldogs may be independent thinkers, they’re very trainable. They just require a consistent and patient owner who understands what they’re thinking. The best way to get an American Bulldog puppy to do what you want is positive reinforcement. Rewarding your dog for following commands with pets, play, or treats will quickly teach them the proper behaviors.
Most American Bulldogs can be trained to play well with humans, whether friend or stranger, but they do require supervision when interacting with children. They are also more wary of interacting with other dogs, even with training, so they may not be the best choice for a multi-dog household.
|American Bulldog Lifespan And Health Issues||
American Bulldogs are generally healthy and can normally live up to 10 to 16 years old. American Bulldogs may be prone to:
|American Bulldog Size And Space Requirements||
American Bulldogs are a large breed of dog, standing at 22 to 25 inches at the shoulder for males, and 20 to 23 inches for females. Most male American Bulldogs will normally weigh between 60 to 120 pounds, which is a very wide range. Female American Bulldogs will weigh between 60 to 80 pounds as adults.
The American Bulldog needs a lot of play and a lot of attention. Their high energy and need for vigorous exercise mean that they require a large outdoor space, preferably a fenced yard, for their play sessions. While they are adaptable dogs, they don’t do well in apartments. They are equally at home in cities or in rural areas.
While they were originally working dogs, they’re now used more as companion animals, and most American Bulldogs need a lot of attention from their human family members. They love to be involved in all family activities and will prefer to sleep inside the house. Their short coat does little to protect them from the elements, so they don’t do well as outdoor dogs.
- American Bulldogs may be able to get along with other dogs in the house, but it’s best if they’re of the opposite sex.
- There are three types of American Bulldog: Standard, Classic, and Hybrid.
- They get along well with children but their strength and weight may result in inadvertent injury if they get too excited. Any interaction between an American Bulldog and children under 6 years old should be supervised.
How can I take good care of my American Bulldog or Puppy?
American Bulldog puppies need to be socialized soon after being brought home to expose them to the various people and objects they will encounter in their day-to-day life. This early socialization will help teach the American Bulldog puppy to be more calm and confident in new situations. Doing this socialization work during the period between 8 and 12 weeks old is crucial for them to become gentle, well-behaved adult dogs.
It’s important to get an American Bulldog puppy high-quality, premium dog food so that they develop properly. American Bulldogs grow quickly and require high-protein food for their muscular bodies. Multiple small meals per day will help prevent overeating and indigestion. Any treats should only be given in moderation, as most treats will be loaded with fat and carbohydrates. If you have any concerns about your American Bulldog puppy’s weight, diet, or appetite, your veterinarian may have more specific dietary recommendations.
American Bulldog puppies will have a schedule of vaccinations to take after being brought home from the breeder. Contact your trusted veterinarian so that they can advise you on the proper schedule for your dog. Like most other dog breeds, American Bulldog puppies should not be allowed to interact closely with other dogs until their vaccinations are complete at 14 to 16 weeks. Follow the schedule your veterinarian gives you to ensure that your American Bulldog is adequately protected from common transmissible diseases.
Most Asked American Bulldog Questions
+How Much do American Bulldog Puppies Cost
Most American Bulldog puppies for sale will cost between $1500 and $3000. Because American Bulldogs almost died out after World War II, the breed had to start over from a very small number of dogs. To ensure that no inheritable conditions are passed on, there are multiple health checks and genetic tests that reputable breeders will need to have done on both the mother and the puppies before any puppies are sold. Only get American Bulldog puppies from ethical breeders to give your American Bulldog the best chance of success in life.