The American Bulldog: Everything You Need to Know


Powerful; it’s the only word used to describe the gorgeous, beautiful breed that is the American Bulldog. With the appearance of a strong and powerful creature, there are few people that dare take their chances with this breed. Many will back away in fear, unsure how to proceed but certain enough that they want nothing to do with this dog. It’s not uncommon to see that this breed has more masculine looking males than females, and with a broad head and neck, this breed reeks strength. It’s what makes this breed so powerful.

But what most people do not know about the American Bulldog is that it’s not always what it seems. This is the type of breed that gives meaning to not judging a book by its cover. While many choose this breed specifically because it has a mean look that provides a certain level of comfort and awareness, others choose this dog because of its gentle soul and sweet nature. Stocky features, a defined brow and an underbite just noticeable enough to make it almost menacing, this is a breed with a distinct look and a very underrated personality.

The American Bulldog originates in a sad manner. This is a dog that was born and bred to fight in a time when this ‘sport’ was considered entertaining before it was realized that it is not, in fact, entertaining or even acceptable. Since they are no longer used as fighting dogs, they are typically used as working dogs and/or pets. With impressive stamina, an easy-going personality and a keen eye and alert mind makes the American Bulldog a very adept hunter and tracker, and many farmers use this breed for that.

Behavior and Temperament

It’s not always easy to tell what you might get with a dog like the American Bulldog. It’s not a big dog, but it’s a powerful dog. It’s not menacing, but it certainly looks that way. This breed is distinct, and it has a reputation that precedes it. This is a breed that is always on high alert and always loyal to his family, but he is also among the most gentle and the most loving of dog breeds. Wonderful with children, this is a dog that is actually preferred by many families because it does have such an even temperament and a sweet nature. This is a very brave dog with a lot of self-confidence, but it’s also a dog that has a strong instinct to protect. It is not about to let anyone harm its family, and that is why this dog requires a strong leader.

Lifestyle and Living Conditions

Not everyone is capable of owning an American Bulldog. In fact, this is a dog that will not thrive in a household in which there is not a strong and dominant leader, and it will not thrive in a home in which people are rarely home. This is not the kind of dog you acquire if you travel often and expect to leave it behind regularly. The American Bulldog needs human interaction on a regular basis to ensure that it is on its best behavior. It’s a sweet dog that listens well, but the breed does tend to become quite restless when left to its own devices too long.

Do not let the relative laziness of the American Bulldog fool you. These are not dogs that are overly active when they are in the house, but they are active dogs. They require ample exercise and they do better raised in a home with a yard. However, it’s not entirely impossible to have one of these in a home that is an apartment or condo provided you ensure he gets at least one long daily walk and plenty of time at the dog park.

When living with an American Bulldog, it’s important to remember that it should be fixed if it is not meant to be raised as a breeder. The reason for this is that these dogs tend to have litters that reach up to 11 puppies. If you are unable to house or raise these 11 puppies, it’s best not to bring them into the world in the first place.

Grooming Requirements

One of the biggest considerations households make when looking for a dog is the required grooming regimen for a particular breed. The American Bulldog is not a hairy dog with a lot of fur, but it still requires a little grooming attention. This breed has a very short coat, it’s on the harsh side and it does require very little effort to groom. It’s easy to take a brush to this dog’s coat only once a week to keep it from shedding too badly in the house.

Additionally, the American Bulldog is not one that requires baths on a regular basis, which is usually good news for dog owners with little time as it is. This dog only needs a bath on occasion, more particularly when it gets into a mess or is exposed to something like fleas or other critters that need to be treated and washed off the dog’s skin.

Health Issues and Size

The American Bulldog is generally a healthy animal, but it is a breed known to develop hip dysplasia. What this means is that your dog might need to go to the vet more often than usual to have this issue treated so that he or she is not living in pain, and so that his or her quality of life is good. While it’s entirely possible that the American Bulldog can suffer from just about any kind of health issue, it’s not common which is why we do not touch on that when discussing this particular breed.

Another possible, but less common, health issue associated with the American Bulldog is obesity. Many people feel that this is a big dog that needs to eat a larger diet, but it does not. The average and acceptable size for this breed is anywhere from 20 to 28 inches in size with females standing on the smaller end of this scale. As far as weight is concerned, you’re to expect that males will weigh anywhere from 70 to 120 pounds and females will weigh anywhere from 60 to 100 pounds. Anything too far below or too far above these weight limits could indicate health issues.

Photo by Getty Images

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