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14 ‘Bully’ Dog Breeds You Should Know

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14 ‘Bully’ Dog Breeds You Should Know

By Sarah Grace McCandless, Animal Planet

When someone says “pit bull,” you may picture a particular pooch — one with a stocky build, short coat and strong head, for example. But the breed is one of several dogs that fall under the umbrella of bully breeds. Unfortunately, dogs in this group have fallen victim to inaccurate stereotypes, and many people believe they’re naturally aggressive. In reality, though, the bully breed category offers a number of wonderful choices for potential owners — including those who are in search of a loyal, obedient, playful companion for their kids.

In fact, the American Temperament Test Society, Inc. (ATTS), a professional organization that independently tests the temperaments of over 25,000 dogs across 200 breeds, concluded that bully breeds such as the American pit bull terrier, American Staffordshire terrier and Staffordshire bull terrier all rank in the mid-80th to low-90th percentile in terms of friendly disposition — on par with dogs such as the beagle and the Australian shepherd.

A good attitude is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the positive attributes the bully breeds have to offer. Read on to learn more about the history of various bully breeds and what makes them tick, and see which one might make the perfect match for your lifestyle.

14. Boxer (above)

According to the American Kennel Club, the development of boxers traces back to at least the 19th century, when German breeders created the line by crossing different types of bulldogs with other breeds, including terriers and perhaps even mastiffs. Boxers are strong, smart and alert, with protective yet friendly temperaments. They are known to stand up on their hind legs and bat with their front paws when playing or engaging with an opponent — that’s where the name “boxer” comes from. Beyond providing companionship as a pet, these dogs have served in a number of other ways, including assisting the blind and acting as couriers during World War I. Boxers made their way to the U.S. shortly after World War I ended and now rank as one of the most popular breeds in the country, according to AKC registration statistics.

13. Alapaha Blue Blood

Named after the region of Georgia where it was first bred in the late 1970s, the Alapaha blue blood actually has roots that trace back to a now-extinct group of dogs — including the mountain bulldog, old southern white and old country (big) bulldog — that first arrived in America during the 18th century. A working dog at heart with natural herding instincts and capabilities, the Alapaha is also a loyal companion that’s particularly protective of its owner and friendly with children. With a medium, athletic build supporting a broad head, loose upper lip and wide set eyes, this dog needs a lot of daily exercise, which makes it a great choice for families that have plenty of backyard space.

See: Top 10 Pet Assistants

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1:23PM PDT on May 27, 2015

Great article. All breeds are only as good as their upbringing. Much like children, who I find far more unpredictable and annoying. ;-)

8:17AM PDT on Apr 12, 2015

Met a sweet Mastiff yesterday. A kind of I'll stand here or sit on your feet and you can pet me dog.

8:39AM PST on Feb 16, 2015

This list is missing the American Bully (finally recognized by UKC with a few other registries specific to the breed), & the Shorty Bull.

10:46AM PDT on Mar 28, 2014

Thank you for the article.. I am a proud American Bulldog mom. Have been a proud American pit bull terrier mom too. Best dogs I have ever had the pleasure of owning me!!

4:36AM PST on Jan 10, 2014

The one in the photo doesn't look like a Boxer at all! More like a Mastiff x Boxer mix.

5:59PM PDT on Oct 7, 2013

In memory of my puppy Brutus :) It's not the breed, it's the training.
We need to focus international attention on animal welfare. They can't wait!

8:00AM PDT on Sep 26, 2013


6:27AM PDT on Aug 26, 2013

They're only bad if lack of training

6:48PM PDT on Aug 11, 2013

Aww these cuties!!

They all look too cubby too run and catch you >,

8:51PM PDT on Jul 8, 2013

Thanks for the article

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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Nice infographics ;)

Helpful information, thanks.

thanks for the info

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