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Sturdy and muscular, American Bulldogs are taller and leaner than their English Bulldog cousin, initially bred to serve as “catch dogs”. Known for being suspicious of strangers and territorial, American Bulldogs make protective and loving family companions.
See the fact file below for more information on the American Bulldog or alternatively, you can download our 20-page American Bulldog worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
- Working class immigrants brought to North America the American Bulldog’s ancestors – Old English Bulldogs.
- Early farmers wanted to breed dogs that would help them best in the all-round farm work, instead of just maintaining breed purity.
- The strong jaws and muscular stature of American Bulldogs helped farmers hunt invasive wild pigs and assisted them in handling cattle.
- They were used in bull-baiting until it was outlawed in the 19th century, causing them to be kept as pets rather than working dogs.
- American Bulldogs went almost extinct after World War II. War veteran Mr. John D. Johnson, together with Alan Scott and other breeders, restored the breed, maintaining its health and working abilities.
- Modern American Bulldogs are in no danger of extinction, continuously serving as an all-round working dogs, a bold and reliable watchdog, and an affectionate and loyal family companion.
- On January 1, 1999, the United Kennel Club (UKC) recognized the breed. In November 2018, the American Kennel Club (AKC) Foundation Stock Service (FSS) added the American Bulldogs to their list.
- Despite being small and stocky, the American Bulldog is remarkably sturdy. Standing at 20 to 28 inches, they are a bit taller than their English and French Bulldog cousins, weighing around 60 to 120 pounds. Males are typically larger in stature and are more muscular than females.
- American Bulldogs are distinctive for their large and broad heads, deep muzzles, thick lips with black pigments, undershot jaws, and wide and open nostrils.
- Their ears, either small or medium, are high set, may be drop, semi-prick, or rose.
- Their chests are wide and deep, with tails that can either be docked or natural.
- American Bulldogs have short and smooth coats that usually come in solid colors, such as black, red, brown, fawn, and all shades of brindle.
- Some also have patches of red, black, and brindle. The UKC does not accept American Bulldogs with a solid black, solid blue, merle, and tricolor (white with patches of black and tan) coats.
- This breed is divided into several types, but the best known lines are the Scott and Johnson American Bulldogs.
- Scott type. They are also known as the “performance” or “standard American Bulldogs, bred by Alan Scott, these types are a crossbreed bred between the early Johnson American Bulldog and non-Johnson Bulldogs. They stand at about 22 to 27 inches at the shoulder, having a resemblance to the American Pit Bull Terrier. Scott types are known for their reverse scissors bite, slightly dropped jaws, and narrow heads and muzzle.
- Johnson type. Less energetic than the Scott type, this line is also known as the “classic” or the “bully” type, bred by John D. Johnson. Johnson dogs are a crossbreed between the old Johnson breed and a northern English Bulldog. They are distinct for their wide chest, boxy head, and underbite, resembling the English Bulldog.
- Obviously not a lapdog, American Bulldogs always want to be right by their owner’s side. They are also not best to be kept in apartments since these breeds have high energy needs. It is important for owners to keep them mentally and physically stimulated to avoid anxiety, boredom, and any destructive behavior.
- They are highly intelligent and trainable. They make good personal guard dogs, besides being hunting dogs. They tend to be sensitive, and hate to be in conflict with their owners; they pout when they get scolded. It is important for owners to have patience when training their American Bulldogs.
- Bred as companions for early farmers, their work ethic differs according to type. Scott dogs often work longer hours than the Johnson dogs. The latter are generally sturdy, but are able to do workloads that require less energy.
- American Bulldogs make loyal and loving family dogs; they are protective towards children and women. Although affectionate, they are not babysitters and should not be left unsupervised with a young child.
- They are commonly thought of as aggressive and territorial dogs. They can be threatening towards unknown cats and dogs, and other animals they consider prey or danger. Owners should be responsible for their American Bulldogs and not let them roam freely. It is also best advised for these breeds to have early exposure for them to easily socialize and adapt in new surroundings.
HEALTH AND CARE
- American Bulldogs are not prone to a number of health problems.
- Some tend to suffer from cataracts, demodectic mange (red and itchy skin disease caused by mites), and hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid gland).
- They are also plagued by canine hip dysplasia (an abnormality in the hip socket, causing crippling lameness and painful joint inflammation).
- American Bulldogs may tend to have Brachycephalic Syndrome (a pathological condition that plagues short-nosed dogs), and may be highly sensitive to hot temperatures.
- Since these breeds have short and neat coats, they shed moderately per year. It is best if their coats are brushed every week, in order to get rid of dead hair and even skin oils.
- Wipe their ears every week with a cotton ball damped with a gentle ear cleaner substance.
- American Bulldogs are expected to live from 10 to 16 years.
- The animated film Tom and Jerry features two American Bulldogs named Spike and Tyke.
- In the 2000 film Return to Me, Peetey the American Bulldog starred as David Duchovny’s character’s dog, Mel.
- An American Bulldog named Snowflake played as one of the sled dogs in the 2001 film Kevin of the North.
- In the 2003 film Cheaper by the Dozen and 2005 film Cheaper by the Dozen 2, an American Bulldog named Gunner played as the family pet.
- Tyler Labine’s character’s dog is an American Bulldog named Weezer, in the 2010 comedy horror film Tucker and Dale vs Evil.
- An American social game Zynga featured an American Bulldog as its company logo.
American Bulldog Worksheets
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about the American Bulldog across 20 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use American Bulldog worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about the American Bulldogs which are taller and leaner than their English Bulldog cousin, initially bred to serve as “catch dogs”. Known for being suspicious of strangers and territorial, American Bulldogs make protective and loving family companions.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- American Bulldog Facts
- Bulldog of America
- A Bulldog’s Anatomy
- More About These Dogs
- Dog Timeline
- Scott and Johnson
- A New Mix
- Health and Care
- Spike and Tyke
- The Three Bulldogs
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Link will appear as American Bulldog Facts & Worksheets: https://kidskonnect.com - KidsKonnect, December 2, 2019
Use With Any Curriculum
These worksheets have been specifically designed for use with any international curriculum. You can use these worksheets as-is, or edit them using Google Slides to make them more specific to your own student ability levels and curriculum standards.