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Bull Terrier Dog Breed

The Bull Terrier or English Bull Terrier is a breed of dog in the terrier family. They are known for their large, egg-shaped head, small triangular eyes and their "jaunty gait." Their temperment has been described as generally fun-loving, active and clownish, but also erratic and unpredictable. Bull terriers have appeared as characters in many cartoons, books, movies, and advertisements, perhaps most famously as party loving Spuds MacKenzie in Budweiser  beer commercials in the late 1980s, and more recently as the Target dog.

The Bull Terrier's most recognizable feature is its head, described as 'egg shaped' when viewed from the front, almost flat at the top, with a Roman muzzle sloping evenly down to the end of the nose with no stop. The unique triangle-shaped eyes are small, dark, and deep-set. The body is full and round, while the shoulders are robust and muscular and the tail is carried horizontally. Bull terriers are known to have more muscle than any other breed of dog pound for pound. It walks with a jaunty gait, and is popularly known as the 'gladiator of the canine race'.

There is no designated height or weight for the breed but the average is, Height: 51-61 cm (20-24 inches), Weight: 20-38 kg (44-85 pounds) The Bull Terrier and the Miniature Bull Terrier are the only recognized breeds that have triangle-shaped eyes.

Though this breed was once a fierce gladiator, it is much gentler today. A Bull Terrier might have a preventive effect and it will certainly defend its owner in a truly critical situation. Bull terriers are known to be courageous, scrappy, fun-loving, active, clownish and fearless. The Bull Terrier is a loyal and polite dog. They become very attached to their owners. The Bull Terrier thrives on firm, consistent leadership and affection and makes a fine family pet. Bull Terriers like to be doing something and fit in well with active families where they receive a great deal of companionship and supervision. They do not do well in situations where they are left alone for 8 hours a day. This breed can be a wonderful pet if very thoroughly socialized and trained, but not recommended for most households. Fond of both grown-ups and children, but if they do not get enough physical and mental exercise they may be too energetic for small children. Children should be taught how to display leadership towards the dog. Meek owners will find them to become very protective, willful, possessive and/or jealous. Bull Terriers may try to join into family rough housing or quarrel. Bull Terriers must be given a lot of structure. Be sure to socialize them well and remain their pack leader 100% of the time, otherwise, they can be extremely aggressive with other dogs. Unaltered males may not get along with other male dogs. Males and females can live together happily and two females can also be a good combination with care and supervision. They are not recommended with other non-canine pets such as cats, hamsters, and guinea pigs. They make excellent watch dogs.

All puppies should be checked for deafness, which occurs in 20% of pure white dogs and 1.3% of colored dogs and is difficult to notice, especially in a relatively young puppy. Many Bull Terriers have a tendency to develop skin allergies.Insect bites, such as those from fleas, and sometimes mosquitoes and mites, can produce a generalized allergic response of hives, rash, and itching. This problem can be stopped by keeping the dog free of contact from these insects, but this is definitely a consideration in climates or circumstances where exposure to these insects is inevitable. Their lifespan is somewhere between 10 and 14 years,although they can live longer - a male bull terrier house pet in South Wales, UK by the name of "Buller" lived to the age of 18 years.The oldest female Bull Terrier on record is an Australian house pet dubbed "Puppa Trout" who remained sprightly into her 17th year.The second oldest female Bull Terrier on record is "Boots Moon Stomp Stout (Crain)" of Denver, Colorado USA. Boots lived to be 16 years of age.

The Bull Terrier's coat is easy to maintain, but grooming can keep it in near-perfect condition. Adding oils to their meals can also vastly improve the quality of their coat.English Bull Terriers have thin, fine hair that requires minimal grooming. They are known to have light shedding patterns. Another important issue is that any whiteness around the eyes, ears, nose, mouth, stomach or hindquarters with a short and sparse haired breed such as this must be protected against the sun with a gentle but high SPF factored sunscreen to prevent sunburn and subsequent cancer.The Bull Terrier requires a fair amount of exercise, but overworking the dog at a young age will cause strained muscles.Older dogs do require exercise, but in small doses, whereas younger ones will be happy to play for hours on end. The breed is renowned for being extremely greedy.

Other common ailments: Umbilical Hernia and Acne. Bull Terriers can also suffer from obsessive compulsive disorder, such as tail chasing, self mutilation, and obsessive licking.

Early in the mid-1800s the "Bull and Terrier" breeds were developed to satisfy the needs for vermin control and animal-based blood sports. The "Bull and Terriers" were based on the Old English Bulldog (now extinct) and one or more of Old English Terrier and "Black and tan terrier", now known as Manchester Terrier. This new breed combined the speed and dexterity of lightly built terriers with the dour tenacity of the Bulldog, which was a poor performer in most combat situations, having been bred almost exclusively for killing bulls and bears tied to a post. Due to the lack of breed standards -- breeding was for performance, not appearance -- the "Bull and Terrier" eventually divided into the ancestors of "Bull Terriers" and "Staffordshire Bull Terriers", both smaller and easier to handle than the progenitor.

About 1850, James Hinks started breeding "Bull and Terriers" with "English White Terriers" (now extinct), looking for a cleaner appearance with better legs and nicer head. In 1862, Hinks entered a bitch called "Puss" sired by his white Bulldog called "Madman" into the Bull Terrier Class at the dog show held at the Cremorne Gardens in Chelsea. Originally known as the "Hinks Breed" and "The White Cavalier", these dogs did not yet have the now-familiar "egg face", but kept the stop in the skull profile.

