If you're looking for a dog who will run and play and chase and explore with you, look no further than a Miniature Bull Terrier (or “Mini Bull,” as their fans call them). Like their full-sized cousins, Miniature Bull Terriers are clownish and mischievous, yet somehow charismatic enough to get away with their antics.
Their unusual eyes, which are triangular and close-set, give these dogs a distinctive appearance. But it's the feisty, tough-guy persona you'll notice first. A Miniature Bull Terrier struts down any street with attitude, and seems to ask every passerby, “Are you talking to me?”
Originally from England, this small-sized breed can grow to between 25-33 pounds and lives an average of 11-14 years. The breed is recognized by the American Kennel Club and classified as a member of the Terrier group.
AKC Recognized: Y
Breed's Original Pastime: Hunting
Breed Group: Terrier
Average Lifespan: 11-14 years
Bark Factor: Moderate
AKC RANKING 132
FAMILY terrier, mastiff (bull)
AREA OF ORIGIN England
DATE OF ORIGIN 1800s
ORIGINAL FUNCTION ratting, dog fighting
TODAY'S FUNCTION earthdog trials
AVERAGE SIZE OF MALE Height: 10-14 Weight: 25-33
AVERAGE SIZE OF FEMALE Height: 10-14 Weight: 25-33
OTHER NAME none
Energy level High energy
Exercise needs Medium
Playfullness Very playful
Affection level Somewhat affectionate
Friendliness toward other dogs Shy
Friendliness toward other pets Friendly
Friendliness toward strangers Friendly
Ease of training Easy to train
Watchdog ability High
Protection ability Moderately protective
Grooming needs Low maintenance
Cold tolerance Medium tolerance
Heat tolerance Medium tolerance
BEHAVIOR & TRAINING
WHAT IS A MINIATURE BULL TERRIER'S PERSONALITY LIKE?
Miniature Bull Terriers are cheerful, silly, and rambunctious. These loving dogs adore children, but they're probably best placed with older kids. For children mature and resilient enough to handle their ruff-n-tumble style, Miniature Bull Terriers make great playmates.
WHAT IS MINIATURE BULL TERRIER BEHAVIOR LIKE?
This is a very active breed: no walk will ever be long enough for this dog—but try your best to keep up. They are fearless and very strong for such a small dog and will never turn down the chance for an adventure.
Miniature Bull Terriers can be wary of other dogs unless socialized early and often. Their high prey drive means they're not usually a good fit for homes with toy dogs, cats, or other small pets.
HOW EASY IS IT TO TRAIN A MINIATURE BULL TERRIER?
For Mini Bulls, that tough-girl attitude isn't just an act. This is a bullheaded breed with a serious stubborn streak, so Miniature Bull Terriers aren't the easiest to train. But their strong wills are exactly what makes working with your pup so important. The Miniature Bull Terrier prey drive makes them poor candidates for off-leash play outside a well-fenced area. And we mean well fenced — these dogs will laugh their way right through underground electronics.
This busybody needs a job, so put her to work—some Mini Bulls make wonderful therapy dogs—or enroll her in earthdog trials or agility training.
CARE & HEALTH
HOW MUCH DO MINIATURE BULL TERRIERS SHED AND WHAT ARE THEIR GROOMING NEEDS?
This breed's short coat is an easy keeper — just brush and bathe them as needed. They're infrequent to moderate shedders.
WHAT HEALTH PROBLEMS DO MINIATURE BULL TERRIERS HAVE?
Miniature Bull Terriers are a sturdy and robust breed. Some are born with inherited hearing problems.
Breed history has moved while this section is under construction. Please check out the first tab for fun facts about this breed's history. You can also read on to learn about this breed's ideal family situation.
ARE MINIATURE BULL TERRIERS GOOD FOR PEOPLE WITH ALLERGIES?
The American Kennel Club doesn't list Miniature Bull Terriers among its breeds recommended for allergy sufferers.
You can reduce your furry friend's impact on your allergies with frequent baths and brushings to reduce loose hairs and allergy-aggravating proteins in your pet's dander. Use a damp cloth to wipe off your dog after playing outside. Smaller dogs have less surface area, so they produce comparatively less dander than larger breeds — definitely something to keep in mind with a dog like a Miniature Bull Terrier! Remember that no breed is 100% hypoallergenic, and any breed can aggravate allergies.
WHAT IS A MINIATURE BULL TERRIER'S BEST DAY?
A Miniature Bull Terrier wants to do ALL THE THINGS with you, as long as those things are outside and on the go. She'll hike or walk or explore as long as you'll let her. Just be sure she's on a leash or within a well-fenced play area — again, that prey drive is real, and no amount of training counteracts a squirrel crossing your Mini Bull's path.
SHOULD I ADOPT A MINIATURE BULL TERRIER?
These dogs can live just about anywhere, and they're not particular about the weather. But this dog will walk all over you if you let her, so the Miniature Bull Terrier is not recommended for novice dog owners. For someone patient and consistent enough to put in the work, however, these are wonderful playmates, clowns and devoted companions.
Have you decided that a Miniature Bull Terrier is the perfect dog for you? Why not be your new best friend's hero and adopt a rescue! Be sure to check out our article on what to expect when you're adopting a dog or cat.