The Healthy Pet Club

Dog Breed profiles

Bull Terrier Breed Profile

Bull Terrier fact file

KC Group: Terrier
Size: Medium
There are no height or weight limits specified in the breed standard, but on average;
Height: 53 - 56cm
Weight: 23.5 - 28kg 
Average lifespan: 12 years
Temperament: Loyal and affectionate, but can be stubborn
Good with children?: Seek breeder advice
Exercise requirement: Moderate
Good guard dogs?: Yes
Moulting level: Low
Grooming: Little
Colours: White, black, brindle, red, and tricoloured 
Jogging partner: Short runs


Bull Terriers are relatively hardy. However, they have been known to suffer from:

  • Kidney disease.
  • Heart disease.
  • Skin problems.
  • Deafness, particularly in white dogs.

Health tests

It is strongly recommended that parent dogs are heart tested, kidney tested, and BAER (brain auditory evoked response) tested — an electronic hearing test which can be carried out from five weeks old. A breeder should be able to provide documentation proving that this has been done. It is advised that you do not buy from a breeder who can’t do this.


  • A unique character who loves to act the clown.
  • Has a great sense of humour — and you’ll need one too.
  • Determined and stubborn.


  • The Bull Terrier is adaptable and will be happy with whatever exercise you can offer.
  • Can get on well with children if brought up around them. However, he is a strong and powerful breed and must be taught to respect others. Any show of dominance should be checked before his sheer bulk becomes a problem.
  • Despite his hardy appearance he doesn’t do well outdoors and would much rather live inside with his family.
  • Remember that he is a terrier and may not always be tolerant of other animals. If a Bull Terrier is challenged he will not back down.
  • He shouldn’t be left alone for long periods. A bored Bull Terrier will occupy himself in ways that may not please you.
  • You will need strong and secure fencing in your garden as the Bull Terrier is a regular Houdini.


  • Lead training is essential.
  • The Bull Terrier has a mind of his own and a well-developed stubborn streak.
  • You need to be willing to put time into training right from day one.
  • Keep training sessions fun and interesting as he will become bored easily.
  • Like an elephant, he will never forget — bad habits as well as good.

General care

  • The Bull Terrier has a short, harsh coat which needs minimal brushing.
  • That short coat, however, means that he also needs warmth and comfort.
  • He can be prone to bed sores so his bed needs to be soft and supportive.
  • Watch his weight — he will happily become a couch potato if you let him.
  • He loves attention and will demand it. Do not pander to him — he needs to know his place in the family pecking order.
  • The Bull Terrier is a notorious chewer and will chew anything. Make sure that he has plenty of specialist hard-wearing toys or you can say goodbye to your furniture, and hello to a trip to the vet’s because he’s swallowed something he shouldn’t.


  • Minimal grooming.
  • Good temperament.
  • Adaptable.


  • Stubborn — can make training difficult.
  • Deafness is known in the breed.

Did you know?

  • The Bull Terrier hasn’t always had erect ears — his ancestors’ ears dropped forward.
  • Bull Terrier Abraxas Audacity won Best in Show at Crufts in 1972.
  • The breed was developed in the 1800s by crossing the Bulldog with the now extinct White English Terrier.


Your Dog uses cookies. If you continue we assume you are happy to receive cookies. Cookie Policy