The dog was immediately popular and breeding continued, using Dalmatian, Greyhound, Spanish Pointer, Foxhound and Whippet to increase elegance and agility; and Borzoi and Collie  to reduce the stop. Hinks wanted his dogs white, and bred specifically for this. Generally, however, breeding was aimed at increasing sturdiness: three "subtypes" were recognised by judges, Bulldog, Terrier and Dalmatian, each with its specific conformation, and a balance is now sought between the three. The first modern Bull Terrier is now recognised as "Lord Gladiator", from 1917, being the first dog with no stop at all.

Due to medical problems associated with all-white breeding, Ted Lyon among others began introducing colour, using Staffordshire Bull Terriers in the early 20th century. Coloured Bull Terriers were recognised as a separate variety (at least by the AKC) in 1936. Brindle is the preferred colour, but other colours are welcome.

Along with conformation, specific behaviour traits were sought. The epithet "White Cavalier", harking back to an age of chivalry, was bestowed on a breed which while never seeking to start a fight was well able to finish one, while socialising well with its "pack", including children and pups. Hinks himself had always aimed at a "gentleman's companion" dog rather than a pit-fighter—though Bullies were often entered in the pits, with some success. Today the Bullie is valued as a comical, mischievous, imaginative and intelligent (problem-solving) but stubborn house pet suitable for experienced owners.

Bull Terrier facts
    * The Afrikaans name for the Bull Terrier is Varkhond
    * There is also a miniature version of this breed; this distinct breed is officially known as the Miniature Bull Terrier.

    * Bull Terriers are prominently featured in Jonathan Carroll's 1980 novel The Land of Laughs.

    * Bull Terriers have appeared in many movies, including: A Dog's Life (1918), It's a Dog's Life (1955), Oliver!, Baxter, Patton, Toy Story, Babe: Pig in the City, Next Friday, Friday After Next, Frankenweenie, Trainspotting, Bulletproof, Derailed, "Scotland, PA", The Incredible Journey, Space Buddies and Snatch.

    * A Bull Terrier appears in several scenes of the 1976 film Je t'aime... moi non plus.

    * Bull Terriers have also featured in television shows such as the 1970s television show Baa Baa Black Sheep, in the opening credits of the British television show Barking Mad, and in the short lived Fox series Keen Eddie.
    * A Bull Terrier is the main character in a Max Brand novel "The White Wolf".

    * Spuds Mackenzie, a dog featured in an advertising campaign for Bud Light beer in the late 1980s, was a bull terrier.

    * American children's writer and illustrator Chris Van Allsburg features a bull terrier named Fritz in at least one scene in every book.

Famous Bull Terriers
    * Abraxas Aaran, who portrayed Willie, the title character's dog, in the 1970 film Patton.
    * Baxter, from the film Baxter - with the tagline, "Méfiez-vous du chien qui pense." ("Beware the dog that thinks.")
    * Blue, owned by Canadian hockey commentator Don Cherry, is widely considered to be almost as famous as Cherry himself.
    * Bodger, an old white bull terrier, is a major character in the book The Incredible Journey by Sheila Burnford and the movie
    * Brut, in the novel, Answers to Brut, by Gillian Rubinstein
    * In Charles Dickens' novel Oliver Twist, Bill Sykes owns an English Bull Terrier named Bullseye.
    * Bullseye mascot of the Target Corporation
    * Chester, Chad's (Preppy) dog in Rockstar Vancouver's video game Bully
    * Chico, a dog in Next Friday and Friday After Next
    * Creampuff, one of Irish Murphy's pig hunting dogs from the Footrot Flats comic series.
    * Kirk Hammett of the thrash metal band Metallica has a bull terrier named Darla.
    * Dave, an old white bull terrier of the Priory Estate.
    * Hip-Hop artist Adil Omar has a bull terrier named Diablo.
    * Fritz, the black-and-white bull terrier who appears in every Chris Van Allsburg book.
    * Grimm, of the cartoon series Mother Goose and Grimm.
    * Odd's dog, Kiwi, is rumored to be a bull terrier but he looks more like a Whippet.
    * Jock, one of the most famous dogs in South Africa. He was the companion of the Percy Fitzpatrick. A book was written about him by Fitzpatrick, It was called Jock of the Bushveld.
    * Lockjaw, Pepper's companion in Sierra's Pepper's Adventures in Time.
    * Meatball, White bull terrier pet of Major Gregory "Pappy" Boyington in Baa Baa Black Sheep (TV series).
    * Pete, from the Fox-television series "Keen Eddie", 13 episodes, 2003
    * Rex from the film Stealing Harvard. Rex is a mean dog who always agrees with his master. However, his crankyness goes away when he tries to bite a man in the crotch and ends up falling in love and having sex with him.
    * Rick Springfield's bull terrier Ronnie appears on the cover of his album Working Class Dog.
    * Rude Dog
    * Sam, who accompanied Alby Mangels, Dutch-Australian adventurer, on his world travels.
    * Scud, from the Disney/Pixar film Toy Story.
    * Sparky, the dog who appears in "Frankenweenie"
    * Spuds MacKenzie - "star" of Bud Light beer commercials in the late 1980's
    * Spunky, of Rocko's Modern Life, resembles a Bull Terrier and was also the name of a famous MA Bull Terrier.
    * Whiskey, from the Eidos Commandos series
    * Willie, owned by World War II US Army General George S. Patton and named after William the Conqueror.
    * Unnamed bull terriers regularly appearing in New Yorker cartoonist George Booth's cartoons. 
The dog from Angry Kid
    * Mumps, the bull terrier who wanders around with Bob Jakin, a prominent character in the novel "The Mill on the Floss" by George Eliot.


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