Boston Bull Terriers – Health, Care, and Other Information

Information and details on the Boston "Bull" Terrier breed including a brief history of the breed, health concerns, care, feeding, and disposition. Also includes links to photos of Bostons, discussion forums for Bostons, and rescue organizations that serve to rehabilitate and re-home Boston Terriers.

Nicknames: American Gentleman and Boston Bull.

History: Made in Boston, hence the name. Created from a cross between the English Bulldog and English White Terrier, then eventually bred with the French Bulldog. A dog originally bred for pit-fighting, now bred for companionship. Recognized by the AKC in 1893.

Coloring and Coat: Smooth, short, shiny coat of hair. Most Boston colors are seal with white markings, black with white markings, or brindle with white markings. Seal looks to be black, but when hair viewed in the sunlight or bright light it will show its red cast.

Personality and Temperament: Highly intelligent, curious, energetic, gentle, alert, sensitive, pleasant, easy to train, affectionate, determined. Tendency to snore and snort, and can be gassy. A dog that is normally good with other household animals and children. Wonderful companion pet for the elderly. Males can be territorial and dominant with other canines. Have many things in common with Boxers (almost a mini Boxer dog, if you will). Not generally barkers, tending to reserve barking only for appropriate times (example: someone at door). Great competitor with agility (yes, really) and obedience. With ours, the "bull" behavior is definitely displayed as he uses his head to ram and butt. He's also most certainly able to take care of his own; his alpha male side healthy and at the ready if needed.

Height and Weight: 15" to 17" tall, 10 to 25 pounds. (Bodies are typically sturdy and muscular.)

Feeding: The food we've chosen for our Boston Terrier is CANIDAEĀ® All Life Stages. He gets 1/2 cup, twice daily with some little healthy snacks in between. There are a few quality kibbles on the market now. Things to look for include human grade, hormone and antibiotic free. Also, the first two ingredients should be meat products.

Living Conditions and Environment: Small enough breed for apartment living, but do enjoy their own yard and room to romp and play. Puppies can be a challenge to house break, but Bostons are not outdoor dogs. Their short muzzles make it difficult for them to tolerate excessive heat and humidity, and their short coats make it difficult for them to tolerate cold. Very important for them to be a part of the family (as I believe it is for all dogs).

Health Concerns: Being a brachycephalic breed ("short head") with their short faces and protruding eyes, Boston Bulls have their share of health concerns. Their prominent eyes must be protected and watched with regard to injury and disease. Tumors of the heart and skin can be common in Boston Terriers. Sometimes afflicted with luxating patellas, deafness, and allergies. Due to their large heads and small pelvis, pups are generally delivered by cesarean section.

Lifespan: 15+ years.

Grooming and Maintenance: Low maintenance breed. Average shedder. Brush short hair occasionally and bathe only when necessary. Wipe face with moistened cloth in between baths. Clip nails as needed. Not sure if all Bostons are this way, but ours is an obsessive groomer, even to the point of grooming the other dogs in the family.

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